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Creamy pesto chicken pasta in a pan.

Creamy Pesto Chicken Pasta

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Created by Mariam E.
This Creamy Pesto Chicken Pasta is a kid-friendly recipe that is made in less than 30 minutes. Bite sized chicken and pasta tossed with a creamy pesto sauce, your family will be reaching for seconds.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Main Dishes
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings
servings

Ingredients

  • 3 cups penne pasta dry, uncooked

Chicken

  • 1.5 lbs. chicken tenderloins cleaned and cubed
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 2 tbsps. olive oil

Creamy Pesto Sauce

  • 2 tbsps. butter salted
  • tbsps. all purpose flour
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • cup chicken broth low sodium
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese grated
  • 3/4 cup pesto sauce more or less to taste
  • ¾ tsp. basil dry

Instructions

  • Cook pasta al dente according to package instructions.
  • Salt and pepper the chicken cubes.
  • Bring a large nonstick skillet to medium heat. Add in the olive oil and pan sear the cubed chicken for 6-8 minutes until golden brown on the outside. Remove the chicken and set aside in a bowl.
  • In the same skillet, melt the butter and then add in the flour. Whisk to blend well into a creamy mixture.
  • Gradually add in the chicken broth while whisking to prevent any clumps. Add in the heavy cream, salt, pepper, dry basil, onion and garlic powder. Simmer on medium low heat for a few minutes until the sauce thickens up a little.
  • Once the sauce thicken up a little, add in the pesto sauce and the grated parmesan cheese. Mix well to get a smooth and creamy consistency.
  • Return the drained and cooked pasta to the creamy sauce and mix to coat well, then add in the cooked chicken. Mix everything together well. Simmer on low heat and cover to cook for about 5 more minutes.
  • Remove from heat and garnish with some fresh basil leaves and serve.

Notes

  • You want to make sure you cut your chicken breasts to the same size for this recipe so they’re cooked through evenly. 
  • Your chicken is done once its internal temperature has reached 165F. You can use an instant thermometer to quickly check for doneness.
  • Feel free to add some vegetables if you’d like! Try spinach, broccoli florets, frozen peas, asparagus, mushrooms, or green beans.
  • Make sure you are cooking the sauce on a low heat, avoid boiling the sauce as it can cause it to separate.
  • Top it off with a little bit of lemon juice for a bright tangy flavor if you’d like.

Nutrition

Calories: 724kcal | Carbohydrates: 53g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 40g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 144mg | Sodium: 682mg | Potassium: 666mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 1426IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 152mg | Iron: 2mg
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