Quick, easy, and creamy pasta with grilled chicken and pesto. One of my favorite ways to use pesto is in a light cream sauce. This pasta mix is delicious and great for a week night meal!
Pick Your Pesto
For this recipe, I used my homemade Parsley Pistachio Pesto. You can use any type of store bought or homemade pesto. In my opinion, homemade is always the way to go.Jump to Recipe
Prepare The Chicken
Rub the chicken with the pesto of your choosing. Season it with salt and pepper as well. I usually let it sit for 5-10 minutes before starting to cook it. This lets the chicken absorb more of the pesto flavor.
Grill The Chicken
You can use any type of pan – I used a grill pan to get the marks on the chicken. This gives the chicken a little char without using an outdoor grill.
About 10 minutes on each side should do the trick. Make sure you don’t overcook the chicken. It will get added back to the pot later in the recipe and it will get cooked a little more.
Start The Pesto Sauce
Every great sauce starts with some onions and garlic! Add some olive oil into a sauce pan. Stir in the chopped onions and mushrooms and saute. At the last minute, add in the garlic and the cherry tomatoes. You can used minced or lightly chopped garlic – either will work.
Add The Half & Half. Bring this to a slow boil before adding the Pesto.
Scoop the remaining pesto into the pan.
Slowly adding in the chicken stock, simmer the sauce for another 15 minutes or so.
Slice The Chicken
While the pesto sauce is simmering, slice up the chicken to get it ready to add back to the pasta.
Cook The Pasta
If you’re using boxed pasta, boil the water and cook the pasta according to those instructions. I used a penne shaped pasta but you can use whatever type you like!
Mix It Up!
Once the pasta is cooked, add all of the ingredients to the pot! I recommend adding half of the sauce to the pasta. This way, if you want to add more to your individual bowl, you’ll have some extra.
Top with Parmesan cheese and serve with warm garlic bread!
Chicken & Pesto Pasta
- 1.5 lbs Chicken Breast
- 1/2 cup Pesto
- 1 cup Half & Half
- 1/2 cup Chicken Stock
- 1 box Penne Pasta
- 1 Medium Onion
- 4 Chopped Garlic Cloves
- 1 container Sliced Mushrooms
- 1 container Cherry Tomatoes
- Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper
- Heat a pan to medium – I used a grill pan for this to get the grill marks on my chicken
- Add the chicken breasts to the pan. Cook for about 10 minutes on each side. You will add the chicken to the pasta mix so you don’t want to overcook the chicken.
- While the chicken is cooking, chop the onion and heat a saute pan with olive oil.
- Add the mushrooms and onions. Saute for about 10 minutes.
- Add the chopped garlic and cherry tomatoes to the same pan. Cook for another minute.
- Add the half and half. Once it starts to bubble, add the remaining pesto to the pan.
- Let the sauce simmer, slowly adding in the chicken stock.
- Slice the cooked chicken and add to the sauce.
- Boil your pasta per the instructions on the box. Tip: Use a larger pot than normal so that you can add the sauce and chicken to the same pot.
- Once the pasta is cooked and drained, combine all ingredients together.