Wrapping anything in bacon is a certain way to make it taste delicious. That is simply a culinary fact. Also, when you stuff sun dried tomatoes and pesto inside of something, it makes it delicious. So chicken breasts with sun dried tomatoes and pesto wrapped in bacon is a double win!
I found a half full jar of sun dried tomatoes in olive oil in the back of my fridge door. They had been neglected for some time. I decided that they should be adopted soon by a chicken breast or they might wither away and die. I know, I was feeling generous that day. Thus was born my idea for chicken breasts with sun dried tomatoes and pesto.
So I took the chicken breasts, sliced them about halfway through down the middle and opened them up to put the sun dried tomato pesto inside. I then realized I did not have anything to wrap and tie the chicken with so I had to get creative. I could have used a shoestring, but decided against that because I hate going barefoot when it’s wet outside.
I found some long metal skewers outside next to the grill and won a sword fight with the stuffed chicken breasts. I made sure to poke them through the bacon and chicken so they would hold the beloved sun dried tomato pesto inside and prevent it from falling to fiery propane fueled death on the grill. Next, I brushed the remaining pesto on the outside and the breasts were ready for flames.
As I watched the fire nip at the fat coming off the bacon, I grinned inside, knowing that the sun dried tomatoes had found a home. They would not die in vain.
The final product was impressive. Slightly crispy on the bacony outside yet tender enough to use as a pillow in the middle of the breast. I cooked them to about 165 degrees because that’s my favorite temperature.
I removed the sword like metal skewers and quickly dove into the stuffed goodies with a fork. Perfection. The tomatoes had won and I was happy. I hope you will be, too.
Be sure to secure the bacon around the chicken and, by all means, do not let the sun dried tomato pesto escape. This would be like stealing a bag of crown jewels and dropping half of them in the moat during your escape. Major grilling foul.
PREP TIME: 15 minutes COOK TIME: 25 minutes SERVINGS: 4
- 3-4 chicken breasts (skin on or off, feathers removed)
- 5-6 strips of thick bacon
- 5 oz. of sun dried tomatoes in olive oil, diced
for the pesto:
- two cups of fresh basil leaves
- 5 cloves garlic
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup pine nuts
- pinch of salt and pepper
- Heat the grill to 350 degrees. Slice each breast down the middle, about half way through. Place all pesto ingredients in a blender or Ninja and pulse until smooth. In a bowl, combine tomatoes and pesto well.
- Spoon a few tablespoons of tomato-pesto mix into each chicken breast. Carefully fold the breast, sealing the pesto inside, then wrap it with one or two pieces of bacon. Next, you can tie it with a heat-resistant string or, as I did, stick a metal skewer through all three breasts, making sure to go through the bacon as well.
- Brush the remaining pesto on both sides of the breasts.
- Place breasts on grill and sear on both sides for about 7-8 minutes per side. If the flames get too high and begin to burn the bacon, move the breasts to indirect heat. Once seared, move them to indirect heat and cook them until you reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees.