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This 1-pan bruschetta chicken with zucchini noodles is healthy, delicious, and so easy to make—it’s sure to earn a spot in your weeknight dinner rotation, especially in the summertime. Combining a fresh basil, tomato, and garlic bruschetta mixture, zucchini noodles, and chicken marinated in Italian dressing, this dish is positively packed with flavor. Leftovers reheat easily!

tomatoes and bruschetta mixture mixed with zucchini noodles, fresh basil and parmesan, and cooked chicken in a cast iron skillet.

Updated and better than ever! Today I’m re-sharing one of my very favorite dinner recipes with a few simple updates that vastly improve the flavor and texture of the dish. If there’s a way to make a recipe better, you can be sure that my team and I will test it. I’m fiercely dedicated to bringing you the best tested recipes I can. And sometimes that means we need to revisit and retest old favorites. (See blueberry pie as an example!)

Which brings us to today’s massively flavorful, yet simple dinner recipe.

Why You’ll Love This Bruschetta Chicken

  • This all-in-one meal is light and healthy, yet satisfying.
  • Cook everything in 1 skillet.
  • Prep ahead of time and cook later.
  • It’s naturally gluten free, and can be made dairy free, if using dairy-free Italian dressing.
  • The recipe uses simple, fresh, and healthy ingredients.
bruschetta chicken and zucchini noodles with parmesan cheese sprinkled on top on plate.
tongs pulling bruschetta zucchini noodles and chicken out of cast iron skillet.

I make this bruschetta chicken dinner year-round, but it’s pretty much on my weekly rotation in the summer. Zucchini noodles—zoodles!—make this dish extra nutritious, and it’s a great way to use summer’s bounteous green vegetable. And we’re taking advantage of in-season tomatoes, too!

In some countries, zucchini is called “courgette,” and zucchini noodles are called “courgetti.”

9 Simple Ingredients for Bruschetta Chicken

Here’s all you need for this healthy all-in-one dinner:

  • Chicken: You need 4 medium-sized (about 6 ounces or 170g each) boneless skinless chicken breasts, about 1.5 pounds (680g) total.
  • Italian Dressing: You can use store-bought or homemade Italian dressing, whatever kind you like best. If I’m making it at home, I really love this homemade Italian dressing.
  • Italian Seasoning: Italian seasoning is a store-bought herb blend, but you can make your own homemade Italian seasoning. It’s optional, but I like adding it to the Italian dressing marinade to amp up the flavor.
  • Tomatoes: We’re going for about 2 and 1/2 cups of chopped tomatoes; any variety, color, and size of tomato will do.
  • Fresh Garlic: 2 cloves, which is about 1/2 teaspoon minced.
  • Fresh Basil: The recipe calls for 3 Tablespoons of chopped basil leaves, but feel free to add more fresh basil on top to serve.
  • Olive Oil, Salt, & Pepper: Cooking basics you likely already have.
  • Zucchini: Zucchini varies greatly in size, but I use about 1.5 pounds (680g) of zucchini, which is usually about 2 large or 3 medium. This recipe is very forgiving if you have more or less than exactly 1.5 pounds.
  • Parmesan Cheese: Optional, for serving.
ingredients on counter including zucchini, basil, chicken on a plate, tomatoes, and 2 garlic cloves.

Do These 2 Steps in Advance

Start by (1) marinating the chicken and (2) making the tomato bruschetta topping. Both need to marinate in the refrigerator for a while to get the best flavor—at least 2 hours, or up to 24 hours. You can do these 2 steps the night before, and cooking dinner the next day will be a breeze.

I usually use these glass containers for marinating and they work just as well for storing leftovers and freezing meals/baked goods. (See 8 Freezer Meals for some inspiration!)

Grab These 2 Kitchen Tools

  • Skillet: Make the bruschetta chicken entirely on the stovetop in a big skillet. The skillet won’t go into the oven, so it doesn’t necessarily have to be oven-safe. This is the cast iron skillet I own and love.
  • Spiralizer: When I prepare this dinner as well as this peanut chicken zucchini noodles dish, I usually spiralize zucchini myself at home. But if you don’t have a spiralizer, zucchini noodles are pretty easy to find these days in most grocery stores in the produce department, or you can use frozen. You can also simply slice the fresh zucchini into thin strips—see recipe Notes.

Can I Use Regular Pasta? If you prefer pasta instead of zucchini noodles, I recommend using 1 pound of angel hair pasta. Cook and drain it according to package directions. Toss the cooked and drained pasta with a scant 1/2 cup of your favorite tomato sauce before adding to the skillet in step 5, for added flavor. The zucchini noodles absorb a lot of flavor from the pan, but regular pasta doesn’t.

zucchini noodles in glass bowl.

Now Let’s Get Cooking!

Make this dinner entirely in 1 pan, just like this lemon thyme chicken. (Have more zucchini than you can fit in one pan? Try zucchini bread, these zucchini muffins, or hide it in this chocolate zucchini cake.)

