A creamy and flavorful chicken pesto panini recipe made with chicken, pesto, cheese and mayonnaise. A tad more sophisticated than the grilled cheeses I lived off of in college.
I’m pretty sure the only real food I ate sophomore year of college was the panini. It was the first year in my life when I really had to take care of myself. No parents or dining hall to keep me fed.
And I didn’t do a great job of it. I remember one out of the 6 of us girls living in the apartment had brought a mini George Foreman grill, and I’m pretty positive all my meals were made on that thing.
The stove and oven itself looked like it belonged in the Smithsonian museum display room of 1950s US kitchens so it didn’t exactly entice me to make something on the stovetop.
Seven years later (how has it already been 7 years?!?!) I still enjoy a good panini, though luckily for my body I’ve diversified my diet quite a bit bit since those college years. Thankfully! I could not still be sticking to that diet!
Bread, chicken, cheese and pesto is all you need and so this chicken pesto panini recipe came to be. If you’re feeling really indulgent sneak in some mayo and smother the bread with it. Your waistline might disapprove but your taste buds will thank you. Mine always do – I pretty much can never say no to mayonnaise, must be my Russian heritage!
Oh and you gotta take the time and make your own pesto, trust me it makes a world of difference. Home made pesto is the best. You can buy store bought, but if you do please and I mean please at least buy the refrigerated version. The stuff that’s on the non-refrigerated shelves is just full of additives – no fresh bold basil flavors there! To make this chicken pesto panini recipe dairy free you can omit the cheese and just make the panini with shredded chicken, pesto and mayo – I’ve had that combo before and it works well too! Or use a dairy free cheese instead – there are so many different ones to choose from nowadays!
If you liked my chicken pesto panini recipe, check out my sandwich page for many more delicious sandwich or panini recipe ideas.
A creamy and flavorful chicken pesto panini with cheese and mayonnaise. Can be made gluten free
- 4 slices gluten-free bread
- 1 cup shredded rotisserie chicken or a few slices chicken cold cuts
- 1 tablespoon mayonnaise optional
- 2 tablespoons pesto
- a few slices sharp cheddar cheese
- 1 tablespoon butter
- Spread pesto on two slices of the bread and mayonnaise on the other two.
- To each slice of mayo bread add chicken and cheese. Top with the pesto bread. Spread 1/4 of the butter on the outside of each slice of bread.
- Heat pan over medium-low heat and add the two sandwiches. Cook until browned, flip and cook until the other side is browned.
- Slice in half and serve!