Creamy, cheesy and zesty, you’ll love this fantastic Chicken Lasagna with Pesto Cream Sauce!
Hey everyone, it’s Jack. Today’s Chicken Lasagna with Pesto Cream Sauce recipe was inspired by Martha telling me this: “Honestly Jack, I think I just prefer a white lasagna over a red lasagna. Don’t get me wrong – I love a good classic lasagna, but if I had the choice, white sauce wins out over red sauce for me anytime!”
We were out to dinner a month or so back, and Martha had ordered lasagna. When I asked how she liked her dinner, it was then that she shared her white sauce vs. red sauce preference at the dinner table.
I also happen to know that Martha LOVES pesto, and she loves prosciutto – so that got me going in the right direction with this Chicken Lasagna with Pesto Cream Sauce recipe. (It’s that, “Happy wife, happy life…” thing that people say…and it’s true!)
But in all seriousness – I absolutely love cooking for my entire family, and I get a thrill seeing the happy and satisfied look on their faces when I prepare a delicious meal for them.
We also have a ton of fresh basil growing in our backyard garden, so I mixed up a batch of our homemade pesto and set to work making this aweome Chicken Lasagna with Pesto Cream Sauce.
How do you make Chicken Lasagna with Pesto Cream Sauce?
- Any lasagna – white or red sauce – is all about layers of flavor. Each layer is prepared and tasted, then assembled and baked.
- To make Chicken Lasagna with Pesto Cream Sauce, you’ll want to start by cooking your lasagna noodles. (I’m old school and prefer the noodles you cook yourself, but the no-cook noodles should work in this recipe too.)
- I also sautéed some prosciutto, onions and spinach together. I also sautéed chicken breasts which I cut into bite-sized strips after they were cooked – then coated them in our homemade pesto.
- In a 9×13-inch baking dish, I assembled our Chicken Lasagna with Pesto Cream Sauce – layers and layers of pasta, ricotta cheese, chicken and pesto, prosciutto and spinach, provolone cheese, and a creamy white sauce.
- Bake until hot and bubbly and golden brown on top, then serve to your wife (or any other family members) – who I guarantee will smile when they taste their first bite of this delicious white lasagna.
You may also like these delicious pesto recipes:
- Homemade Pesto
- Whole30 Spaghetti Squash with Pesto
- Pasta with Pesto Cream Sauce
- Pesto Chicken over Sautéed Cannellini Beans
- Goat Cheese, Pesto and Sun-Dried Tomato Terrine
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.
All ingredients must be prepared ahead of time before assembling.
Can be assembled the night before and brought to room temperature before baking.
*Store bought pesto can be oily and may cause oil to pool in the bottom of the baking dish as you cut into it. Our home-made pesto is nice and cheesy and should not affect the lasagna.
16 lasagna strips (one box is 18 pieces so cook all in case some break)
1-pound container of whole milk ricotta cheese
½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
¼ cup fresh Italian flat leaf parsley, chopped fine
1 whole egg
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly grated black pepper
Few grinds fresh nutmeg
½ cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
6 ounces prosciutto diced into small pieces
1 cup onion, diced
½ pound fresh baby spinach
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
All-purpose flour to coat chicken
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup pesto divided, see recipe here (*see note above)
2 cups heavy cream
3 ½ cups whole milk
4 ounces butter (1 stick)
4 ounces flour (shy of one cup)
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
Dash of hot sauce (we like Cholula)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon white pepper
½ teaspoon dry mustard
Few grinds fresh nutmeg
1 pound sliced deli provolone cheese
In a very large wide pot, heat water and once boiling, salt the water, then add one lasagna strip at a time so they don’t stick and cook for 1 minute short of what it says on the box. My box said to cook for eight minutes and I cooked for seven.
Have a strainer standing by and gently lift each piece out with tongs into the strainer being careful not to break them up. Rinse with cold running water and layout on a sheet tray not touching each other. I layered with plastic wrap until I was ready to use.
In a medium bowl, mix ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, parsley, egg, salt, pepper, nutmeg and the mozzarella cheese. Set aside.
In a large sauté pan over medium heat, heat olive oil and add prosciutto and cook for two minutes, then add onions and cook for two minutes.
Add spinach and cook until wilted, about another two minutes. Set aside.
Pound or butterfly chicken breasts to a uniform thickness of one quarter inch.
Coat the chicken with flour and shake off excess.
Heat a large sauté pan to medium high and melt butter. Add chicken in a single layer and cook two minutes. Flip, lower heat to low and cook covered for five minutes without removing cover. Turn off heat and let sit five more minutes, again without removing cover.
Move chicken to a cutting board to cool.
Once cool, cut into half inch size pieces by cutting into strips then across the strips into pieces. Place in a bowl and toss with ½ cup of the pesto. Set aside.
Place milk and cream in a sauce pan and heat to hot. Keep on low flame.
In a large sauce pan, melt butter over medium heat then add flour and cook for three minutes, stirring often.
Whisk in one third of the milk mixture with a wire whisk and stir briskly to form a thick paste. Add another third and whisk that in. Finally add the remaining third and whisk to form a smooth sauce.
Add Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, salt, pepper, dry mustard and nutmeg. Stir to combine then remove from heat and set aside.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
In a 9X13 inch pan, spread one cup of sauce on the bottom and line with three lasagna noodles.
Place all of the chicken and pesto mixture on top and cover with about five provolone slices. (enough to cover the surface, overlapping is fine)
Cover with four more lasagna noodles (three the long way and one trimmed to fit the short way.
Pour the spinach mixture on top, including any liquid collected in bowl.
Top with one cup of sauce then four more lasagna noodles.
Spread on the ricotta mixture then top with five lasagna noodles, overlapping four the long way and one trimmed to fit the short way.
Top with one more cup of sauce and about eight slices of overlapping provolone cheese.
Cover with parchment and foil and bake for 40 minutes covered and ten minutes uncovered.
Place under broiler for a minute or two to slightly brown the cheese. Let sit for ten minutes before cutting.
Place the remaining white sauce in a small sauce pan and heat to hot. Then off heat, whisk in the remaining pesto and serve with the lasagna.
Cut into 8, 10 or 12 pieces.
Keywords: pasta, lasagna, pesto,