The answer to your quick and healthy weeknight meal dilemma! This Easy Chicken Bake recipe is filled with delicious pesto, spinach, artichokes, and tomatoes, all baked together for a healthy dinner that comes together in just minutes.

I planned on staying in all day.  I planned on bringing dinner to a friend who has just had surgery.  I planned on making something else for dinner.  Thank goodness plans sometimes fall to the wayside!  I have MANY Easy Chicken Bake Dinner Recipes, and this one is the perfect new addition!

We have been sick FOREVER.  I mean like someone in our house has been sick at all times for almost 3 months.  It is ridiculous.  Well today, I planned on staying in all day after a hectic start to the week.  I was going to get some work done. Get some cleaning done.  Be all around productive.  Or at least pretend.

Then the littlest’s ear drum ruptured, so we had an unexpected trip to the doctor that took a huge chunk out of our day.  The poor little guy is doing much better, and even though there is nothing I could have done, I feel like a bad mom.

So we get home, and now I have just a short window of time to get dinner together for my friend and less than half the window of naptime I usually get in which to make it all.

Healthy dinner idea- Easy Spinach Artichoke Pesto Chicken Bake Recipe. This only takes about 10 minutes to make and everyone raves about how good it is!!

This sweet friend and her family eat healthy, almost towards Paleo.  This always intimidates me a bit since I have never met a piece of gluten I didn’t like, but since trying the Whole30 diet last fall, I am much less afraid to make heathy and delicious meals in that direction.

{To clarify this recipe is not strictly paleo but it is certainly a balanced healthy meal that looks WAY fancier than the time it took to make.}

So anyway, I was going to make my very popular Italian Chicken Bake, but then saw the artichokes that I needed to use and inspiration hit.  I whipped it up, put it in the oven, and it smelled SO good I knew that I was ditching my current dinner plans and making another pan of this Pesto Spinach Artichoke Chicken for our family dinner. {See ALL of my Easy Chicken Bake Dinner Recipes here!}

Then I decided it was a crime not to share, so I had to put it on the blog.  The only problem was that there was a snowstorm outside and not enough light inside to take photos.  So let me tell you what I did just for you guys…

I grabbed all of the ingredients, headed outside with them INTO the snowstorm, and proceeded to stand on our outdoor table with snow blowing all over me, my camera, the food, and everything so I could get enough light to share this recipe with you.  So if things look a little wet in the pics below, you will know why.  Please tell me you appreciate this!!  Let me give you a little sneak peek of what this looked like…

So now that you know what I went through just to share this with you, I will pass on the recipe.  It was totally worth it!! (Let me know if you agree in the comments!)

EASY PESTO SPINACH ARTICHOKE CHICKEN BAKE RECIPE

One thing I love about this dinner is that it is so easy from fridge to oven.  It has the ease of a crockpot meal, but you can make it fresh in minutes and maintain all of the delicious flavors and textures!  To make this recipe you only need a few ingredients (Full printable recipe at bottom of post):

  • 3-4 Chicken Breasts
  • 6-8 Tbsp prepared pesto
  • 1 cup fresh spinach leaves
  • 2 roma tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1 can marinated artichoke hearts, drained and quartered
  •  6 oz mozzarella or Italian blend cheese

To make this with the best results you will want to trim any fat off the chicken then lay it flat in a baking dish.  If the chicken breasts are extra thick, you can butterfly them to help it cook more quickly.

Next spread the pesto on top of the chicken breast.  I usually don’t measure but just eyeball it, and spread a thick layer of pesto to cover each chicken breast.  I love lots of pesto because it really flavors the chicken and it also melts down into the bottom of the pan and mixes with the chicken juices to make an awesome sauce to spoon over rice you eat the meal with!

Now layer on the spinach, tomatoes, and artichokes on top of the pesto.  I like to just make sure everything is chopped into rough chunks.  With as long as the dish bakes, they are all soft and easily eaten once it is done.

Last, cover the top with cheese.  If you love cheese (who doesn’t love cheese?!) then add a little extra, since it is amazing when it melts down into the juices, or if you don’t love cheese (who are you?!) then you can even leave it out all together if you want.

Pop this in the middle rack of an oven preheated to 375˚F for 35-50 minutes.  I always like to add a warning because the cook time can vary pretty greatly depending on the size, true temperature, altitude, and thickness of your chicken breasts.  You might end up on the quick side, but you could also end up needing to cook it a little longer depending on the circumstances, so make sure to check your chicken.

Another question I get often is whether you need to cover this when you bake it.  I do not cover mine when I bake and as long as I cook it on the lower middle rack, it has never burnt the cheese.  Others have said that their cheese gets too crispy, so again depending on the size, and true temperature of your oven, you may want to keep an eye on it and if it is getting too brown or crispy, just put some foil over the top and it will save the day.

Once the chicken is no longer pink and the juices run clear, you can take it out of the oven and it is ready to serve.  I served mine over rice which is probably my favorite way to eat it since the extra juices that cook at the bottom of the pan are heavenly when you spoon it over the top of the rice.  If you are trying to be a little healthier you can pack a huge nutritional punch by serving this over sautéed spinach and it is also super delicious!  Another stellar way to serve this up is with a big crusty loaf of french bread… YUM!

Before you go… Make sure to check out my other EASY CHICKEN BAKE DINNER RECIPES here!  SO many quick and easy ideas to keep your family fed while keeping your sanity!

Easy Pesto Spinach Artichoke Chicken Bake Recipe

Ingredients

  • 3-4 Chicken Breasts
  • 6-8 Tbsp prepared pesto
  • 1 cup fresh spinach leaves
  • 2 roma tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1 can marinated artichoke hearts, drained and quartered
  • 6 oz mozzarella or Italian blend cheese.

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375F
  2. Place chicken flat in the bottom of a baking dish.
  3. Spread 1-2 tbsp pesto on each chicken breast (the more you like pesto the more you use! I just eyeball it!)
  4. Layer on spinach, artichokes and tomatoes.
  5. Cover top with cheese.
  6. Bake on lower middle rack for 30-45 minutes or until the chicken is cooled through and the juices run clear.
  7. Serve over rice or sauteed spinach.

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