Pesto Chicken & Orzo Pasta with Tomatoes & Zucchini
45g of Protein

Pesto Chicken & Orzo Pasta

with Tomatoes & Zucchini

40 MIN
2 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

For this vibrant, crowd-pleasing dish, we’re combining tender orzo pasta with tomatoes and zucchini, then tossing it all with our irresistible basil pesto. You'll top it with seared chicken and finish it off with a sprinkle of romano cheese for a touch of richness.
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Dietary Information

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45g Of Protein
  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    750 Cals (est.)
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ingredients
Pesto Chicken & Orzo Pasta with Tomatoes & Zucchini
Title
  • 2 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • 4 oz Orzo Pasta
  • 4 oz Grape Tomatoes
  • 1 Zucchini
  • ⅓ cup Basil Pesto
  • 2 cloves Garlic
  • ¼ tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
  • ¼ cup Grated Romano Cheese
  • 1 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp Weeknight Hero Spice Blend (Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Smoked Paprika & Whole Dried Parsley)
Prepare the ingredients
1 Prepare the ingredients

Fill a medium pot 3/4 of the way up with salted water; cover and heat to boiling on high. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Halve the zucchini lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise. Peel and roughly chop 2 cloves of garlic. Halve the tomatoes; place in a bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Stir to coat.

Cook the pasta
2 Cook the pasta

Add the pasta to the pot of boiling water. Cook, stirring occasionally, 8 to 10 minutes, or until tender. Turn off the heat. Drain thoroughly and return to the pot. Cover to keep warm.

Cook the zucchini
3 Cook the zucchini

Meanwhile, in a medium pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the sliced zucchini in an even layer. Cook, without stirring, 3 to 4 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add the chopped garlic and as much of the red pepper flakes as you’d like, depending on how spicy you’d like the dish to be. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 2 to 3 minutes, or until softened. Transfer to a bowl; cover with foil to keep warm. Rinse and wipe out the pan.

Cook the chicken
4 Cook the chicken

Pat the chicken dry with paper towels; season on both sides with salt, pepper, and enough of the spice blend to coat (you may have extra). In the same pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the seasoned chicken. Cook 6 to 9 minutes per side, or until browned and cooked through.* Transfer to a cutting board.

*The USDA recommends a minimum safe cooking temperature of 165°F for chicken.

Finish the pasta & serve your dish
5 Finish the pasta & serve your dish

To the pot of cooked pasta, add the cooked zucchini, seasoned tomatoes, pesto, vinegar, half the romano, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Stir to combine. Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired. Slice the cooked chicken crosswise. Serve the finished pasta topped with the sliced chicken. Garnish with the remaining romano. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

Prepare the ingredients
1 Prepare the ingredients

Fill a medium pot 3/4 of the way up with salted water; cover and heat to boiling on high. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Halve the zucchini lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise. Peel and roughly chop 2 cloves of garlic. Halve the tomatoes; place in a bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Stir to coat.

2 Cook the pasta

Add the pasta to the pot of boiling water. Cook, stirring occasionally, 8 to 10 minutes, or until tender. Turn off the heat. Drain thoroughly and return to the pot. Cover to keep warm.

Cook the pasta
Cook the zucchini
3 Cook the zucchini

Meanwhile, in a medium pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the sliced zucchini in an even layer. Cook, without stirring, 3 to 4 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add the chopped garlic and as much of the red pepper flakes as you’d like, depending on how spicy you’d like the dish to be. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 2 to 3 minutes, or until softened. Transfer to a bowl; cover with foil to keep warm. Rinse and wipe out the pan.

4 Cook the chicken

Pat the chicken dry with paper towels; season on both sides with salt, pepper, and enough of the spice blend to coat (you may have extra). In the same pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the seasoned chicken. Cook 6 to 9 minutes per side, or until browned and cooked through.* Transfer to a cutting board.

*The USDA recommends a minimum safe cooking temperature of 165°F for chicken.

Cook the chicken
Finish the pasta & serve your dish
5 Finish the pasta & serve your dish

To the pot of cooked pasta, add the cooked zucchini, seasoned tomatoes, pesto, vinegar, half the romano, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Stir to combine. Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired. Slice the cooked chicken crosswise. Serve the finished pasta topped with the sliced chicken. Garnish with the remaining romano. Enjoy!

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