Baked Pesto Chicken Recipe with Olives & Feta

Tender, flavorful, and juicy baked chicken recipe cooked in a creamy basil pesto sauce with feta cheese and olives. An easy keto chicken recipe perfect for dinner.

Baked Chicken with Pesto, Olives, and Feta Cheese

I am sharing my family’s favorite baked chicken recipe! It’s this moist and tender Baked Pesto Chicken with Feta and Olives. It’s easy to prepare, it’s deeeeelicious, and it will soon be added to your weekly dinner rotation. Basil pesto lends an amazing flavor to this chicken recipe, and it is the answer to your dilemma about the perfect chicken flavor.

Another thing we should note: this is a low carb meal, it is keto friendly (YAY!), and it’s all prepared in just ONE SKILLET.

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Me thinks I am obsessed with pesto. You can put it on watermelon and I’ll eat it. For those that know me, you know that I HATE watermelon, but pesto might change my mind. Ya never know!

In this particular recipe, I almost always use chicken thighs because, there are 3 other members in this family that prefer thighs over chicken breasts.  The argument holds that the thighs are juicier and as tender as can be. True dat! I am definitely not going to argue. BUT, for you, if you want to use breasts, go right ahead.

You can refer to my Creamy Pesto Chicken recipe for a bit of chicken breasts inspiration.

Also? When I do use chicken thighs, just as I did here for us, I remove the skin after it’s cooked, the other 3 in this household do not. One of them is only 5 years old and she won’t accept chicken without the crispy skin.

In any case, this baked pesto chicken will be amazing no matter what cut of chicken you use.

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  • Deliciously seasoned chicken thighs are added to an oiled hot cast iron skillet and cooked until just browned on both sides.
  • Feta and olives are placed all around the chicken, using enough to cover the empty spaces.
  • A mixture of basil pesto, garlic, evaporated milk or half and half (heavy cream is OK, too) is poured over the chicken and baked for about 25 to 30 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and sauce is bubbly.
  • That’s it!

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Simple, quick and easy, making it a perfect meal for weeknight dinners. ✔✔✔

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Since too many dirty pots, pans, and dishes are my nemesis, I kept this recipe in one pan – a cast iron skillet that is a must have for any working kitchen – and it took me just a little over 35 minutes to prepare the entire dinner, from start to finish.

chicken in cast iron skillet, olives, cheese sauce, baked pesto chicken

Almost always, I try to serve this meal with just a big green salad on the side, similar to my Berry Caprese Salad, sans the berries. Berries and olives just don’t go together… or do they?

*runs to the kitchen to find out*



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Baked Pesto Chicken with Olives and Feta

Katerina | Diethood
Tender & flavorful baked chicken recipe cooked in a creamy basil pesto sauce with feta cheese and olives. An easy keto chicken recipe perfect for dinner.
4.56 from 9 votes
Servings : 4 servings
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Total Time 45 mins


  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1.5 pounds chicken thighs or chicken breasts
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup basil pesto
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 cup half and half or evaporated milk you can also use heavy whipping cream
  • salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 1 cup cubed reduced sodium feta cheese
  • 1 cup pitted olives, rinsed and dried to minimize sodium intake
  • fresh basil chopped, for garnish, optional


  • Preheat the oven to 400F.
  • Combine butter and olive oil in a cast iron skillet and melt over medium heat.
  • Season chicken with dried basil, salt and pepper; add to hot oil and cook for 2 to 3 minutes per side, or until browned.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine basil pesto, garlic, half and half, salt and pepper; whisk until thoroughly combined.
  • Remove skillet from heat and add olives and cubed feta to the skillet.
  • Pour the prepared pesto sauce over the chicken.
  • Bake in oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and sauce is bubbly.
  • Remove from oven.
  • Garnish with fresh basil and serve.




Calories: 636 kcal | Carbohydrates: 11 g | Protein: 34 g | Fat: 48 g | Saturated Fat: 16 g | Cholesterol: 194 mg | Sodium: 831 mg | Potassium: 333 mg | Fiber: 1 g | Sugar: 8 g | Vitamin A: 805 IU | Vitamin C: 0.5 mg | Calcium: 265 mg | Iron: 1.7 mg | Net Carbs: 10 g

Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.

Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Keyword: basil pesto chicken recipe, chicken breast recipe, chicken thighs recipe, keto chicken recipes, keto dinner idea
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28 comments on “Baked Pesto Chicken Recipe with Olives & Feta”

  1. Great recipe. Didn’t have a cast iron pan so seared the chicken the put in a warmed casserole dish. Actually added the feta to the cream (heavy cream) pesto mix and let it sit while I seared the chicken. Poured it all on together. It was wonderful. We’re on a vacation and the first thing I shopped for was the ingredients for this dish. Easy and tasty.

    1. Katerina - Diethood
      Katerina Petrovska

      That’s great! I’m very happy you and your family loved it! Have a great vacation! 🙂

  2. I followed the recipe to a tee, but my sauce was a curdled mess. Not something that I would serve to guests. The taste was okay.

  3. Delicious. Definitely saved for the future. My wife isn’t big on olives so I replaced the 1c with 1/2c of capers and turned out fantastic.

  4. Winner winner chicken dinner. Soooooo moist and flavorful. I’ve never had baked feta and I’m totally a fan. I used whipped coconut milk cream but that was the only change I made.

  5. Avatar photo
    Little ol’ me

    Made this dish for a dinner party of 10 tonight. Was in a pinch for time, so skipped browning chicken and went straight to oven in 3 Pyrex dishes. Served with protein pasta and regular feta (no low sodium at the store), tomato bruschetta and a sausage version of bruschetta, as well as a Caesar salad and it was a hit. People, if you think it’s too oily, use chicken or turkey breast. There is enough fat And flavor to get away with skipping the thighs.

    The only change I’d make for next time (Yes, there will be a next time!!) is the triple the recipe and freeze raw and ready to bake or crock pot!

  6. I put the (homemade) pesto under the skin of the chicken thighs. Added the cream, olives and feta. Ignored all the other ingredients (why add dried basil when you have fresh pesto?) and put it in the oven. 10 minutes covered and the rest uncovereduntil cooked. It was good but still a bit greasy. I don’t understand the frying of the thighs with the addition of salt and oil. There is more than enough salt in the feta and pesto – and the thigh skin has enough fat. Good idea but poor execution. I enjoyed it when I cooked it my way.

  7. Avatar photo
    Sharon Andrews

    This is wonderful! I didn’t have cream, so I used plain yogurt. I served over rice. I know that rice is a no no on Keto but I am experimenting for 2 dinner parties that I will be hosting in August.

    It is a winner! Served with broccoli and cubed watermelon. My husband loved it too!

    Thanks for the great recipe!

  8. Holy Buckets this looks like a flavorful and tasty dish! I love olives and if I can sprinkle them in, I am a happy camper.

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