This tomato chicken pasta is your dinner dream! Only 30 minutes and simple ingredients make up with this creamy tomato sauce that clings to golden tender chicken and hugs all those silky pasta noodles. Finish it off with some parmesan cheese and fresh basil and maybe a glass of wine!
Chicken is the world's most popular dinner and sometimes it can be a little challenging to keep it new and creative. If you're looking for more chicken pasta recipes then maybe try this cajun chicken pasta or this creamy chicken and bacon pasta. This tomato chicken pasta does just that. We're skipping cream in the sauce and using mascarpone and instead of spinach wilted into the sauce, we're using rocket (arugula) on the side to give the whole dish a bright peppery kick.
30 Minute Tomato Chicken Pasta
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- Boneless skinless chicken breast- You can use chicken thighs here instead, just reduce the cooking time a little bit. This is also a really great way to get the most value out of chicken and stretch your budget.
- Tinned cherry tomatoes- Chopped tomatoes are perfectly fine here too, but the sauce won't have that summery sweetness that the cherry tomatoes have. You can also use fire-roasted tomatoes if you have access to them. (That's mainly North American readers)
- Mascarpone- We're skipping the single/heavy/double cream in this recipe and using mascarpone. It helps to thicken the sauce and brings a lovely light texture and flavour to it.
- Rigatoni- Any pasta noodle will do here, but something like this rigatoni or penne is perfect because they have ridges that the sauce clings to.
- Chicken stock- made with a stock cube.
- Onion and garlic- the building blocks of flavour for any pasta sauce.
- Rocket- Instead of spinach, this rocket adds a peppery kick and a fresh texture that the traditional spinach just doesn't have.
- *As a note I assume that you already have olive oil and salt and pepper so don't mention them in these lists, but they are in the recipe card at the bottom of the post.
Step by step directions
Step 1 & 2
- Start by dicing the chicken into chunks. This will help it cook faster. Brown the chicken on all sides until golden. Remove the cooked chicken to a plate while you make the rest of the sauce. *Leave the golden bits on the bottom of the pan. The onion will soften it and add so much flavour.
- Add the diced onion and garlic cloves to the pan and saute gently until softened. Scrape the brown bits off the bottom of the pan and mix with the onions.
Step 3 & 4
- Add the tinned cherry tomatoes and chicken stock to the pan and bring to a simmer until the tomatoes burst and the stock reduces slightly. This should take about 5-6 minutes on medium heat.
- Turn the heat down to low and add the chicken back to the pan and stir in the mascarpone. As you stir the sauce the mascarpone will just melt in.
Step 5 & 6
- Stir in the shredded parmesan and give the pasta a very good mix. That parm melts into the sauce and makes it all so thick and creamy.
- Add in some of the rocket and the basil. Serve it all with extra grated parm and lots of fresh cracked pepper for good measure.
- You can use minced turkey for this recipe if you want to keep it even leaner than with the chicken.
- Instead of tinned cherry tomatoes, you can use tinned chopped or plum tomatoes.
- Spinach instead of the rocket.
- What does mascarpone taste like?
- Mascarpone cheese has a mildly sweet, almost nutty flavour with a fresh buttery character. It's less tangy than comparable cheeses like ricotta and American cream cheese.
- Can I use cream instead of mascarpone?
- You sure can. Once you add the cream or the mascarpone, be sure to not boil the cream again so that it doesn't curdle.
As with most pasta dishes, this creamy tomato chicken pasta makes amazing leftovers. Store in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge. To reheat simply microwave for about 2 minutes stirring every 30 seconds. If the pasta sauce seems a little too thick, then just add a splash of water before heating up.
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