Pesto Chicken Rollatini with Lemon Scented Fusilli

Pesto, like hummus, is something I haven’t ever made myself for some reason. I always just buy it. It seems easy enough to make it, and in doing so I could customize it to exactly the taste I want, but it just hasn’t happened yet.

Fortunately, I found a store-bought brand that I just love. It is one of the only ones I’ve ever found that doesn’t have nuts in it (not even pine nuts, which I heard are actually seeds? Either way, I’m not going to test my allergies to them…), and it also contains no preservatives or other nasties.

IMG_1702I like to add this pesto to a big bowl of quinoa or spread on ciabatta to make a caprese sandwich. But this last week I tried something I should have years ago: I spread it on chicken, added some cheese and spinach, rolled the chicken up, and baked it.

IMG_1696And the result was one of the most deliciously flavored chicken dishes I’ve ever had.

Pesto Chicken Rollatini (egg and nut free)
serves 4

Ingredients:
– 4 chicken breasts
– 1/4 cup pesto, store-bought or homemade
– 4 slices of provolone or havarti cheese
– 1/2 cup spinach
– 1/3 cup panko breadcrumbs
– salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, and/or garlic powder, to taste

– toothpicks, for securing roll

Directions:

  1. Spray a 7×11 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Heat oven to 350*F.
  2. Pound out each chicken breast to 1/4-inch thickness. (I use a resealable plastic bag and a meat tenderizer to do this, but you could sandwich the chicken between plastic wrap and use a rolling pin to pound it out.)
  3. Lay the chicken out on a work surface. Spread about 1 teaspoon of the pesto onto each chicken breast. Top each with a slice of cheese, and a few leaves of spinach.
  4. Roll up each chicken breast and secure with toothpicks. (I use about 4 toothpicks each, as I want to ensure the cheese doesn’t melt out too much!)
  5. Place each rollatini in the baking dish, with the seam either to the side or down. Sprinkle the top with panko and seasonings.
  6. Cover the dish loosely with aluminum foil, and bake for 35 minutes.
  7. After that time, remove the foil and bake an additional 10 minutes, until the tops of the rollatini are golden brown.
  8. Serve hot with a side of veggies or over lemon-scented pasta, and enjoy!

IMG_1694

———–

I wanted something deliciously Italian to serve with the rollatini when my friends Briana and Amber came over for lunch. It was a beautiful summer day, and I was inspired to use lemon. So, based on this recipe, I made lemon-scented fusilli.

Lemon-Scented Fusilli (egg, nut, and dairy free)
makes 8-10 servings

Ingredients:
– 1 lb. whole wheat fusilli
– salt for pasta water
– 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
– 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
– 1/4 tsp. cracked black pepper

Directions:

  1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse.
  2. Whisk together lemon juice, olive oil, and black pepper. Pour over pasta, stir, and enjoy!

——–

IMG_1698Have a great weekend!

27 comments

  1. That recipe looks so good, I might have to try it this week.

    I love pesto too. One time I ordered a pesto pizza at a restaurant.

    1. Let me know if you do try it! Pesto pizza sounds wonderful…I might have to give that a try sometime. šŸ™‚

  2. Holy cow. This looks soooo gooooood. Mmmm that pesto chicken. I want.

    1. Thanks! šŸ™‚

  3. This sounds incredible! I looove pesto, and I’m never one to turn it down. šŸ™‚ I’m going to have to try the recipe this week!

    1. Thanks! I hope you do! Let me know if you like it. šŸ™‚

  4. Yum! Looks delicious!

  5. This looks incredible!! šŸ™‚

  6. Oh wow, this looks wonderful! I’m going to have to try to think up a vegetarian version. I just can’t say no to pesto!

    1. Hmmm…that’s a good idea. I’ll have to try making a vegetarian version too! Please let me know if you do and how it turns out!

  7. Get. Out. Of. Town.
    This looks so good šŸ™‚ I had pesto on a bagel sandwich a while ago and it was to die for.

    1. Haha thanks! That sounds fantastic…I think pesto could go on just about anything, but a bagel? Yes please!

  8. chelpu · · Reply

    We tried this for lunch today and it was wonderful. Thanks, Olivia!

    1. Good, I’m so glad! Thanks for letting me know! šŸ™‚

    1. Aw, thank you SO much!! I really appreciate it. šŸ˜€

  9. Looks delicious! I’ll have to try these!

  10. […] Thursday afternoon, I had my friends Briana and Amber over for lunch. I made Pesto Chicken Rollatini and Lemon-Scented Fusilli for us all and I think it’s safe to say we all loved […]

  11. What a lovely recipe! I love that whole combination. Pinned. šŸ™‚

    Stopping by from the What’s Cookin’ Wednesday Party. Have a great week!

    Julie @ This Gal Cooks

    1. Thanks, I hope you like it! Thanks for stopping by!

  12. debraaelliott1960 · · Reply

    So yummy in your tummy goodness. Stopping by from What’s Cooking Wednesday.

    1. Thank you, and thanks for stopping by!

  13. Made this for dinner tonight. The mister said it was “awesooome”. So easy too!

    1. Good, I’m so glad to hear that! Thanks for stopping by and letting me know what you thought! šŸ™‚

  14. […] made some of that Pesto Chicken Rollatini, and added a side of roasted veggies. SO GOOD. (^^Shameless […]

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