Last week I bought a pretty basil plant that I have sitting on my window sill. Not only does it look great it smells fantastic too! So when I was on the hunt to solve the never ending battle of “what should I cook for dinner??” I wanted to use something with my fresh basil and when I think of basil I think of caprese, which is the timeless combo of fresh mozzarella, tomato and basil. So thus this recipe was born. This baked chicken caprese was so easy to make and declines too- and topped off with the super easy balsamic sauce- it’s great for adults and kids too!
One thing I didn’t have was fresh mozzarella but I did have some slices from the deli so I decided “why not?” and used those instead. This was actually more kid friendly in my opinion since it melted completely onto the chicken. My kid’s aren’t fans of anything chunky so even though I love some fresh mozzarella, this way we didn’t have to listen to complaints about the cheese.
The balsamic sauce can be left off for those who weren’t a fan (like my kids!) or drizzled on extra heavy for those who like it, and with only two ingredients, it was so simple to make!
- chicken breasts
- 1 t dried basil
- 1 t dried oregano
- 1 t dried thyme
- ¼ cup olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1½ unsalted butter
- nonstick spray
- slices of mozzarella (one per chicken)
- slices of tomato (one per chicken)
- 1 cup fresh basil, chiffonaded
- Balsamic sauce:
- ¼ balsamic vinegar
- 1½ T brown sugar
- Flatten chicken breasts between two pieces of wax paper the trim off the fat.
- Season the breasts with salt and pepper to taste.
- In a small bowl, mix the olive oil and herbs and then brush onto the chicken.
- Sauté the chicken in a hot pan for 3-4 minuets on each side.
- Heat oven to 400 degrees, and when it's hot, transfer the chicken to a heat safe dish and cook of 25-30 minutes until cooked.
- While the chicken is cooking, combine the balsamic vinegar and sugar and simmer 5-6 minutes until it's dissolved. Let cool.
- Top each breast with one slice of mozzarella and a tomato and broil for 2-3 minutes until the cheese is melted, then top with the fresh basil and serve with a drizzle of the balsamic sauce.
Yum, right? This dish is perfect for summer and is so light and delicious- so good in fact that my kids even ate it!