This 20-minute Pesto Artichoke Chicken is swimming in a delicious garlic pesto cream sauce that is so simple to make. Easy and perfect for busy weeknights.

Skillet filled with creamy pesto artichoke chicken served with Parmesan and fresh basil leaves.

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Simple chicken dinners are such a lifesaver for busy days. They’re usually quick to make, and so adaptable to whatever ingredients are in season or popular with your family. If you’re looking for a new way to serve chicken breasts, you’ll love this skillet with artichokes and a pesto cream sauce.

Why a skillet meal? Making this on the stovetop is much faster than using the oven to bake or roast the chicken and artichokes, and allows you to incorporate tons of flavor very quickly into a luscious pan sauce.

Ingredients & Common Substitutions

Labeled photo of prep bowls and parchment holding chicken breasts, olive oil, Parmesan, cream, artichoke hearts, fresh basil, pesto, garlic, and white wine, which can be substituted with chicken broth.

Most of these ingredients are pretty straightforward, but a few notes where there might be some tips on what to buy and how to prepare it:

  • Chicken Breasts: I highly recommend using thinly-sliced boneless, skinless chicken breasts. They cook more quickly and evenly and are the best way to ensure chicken doesn’t become dry or tasteless when cooked in a skillet. I buy them that way to save time, but you can slice your own by carefully cutting each breast in half to make two thinner portions.
  • Cream: I usually use heavy cream for recipes like this, because it works so well to thicken a sauce and add flavor, and a very small amount goes a long way. Light cream or half and half do work, as well, so feel free to use those if you prefer.
  • White Wine or Chicken Broth: Either of these or a mix works well in this recipe.
  • Artichoke Hearts: A can of quartered artichoke hearts is the simplest, because they can simply be drained and added directly to the skillet. If you happen to have whole artichoke hearts, just give them a rough chop first. I would say that this yields a lot of artichokes per chicken breast; if you think you’ll want just a few, and could use the remaining artichoke hearts for another recipe, you may want to use half of a can and store the rest.

What is the best brand of store-bought pesto?

Most store-bought brands are good for a recipe like this, where the pesto will be mixed in with other ingredients to form a sauce. Our favorite is always DeLallo. Not sponsored, just true love.

How to make pesto from scratch?

If you have an extra five minutes and a food processor, you can make pesto from scratch! Use this traditional basil pesto with a hint of lemon zest for a classic, or give this zucchini basil pesto a spin for a nutritional boost and clever way to use up a bounty of summer zucchini.

How To Make Pesto Artichoke Chicken

First, season the chicken with salt and pepper and brown it in a bit of olive oil. Remove to a plate and let rest.

Browned chicken breasts resting on a plate.

Next, you’ll prepare the ultra-quick pesto cream sauce. Using the same skillet in which you cooked the chicken makes your clean-up simple and enhances the flavor, because the sauce will incorporate the browned bits left over from cooking the chicken.

Pesto cream sauce in a skillet.

Next, add the artichokes.

Artichokes added to pesto cream sauce.

Now give it all a good stir, and return the chicken breasts to the pan along with any juices. Leave it over medium heat for a few minutes to warm through, and generously spoon the sauce and a few artichokes over each chicken breast.

Chicken breasts returned to the skillet with pesto cream sauce and artichokes spooned on top.

A quick garnish of fresh basil leaves and a sprinkle of grated Parmesan makes it look pretty.

Pesto artichoke chicken skillet garnished with fresh basil and grated Parmesan cheese.

And just like that, dinner is served!

Close-up of a tender chicken breast served with pesto cream sauce and artichoke hearts.

Serving Suggestions

This simple pesto artichoke chicken goes beautifully with a small portion of pasta or a crusty baguette sliced thin. Watch with satisfaction as your family uses the bread to mop up stray streaks of the pesto cream sauce from the corners of their plate. For a veggie, I like to pair this dish with green beans, asparagus, or peas.

More Easy Chicken Dinners

If you love simple chicken skillets, try my creamy Tuscan chicken, chicken with sun-dried tomatoes and artichokes, creamy garlic chicken, or balsamic chicken with spinach and mushrooms next.

Looking for a lighter option? These chicken skillets with lemon and rosemary, lemon and thyme, or topped with balsamic and fresh bruschetta hit the spot every time, guaranteed.

Skillet with pesto artichoke chicken and a wooden spoon about to serve portions.

If you try this Pesto Artichoke Chicken, don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave a comment below. I love hearing how recipes turn out in your kitchen, and it helps other readers, too.

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Pesto Artichoke Chicken

Easy and perfect for busy weeknights. Tender chicken and an irresistible garlic pesto cream sauce!

Ingredients

  • 4 thin-sliced chicken breasts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine or chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup pesto
  • 1/4 cup cream heavy or light
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 (14 ounce) can quartered artichoke hearts drained
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • fresh basil to serve

Instructions

  • Warm olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season both sides of the chicken breasts generously with salt and pepper, then place in the skillet and cook for 2-3 minutes per side, until golden brown and cooked through. Transfer chicken to a plate and cover loosely with foil.
  • Add an additional drizzle of olive oil to the pan, followed by the garlic. Cook for 30 seconds, just until fragrant. Add white wine or broth, then scrape the bottom of the skillet to loosen any browned bits.
  • Add the pesto followed by the cream and Parmesan, stirring into a smooth sauce. Add artichoke hearts, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 8-10 cranks of fresh-ground black pepper. Stir well, then let the sauce simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  • Return the pieces of chicken to the skillet, using a spoon to generously drizzle the sauce over each piece. Serve with additional Parmesan and fresh basil leaves, as desired.

Notes

  • Store-bought Pesto: Most store-bought brands are good for a recipe like this, where the pesto will be mixed in with other ingredients to form a sauce. Our favorite is always DeLallo.
  • Homemade Pesto: If you have an extra five minutes, you can make pesto from scratch! Use this traditional basil pesto with a hint of lemon zest for a classic, or give this zucchini basil pesto a spin for a nutritional boost and clever way to use up a bounty of summer zucchini.

Nutrition Estimate

Calories: 298kcal, Carbohydrates: 8g, Protein: 15g, Fat: 21g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 6g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 41mg, Sodium: 767mg, Potassium: 234mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 664IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 79mg, Iron: 1mg
Did you make this recipe?Leave a review below, then snap a quick picture and tag @nourishandfete on Instagram so I can see it!