Crazy Easy Pesto Grilled Chicken Recipe

5 / 5 ( 1 Review )
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Grilled pesto chicken recipe

Painless Pesto Grilled Chicken Recipe

So simple, yet so delicious. This pesto grilled chicken recipe is the latest addition to my favorite grilling recipes. The chicken is tender, moist, and has a great flavor. Everyone in my family loved it when I made it! The ease and simplicity of the recipe is a major bonus too.

easy grilled pesto chicken - only a few ingredients

Pesto Grilled Chicken Ingredients

This recipe only calls for a handful of simple ingredients: chicken, pesto, rice vinegar, salt, and sugar. That’s it! Add it all to a large resealable bag and shake it up. (If you use seasoned rice vinegar, you can omit the salt and sugar.)

If you’re not familiar with pesto, don’t let the green color scare you off. It is typically a sauce of basil, pine nuts, garlic, Parmesan, and olive oil. Costco sells an awesome pesto sauce, but you can also find it at nearly any other grocery store or even make your own.

pesto rice vinegar marinade for chicken

Cooking & Serving Tips

You can leave the chicken breasts whole, marinate and grill, then slice them up for serving. I like to pound the breasts flat a bit first to help even out the thickness so they will cook more quickly and evenly.

There’s just something I love about these grilled pesto chicken kebabs though. Not even sure what. Maybe because they’re easy to eat and kinda fun. I don’t know, but this chicken is excellent either way!

For chicken kebabs, you want to thread the chicken onto the skewers, rolling or folding as needed to maintain about 1-inch cubes. Leave some space at each end of the skewers. The skewered chicken pieces should be lightly touching each other, not squished and not fully separated. Enjoy!

Try not to skip the foil tent and resting time right after cooking because that will help enhance the tender, juiciness of the chicken.

Norpro Stainless Steel Skewers, Set of 6

I have a few sets of these Norpro 14-inch Stainless Steel Skewers. Love ’em! And I always wear my Pit Mitt to easily turn the skewers on the grill.

Crazy easy grilled pesto chicken

More recipes with pesto:

large pesto roast beef sub sandwich

easy grilled pesto chicken kebabs recipe

More of my favorite kebab recipes:

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Pesto grilled chicken recipe

Grilled pesto chicken recipe

Crazy Easy Pesto Grilled Chicken Recipe

You're going to love how easy this pesto grilled chicken recipe is. It's absolutely delicious as well.
5 / 5 ( 1 Review )
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Prep Time: 12 hours
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Total Time: 12 hours 8 minutes
Serves: 4
Adjust Servings: 4


  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup pesto
  • ¼ cup rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar


  • Chop the chicken in 1-inch pieces for kebabs, or leave the chicken pieces whole and flatten a bit to help even out the thickness of the breast.
  • Place the chicken in a gallon-size resealable bag.
  • Add the pesto, rice vinegar, salt, and sugar to the bag, seal, and shake until combined and chicken is coated.
  • Refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 12 hours.
  • Turn all grill burners to high, close lid, and let preheat for about 15 minutes.
  • Leave the primary burner on and adjust to a medium-high heat. Turn off other burners.
  • Grill the chicken over the primary burner with lid closed.
  • For kebabs, turn one-quarter every 2 minutes, cooking for a total of 8 minutes. For whole chicken breasts, cook for 5-6 minutes each side.
  • When cooked through, remove from grill and tent with foil to let rest for 5-10 minutes, then serve.

Recipe Notes

This chicken may be cooked on the grill, in a skillet, or broiled in the oven.


Calories: 505kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 51g | Fat: 29g | Sodium: 1424mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g

Recipe Adapted From: Mel's Kitchen Cafe

Ingredients: Chicken, Pesto, Rice Vinegar, Salt, Sugar
Meal Type: Main Dish, 4th of July, St. Patrick's Day, Summer, Egg Free, Gluten Free
Categories: BBQ, Meat and Poultry, Grill

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