This Easy Grilled Pesto Chicken with Fresh Tomato Pasta is a simple and delicious dinner idea. Fresh and flavourful.
If you’re looking for a fresh, flavourful and easy dish for dinner, this Pesto Chicken is a great option! This juicy grilled chicken is paired with a plate full of pesto pasta with fresh tomatoes and bocconcini cheese. So good. This recipe includes homemade and short-cut tips for pesto!
About this pesto chicken recipe:
Basil + chicken + barbecue = delicious. This recipe is especially delicious if you use all your fresh garden basil, and make a batch of pesto – the flavour from homemade pesto is unreal! The chicken in this recipe is flavourful with tastes of delicious basil and garlic. And the pasta with fresh tomatoes and bocconcini cheese carries the same pesto flavour, making a delicious combination!
Marinade the chicken with pesto sauce:
By adding the pesto sauce before grilling and letting the chicken marinade in the pesto, it has a chance to infuse the chicken with flavour, and it also makes it so moist and flavourful! Let the chicken marinade for at least 1 hour, or even overnight.
Serving this dish:
After the chicken is grilled, I like to slice it first then add/drizzle a little extra pesto over the top of the chicken breast right before serving. Also, when you’re ready to serve the chicken and pasta, you can set out some parmesan cheese, more fresh basil, pine nuts and extra pesto to garnish individual dishes. I know in our family, we each like to add extras to our plates.
The leftovers are delicious!
As an added bonus, the leftovers make a great lunch! Add any leftover chicken and toss it with the pasta and you have lunch the next day. If you have extra pesto, stir a little more in. You can heat up the leftovers, or serve them cold like a pasta salad.
For this recipe you can use a homemade pesto like my Basil Pesto Recipe in this post. If you want a delicious and SUPER easy pesto shortcut, use a pre-made pesto. We love the jar of pesto from Costco (Kirkland brand), and honestly, this is what I use most of the time.
Pesto Chicken Recipe Tips:
- Chicken: Use boneless, skinless chicken breast. You can also use boneless, skinless chicken thighs, chicken cutlets, filets or even turkey filets.
- Pesto: You can make homemade pesto or use your favourite pre-made pesto.
- Tomatoes: I like to use cherry tomatoes because they’re so flavourful and hold their shape well when sliced. But you can use any type of tomato.
- Pasta: Use 1 lb of your favourite dried pasta. We love spaghetti noodles! But you can use penne, fusilli, fettuccini…you could even use zucchini noodles (zoodles)!
- Cheese: I like to use small balls of bocconcini cheese. But you can also use bite sized squares of mozzarella cheese.
- Extra Seasoning: Pesto is quite salty, so I don’t add extra salt. If you like fresh ground black pepper, add a few grinds to the finished dish.
- Marinating Tip: For maximum flavour let the chicken marinate in the pesto for at least 1 hour, or even overnight. I like to put the chicken with the pesto into a ziplock bag, this makes it easy to mix and massage.
- Make Ahead: This chicken can be prepared up to 8 hours ahead of time. Mix the chicken with the pesto, then cover and refrigerate for up to 8 hours. Then remove and bring to room temperature for about 30 minutes before you barbecue.
- Extras: You can offer parmesan cheese, more fresh basil, pine nuts and extra pesto to garnish individual dishes.
- Leftovers: Store any leftover in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
- Meal Prep Tip! Double the recipe and serve the leftovers as pasta salad the next day!
PIN IT to make later!
Have a delicious day!
Please note this post was originally published in 2014. I have since updated it with new images and helpful recipe tips!