Baked Pesto Chicken

12 Comments
3 minutes
January 11, 2024
Carole JonesJump to Recipe

Honesty time:  I had to bribe my children to eat this dish.  The green color completely threw them for a loop.  I tried to explain to them that it was just pesto and that they would adore it.  They love pesto on pasta and pizza.  I guess slathering it all over chicken was just too big of a jump for them.

Once I promised a big bowl of ice cream for finishing the chicken, all six of them ate it.  And not to say “I told you so,” but they loved it.  Even my oldest said, “It is really good Mom, but I just don’t like how it looks!”  I have another pan of it in the freezer, so hopefully it will go over a bit smoother next time around!

I love recipes that are so easy to double.  One for now, one for later!  Many of you have noticed the addition of freezer instructions to some of my recipes.  I’ve had some emails asking how I use freezer meals and my own tips.  I’m working on putting together a post all about freezer cooking so stay tuned!

Baked Pesto Chicken

The original recipe instructs it to be baked while covered in foil, but I baked it uncovered instead.  I’m glad I did.  It makes quite a bit of sauce on it’s own when baking.  If it would have been covered, it would have boiled instead of baked!!

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Baked Pesto Chicken

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Ingredients

Scale
  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 3/4 C basil pesto
  • 3/4 C grated mozzarella cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Trim chicken of excess fat.  Slice lengthwise into 2-4 pieces, depending on size of breast meat.
  2. Spread some of the pesto in a thin layer across the bottom of your 9 x 13 pan.  Lay the sliced chicken on top, then spread on the remaining pesto.
  3. Cook, uncovered for 25 minutes.  Remove pan from the oven and top with the cheese.  Return to the oven for another 5-7 minutes until completely cooked.  Serve the sauce in pan over noodles or rice, or just over the cooked chicken.

Notes

**For freezer, use a disposable foil pan and cover tightly with foil or foil lid.  To bake, allow to thaw in fridge before cooking, or bake frozen for about 50 minutes or until chicken is done.

  • Author: Carole

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 chicken breast
  • Calories: 560
  • Sugar: 0g
  • Sodium: 295mg
  • Fat: 25g
  • Saturated Fat: 20g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 0g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 2g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Protein: 86g
  • Cholesterol: 15mg

Carole Jones

Carole Jones is an Arizona-based cookbook author & food blogger. She's authored The 30 Minute Cooking From Frozen Cookbook and the self-published Take 5: Chicken e-cookbook. For the past 15 years, Carole has shared her culinary adventures cooking and baking for her six brutally honest children here on My Kitchen Escapades. Hot, crusty bread is Carole's love language, but her two adorable grandchildren are a close second. Yes, second. Don't judge.

12 comments

Katie
12 years ago

would have liked the recipe for the pesto 😉

Carole
12 years ago

Katie: I used store bought pesto so no recipe needed 😉

Beth Welmaker
12 years ago

This recipe is for one, double for the freezer right?

lcap322
12 years ago

I made this but it had green beans which turned out real good. My husband loved it too. I will make this again and again. Its so easy to make…seriously. Thanks!

Anonymous
11 years ago

Can you marinate the chicken in the pesto before cooking it?

Carole
11 years ago

Absolutely!

2014: Week One | Jumping Raccoons
9 years ago

[…] those once in a while. I also ran in the garage again. Lucky B, he came home to another dinner, baked pesto chicken this time. Delicious. It was a standard evening: dinner, bath, bed for the kiddos; mom and dad time […]

Cheesy Spinach and Mushroom Chicken Bake
9 years ago

[…] Chicken Bake, Chorizo Chicken Bake, Basil Artichoke Chicken Bake, Spinach and Tomato Chicken Bake, Pesto Chicken Bake) but without offending my previous bakes, this is easily my new favorite.  Yes, it does take a bit […]

Beth
8 years ago

Can you bake the second one to freezer and then just thaw to eat, or do you need to freeze the chicken uncooked?

Thanks!

Carole
8 years ago

Hey Beth! You could certainly bake the frozen one first. Just know that when you reheat it, either in the microwave or oven, the meat will be a bit dried out

Martha hughes
8 years ago

Could you cook this in crockpot?

Carole
8 years ago

Sure Martha. Just don’t overlook it, which is the biggest offender of cooking chicken in a crockpot.

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