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Corkscrew Pasta With Versatile Pesto Sauce

Pesto Pasta With Chicken and Tomatoes

Amanda Haas


This pesto is also delicious over seared chicken with a piece of fresh mozzarella melted over the top. Heavenly! If you'd like to use gluten-free pasta, purchase Bionaturae or Ancient Harvest pasta.

Corkscrew Pasta With Versatile Pesto Sauce


  1. 8 ounces uncooked fusilli or rotini (corkscrew pasta)
    2 garlic cloves, peeled
    3 cups fresh basil leaves
    2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
    1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
    1 teaspoon kosher salt
    1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
    2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, divided
    1 medium onion, cut into 1/2-inch slices
    3 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
    4 cups cherry tomatoes
    Cooking spray
    1/3 cup (1.3 ounces) finely shredded fresh parmigiano-reggiano cheese


  1. Preheat grill to high heat.
  2. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain. Place in a large bowl and keep warm.
  3. With processor on, drop garlic through food chute; process until minced. Add basil and next 4 ingredients. With processor on, slowly pour oil through food chute; process until smooth.
  4. Brush 1 tablespoon vinegar over onion slices; brush remaining vinegar over chicken. Place 2 cups tomatoes in center of each of 2 (24-by-12-inch) pieces of foil. Fold foil over tomatoes; tightly seal edges.
  5. Place chicken, onion, and foil pouches on grill rack coated with cooking spray. Grill chicken, onion, and foil pouches 15 minutes or until onion is tender and tomatoes pop, turning all after 5 minutes. Remove onion and foil pouches from grill; turn chicken over, and cook an additional 5 minutes or until done. Let chicken stand 5 minutes. Chop onion; cut chicken into 1/4-inch slices. Add pesto, tomatoes, chicken, and onion to pasta; toss well. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup cheese; toss gently. Sprinkle remaining cheese evenly over servings. Serve immediately.

Amanda Haas is a cookbook author, cooking video host, and the founder of One Family One Meal, a website that helps families menu plan, grocery shop, and cook on a budget. Her cookbook, Real Family Food, features this and other delicious family-friendly recipes, as well as simple tips for bringing your family together around the table and a strategy for meal planning, budgeting, and shopping.

Image Source: Photo by Jim Bathie
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