Who doesn’t love a gourmet lunch idea that’s quick to make and easy to pack in a lunchbox? Lucky us, this grilled chicken pesto sandwich checks all those boxes.
Best of all, you can quickly assemble it with basic ingredients, like leftover pesto and chicken; let me show you how!
Chicken Sandwich with Pesto
If a cheesy grilled chicken sandwich wasn’t tasty enough, try adding some pesto to it and watch how this lunch goes from ordinary to extraordinary.
We all have a favorite recipe with pesto, but most of the time, they leaves us with only 1-2 tablespoons leftover. Thankfully, pesto makes a great sandwich spread, and it doesn’t take much to amp up the flavor.
Want to pack more lunches with chicken? It’s a great idea, and the easiest way to keep some on hand is to prepare extra whenever you are making dinner.
This hack works great with grilled, baked, and pan-seared chicken recipes, which are simple to prepare and include in salads, wraps, and sandwiches like this one!
What is in a Grilled Chicken Pesto Sandwich
Let’s take a look at what we need to make this epic lunch idea happen:
- Butter: for grilling
- Hearty bread: sliced whole-grain, sourdough, ciabatta- make it simple or as fancy as you like.
- Basil pesto: infused in every bite. Use this homemade pesto recipe or your favorite variety.
- Cooked chicken: you can use leftovers or thinly sliced deli chicken.
- Mozzarella cheese: works great with pesto, but so do all the other cheeses.
- Snacks: balance out the lunchbox with fresh fruit, veggies, and your kids’ favorite treats.
Watch this epic pesto chicken grilled sandwich come together in this quick video:
It’s fresh ingredients and ideas like this one that helps you pack incredible lunches all year long! Want more? You’ll find everything you need right below:
101 Packed Lunches eBook
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How to Pack a Grilled Chicken Pesto Sandwich for Lunch
Now, let me show you how to prepare and pack a proper grilled cheese in the lunchbox so the bread stays nice and toasty.
Spread the mayonnaise and pesto onto both slices of bread. Top one slice with the chicken and cheese. Assemble the sandwich and butter on both sides.
- Grill up and cool down
Heat a non-stick pan over medium-high heat, and grill the sandwich like you would any grilled cheese. Remove it from the heat, and allow the sandwich to cool down to room temperature before packing it into a lunch container.
- How to add snacks
If you wish to include fruit and veggies, make sure to pack them separately from the sandwich, so the bread stays crisp and fresh. A compartmentalized lunch container comes in handy for lunch-packing moments like this.
- Pack it away
Close the container and place it in the lunch bag with an ice pack.
Why should we let the sandwich cool after cooking? Great question! This trick prevents steam from building up in the container and making the bread soggy.
Grilled Chicken Sandwich with Pesto
- 2 tablespoons basil pesto
- 2 slices of hearty sandwich bread
- 3 ounces cooked chicken breast, thinly sliced
- 1-2 slices of mozzarella cheese
- Butter, for grilling
- Spread the pesto over both slices of bread. Layer the chicken and cheese onto one slice and assemble the sandwich. Butter both sides.
- In a medium non-stick pan over medium-high heat, grill the sandwich for 2 to 3 minutes until the bottom is golden brown. Flip and continue to grill until the cheese is melted.
- Remove from heat and allow the sandwich to cool to room temperature before slicing in half and packing it inside a lunch container.
- If adding veggies or fruit, be sure to pack them in a separate compartment or container.