Pesto Chicken and Radicchio Skewers

Chicken marinates in a citrus-basil pesto before sharing stick space with purple radicchio.

Pesto Chicken and Radiccio Skewers
Photo: Carson Downing
Hands On Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
4 hrs 25 mins
8 skewers, 3/4 cup sauce


  • 1 ½ pound boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs

  • ¼ cup pesto

  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice

  • 1 small, round head radicchio

  • Fresh basil (optional)

  • Parmesan Cream Sauce


  1. Cut chicken into 1-inch cubes. Set a resealable plastic bag in a shallow dish. In the bag, combine pesto, lemon juice, 1 Tbsp. olive oil, and 1/2 tsp. each salt and black pepper. Add chicken, seal, and turn to coat; refrigerate 4 to 8 hours.

  2. Cut radicchio into 8 wedges, then cut each wedge crosswise in half so each piece is about 1 1/2 to 2 inches across and 3/4 inch thick. If using wood skewers, soak them in water at least 30 minutes before grilling. Thread two pieces of radicchio on each of eight 10- to 12-inch skewers. Drizzle with 1 Tbsp. olive oil and sprinkle with 1/4 tsp. each salt and pepper.

  3. Remove chicken from marinade, reserving marinade. Add marinated chicken pieces to the skewers.

  4. Preheat an outdoor grill to medium (350°F to 400°F); brush cooking grates clean and lightly oil. (Or set a grill pan over medium-high and brush with oil.)

  5. Grill 8 to 10 minutes, occasionally brushing with reserved marinade before turning skewers over halfway through, until chicken is fully cooked (165°F) and radicchio is charred. If you like, top with fresh basil. Serve with Parmesan Cream Sauce for dipping.

Parmesan Cream Sauce

In a small saucepan bring 1 cup heavy cream and 2 smashed garlic cloves to a boil over medium. Reduce heat and simmer until thickened and reduced to 3/4 cup, about 12 minutes. Remove from heat; remove garlic and discard. Add 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese and 1/4 tsp. black pepper, stirring until cheese is fully melted. If the sauce cools and firms before serving, gently rewarm over low heat. Makes 3/4 cup sauce.Nutrition analysis per serving: 246 calories, 5 g protein, 3 g carbohydrate, 24 g total fat (15 g sat. fat), 76 mg cholesterol, 0 g fiber, 2 g total sugar, 20% Vitamin A, 0% Vitamin C, 197 mg sodium, 10% calcium, 1% iron

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

598 Calories
48g Fat
7g Carbs
34g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 598
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 48g 62%
Saturated Fat 20g 100%
Cholesterol 164mg 55%
Sodium 859mg 37%
Total Carbohydrate 7g 3%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 34g
Vitamin C 9.1mg 46%
Calcium 174mg 13%
Iron 1.5mg 8%
Potassium 444mg 9%
Fatty acids, total trans 1g
Folate, total 30.7mcg
Vitamin B-12 0.5mcg
Vitamin B-6 0.6mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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