Garlic Pesto Chicken with Tomato Cream Sauce

This recipe was so easy for a weeknight, so tasty with its flavor combinations, and so great as dinners for Mike at the foundry. I found it off of Pinterest; while my picture doesn’t do the dish justice, I can verify that it’s still a great meal.

The important thing to do with this recipe is marinate the chicken for a few hours, or even overnight, as I did. I adapted the recipe to use spices in my kitchen, and not buying a bottle of marinade (which can have loads of sodium).

Garlic Pesto Chicken with Tomato Cream Sauce – adapted from Southern Girl Cooking

  • 1 pkg thin-sliced chicken breasts (chicken tenders will work also), cut into 1-inch strips
  • garlic powder, onion powder, italian seasoning, & salt-n-pepper, to taste
  • a few dashes of lemon juice
  • 2 spoonfuls of pesto

In a baking dish, layer ingredients & mix to coat chicken. Cover & store in refrigerator for up to 24 hours.

For the sauce, the night you’ll be eating it:

  • 8 oz pasta (I used basic, whole-wheat spaghetti)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, or 2 tbsp minced/crushed
  • 2 spoonfuls of pesto
  • 1/2 cup chicken or veggie broth
  • 8 oz of tomato sauce (I used Ragu)
  • 1 cup half-n-half
  1. In a saucepan, boil water & begin cooking pasta.
  2. In a skillet, cook up chicken & marinade. Cook chicken until no longer pink, and remove from heat.
  3. In the same pan, heat up the olive oil and cook the garlic.
  4. Add pesto & broth; cook until the liquid has reduced by half.
  5. Add tomato sauce, and stir. Add cream and simmer for 5 minutes. *At this point, I also added some frozen peas.*
  6. Add pasta & toss to combine; add chicken and do the same. Serve nice and hot, topped with a bit of parmesan cheese.

This can easily be made without the chicken, but I’m going to warn you – the chicken makes the dish. There is so much flavor from the marinade; I may even make the chicken alone by itself for another dish or two in the future. I love cooking Italian-inspired dishes, and this is a great, easy dish to add to your arsenal.


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