Caprese Chicken with Walnut Pesto
Tender chicken breast layered with homemade walnut pesto, fresh mozzarella, sliced tomatoes, fresh basil, and a drizzle of balsamic glaze is the one-pan meal you need on your dinner table! This Caprese Chicken with Walnut Pesto is ready in under 30 minutes!
If you’re looking for a quick and easy dinner idea, look no further than this recipe. The bright, herby, and garlicky flavors from the pesto paired with the sweet and tangy flavors from the balsamic glaze take your average chicken dinner into overdrive.
This recipe is based on the simple yet delicious flavors of the Caprese salad (also known as Insalata Caprese), which you can describe as a simple salad of fresh mozzarella layered with tomatoes, basil, and a splash of balsamic. I just added chicken into the mix to turn into a warm and complete meal.
The best part? That melty fresh mozzarella cheese!
Ingredients needed to make this Chicken Caprese with Pesto:
- Chicken is the base of the dish. Using organic chicken breast sliced in half ensures the chicken is cooked evenly and throughout without drying out. You’ll season the chicken with Italian seasoning, black pepper, garlic powder, ground thyme, Himalayan pink salt, and onion powder.
- You’ll need fresh basil, shelled walnuts, olive oil, grated parmesan cheese, whole garlic cloves, black pepper, garlic powder, and Himalayan pink salt to make your homemade pesto.
- Freshly sliced mozzarella is placed right on top of your homemade pesto. I use sliced mozzarella, but mini/pearl mozzarella is a great substitution.
- For the tomatoes, you have a lot of options. You can use vined tomatoes, regular/globe tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, grape tomatoes, or plum tomatoes. Any tomatoes variety will work for this recipe.
- You sprinkle fresh basil on top of the tomatoes before serving. It enhances the basil flavor you already get from the basil within the walnut pesto.
- The balsamic glaze is the finishing component and adds a special touch to the dish. To make this recipe easy, I purchase Bertolli Italian Glaze with Balsamic Vinegar of Modena, but you can also make a balsamic reduction which is a condensed and sweeter version of balsamic vinegar.
Recipe Tips & Tricks
- You can slice your boneless chicken breast in half for even cooking, or you can pound them flatter. The pounding will result in a larger-sized chicken breast. Both methods will ensure your chicken cooks perfectly. The goal here is to start with a thinner piece of chicken.
- Fresh mozzarella slices melt well and evenly over the chicken breast. You can use shredded mozzarella, but the melt may not be uniform, and it does melt a bit faster. Mini or pearl mozzarella balls melt great as well.
- Fresh pesto is fantastic, but you can purchase this premade too.
What can I serve with my Caprese chicken:
While this grilled chicken with pesto and mozzarella is very filling on its own, you can pair it with a side dish like asparagus, a side salad, zucchini, squash, broccoli, sauteed spinach, or a buttered orzo pasta blended with chopped vegetables.
Not only does this dish taste great, but it is light on the carbs too! It’s the perfect way to start the year on a lighter note with a recipe that is healthier but doesn’t slack on flavor.Print
Caprese Chicken with Walnut Pesto
- Total Time: 18 minutes
- Yield: 4 1x
Caprese Chicken with Walnut Pesto layers tender chicken breast with homemade pesto, mozzarella, tomatoes, fresh basil, and balsamic glaze.
- 1 lb boneless chicken breast
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp ground thyme
- 1/2 tsp Himalayan pink salt
- 1/4 tsp onion powder
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 lb fresh mozzarella cheese
- 1 tomato, thinly sliced
- balsamic glaze
- 2 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves
- 1/3 cup walnuts, shelled
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 2 whole garlic cloves
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp Himalayan pink salt
For the Walnut Pesto:
- Remove leaves from basil stem, then place in a food processor (paid link) along with the garlic cloves and walnuts. Pour half of the olive oil into the food processor (paid link) and blend ingredients.
- Slowly drizzle in the remaining olive oil and blend until smooth.
- Add blended pesto into a bowl and stir in grated parmesan cheese, black pepper, salt, and garlic powder.
For the Chicken:
- Cut fresh mozzarella cheese into thick slices and cut tomatoes into thin slices.
- Cut boneless chicken breast in half lengthwise and season both sides evenly with Italian seasoning, black pepper, garlic powder, ground thyme, salt, and onion powder.
- Heat a cooking pan to medium-high heat and add the olive oil.
- Cook chicken breast for 4 minutes on one side, then flip. Immediately layer the cooked side with pesto, mozzarella cheese, and one or two tomato slices. Cover and cook for an additional 4 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and drizzle balsamic glaze on top. Serve immediately.
You can slice your boneless chicken breast in half for even cooking, or you can pound them flatter. The pounding will result in a larger-sized chicken breast. Both methods will ensure your chicken is cooked perfectly. The goal here is a thinner piece of chicken.
Fresh mozzarella slices melt well and evenly over the chicken breast. You can use shredded mozzarella, but the melt may not be uniform, and it does melt a bit faster. Mini or pearl mozzarella balls melt great as well.
Fresh pesto is fantastic, but you can purchase this premade.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 8 minutes
- Category: Low Carb
- Method: Stove Top
- Cuisine: Italian
- Calories: 513
- Sugar: 0.8g
- Sodium: 594mg
- Fat: 36.1g
- Carbohydrates: 4.6g
- Fiber: 1.4g
- Protein: 42.3g
- Cholesterol: 116mg
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