Lunch Meal Prep Soups/Salads

Pesto Chicken and Avocado Salad

closesup of pesto chicken and avocado salad with feta cheese and red onions

Pesto Chicken and Avocado Salad. These are some of my favorite things all wrapped up in an easy meal. Let’s get right into this recipe, that was so good I had to have it for lunch 3 weeks in a row (yes, seriously)

First of all, the spinach-basil pesto. You guys can buy your own pesto (if you really want) but you know I got you covered on a recipe! My favorite thing about this pesto is it’s nut-free (so you cut the cost in half) and dairy-free. After all of that, it still packs a huge punch in flavor and nutrients.

We’re going to use some of this pesto for a marinade. I also included a short blurb on how to make an easy pesto vinaigrette. I’ve served this recipe with my normal salad dressings and you can’t really go wrong no matter how you choose to dress it.

Marinating the chicken keeps it nice and juicy while we pan-grill it. And that’s pretty much all of the cooking you’re going to do! While the chicken marinates, go ahead and prep all of your veggies so everything is ready to come together.

Like all of my other soups/salads, don’t forget the food hack to keep your ingredients fresh and not soggy. Simply prepare all of your ingredients and store the lettuce away from any “wet” foods (like the tomatoes or the dressing.) When you’re ready to eat, assemble your salad and you have a tasty meal that comes together in minutes.

You can try this with sliced deli turkey instead of chicken, or put everything into a whole-grain wrap so you can eat this on the go! Whether for a quick lunch or a hearty dinner, you’re going to love this Pesto Chicken and Avocado Salad.

closeup of pesto chicken and avocado salad

Pesto Chicken and Avocado Salad

Shani W.
Using a nut-free Spinach-Basil Pesto, this Pesto Chicken and Avocado Salad is a tasty way to get all of your greens in!
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 12 mins
Course Lunch
Servings 4 bowls

Ingredients
  

  • 2 ct. chicken breasts
  • 3 tbsp. spinach-basil pesto more if making a pesto vinaigrette
  • 3 cups Romaine hearts chopped
  • 3 cups spinach leaves chopped
  • 6 oz. cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 ct. red onion
  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 ct. avocados
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese

Instructions
 

  • Trim your chicken breasts of any fat.  Add the chicken and spinach-basil pesto to a large bowl or Ziploc bag. Season with a bit of Adobo seasoning and garlic powder. 
  • Mix everything until the chicken is completely covered in pesto and seasonings; marinate (covered) in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes.
  • While the chicken is marinating, chop your greens and wash/dry them using a salad spinner. Season them with a bit of black pepper and chopped oregano.
  • Slice cherry tomatoes in half, and season with a pinch of salt and black pepper. 
  • Slice the red onion into rings or chop them into small cuts.
    I store all veggies (lettuce/spinach, tomatoes, and onion) in the fridge in separate containers until the proteins are ready.
  • In a large skillet, add the olive oil and heat to medium heat.
  • Add the pesto-marinated chicken to the skillet. Sauté for about 5-6 minutes on each side (depending on how thick your chicken breasts are) until they are fully cooked.  Remove from heat and let rest for at least 3 minutes before slicing into the chicken.
  • In a bowl, assemble your salad with the lettuce mix, pesto chicken, tomatoes, and onions.  Slice half of an avocado for each bowl and add to the salad.  Top with the feta cheese.
  • Either toss with your favorite dressing or leave it on the side.
    I made a tasty pesto vinaigrette for this because I can't get enough of the pesto flavor! Simply blend together more spinach-basil pesto, a touch of extra-virgin olive oil, and some extra lemon juice until it is a thin consistency and drizzle over your salad.
  • Serve immediately. Enjoy!

Notes

This recipe is an easy and amazing meal prep for lunch.  Simply prepare all of your ingredients and store them separately to avoid sogginess. 
I normally cut my avocado the same day to prevent browning.  Assemble everything for a 2-minute lunch during the week!
Keyword Avocado, Meal Prep, Pesto Chicken, Soups/Salads
bowl of pesto chicken and avocado salad with an avocado on the side and a fork below

The Coined Breakdown

  • Total Cost per serving: $2.69
  • Total Cost (2 bowls): $10.76
  • Those Other Guys: $13.99 per bowl

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