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Chicken Pesto Pizza

Preview: Chicken Pesto Pizza is a family favorite because it’s so easy and something a little bit different. Use pesto instead of pizza sauce. Then top with the usual Mozzarella and chicken chunks. Garnish with fresh cilantro.

Does homemade pizza seem like too much trouble? I understand. If it’s the crust that gives you heartburn, consider buying the dough. If it’s preparing a bunch of ingredients, this recipe may be for you.

Use leftover rotisserie chicken or any other sliced cooked chicken you have on hand. Use jarred or homemade pesto sauce instead of pizza sauce (any flavor). It’s a nice variation that’s not too out there but tastes delicious.

Chicken Pesto Pizza - sliced on a plate

This recipe was first published back in 2014. The original post is now a separate list of secrets for making the best homemade pizza without a baking stone.

Got you covered on the pizza dough.

Need a good pizza dough recipe? Try my favorite pizza dough or this whole wheat pizza dough recipe — a clone from California Pizza Kitchen.

Both recipes are written to be made in a bread machine. However, you can also use a food processor, stand mixer, or make it by hand. Directions for this modification are included in the recipe notes.

CPK Honey Whole Wheat Pizza Dough from Your Bread Machine--raw dough

Don’t have cilantro or green chile pesto on hand?

Use basil pesto instead. If you want to try this and can’t find cilantro or green chile pesto, try making it here. It’s not difficult. Basically, you substitute cilantro for basil.

Just like basil pesto, cilantro pesto is versatile. Use it in salad dressings, over pasta, or as a spread on hot French bread.


Posts Related to Chicken Pesto Pizza

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p.s. Questions or suggestions? Please email me: Paula at

Yield: 16 slices

Chicken Pesto Pizza Recipe

Chicken Pesto Pizza - sliced on a plate

Chicken Pesto Pizza uses flavorful pesto sauce in place of pizza sauce. Add some cooked chicken, cheese and cilantro or basil for a gourmet pizza you can easily put together from start to finish.

Prep Time 2 hours
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes



  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Brush olive oil over the bottom of your pizza pan. Place your flattened pizza dough into the pan and use fingers to stretch it to the edges. Spread pesto over raw pizza dough.
  3. Sprinkle cheese evenly over pesto, then do the same with the chicken. If desired, save a little cheese to sprinkle over the top of the chicken.
  4. Place pizza into the oven and reduce temperature to 425 degrees F. Bake for approximately 15 minutes, but start checking at around 13 minutes.
  5. Pizza is done when lightly browned and crust is golden brown and crispy on the bottom.


Directions for making bread with a stand mixer or by hand:

  • To make this recipe in a heavy-duty stand mixer, add ingredients to the bowl in the same order. Turn on low to mix until all ingredients are moistened. Using dough hook, turn speed to 2 or 3 and continue beating/kneading until dough becomes smooth and elastic, about 5-10 minutes. Cover and allow to rise in a warm place. Deflate dough gently and shape rolls as indicated in recipe.
  • If making by hand, combine all ingredients into a shaggy ball in a large bowl. Turn dough out on a floured surface and knead with your hands until dough becomes smooth and elastic, a process that will likely take 10-20 minutes depending on your experience. Place dough ball into a greased bowl. Cover and allow to rise until double. Deflate dough gently and shape rolls as indicated in recipe
  • Please note: If you substitute regular yeast for instant or bread machine yeast, you must dissolve it first before adding to the dry ingredients. Stir it into about 1/4 cup of the lukewarm liquid called for in the recipe. Let sit for about 10 minutes. Add to other wet ingredients and then add dry ingredients. Proceed as directed to knead and shape rolls.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 150Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 13mgSodium: 219mgCarbohydrates: 17gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 6g

Nutritionals may vary according to the type of crust you choose.

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