Chicken Margherita is tender and flavor packed grilled chicken that is smothered with mozzarella, pesto, and juicy cherry tomatoes. Liven up dinnertime with this restaurant quality meal that’s quick and easy to make at home!
Impressive and high-quality food doesn’t have to be stressful to prepare. For more simple but delish grilled chicken try Grilled Barbecue Chicken, Grilled Key Lime Chicken, and Grilled Honey Mustard Chicken.
Chicken Margherita (Grill or Stove Top!)
Chicken Margherita can be grilled outdoors or inside on a kitchen stove top. Either way you choose to cook it, the chicken will turn out tender and juicy. Every bite will explode with flavors from the tangy and slightly sweet and salty marinade. The ooey gooey cheese and the juicy tomatoes add the perfect textures to the soft chicken. Then, the nutty pesto balances the sweeter tastes and brings a rich garlic flavor. Altogether, it is colorful and delicious, and best of all, easy to prepare at home!
This is a huge hit meal that features the best chicken ever! It is so tender and tasty! Make this chicken in bulk to save yourself time because you will crave it often! There will be no leftovers since every bite is simply heavenly! So, double or triple the recipe and store some for last minute dinners from the freezer. You will use this chicken again and again because your family will rave over it. It is a tried and true family meal you don’t want to miss!
Chicken Margherita Ingredients:
Common items that you may already have on hand fill this ingredient list. They combine together to create a perfectly balanced dinner that is both colorful and delish!
- Balsamic vinegar: Tenderizes the meat because of the acidity and adds a sweet, tangy flavor.
- Honey: Whisk into the marinade to adds sweetness to the chicken.
- Garlic: About 3 cloves minced will add just the right amount of garlic.
- Olive oil: The base of the marinade. It that helps bring the flavors all throughout the chicken and keep it moist while grilling.
- Italian seasoning: The perfect blend of seasoning.
- Salt and pepper: To taste.
- Chicken: Boneless, skinless breasts are easiest on the grill.
- Mozzarella cheese: Sliced ooey gooey cheese covers the chicken.
- Basil pesto: Tops the chicken with a nutty basil and garlic flavor.
- Cherry tomatoes: Sliced and loaded on top of the chicken for color and taste.
- Basil: Freshly chopped for garnish to create a nice presentation.
Let’s Cook Some Chicken!
A 5-star meal is easy to achieve with this simple to follow recipe. Whisk together a tangy marinade and allow your chicken to soak in the flavor. Then, toss it on a hot grill, smother it with amazing toppings, and you will have a professional looking dinner ready to serve!
- Whisk together marinade: In a medium sized bowl whisk the balsamic vinegar, honey, garlic, olive oil, Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper. Add the chicken breasts and coat. Marinate for 30 minutes.
- Grill Instructions: Heat the grill to medium high heat. Grill the chicken on each side about 6 minutes or until cooked throughout and no longer pink. Top with mozzarella cheese, pesto, tomatoes and chopped basil.
- Skillet Instructions: In a medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat, discard the marinade and reserve 1/4 cup and add the chicken to the skillet. Cook on each side for 3-4 minutes or until chicken is cooked to 165 degrees. Add the reserved marinade and cook until the sauce reduces. Top with mozzarella cheese, pesto, tomatoes and chopped basil.
Variations of Chicken:
Chicken Margherita variations are reminiscent of flavors found in caprese sandwiches, salads, and skewers. Build this grilled chicken into a thick layered sandwich like this Basil Pesto Chicken Sandwich or turn it bite sized and serve on a skewer. Load it on top of fresh pasta, bruschetta, gnocchi, or a homemade zucchini pizza crust. There are endless possibilities, but here are a few more to try:
- Sauce: Make your own homemade pesto when possible because the flavor is just so much better! Store-bought will also work well if you are in a rush. Or swap the pesto sauce entirely, and replace it with a marinara sauce if that’s what you have on hand.
- Tomato: Although cherry tomatoes are my first choice because of their convenient size, use any tomato and dice it into bite size for topping the chicken.
- Marinade: My absolutely perfect chicken marinade also works well with this chicken if you prefer to use it instead.
- Serve with: Baked Zucchini Fries, 10 Minute Pesto Pasta, green beans, garlic mashed potatoes, or Sauteed Garlic Asparagus with Bacon.
Can You Make Ahead Margherita Chicken?
The best part of this meal is how quick and easy it is to prepare and how impressively delicious it is! It is simple to make ahead and store for an effortless weeknight meal. Store the chicken separately from the toppings and build just prior to serving.
- Refrigerated: Cooked chicken breasts will remain safe to eat for 3-4 days if stored in an airtight container and kept in the refrigerator.
- Frozen: For the best quality chicken, do not freeze more than 4 months.
- Thaw: Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and use within 3 days. Or thaw in cool water and use immediately.
More Savory Chicken Recipes:
- Creamy Chicken Marsala
- Grilled Hawaiian Barbecue Chicken
- Lemon Pepper Chicken
- Grilled Honey Balsamic Chicken
- Sweet Chili Lime Chicken
- 3/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup honey
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons italian seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 4 slices mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 cup basil pesto
- 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes sliced
- 1/4 cup fresh chopped basil
In a medium sized bowl whisk the balsamic vinegar, honey, garlic, olive oil, Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper. Add the chicken breasts and coat. Marinate for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl add the avocado, tomato, basil and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
On the grill:
Heat the grill to medium high heat. Grill the chicken on each side about 6 minutes or until cooked throughout and no longer pink. Top with mozzarella cheese, pesto, tomatoes and chopped basil.
On the Stove Top:
In a medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat, discard the marinade and reserve 1/4 cup and add the chicken to the skillet. Cook on each side for 3-4 minutes or until chicken is cooked to 165 degrees. Add the reserved marinade and cook until the sauce reduces. Top with mozzarella cheese, pesto, tomatoes and chopped basil.