Filed Under: Chicken | Main Dish | Weeknight

Baked Chicken Pesto Parmesan

Recipe By Tessa Arias
July 28th, 2014

Baked Chicken Pesto Parmesan takes just 25 minutes and 4 ingredients to make and is loaded with cheesy goodness. It's a favorite easy weeknight recipe!

Yield: 4 servings

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook: 20 minutes

Baked Chicken Pesto Parmesan takes just 25 minutes and 4 ingredients to make and is loaded with cheesy goodness. It’s a favorite easy weeknight recipe!
Baked Chicken Pesto Parmesan - 25 minutes and 4 ingredients!

This Baked Chicken Pesto Parmesan recipe is for those nights. Those nights when your day was so crazy and hectic that the thought of having to feed your family sounds like a huge burden. Those nights when you need to get something on the dinner table quick, and refuse to succumb to grabbing fast food. This recipe is one that I turn to again and again because I usually have the ingredients on hand and because it’s so ridiculously easy. I’ve even left the recipe for Jared to make by himself, which is saying something because usually he doesn’t cook. Anyone can make this, even if you’re exhausted, worn down, and sleep deprived from a long day. It’s exactly the kind of weeknight recipe you all have been asking me for via email and on Facebook!

The simplicity of this recipe is perfect, but you can also switch things up and add your own twists if you’d like. Feel free to use whatever melting cheese you have on hand, or you could even go more classic with marinara sauce instead of pesto. The recipe is easy to halve for 2 servings, or double for larger families or for leftovers. I like to make this with homemade pesto which I like to make, scoop into an ice cube tray, freeze, then pop the pesto cubes into an airtight container and store in the freezer until I’m ready to defrost and use. I like to serve this chicken with whole wheat spaghetti tossed with olive oil, lemon zest and juice, parsley, salt and pepper and some steamed veggies.

What’s your go-to weeknight meal recipe?

Baked Chicken Pesto Parmesan - 25 minutes and 4 ingredients!

Recipe Rundown
Taste: Who doesn’t love the marriage of pesto and chicken, especially when there’s mozzarella and parmesan involved?
Texture: The chicken is perfectly tender and juicy, with a generous coating of pesto and beautifully melted and slightly golden cheese.
Ease: Easy peasy lemon squeezy. 25 minutes and 4 ingredients (not including salt and pepper) is all you need to get this on the table.
Appearance: Who could say no to golden melted cheese??
Pros: A perfectly quick, easy, and flavorful weeknight recipe that you’ll turn to again and again.
Cons: None.
Would I make this again? I’ve made this many times!

How to make
Baked Chicken Pesto Parmesan

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Baked Chicken Pesto Parmesan takes just 25 minutes and 4 ingredients to make and is loaded with cheesy goodness. It's a favorite easy weeknight recipe!


  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breast cutlets
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup pesto, homemade or store-bought
  • 1/2 cup grated mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Place the chicken on a foil lined baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper on both sides. Rub the tops of the chicken with the pesto then sprinkle with both cheeses. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and registers an internal temperature of 165°F.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Tessa Arias

About Tessa...

I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

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Recipe Rating

  1. #
    sally @ sallys baking addiction — July 28, 2014 at 3:07 am

    Only 4 ingredients? Absolutely on my “to-make” dinner list Tessa. Looks so good!

    • #
      Tessa — July 28, 2014 at 10:17 am

      Thanks Sally!

  2. #
    Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness — July 28, 2014 at 3:41 am

    Totally LOVING this chicken. Like you said, who doesn’t love pesto, chicken, cheese AND easy? Pinning!

    • #
      Tessa — July 28, 2014 at 10:18 am

      Exactly Taylor! Thanks 🙂

      • #
        adam — September 8, 2015 at 2:31 am


  3. #
    Cassie — July 28, 2014 at 5:14 am

    I can’t believe how awesomely simple this is. 4 ingredients + pesto = major winner. Genius idea, Tessa.

    • #
      Tessa — July 28, 2014 at 10:19 am

      Thanks so much Cassie!

  4. #
    Liz — July 28, 2014 at 5:47 am

    Looks and sounds good and easy. Thank you.

    • #
      Tessa — July 28, 2014 at 10:18 am

      Hope you make it soon!

  5. #
    Gaby — July 28, 2014 at 7:06 am

    Gorgeous dinner idea! Trying it soon!

    • #
      Tessa — July 28, 2014 at 10:19 am

      Thank you Gaby!

  6. #
    Jackie — July 28, 2014 at 8:26 am


    How many frozen cubes of pesto equall to 1/3 cup. Also, what are the measurements ingridients for the whole wheat spaghetti.

    • #
      Tessa — July 28, 2014 at 10:17 am

      Not every ice cube tray is the same size, but most are around 2 tablespoons per cube so you’d need about 5 pesto cubes. The spaghetti doesn’t require precision, it’s more eyeballing and how much you want to serve and what you think tastes best.

  7. #
    Julie @ Table for Two — July 28, 2014 at 11:41 am

    Ahhh I just made a bunch of homemade pesto this weekend cause I all of a sudden had a huge craving. I’m going to have to whip up some pasta and chicken with it soon! I love that you used pesto instead of the marinara sauce in the usual chicken parm!

    • #
      Tessa — July 28, 2014 at 3:47 pm

      That’s awesome Julie! Thank you 🙂

  8. #
    Leah — July 28, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    I made this tonight, and it was great! I just made pesto last night, had leftover pasta, had chicken I needed to use AND had the cheese – it was meant to be! Anyway, it was so easy, so good, and my picky boys both liked it. I even scraped the extra pesto & cheese off the foil and ate it on Wheat Thins! Thanks so much!

    • #
      Tessa — July 29, 2014 at 11:39 am

      Wow – love it!! So glad you and your family enjoyed the recipe 🙂 Thanks for commenting.

  9. #
    Erin @ The Spiffy Cookie — July 28, 2014 at 7:05 pm

    This might be the best change up to chicken parm. Love pesto!

  10. #
    Jessica — August 17, 2014 at 4:23 pm

    This is such a wonderful meal idea! I have always loved chicken parmesan and pesto, but had never thought to bring them together into such a tasty looking dish. I’ll be sure to make this during the week with all the extra basil our garden produced. Thanks for the meal inspiration!!

    • #
      Tessa — August 17, 2014 at 9:09 pm

      Thanks so much! Enjoy your garden fresh pesto 🙂

  11. #
    betsy — January 12, 2015 at 9:11 am

    urban pL8 has some delicious SPICY paleo chicken recipes!

  12. #
    adam — September 8, 2015 at 2:33 am


  13. #
    Patty — December 12, 2015 at 1:07 pm

    I’ve made this a bunch of times now and shared it with my daughter. Love, love, love it!

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