After the marinated chicken and bruschetta mixture have chilled for at least 2 hours and you’re ready to cook, you have 3 steps:

Cook the marinated chicken: Heat your skillet with olive oil over medium heat. Add the marinated chicken, cover, and cook for 10–15 minutes, turning a few times, until it’s cooked through. Carefully remove the chicken to a cutting board, but don’t clean out the skillet. Slice the chicken.

Cook the zucchini noodles: Add another Tablespoon of olive oil to the skillet, followed by the zucchini noodles and 1 cup of the bruschetta topping. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. The noodles will cook down, absorbing the flavors. Remove from heat and carefully drain off most of the liquid. (A reader suggested draining some liquid and it definitely improves the dish.)

Combine all ingredients: Return the skillet to the stovetop, and add the sliced cooked chicken and the remaining bruschetta mixture. Cook, stirring, for about a minute, until warmed through.

Slicing the chicken, instead of serving whole, was another suggestion from a reader. Sliced chicken absorbs more flavor and the finished dish is easier to eat.

Piping hot zucchini noodles before adding the sliced chicken:

heated zucchini noodles in cast iron skillet with tomatoes and garlic.
bruschetta tomatoes and cooked sliced chicken over zucchini noodles with fresh basil garnish in cast iron skillet.

And dinner is ready! Top the chicken and zucchini noodles with freshly grated parmesan cheese and some more fresh basil to serve. This dish is great on its own, but you could also serve it alongside some fresh bread, like dinner rolls, olive bread, or homemade artisan bread.

Print
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bruschetta chicken and zucchini noodles with parmesan cheese sprinkled on top on plate.

Skillet Bruschetta Chicken Dinner

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 2 hours
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours, 25 minutes
  • Yield: serves 4
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Cooking
  • Cuisine: Italian

Description

Here is a healthy, light, and simple recipe for bruschetta chicken with zucchini noodles cooked in 1 pan.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1.5 pounds (680g) skinless boneless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup + 2 Tablespoons (267ml) Italian dressing, divided
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, optional
  • 1 pound (454g) tomatoes, chopped (about 2 and 1/2 cups chopped)
  • 3 Tablespoons (3g) chopped basil leaves
  • 2 whole garlic cloves, minced (about 1/2 teaspoon minced)
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1.5 pounds (680g) zucchini, spiralized into noodles*
  • optional for topping: freshly grated parmesan cheese & more basil

Instructions

  1. Marinate the chicken in advance: Place chicken breasts into a large zipper food storage bag or shallow dish/container. Mix 1 cup (240ml) of dressing and Italian seasoning, if using, together and pour on top of chicken. Turn chicken to coat. Seal the bag/cover the dish and refrigerate for 2—24 hours.
  2. Make the bruschetta topping in advance: Combine the chopped tomatoes, chopped basil leaves, minced garlic, and the remaining 2 Tablespoons of Italian dressing. Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. You should end up with about 2 and 1/2 cups (475g) of the bruschetta mixture. Cover tightly and refrigerate for 2—24 hours.
  3. Cook the chicken: In a large skillet, heat 1 Tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add the marinated chicken, cover, and cook for 10–15 minutes, turning a few times. You want the chicken nice and golden-brown on the outside while fully cooked inside. (Chicken is considered done when an instant read thermometer reads the center of the thickest part as at least 165°F (74°C).) Remove the chicken to a cutting board; do not clean out skillet. Slice the chicken.
  4. Cook the zucchini noodles: Add 1 Tablespoon of olive oil to the skillet, followed by the zucchini noodles (see Notes if using frozen zucchini noodles) and about 1 cup of the bruschetta topping. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. The noodles will cook down, absorbing the flavors. Remove from heat and carefully drain off most of the liquid. 
  5. Return the skillet to the stovetop, and add the sliced cooked chicken and the remaining bruschetta mixture. Cook, stirring, for about a minute, until warmed through. Serve immediately, topped with grated parmesan cheese and more fresh basil, if desired.
  6. Leftovers keep well in the refrigerator for a few days. Reheat in the microwave or covered on the stove over low heat until warmed.

Notes

  1. Chicken: You need 4 medium-sized (about 6 ounces or 170g each) boneless skinless chicken breasts, about 1.5 pounds (680g) total.
  2. Zucchini: Zucchini varies greatly in size, but I use about 1.5 pounds (680g) of zucchini, which is usually about 2 large or 3 medium. This recipe is very forgiving if you have more or less than exactly 1.5 pounds. If you do not have a spiralizer, you can simply slice the zucchinis into super thin strips instead, or use a vegetable peeler to slice ribbons. You can use frozen zucchini noodles, no need to thaw. In step 4, cook with 1 Tablespoon olive oil as directed but do not add the bruschetta topping yet. Cook for 4 minutes, drain all liquid, then add 1 cup bruschetta topping and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and carefully drain off most liquid. Continue with step 5.
  3. Can I use regular pasta? If you prefer to use regular pasta instead of zucchini noodles, I recommend using 1 pound of angel hair pasta. Cook and drain it according to package directions. I suggest tossing the cooked and drained pasta with a scant 1/2 cup tomato sauce before adding to the skillet in step 5, for added flavor. The zucchini noodles absorb a lot of flavor from the pan, but regular pasta doesn’t.
  4. Special tools: Spiralizer | Skillet | Tongs | Glass Container

