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Thursday, September 10, 2009

Grilled Chicken with Pesto Pasta by Debbie

6 chicken breasts
Italian dressing
1 box whole wheat spaghetti
1 recipe Pesto (see recipe below)

1 cup firmly packed fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup firmly packed parsley springs with stems removed
1/2 cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
1/4 cup pine nuts, walnuts, or almonds
1 large clove garlic, quartered
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup olive oil or cooking oil
1/4 cup milk

Combine the chicken breasts and Italian dressing. Let this marinate for several hours, or freeze at this point.

To prepare the pesto, combine all ingredients, except the oil and milk, in a food processor or blender. Cover and process until a paste forms. Gradually add the oil and process until the consistency is like soft butter. Transfer the pesto to a mixing dish and whisk in about a quarter cup of milk. Cover and set aside, or freeze at this point.

Serving Day:
Thaw chicken breasts and pesto in the refrigerator. Leave the pesto covered until you are ready to use it, or lightly coat it with olive oil (this keeps the pesto from turning brown).

Grill the chicken breasts (or bake in the oven).

Cook the pasta according to the package directions. When the pasta is done, drain and return to the cooking pot. Add the pesto directly to the pasta and stir until the pasta is completely coated. When the chicken is cooked, slice the breasts into strips and place on top of the pasta.

Note: When making my pesto, I use Parmesan cheese, walnuts, and olive oil. The pesto recipe is from the Better Homes and Gardens cook book. Our family LOVES pesto - I hope your family enjoys it too!


  1. Kids LOVED the pesto pasta... Hubby RAVED about the chicken... I liked it all! :) Everyone was happy - THX for a great dinner!
    :) Mags

  2. We also loved the Pesto dish!! The chicken was perfect! I would have liked just a little bit more pesto sauce for the box of pasta. I cooked the whole box of pasta and it just drank up the pesto sauce. Wonderful meal! Thanks!

  3. 5 thumbs up. The kids said, "Super awesome great!" Thanks!

  4. We really liked this meal! I made it with bow tie pasta and the pesto was plenty for the whole box. I didn't read your instructions before I thawed it out and the pesto turned brown...just like you said it would:) Thanks for a tasty and delicious meal! Missy