Joint cartilage has a limited regeneration capacity. Joint wash-out, debridement, abrasion, subchondral bone drilling or microfracture techniques trigger fibrous instead of hyaline cartilage tissue. Cartilage tissue engineering combines chondrocytes, synthetic and/or natural matrices and/or signaling molecules. These modalities can be used alone or in combination. Matrix-induced autologous chondrocyte implantation and/or transplantation has been frequently used recently in the regeneration of chondral defects. Chondrocytes can be combined with natural or synthetic matrices for this purpose. Results of the procedure, however, lack strong evidence of superiority over current surgical procedures frquently used in clinical practice. Indications, contraindications, applications, follow-up, potential complications and information on rehabilitation of autologous chondrocyte implantation are selected in this manuscript. Future prospective, longitudinal, randomized-controlled multi-center studies will provide high level evidence to the outcomes of this high-technology cutting edge method.