WW Recipe of the Day: 3-Ingredient Creamy Pesto Chicken
I am growing increasingly fond of 3-ingredient recipes. I keep saying "who knew"?
With ongoing temps at a record high in the southwest, it's really hard to get very much kitchen motivation.
So when I tried this and found a super creamy, moist, delicious and easy way to serve yet another chicken I was hooked.
Three common ingredients: chicken thighs, pesto and coconut milk. Dab, pour, bake and eat. In the time it takes to set the table, settle in with a glass of your favorite dry wine, dinner is served.
How Many Calories and WW Points in this Creamy Pesto Chicken?
According to my calculations, each serving has 159 calories and:
4 *SmartPoints (Green plan)
4 *SmartPoints (Blue plan)
4 *SmartPoints (Purple plan)
4 *PointsPlus (Old plan)
To see your WW PersonalPoints for this recipe and track it in the WW app or site, Click here!
How to Make 3-Ingredient Pesto Chicken Step by Step
Step 1: Gather and prepare all ingredients.
Step 2: Spray a small baking pan with non-stick spray. Place the chicken thighs in the prepared pan and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Step 3: Top each thigh with 1 teaspoon pesto.
Pour the coconut milk over and around the chicken in the pan.
Step 4: Bake for 35 minutes, or until the chicken is thoroughly cooked. This will measure 165F degrees on a meat thermometer (affiliate link).
Step 5: Remove from the oven and serve hot.
Recipe Notes, Additions & Substitutions
I used bone in thighs which will take about 30 to 35 minutes to thoroughly cook through. If you're used to using boneless chicken, then by all means use them and be aware that they'll cook much faster—maybe 20 minutes or so.
The skin on chicken is easier to remove, using a very sharp knife, if it sits out for just a few minutes (maybe 5).
I like the prepared pesto from Trader Joe's which keeps in the fridge for months without losing any intensity of flavor.
The lite coconut milk I also got at Trader's however it's available in most supermarkets and in all Asian stores.
If you are feeling ambitious and make your own skinny pesto, the calories and fat will be somewhat reduced. Even with the prepared jar, this is a remarkably rich and tasty meal with more than reasonable "numbers"!
Rice is the ideal side dish as it soaks up any juices that the coconut chicken gives off as it sits on the plate. New potatoes or a small dish of pasta would also work very well. If you are watching your carbs, you may want to try cauliflower rice.
Seasonal greens and veggies like green beans or colorful tomatoes will compliment the creamy dish.
Any herbs for garnish are fine; basil, cilantro, parsley all make the plate look elegant and add another small layer of freshness.
Last time I made it I even sprinkled a few sesame seeds over the top along with cilantro for an Asian twist.
Ways to Use Leftovers
If you double the recipe and have leftovers, just a simple reheat in the microwave (affiliate link), uncovered, will give you the same rich and tasty chicken.
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3-Ingredient Creamy Pesto Chicken
- 2 chicken thighs, skin removed (about 4 ounces each)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 teaspoons prepared pesto
- ⅓ cup light coconut milk
- Heat the oven to 35F0 degrees. Spray a small baking pan with non-stick spray.
- Place the chicken thighs in the prepared pan and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Top each chicken thigh with 1 teaspoon pesto. Pour the coconut milk over and around the chicken in the pan.
- Bake for 35 minutes, or until the chicken is thoroughly cooked. This will measure 165F degrees on a meat thermometer.
- Remove from the oven and serve hot.
*Points® calculated by WW. *PointsPlus® and SmartPoints® calculated by Simple Nourished Living; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc. All recipe ingredients except optional items included in determining nutritional estimates. SmartPoints® values calculated WITHOUT each plan's ZeroPoint Foods (Green plan, Blue plan, Purple plan) using the WW Recipe Builder.
More Pesto Recipes for Weight Watchers
- Baked Tilapia with Basil Pesto
- Spicy Chicken Pesto English Muffin Pizza
- Low-Calorie Italian Zucchini Soup with Pesto
- Microwave Mug Chicken Pesto Couscous
Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, Hallie is a chef-teacher who eventually found her way to Provence, France, where she gave food and wine tours of the region.
In addition to writing more than a dozen cookbooks, she has also been teaching both professional and recreational cooking classes since 1978.
Hallie looks forward to sharing some of her favorite easy, healthy recipes with you here on Simple Nourished Living.
This post contains affiliate links to products I like. When you buy something through one of my Amazon links or other (affiliate links), I receive a small commission that helps support this site. Thank you for your purchase!
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Jeannie M Bush
We are not fans of dark meat. What are your thoughts on using chicken tenderloins?
Hi Jeannie, Chicken tenderloins would be a fine substitute. However, they may cook a bit more quickly so would keep an eye on them. ~Martha
Can I use a slow cooker (crock pot) for this recipe?
Hi Cari, I haven't made it in the slow cooker but think it should work fine. Let us know how it turns out for you. ~Martha