This easy and delicious Pesto Chicken & Pasta is sure to become a family favorite!
Twenty years ago, when I was a newlywed and had my very own kitchen for the first time, I spent a great deal of time trying out new recipes to find new things that Ricky liked. One of my most successful finds in this area was a little paperback cookbook brochure up at the checkout counter. Just about every recipe I tried became a favorite. I tweaked them a bit to fit our own tastes and then passed them on for Mama to try. When they got rave reviews from both of us, I knew I had a winner.
This Pesto Chicken and Pasta is one of those recipes. The original version was a bit more complicated but things tend to get streamlined and simplified in my kitchen, I don’t have time for fussy dishes, and the easy version of this has been a favorite for two decades.
Of course, Mama took the time to handwrite all of our favorites into her personal cookbook so they’ve been preserved for the generations to come. She’s good about that. She takes meticulous notes on everything and is never without a notebook and a pen should the need arise. I take lots of notes as well but the difference is that I lose the notes shortly after taking them whereas my mother likely has every note she has ever written in the last five decades – and she knows exactly where they are.
She’s the organized one whereas I’m more of a creative mess – or mastermind as I like to think of it. 🙂 I tend to lose things because my brain is always on the next thing I am getting ready to do and often, during the course of my day, my focus is not on the menial task at hand. For example, brushing my hair may begin in front of the bathroom mirror but finish somewhere in the living room because I remembered a book I wanted to get a quote from. As a result, I absentmindedly sit my brush down in my living room chair or on top of an end table rather than putting it back in the bathroom drawer and the next time I need it I have to go through exactly what I was doing when I was brushing my hair in order to find it. My mother, her brush comes out of the bathroom drawer and she stands right over that drawer until she is done and puts it right back in, closing it immediately. These different scenarios are why I end up buying extra brushes and Mama often jokingly brags something to the tune of “I’ve had the same brush since I was x years old because as soon as I am done using my things I put them right back where they go.” I roll my eyes, we each laugh at ourselves and one another and go on about our lives, grateful for the humorous contrast in our personalities.
What a blessing to see the opportunities for laughter in your own life and to be able to appreciate the rainbow of personalities around us! Do you and someone close to you have hilariously different personalities? Tell us about it in the comments on this post!
This recipe for Pesto Chicken & Pasta uses items I generally have on hand. Sometimes I have to go buy the Pesto sauce but that is about it.
You’ll need: 3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts or 1.5 pounds chicken tenders, petite diced tomatoes (undrained), crushed tomatoes (undrained), pesto sauce, minced garlic, salt and pepper to taste, and a little olive oil. You’ll also need some pasta of your choice (my daughter loves bowties) and a few tablespoons of parmesan cheese if you’d like, but that is totally optional.
If you’d like to keep this on the lower carb side, just use zero carb pasta or have this dish without any pasta at all, the chicken and sauce are enough on their own to satisfy.
On a sidenote: I dearly love Pesto. I usually pick up a jar at Aldi. If you’ve never bought it before it is basically basil, garlic, cheeses, and some olive oil. You can find it near the spaghetti sauce at pretty much any grocery. As far as flavor goes, it packs a delicious punch!
Ooh goodness gracious! Look at that delicious sauce covering up all the wonderful chicken!
Enjoy your fresh and flavorful family pleasing meal of Pesto Chicken & Pasta!
- Olive Oil
- 3-4 chicken breasts boneless skinless (thin) or 1.5 pounds boneless skinless chicken tenders
- 1 can 14 oz petite diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 can 14 oz crushed tomatoes, undrained
- 1/2 cup pesto sauce
- Tablespoon minced garlic
- salt and pepper to taste
- Fresh cooked pasta of your choice for serving
- Few tablespoons grated parmesan cheese optional
- In large skillet place 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium high heat. Add chicken breasts and cook until browned on both sides, flipping as needed. Chicken does not have to be done in the center.
- Add both cans of tomatoes with juice, pesto sauce, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir together and reduce heat to medium low, cooking until chicken is no longer pink in the center and sauce is heated through.
- Spoon chicken and sauce over fresh cooked pasta. Garnish with parmesan if you'd like. Enjoy!
Next time your tempted to fight fire with fire remember, the fire department uses water.
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