Chicken & Turkey/ Field Friendly Meal/ Main Dish

Pesto Pasta Salad with Chicken

Pesto Pasta Salad with Chicken

Mix up dinner or packed lunches with Pesto Pasta Salad with Chicken. It’s the perfect light main dish for summer potlucks and backyard barbecues!

I am always on the lookout for recipes that I can make ahead of time. This pasta salad fits the bill and it’s always welcome in our house when warm weather hits!

Pesto Pasta Salad with Chicken also makes a fabulous field meal for my farming friends!

As an added bonus, it only need five ingredients which likely means this pasta salad will join your regular meal plan rotation!

How to use leftover chicken to make pesto pasta salad

Is “leftovers” a dirty word in your household? Transforming leftover chicken is the perfect way to solve that particular problem.

Whether you have leftovers from Honey Mustard Grilled Chicken, a whole chicken made in an Instant Pot, or leftover rotisserie chicken, you’ll love this easy summer recipe.

Pesto Pasta Salad with Chicken Ingredients

Basically, the recipe title tells you everything you need to know!

Five ingredients – that’s it! If I can count them on one hand, it’s a win in my book. For this easy recipe we’ll need:

  • leftover grilled or rotisserie chicken
  • penne pastas
  • grape tomatoes
  • mozzarella cheese
  • prepared pesto

Recipe variations

If you can’t resist tinkering with recipes like me, there are all sorts of ways you can mix up this recipe.

  • pasta shapes – use rotini, bowtie or any other shape of pasta you can spear with a fork. I don’t recommend going too small or too long, though.
  • use a sprinkle of shredded parmesan for some added flavor
  • add baby arugula or baby spinach while the pasta is still warm. It will wilt and add a pop of color and nutrition!
  • make this lower carb by using chickpea pasta. Our kids actually love this and so do I!

Pasta Salad Recipes

Pesto Pasta Salad with Chicken

Pesto Pasta Salad with Chicken

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Mix up dinner or packed lunches with Pesto Pasta Salad with Chicken. It's the perfect light main dish for summer potlucks and backyard barbecues!

Ingredients

  • 12 oz penne pasta
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, cut in half
  • 2 cups cooked chicken, shredded or chopped
  • 1/3 cup pesto sauce
  • 3/4 cup shredded mozzarella
  • chopped basil, for garnish (optional)

Instructions

  1. Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain and add to a large bowl.
  2. Add pesto sauce to pasta and stir to coat while the pasta is slightly warm.
  3. Add tomatoes, cooked chicken and cheese. Toss to combine ingredients.
  4. Serve at room temperature or refrigerate to serve.

Notes

If you can't resist tinkering with recipes like me, there are all sorts of ways you can mix up this recipe.

  • pasta shapes - use rotini, bowtie or any other shape of pasta you can spear with a fork. I don't recommend going too small or too long, though.
  • use a sprinkle of shredded parmesan for some added flavor
  • add baby arugula or baby spinach while the pasta is still warm. It will wilt and add a pop of color and nutrition!
  • make this lower carb by using chickpea pasta. Our kids actually love this and so do I!

Nutrition Information
Yield 6 Serving Size 1 grams
Amount Per Serving Calories 267Total Fat 12gSaturated Fat 4gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 47mgSodium 253mgCarbohydrates 20gFiber 2gSugar 2gProtein 19g

Did you make this recipe?

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Other recipes using cooked chicken

Greek Chicken Salad

Chicken Avocado BLT Wraps

Shared on Meal Plan Monday

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