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Chicken Pesto Pasta with Asparagus

10 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time

Chicken Pesto Pasta with Asparagus

10 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time

As easy, delicious pesto pasta with loaded with spinach, poached chicken and grilled asparagus. It can be served warm or cold as a pasta salad. Perfect for a quick and easy dinner and meal prep too!

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Ingredients (4 servings)

50g raw spinach
100g dry roasted almonds
2 tbsp dried basil
2 cloves of garlic
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2-4 tbsp water
1/2 lemon, juiced
-Salt, to taste
-Pepper, to taste
Poached Chicken
110g chicken breast
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
120ml water
Other Ingredients
1 bunch asparagus
240g pasta (4 servings)
40g raw spinach
-Salt, to taste
-Pepper, to taste

Make pesto

  1. In a food processor, add garlic and process until finely minced.
  2. Add spinach, almonds, basil and lemon juice, and process until a loose paste forms. Pausing to scrap down the sides if necessary.
  3. With the food processor running, slowly drizzle in olive oil. Then add 1 tbsp water at a time until you reach your desired consistency.
  4. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Poach Chicken

  1. Heat up olive oil in a skillet over medium heat and put in chicken. Season the top of the chicken with salt. Let it sear for 5 minutes.
  2. Flip the chicken, and add water. Cover and cook for 7-10 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165 °F / 75°C. You can check this using an instant read thermometer. Alternatively you can tell the chicken is cooked when the center is no longer pink.
  3. Remove chicken from skillet and let rest for 5 minutes before cutting into cubes.

Grill Asparagus

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F / 200°C.
  2. Trim off the end bits of asparagus, then cut into halves.
  3. Transfer asparagus to a baking dish. Spray lightly with cooking spray. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Grill in the oven for 4-5 minutes or until desired doneness.

Cook pasta and assemble

  1. Cook pasta according to instructions on package.
  2. 30 seconds before pasta is done cooking, add your spinach.
  3. Reserve 1/2 cup of pasta cooking water, then drain pasta and spinach.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, add cooked pasta, spinach, pesto, chicken and asparagus. Give everything a toss until combined. Add 1-2 tbsp of pasta cooking water to make it saucier if needed.
  5. Serve and enjoy!
  • Leftover pesto can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 1 month.
  • For the pesto, feel free to substitute almonds with other nuts or seeds you like!
  • You can use reduced-sodium chicken stock instead of water.
  • You can customize the consistency of the pesto to your liking by adjusting the amount of olive oil and water. If you're watching your fat intake, you can reduce the amount of olive oil or substitute it completely with water or vegetables stock.
  • Feel free to omit chicken or substitute with any other protein of choice!