These Chicken Pesto Cups were one of the very first things that I added to the blog. But back then I called them “wraps” and the picture and post was awful. But the recipe was spot on so I decided to resurrected the post, shine it up and make it new and pretty for you.
When I first started transitioning to a paleo / grain-free / whole foods diet, Pinterest killed me. Scrolling though all of these foods that I was no longer planning to eat was torture. Especially when I came across a Chicken Pesto Sandwich. Man, that ciabatta roll had my name all over it. But knowing I couldn’t eat it I kept scrolling by and didn’t Pin it.
But I kept thinking about that sandwich! I was literally trying to fall asleep one night and remember thinking about that damn sandwich. I’m sure the fact that I “couldn’t” have it any longer added to my longing for this magical sandwich. Finally, one day I caught myself at lunchtime thinking about this stinking Chicken Pesto Sandwich AGAIN! Good grief. Now I needed to do something about it.
I took the predominant flavors that I was craving and decided to create a lettuce wrap instead. And guess what? It was so amazing that I didn’t even miss that big ‘ol hunk of ciabatta gluten-y goodness. Ok, maybe just a little but I felt great knowing that I didn’t have to give up all of the foods and flavors that I loved before. It just needed a bit of tweaking. It was the beginning of my paleo adventures trying to reimagine old favorites.
You’ll need to hop over to a couple of other recipes of mine for this one. First, if you haven’t checked out my Paleo Pesto yet now’s the time. You’ll clearly need a good pesto recipe for a chicken pesto anything so head over and bookmark that.
You’ll also need a good mayo recipe to mix the chicken up with to get it creamy and you can use my 30-Second Mayo for that. If you haven’t used an immersion blender to make your own mayo, you’re in for a real treat.
Assembling this is pretty self-explanatory as it’s just layering the flavors / ingredients up. It’s not rocket science an I’m not going to pretend that it is. You can also add as much pesto, tomatoes, mayo as you’d like. The amounts below are recommended and what I personally like.
In case you are wondering this makes a GREAT make-ahead lunch for school, work or picnics. Just make all of the components ahead of time for the week and assemble as needed. Feel free to make a Whole Smiths’ Whole Roasted Chicken ahead of time to use or a store bought rotisserie chicken if you’re short on time.
chicken pesto cups
- 2 C. shredded chicken
- 1/4 C. mayo
- 1 C. cherry tomatoes halved
- 1 C. sprouts
- 1 head of iceberg lettuce or top on a bed of spinach as an option
- Paleo pesto
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Toss shredded chicken with mayo and salt and pepper to taste, set aside
- Peel one leaf of iceberg lettuce off and arrange into a small bowl
- Fill bowl with chicken and mayo mix
- Top with cherry tomatoes, sprouts and desired amount of pesto (I recommend 1 Tbsp. for each serving)