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pesto chicken sandwiches

Slow Cooker Pesto Chicken Sandwiches

  • Author: Jessie
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 4 hours
  • Total Time: 4 hours 15 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 4 Sandwiches 1x

Description

An easy slow cooker recipe for busy weeknights.


Scale

Ingredients

FOR THE CHICKEN:

  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1/2 cup basil pesto
  • salt and pepper to taste

TO ASSEMBLE THE SANDWICHES:

  • 4 rolls, halved (I used a nice crusty French bread roll)
  • 4 Tbsp. mayonnaise or plain Greek yogurt
  • 8 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 large tomato, sliced
  • (optional) extra chopped fresh basil, for garnish

Instructions

FOR THE CHICKEN:

  1. Add chicken breasts, pesto, salt and pepper to your slow cooker. Cook on low for 4-6 hours.
  2. When chicken has cooked, remove slow cooker lid and let the chicken cool for a few minutes, then use two forks to shred the chicken (I do this right in the slow cooker!) As you shred, the chicken will soak up any extra pesto and moisture still in the slow cooker, so don’t worry about draining away any excess liquid.

TO ASSEMBLE THE SANDWICHES:

  1. Lightly toast your sandwich rolls (you can do this in a regular toaster or pop the roll halves on a baking sheet and broil them in the oven for a minute).
  2. Spread a light layer of plan Greek Yogurt (or mayonnaise) across each of the roll halves. Top with a scoop of the pesto chicken, a few slices of fresh mozzarella, and a few tomato slices.
  3. Season the tomatoes with a pinch of salt and fresh ground pepper. If you’d like, you can add a pinch of chopped fresh basil for extra garnish and flavor.
  4. Place the top halves of your rolls on the sandwiches and serve immediately.

Notes

I used boneless, skinless chicken breasts for this recipe, but feel free to use whichever cut(s) you like. Keep in mind that you may need to adjust the cooking time for different cuts of chicken.

Cooking time for the chicken may vary depending on the size of your slow cooker. I use a relatively small slow cooker, so if you have a larger slow cooker you may want to add extra pesto or a splash of water to preserve moisture as the chicken cooks. Just keep an eye on the chicken as it cooks and use your best judgment!

A well-balanced, well-seasoned pesto is the key to getting great flavor with this chicken. I use homemade basil, cilantro, pea, or arugula pesto. If the chicken needs a little more flavor than your pesto has on its own, add extra salt, pepper, or a squeeze of lemon juice to brighten it up.

These sandwiches are great with hot or cold chicken – use the chicken when it’s still hot from the crockpot, or make it in advance and keep it in the fridge to assemble a cold sandwich on the fly!

If you’re using the chicken while it’s still hot, the heat from the chicken will melt the mozzarella a little bit. If you want your cheese to be extra melty, pop the sandwiches in a hot oven for a few minutes to help melt the mozzarella.

If you have time and are feeling ambitious, try a roasted garlic or lemon aioli in place of the mayonnaise for extra flavor!

Add a handful of salad greens or baby arugula to these sandwiches to make them a little heartier.

Nutrition

  • Calories: 747