Keywords: skillet bruschetta chicken

Reader Questions and Reviews

      1. Loved this recipe. Never made Italian dressing. Hubby was impressed. This will be on our dinner rotation Thank you.

  1. Hi Sally
    I just had this dish for dinner and it was AMAZING!! I had marinated the chicken and bruschetta topping for 24 hours and it was worth the wait. The dressing by itself is absolutely divine and made me think “why do I buy that bottled stuff? – I don’t really like it anyway”. Do you think it would be ok to freeze fresh uncooked chicken breasts with the marinade? I hope you will be posting some more recipes to make use of a spiralizer. My daughter bought one and other than making zoodles, I really don’t know what else to do with it! I am a huge fan of your blog and have made many of your recipes (just today – glazed chocolate donut holes – YUM). I hope you are safe with the horrendous weather we are seeing on the news (I’m in Australia complaining about the summer heat while you guys are getting snowed in!). Cheers 🙂

    1. Hey Judy! I’m happy you made the bruschetta chicken recipe complete with that homemade italian dressing marinade. Isn’t it incredible? I’ll never buy Italian dressing from the store shelves again! You can freeze the uncooked chicken in the marinade, yes. I’d say up to 2-3 months, maybe a little longer.

      Yes, surviving the blizzard! We got over 20 inches in my part of Pennsylvania!

  2. Since being pregnant I am always craving something new for dinner, the hubs and I had an abundance of grape tomatoes so I made this for dinner tonight and it was amazing! honestly, so much flavour in one dish I couldn’t believe it! we both loved it and it definitely hit the spot. super filling with enough leftovers to have it again for lunch tomorrow! thanks for another great dinner recipe Sally, I haven’t had a bad one from your blog! 

  3. I love bruschetta so this recipe sounded and looked great! I made it with thin spaghetti, then sprinkled parmesan cheese on top. My husband and I both loved it! Thanks for a new idea on chicken!

  4. The first time I made this I wasn’t overly impressed because it was kindof a watery mess in the end. But I tried it again tonight and made some adjustments. I highly recommend pre-cooking the zucchini noodles first and then draining them and squeezing out excess liquid BEFORE adding them to the skillet with the good stuff. This made a huge difference…no excess liquid and way more flavor! I also sliced the chicken breast after cooking and placed on top of the zucchini noodles before topping with the remaining bruschetta mixture. Just made it a little easier to eat since I didn’t have to cut up chicken as I ate. Tonight it was a delicious, flavorful and healthy meal.

  5. Hi Sally, I read the above review from Judy in 2016 referencing the divine homemade Italian dressing. I presume it would be your recipe, but don’t see it on your website. Maybe you don’t post it anymore. I’d really like to try it!
    Your recipes are bomb!

    1. Hi Ruthie! I was no longer satisfied with the homemade dressing recipe, however I’ve made this one in the past and we have loved it: https://www.budgetbytes.com/homemade-italian-dressing/

  6. Can I use frozen zucchini noodles from the market for this? I don’t have a spiral cutter and I prefer the noodle-type texture.

  7. Sally
    I made this for dinner tonight and it was delicious. I didn’t have time to marinate as long as instructed and I added some chili peppers which gave it more flavor. This will be a regular for my dinner arsenal. Thank you for sharing!

  8. This was my first time with zoodles, and they held up so much better than I imagined. I went ahead and made them in advance, and put a paper towel under them in a bowl. It helped release some moisture. I only had chicken thighs, so I cooked them in the crock pot with the dressing instead of stove top because for me, thighs plus stove top is rubber. They were delish! The bruschetta was so great, too! I used the Italian Dressing recipe referenced in one of Sally’s replies, above, and though it was good, it was VERY tangy. My husband can’t do tangy things, lol, so he forced himself to finish it. I could eat this every day! Thanks for a great recipe.

  9. This was absolutely delicious. I bought a spiralizer (over a month ago) from Amazon and could not get it to work. So it will go to Good Will and thank you for telling me that they are available in the frozen food ailes. I did it this time with thin sliced zucchini.

  10. This was a delicious recipe. I had bought a spiralizer from Amazon over a month ago so it’s been too long to send it back. Now it will go to Good Will. I cut my zucchini into thin slices which worked great. Thanks for telling me that frozen zoodles are available in the frozen foods aisle. My daughter said it smelled fantastic as I was cooking it.

  11. I am making this dish this evening. Question: I bought frozen zoodles. Should I use 1.5 lbs of finished zoodles? Not having made zoodles with a spiralizer, I am not sure if 1.5 lbs of whole zucchini yields the same in zoodles, or how freezing might affect weight. Hope my poorly worded question isn’t too confusing. Thanks in advance for your guidance!

      1. Thanks, that’s what I used. I pounded the chicken breast out and marinated for 24 hours before cooking. I guess the dressing caused the meat to really sear and the flavor was just fantastic. Another great recipe, Sally!

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