Frugal Recipes for Large Families: Oven Fried Pesto Chicken

Frugal Recipes for Large Families

pesto chicken

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Oven Fried Pesto Chicken: Frugal Recipes for Large Families

I love to drop by local farmer’s markets when I see them, and this past Saturday, I found a doozy.  Tons of fresh veggies as well as some of the best looking herbs you’d ever want to find.  I bought a few things, but the one thing that I had plans for was a handful of beautiful fresh basil.  Pesto was running through my mind, but I always make pesto with fresh basil.  I needed to change it up.  I knew I had some chicken in the refrigerator waiting for some inspiration.  Then it hit me.  Oven Fried Pesto Chicken!  I love oven fried chicken, and using pesto as a flavoring sounded fresh and delicious.

The best part was the price!  I baked 16 drumsticks for $8.49, or just $.53 per drumstick!  Two drumsticks will feed a person, with sides, so you get about 8 servings out of this dish!  It’s perfect when paired with an inexpensive pasta side.

Oven Fried Pesto Chicken Label

What Makes Oven Fried Pesto Chicken so Amazing?

Fresh basil has a wonderful flavor that can’t be compared with other herbs.  I happened to see a vendor selling large bundles for just $2.00!  The scent was spicy and peppery, and filled my car with its lusciousness.  Pairing that with parmesan and panko breadcrumbs, you have a great crunch and a salty earthiness that makes for a fantastic dinner.

Enjoy!

Frugal Recipes for Large Families Oven Fried Pesto Chicken

Frugal Recipes for Large Families Oven Fried Pesto Chicken

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Coat a baking sheet with about 2 T olive oil and set aside.
  3. Drizzle some olive oil over the chicken and set aside.
  4. In a food processor or blender, pulse the basil and cheese until finely crumbled.
  5. Place the breadcrumbs in a bowl and top with the basil mixture. Mix well.
  6. Dip each chicken piece in the breading, pressing to coat.
  7. Place on the prepared baking sheet and continue with the remaining chicken.
  8. Bake 1 hour, turning at the 30 minute mark.
  9. Chicken is done when juices run clear and the meat is no longer pink at the bone.
  10. Serve hot.
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Why Oven Fried Pesto Chicken

If you’ve never oven fried chicken before, it’s a great way to get the crispy coating of fried chicken, but without all the fat.  It works fantastically with breaded coatings, such as Oven Fried Pesto Chicken, and infuses the meat with flavor all the way through.

 

5 lbs chicken drumsticks (or other chicken pieces)

1 C fresh basil leaves

½ C grated Parmesan cheese

2 C panko breadcrumbs

olive oil

 

Heat oven to 400 degrees F.

Coat a baking sheet with about 2 T olive oil and set aside.

Drizzle some olive oil over the chicken and set aside.

In a food processor or blender, pulse the basil and cheese until finely crumbled.

Place the breadcrumbs in a bowl and top with the basil mixture.  Mix well.

Dip each chicken piece in the breading, pressing to coat.

Place on the prepared baking sheet and continue with the remaining chicken.

Bake 1 hour, turning at the 30 minute mark.

Chicken is done when juices run clear and the meat is no longer pink at the bone.

Serve hot.

 

Next time you find yourself with an abundance of fresh basil, make some Oven Fried Pesto Chicken and feed a crowd for pennies!

 Frugal Recipes for Large Families

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