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May 21, 2020

Sheet Pan Pesto Chicken and Veggies (Paleo, Whole30, Keto)

Pesto chicken and veggies are smothered in a dairy free basil pesto sauce and baked in the oven in just 30 minutes! It’s perfect for busy weeknights and Paleo, Whole30, and Keto too!

Baked chicken legs, zucchini, and tomatoes covered in pesto

Making Pesto Chicken and Veggies

This pesto chicken and veggies combo is so delicious and perfect for summer. The chicken comes out of the oven so juicy and tender along with the fresh zucchini and tomatoes.

For the pesto sauce you should make my homemade dairy free spinach pesto, but if you are short on time feel free to buy the store bought pesto (it just won’t be as flavorful).

If you are buying pesto from the store, it will be in the refrigerated section. Make sure you look at the ingredient label when buying it to see if there are any sneaky ingredients like canola oil, sunflower oil, and preservatives.

Honestly I have a hard time finding quality pesto (especially that’s dairy free) at my local grocery stores, so that is why I make my own.

How To Make Homemade Pesto

You can easily make homemade pesto in just 5 minutes with a food processor or blender, and with ingredients you already have in your pantry, or garden (if you grow basil).

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups packed basil leaves, about 2 large bunches
  • 2 cups fresh spinach leaves, packed
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/3 cup raw pine nuts OR walnuts, almonds, pecans
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Instructions:

  1. Combine basil leaves, spinach, pine nuts, garlic, and salt in a food processor and process until ingredients are very finely chopped.
  2. Scrape down the sides of the food processor bowl and add the olive oil. Process again until a smooth paste has formed (about 15 seconds).
  3. Taste and adjust. Taste the pesto and add more salt, pepper, or garlic as needed.
  4. Store pesto in a small container and refrigerate for up to 1 week.
Chicken drumsticks, zucchini, and tomatoes covered in pesto on sheet pan

After you make the pesto, you can go ahead and slather it over the chicken and veggies. Pop the baking sheet in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through, and the veggies are perfectly tender.

I recommend using an instant read thermometer to check the temperature of the chicken at 25 minutes. You don’t want to over cook it. When the chicken is done cooking I topped mine with some extra fresh basil.

Pesto chicken legs, tomatoes, and zucchini on baking sheet

Recipe Variations

Chicken: you can swap the drumsticks for chicken thighs, or breast. I recommend using the skin on for dark meat and if you want a lighter dish you can use chicken breast. Be sure to cook breast no longer than 165-170 degrees, as breast can dry out quicker.

Veggies: swap out the zucchini and tomatoes for asparagus, yellow squash, bell peppers, broccoli, green beans or onions.

More Recipes With Pesto:

Print

Sheet Pan Pesto Chicken and Veggies (Paleo, Whole30)


  • Author: Abbey Blackwell
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Description

Pesto chicken and veggies are smothered in a dairy free basil pesto sauce and baked in the oven in just 30 minutes! It’s perfect for busy weeknights and Paleo, Whole30, and Keto too!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 medium zucchini, sliced
  • 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 pounds chicken drumsticks, about 5 drumsticks
  • 1/2 cup dairy free pesto, divided

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl, combine zucchini, tomatoes, and 3 tablespoons of pesto. Toss until the veggies are covered evenly, then transfer to a baking sheet.
  2. In the same bowl, combine the chicken drumsticks and 3 tablespoons of pesto and toss until coated evenly. Arrange chicken in with the vegetables on the baking sheet.
  3. Bake chicken for 25-30 minutes, or until chicken reads 165 degrees and vegetables are tender. Top the chicken and veggies with extra pesto if you prefer.

Notes

  • I used my homemade dairy free pesto, but you can use store bought as well. If you buy store bought pesto, make sure it is dairy free (for Paleo, Whole30), and/or has quality ingredients.
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: Whole30, Paleo, sheet pan chicken and veggies, pesto chicken healthy

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Hi, I’m Abbey! Food blogger, health coach, and personal trainer. I’m just a girl who loves food, and loves to show others how good healthy eating can taste! Here you’ll find easy real food recipes as well as healthy lifestyle and fitness content. I’d love to get to know you!

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