This incredibly delicious Chicken Caprese Sandwich brings the classic zesty taste of your favorite Caprese salad to a handy sandwich perfect for on the go.
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A Perfect Caprese Sandwich with Chicken
Caprese is a classic Italian flavor with the perfect pairing of tomato, basil, and mozzarella that makes for the perfect summer dish right out of your garden on a hot summer day. This sandwich is a great way to use some of your tomato harvest or to make use of some grilled chicken.
Chicken breast – I used a fresh chicken breast that I simply pan-fried after seasoning. However, if you have leftover rotisserie chicken or some previously grilled chicken strips, those will also work perfectly for this chicken sandwich recipe. **Check the recipe card below on how to use different types of chicken.
Fresh mozzarella – It’s important that you use FRESH mozzarella here. Using pizza mozzarella or the block type of mozzarella will not give you that same, fresh and creamy flavor that fresh mozzarella does. Most grocery stores sell it now so it’s not hard to find.
Ripe tomatoes – The best tomato to use it the one out of your garden! The second best is a nice slicing tomato from the grocery store.
Lettuce – I used romaine, but you can use butter lettuce, Boston, green leaf, or even iceberg if you wanted a stronger crunch.
Pesto – I have a delicious recipe for Homemade Garlic Scape Pesto on the blog, but because I’ve completely used it all, I got a store-bought variety.
Seasonings – I dusted the chicken breast with Salt, Pepper, Garlic powder, and Smoked Paprika. However, use your favorite seasoning collection if you’d like.
Buns – Use a nice crusty, but fluffy inside, bun. Artisan, torpedo, or submarine buns work best here.
How to make this Grilled Chicken Caprese Sandwich
Start by cutting your chicken breast horizontally to make it thinner. This helps so you don’t have a big huge chunk of chicken in the sandwich, and it also helps speed up the cooking process.
Season your chicken before grilling/frying or season ahead of time and allow it to marinate until you are ready to cook. This is a great way to prep your lunch or dinner the night before.
I’ve listed the seasonings I used, but feel free to make it your own. You can even marinate your chicken in Italian dressing or balsamic vinaigrette to really enhance the flavor.
While the chicken is cooking you can begin to assemble your sandwiches. On a large buttered and warmed bun (we use torpedo buns), layer the lettuce, sliced tomatoes, and fresh mozzarella.
When the chicken is cooked through, remove it from the heat and carefully slice the breast into strips.
Drizzle the pesto on the cheese and then lay down the chicken slices. You can sprinkle a few drops of balsamic dressing if desired on the chicken. Cover with the top of the bun.
Make it your own
There is a lot you can do to this simple sandwich to give it your own flare and make this Caprese sandwich truly unique.
You could add fresh basil leaves or use spinach in place of the romaine lettuce. Switch out the pesto for a smoked red pepper spread.
Switch up the buns and use some artisan bread. Butter both sides and give them a light toasting in the skillet before you cook the chicken. The added crunch from the bread would give an awesome texture.
How can I make this sandwich ahead of time?
Absolutely. You can grill your chicken ahead of time and keep it chilled until you assemble the sandwiches. You can even use leftover chicken from the previous night. Simply assemble when you are ready to eat to keep the bun from becoming soggy.
If you do not finish your sandwich or would like to pack it for lunch and serve cold, wrap the sandwich really well in plastic wrap and keep it chilled. You’ll want to eat it within 2 days.
The importance of fresh ingredients
To get the most out of this sandwich you need to have the freshest ingredients available. Similar to my Open Faced Caprese Steak Sandwich, (which is INSANELY delicious as well), these sandwiches are the perfect way for a dish right out of your garden where you grow fresh tomatoes, romaine lettuce, and basil. These fresh ingredients are available for a great price at the local farmers’ market this time of year if you don’t have your own garden.
Fresh mozzarella is easy to make at home or can be found at your local farmers’ market, Italian specialty store, or regular grocery store. The flavor and texture of fresh mozzarella is so superior to use in this Caprese sandwich. It honestly wouldn’t be the same if you didn’t use the fresh version.
Have you made Caprese sandwiches before? What type of ingredients did you use? Let me know below in the comments, I’d love to hear about it!
- 1 Chicken breast, sliced in half horizontally (approximately 6 oz)
- 4-6 fresh mozzarella slices
- 4-6 fresh tomato slices
- 3 tablespoons Pesto
- 2 buns, torpedo
- as desired, salt, pepper, garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika ** see notes
- Oil for frying.
- After carefully slicing the chicken breast in half horizontally, season both pieces, front and back with the seasonings. *see notes
- Grill (using a grill pan or the bbq) or, pour the oil in a skillet and pan fry the chicken until cooked through. You want it to have no pink in the flesh and register 165F.
- While it's cooking, assemble the sandwich.
- Cut the buns in half horizontally. Butter them if you wish, and begin to lay the lettuce on the bottom. Top that with the slices of tomato.
- Season the tomato with salt and pepper. It's important to add layers of seasoning throughout the sandwich.
- Add the sliced mozzarella on top of the tomatoes and dollop/spread the pesto on top of the cheese.
- Remove the cooked chicken from the pan and lay it on top of the cheese. Optional step - drizzle a little balsamic vinegar over the chicken.
- Replace the top bun, cut in half and serve!
1. Smoked paprika has a strong smoke flavor so a little goes a long way. Use sparingly unless you're familiar with the spice so you know how much to use to your preference.
2. If using rotisserie chicken, you'll want to use about 3-4 ounces of cooked chicken, or chicken strips. Feel free to season the cooked chicken with the same spices. Gently heat the chicken in the skillet to bloom the spices on it and warm it for the sandwich if you prefer. If not, go straight to assembly steps.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 2 Serving Size: 1 sandwich
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 633Total Fat: 38gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 23gCholesterol: 111mgSodium: 1112mgCarbohydrates: 30gFiber: 3gSugar: 5gProtein: 42g
All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods, and portion sizes per household.