Pita pockets are a fun, quick way to throw together a sandwich at any time of day, and often make a great excuse to use leftover ingredients. They can be filled up with any number of meats, vegetables, spreads, and cheeses, and can make a healthful and satisfying lunch or dinner for anyone to enjoy — without packing on the calories. Of Mediterranean origins, this slightly leavened flatbread is a simple departure from the usual “two slices of white bread” approach.
Try any of these six recipes to deliver yourself a heart-healthy burst of flavor using stuffed pita.
1. Chicken and Arugula Pita Pockets
The bit of lemon zest in this recipe unleashes the flavors of the pesto, making it a simple and mouthwatering culinary venture. This is a great way to create a whole new meal out of existing leftovers; pita pockets make it a breeze to use up that leftover chicken breast sitting in the fridge. This recipe from GiadaDe Laurentiis of Food Network takes 20 minutes to complete and yields 4 lunch-sized servings. Each serving contains 360 calories and 22 grams of protein.
- 2 whole-wheat pitas, halved and opened
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- ½ cup arugula pesto, recipe follows
- 2 store-bought rotisserie chicken breasts, diced into ¼-inch pieces
- 8 cherry tomatoes, quartered
- 1 cup arugula
- 2 cups packed arugula
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and halved
- ½ cup olive oil
- ½ cup grated Parmesan
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Directions: Preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Arrange the pita halves on a baking sheet and bake for 5 to 7 minutes until warmed through. In a large bowl, combine the mayonnaise, lemon zest, and arugula pesto. Stir in the diced chicken. To assemble the pita pockets, fill each pita half with the chicken mixture. Top with tomatoes and ¼ cup arugula and serve.
To make the arugula pesto, blend the arugula and garlic in a food processor until finely chopped. With the machine running, gradually add the oil until well-blended. Transfer to a large bowl and stir in Parmesan and salt and pepper.