Pesto Tortellini with Chicken
and broccoli / spinach
Smarts: Using store-bought pesto is a great way to simplify this meal.
- Pine nuts - 2 Tbsp (sub walnuts or pecans)
- Cheese, parmesan (opt) - 1 oz, cut into large pieces
- Garlic - 1 clove, peeled
- Basil leaves, fresh - 1 1/2 oz
- Lemon juice - 2 tsp
- Oil, olive - 3 Tbsp
- Pine nuts - 1 Tbsp (sub walnuts or pecans)
- Broccoli florets - 12 oz
- Cheese, parmesan (opt) - 1 oz, grated
- Chicken breast, boneless and skinless - 1 lb, thinly sliced
- Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp + 1 Tbsp
- Water - 1 Tbsp
- Baby spinach - 5 oz
- Pasta, tortellini - 12 oz (sub any fun pasta shape)
- Toast pine nuts - Toast nuts (portions for pesto and pasta) in a dry skillet or frying pan until fragrant and golden, 3 to 4 minutes. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Broccoli / Cheese (portion for pesto and pasta) - Prep as directed. Store separately. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Make pesto - Peel garlic cloves. Place nuts (portion for pesto), parmesan cheese (portion for pesto), garlic, basil leaves, and lemon juice in a food processor. Pulse until all ingredients are well chopped. With food processor running, drizzle in olive oil until smooth. (Add some additional olive oil if needed to help everything blend.) Season to taste with some salt and pepper. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Chicken - Slice chicken into thin strips. Tenderize with a fork and season with some salt and pepper. (Can be done 1 day ahead)
- Bring a large pot of salted water for the pasta to boil.
- While water is heating up, place a large skillet or frying pan with first portion of cooking oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken and saute until golden brown and cooked through. Set chicken aside and return pan to heat.
- To heated pan, add second portion of cooking oil and then broccoli and water. Cover pan with a lid and let broccoli steam, covered, until nearly tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove lid and add spinach to pan. Continue cooking broccoli until most of the water has cooked off, broccoli is tender, and spinach is wilted.
- While broccoli is steaming, add tortellini to boiling water and cook according to package directions. (Tortellini cooks quickly, so keep an eye on it.)
- Drain tortellini.
- Toss together tortellini, broccoli, spinach, and chicken. Fold in pesto. Taste and season with some salt and pepper.
- Serve pasta with pine nuts (portion for pasta) and parmesan cheese (portion for pasta) on top. Enjoy!
So fast and easy and my kids had 4 servings each. I up the pasta to 12oz, which is my usual when the recipe calls for 8. Took less than 30min including prep and 3 trips to the garden to pick basil (1.5oz is more than I thought)! Oh! Also, put the broccoli in with the pasta for the last couple minutes instead of cooking it on its own. Left the chicken in the pan and added spinach when it was almost done. Then, tossed everything together. Used walnuts instead of pine nuts because apparently there is a shortage of pine nuts.1 Helpful
Used store bought pesto and farro instead of tortellini. Tasty and came together quick!0 Helpful
A quick and easy meal - used jarred pesto and skipped the pine nuts/walnuts and extra parm0 Helpful
So easy and tasty! Used store bought pesto in a jar, brand is DeCecco from Schnucks - Lindburgh. Bought family size tortellini. Will be great leftovers.0 Helpful
Another hit with the family.0 Helpful
yum! loved it and super easy with store bought pesto!0 Helpful
Good easy meal. Made it with fresh tortellini from the refrigerated section of the grocery store.0 Helpful