Last week I was totally craving pasta and cheese. Not sure if it was the weather or hormones!
I thought about making this yummy Baked Ziti with Spinach and Sausage but I didn’t have any sausage and I had some chicken that needed to be used.
I also wanted something a little different, not a tomato based dish so I decided to use pesto and balsamic vinegar in a chicken pasta dish instead! With some store bought pesto this dish is easy to put together.
I marinaded my chicken in the pesto. I also pounded the chicken breast to about 1/2 inch thin before marinading it. It allows the chicken to cook faster and more evenly. You can marinade it over night or just for a couple of hours. I then browned the chicken in a pan on the stove top for about 5 minutes and then put it into a 300 degree oven to finish cooking. Cook until cooked through, approx. 10-15 minutes depending on how thick your chicken is.
The sauce for this dish includes fresh diced tomatoes, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, fresh basil and some salt & pepper – yum!
This recipe makes a nice 9 x 13 full of yummy pasta!
Cook your pasta, slice up your chicken and add everything together. Pour it into a 9 x 13 and then cover with mozzarella cheese and bake!
As empty nesters a 9 x 13 is a lot of food! But this was so good my husband didn’t mind having it for dinner twice and taking it for lunch a couple of times!
For some other yummy pasta dishes try these:
- 3/4 C pesto
- 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, pounded to 1/2 inch thick
- 1 lb. penne pasta, cooked
- 2 C tomatoes, diced
- 1/4 C olive oil
- 1/4 C balsamic vinegar
- 4 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 C mozzarella cheese, shredded
- Placed pounded chicken breasts and pesto in a plastic bag in the refrigerator, overnight or at least 2 hours.
- Brown on both sides in frying pan for 5 minutes.
- Place in baking dish and finish baking in 300 degree oven until cooked through. Approximately 10-15 minutes depending on how thick chicken is.
- Cut up chicken into bite size pieces
- Cook pasta in boiling water
- Mix together tomatoes, olive oil, balsamic vinegar and basil in bowl.
- Dice chicken
- Mix together, tomato mixture, chicken, salt and pepper to taste and pasta and place in a 9 x 13 pan.
- Cover with cheese.
- Bake at 300 until cheese is melted and bubbly and mixture is heated through. Approx. 20 minutes.
recipe adapted from allrecipes