Warm and Tasty Spicy Creamy Chicken Pasta
This Spicy Creamy Chicken Pasta dish is absolutely delicious. It’s a perfect weeknight dinner, especially if you’re trying to get your kids to eat more veggies!
This recipe is simple, but it does take some time in the kitchen. I recommend making the sauce in advance and letting it sit overnight so that all of its flavors can meld together. In addition to being great for dinner tonight, this recipe would be great as leftovers or even just as a snack-on-the-go during football season!
1 lb. chicken (I used boneless skinless chicken breasts, but a rotisserie chicken works great too)
Cut the chicken into strips or cubes, as desired.
Cutting chicken into smaller pieces is a great way to make sure they cook faster and stay moist while they’re cooking.
Salt and pepper
Salt and pepper are the only seasonings used in this recipe. Salt adds flavor, while pepper helps to tenderize the chicken.
Salt is also a crucial part of seasoning food properly so that it can absorb all of its other flavors, which is why it’s important not to skimp on salt when cooking with poultry or meat.
3 cups half and half
All of the ingredients in this recipe are essential, but you’ll want to use the best quality you can afford.
- Pasta: I recommend using a good quality pasta for this dish, like Barilla or Penne Rigate (or even spaghetti). If you prefer not to use cream at all, then look for full-fat pastas such as whole wheat or gluten free.
- Chicken: Buy only chicken that has been USDA certified organic and free range—I suggest buying it from your local farmers market or online through Amazon Prime Pantry (or another delivery service). This will ensure that it is free from antibiotics and hormones! And if you don’t feel comfortable buying from one source only…that’s okay too—just remember that there are many different types of farms out there! Read more about them here if interested 🙂
1/2 cup butter, cut into pieces
Butter, or fat, is a macronutrient. It’s also a dairy product and is a good source of fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. It’s important to include healthy fats in your diet because they help you absorb more vitamins from other foods you eat. Saturated fat helps maintain healthy blood cholesterol levels by helping to lower “bad” LDL cholesterol (low density lipoprotein) while raising “good” HDL cholesterol (high density lipoprotein).
1 tsp garlic salt or granulated garlic
To make this recipe, you’ll need 6 cups of low-sodium chicken broth. For the best flavor, use homemade stock from your pantry or take advantage of the many ready-made broths available at grocery stores and other retailers. Once your stock is simmering in a large pot on the stovetop (or in your slow cooker if you’re using one), add 2 cloves minced garlic to it with 1 teaspoon salt and stir until they’re dissolved into the liquid. Then add 2 tablespoons butter along with some freshly ground black pepper to taste—this will give your pasta that extra kick!
To serve: Heat up some whole wheat penne pasta according to package directions; drain once cooked throughly then add 1/2 cup heavy cream plus 1 tsp granulated garlic (or 1 tsp garlic salt) followed by 4 ounces shredded sharp cheddar cheese shreded into small pieces so as not interfere with each bite’s texture.*
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, plus more to taste (can omit)
If you like it spicy, adding a little more cayenne will make the dish even better.
3/4 cup grated parmesan
It’s worth it to choose the right cheese for your recipe. Parmesan is a hard cheese with a high fat content, which helps make it crisp and delicious in this dish. You can use any type of parmesan you want—the more expensive or aged varieties tend to be better than the cheaper brands—but I think grating your own will give you the best results!
You’ll need about 1-2 cups of grated parmesan for this recipe (depending on how much sauce you want). If you don’t have any on hand, feel free to substitute shredded mozzarella or feta instead!
This recipe makes a spicy chicken pasta dish that is full of flavor and very creamy.
In a large saute pan over medium heat, add the chicken and cook until it is no longer pink. Add the half and half, butter, cayenne pepper and parmesan to the pan. Stir to combine well with each other. Heat up until heated through but not boiling (about 2-3 minutes).
This is a great recipe for using up leftover chicken, or just wanting something different. If you love spicy food, this dish will make your mouth water!