Start a pot of boiling water for the pasta. Add a large pinch of salt and splash of olive oil.
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
Prepare the vegetables:
a. Skin and chop the carrot into half inch thick circular pieces (or similar).
b. Cut the cucumber in half. Cut a little less that half into quarter inch circles. Cut the remainder into ¾ inch circles and then quarter each piece.
c. Cut half of the total tomato into quarter inch slices. Cut the rest of the tomato into similar sized chunks as the cucumber quarters.
Drizzle about 1 tbsp. of olive oil into large non-stick frying pan. Bring up to medium/high heat and put in the carrots so that each carrot slice is face down. Cook for 2-4 minutes or until the carrots have blistered and then flip each piece. Do the same for the other side.
Once the carrots are done turn off the heat and add 3-4 oz. of pesto to the pan with the carrots. Mix until everything is fully coated (make sure the heat is off and things have cooled a bit).
Your water should be boiling at this point. Add the penne pasta to the pot. Stir to prevent the pasta from sticking to the bottom. Set a timer for a minute or two less than the allotted cooking time (about 8 min).
Prepare the chicken by massaging 1 oz. of pesto into all the chicken. You can sprinkler some salt as well if your pesto needs it.
Put the chicken breast on a baking sheet and put in the oven. Set a timer for 15-20 minutes or until the chicken reaches 165 degrees F.
When your pasta is done, strain the pasta and add 2/3 of the pasta to the pan with the carrots and pesto. Turn on the heat to medium and cook while stirring for a couple minutes until everything is coated. Turn off heat.
Once the chicken breast is done pull out and let rest for 5 min.
Cut the mozzarella ball into thirds. Cut two thirds into 1/8 inch strips. Cut the remaining third into small cubes (a little smaller than the cucumber pieces).
Cut both rolls in half (sandwich style) and layer one side of each roll with Parmesan and the other side with half the total mozzarella slices.
Portion your chicken into 3 even portions. Cut 1/3 of the chicken into quarter inch slices. Cut the remainder into cubes.
Prepare the sandwiches.
a. Layer the chicken slices onto on of the sandwich rolls. Put the top of the bread on top of the chicken to complete the sandwich. You can add a slight drizzle of pesto if you want.
b. Layer 2-3 slices of tomato (should have half of the sliced tomato left over) onto the top of one of the sandwich rolls. Drizzle with 1 oz. of pesto on top.
Prepare a skillet or griddle with olive oil over low heat. This will be used to press the completed sandwiches to make a panini. Once the skillet or griddle is hot put the sandwiches on and use the bottom of another pan or push down on the griddle to prepare sandwich. Make sure to flip if you are not using the griddle. The panini’s are done once the cheese is melted. Once they are done take the panini’s and let them rest away from the heat.
Pesto Pasta (530 calories):
Take ½ half of the pasta with carrots and add one half of the chopped tomato. Mix and cover with Parmesan to taste. Store the pasta in the refrigerator. The pasta can be served cold or heated up in a microwave.
Chicken Panini (550 calories):
Cut chicken sandwich in half. Store the panini in the refrigerator. Before eating, the panini should be toasted or microwaved until the cheese starts to melt.
Cucumber-Tomato Salad (520 calories):
Take the sliced cucumber and layer it with the rest of the sliced tomato and the remaining sliced mozzarella. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Add salt and pepper to taste. This should be stored in the refrigerator and the dressing can wait till the day of or it can marinate. This lunch should be enjoyed chilled.
Pesto Chicken Pasta (665 calories):
Take the other half of the pasta with carrots and add half of the cubed chicken. Mix and cover with Parmesan to taste. Store the pasta in the refrigerator. The pasta can be served cold or heated up in a microwave.
Pasta Salad (600 calories):
Take the left over plain pasta and add the rest of the chopped tomato, chopped cucumber, cubed chicken, and cubed mozzarella. Add olive oil and balsamic vinegar to taste (this can marinate or it can be added just before eating). Store the pasta in the refrigerator.The pasta salad should be served chilled.
Caprese Panini (570 calories):
Cut caprese sandwich in half. The panini can be stored in the freezer to preserve freshness (or just the refrigerator). Before eating, the panini should be toasted or microwaved until the cheese starts to melt.