This Chicken Pasta is an easy dinner solution for your hunger pangs. You crave for something homemade, light and quick after your day’s work or school, this chicken pasta is the easiest meal you can make under 30 mins. Serve it with some veggie salad or grilled veggies on the side.
This simple recipe uses ingredients that are easy to source, such as boneless chopped chicken breast/thighs, spaghetti, fresh tomatoes, onion, spices such as chili flakes, garlic, and dried or fresh herbs.
With some chopping and a couple of cooking steps, you can have a filling, nutritious dinner that will keep both your belly and your wallet full. Leftovers will taste even better the next day too!
To make sure you make the best chicken pasta possible, it’s important to know how to cook one of the most fundamental ingredients: the pasta.
Pro Tips for Boiling Pasta
One of the easiest ways to level up your cooking game is knowing how to properly cook pasta. Whether it’s long, thin spaghetti or short, curly cavatappi, most pastas need to be boiled properly to get their trademark bite and flavor.
Here are a few tips for perfectly boiled pasta.
- Salt the water. If you hear someone tell you your pasta water needs to be “salty like the sea,” follow their advice! Salty water helps season the pasta and make it taste good.
- Don’t add oil. Some folks say that adding oil to pasta water keeps the pasta from sticking. This is just not true, and the oil prevents the sauce from sticking to the pasta. Just give the pasta a little stir or two, especially at the beginning of cooking, to prevent it from sticking.
- Reserve some pasta water. Pasta water helps loosen and emulsify pasta sauces, giving them better overall texture and consistency. Don’t be afraid to keep some behind to perfect your pasta!
- Toss pasta in sauce immediately after draining. To keep your pasta’s texture and warmth, make sure whatever sauce you want to use is ready to go as soon as you start to drain the noodles.
Variations on Chicken Pasta
This chicken pasta is easily adaptable to suit your needs.
You can use shredded cooked chicken, grilled chicken, or brined chicken instead of raw chicken breast to speed up the cooking.
For additional richness, try topping the pasta with Italian or melting cheeses like parmesan, ricotta, mozzarella, Fontina, or cheddar.
If you don’t have any fresh tomatoes on hand, just use canned! For more texture, use diced or whole canned tomatoes. For a smoother sauce, canned tomato sauce or passata will also work.
Tomato enthusiasts are encouraged to try finding canned San Marzano tomatoes, especially ones with a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO or sometimes DOP in Italian) label for authenticity.
Fresh herb lovers can go wild. Basil, parsley, oregano, marjoram, and rosemary all complement this recipe handsomely.
Consider adding soft herbs towards the end of cooking to preserve their freshness and harder, woodier herbs earlier to soften them and draw out their flavors.
How to Make Chicken Pasta (Stepwise Photos)
1. Bring 10 cups of water to a boil in a large pot. Add salt and spaghetti and cook as per the instructions on the pack. I used organic durum wheat spaghetti.
2. They must be cooked al dente. Drain them in a colander and rinse them well.
Make the Sauce
3. Heat oil in a pan and saute garlic until it smells good.
4. Add chicken shredded or cubed and then sprinkle salt. I had brined the chicken in vinegar for about 2 hours. If you have brined yours in salted solution, then skip adding salt to the pan here.
5. Saute on a medium heat until completely cooked. Add the spices. Saute on high heat just for a min or 2.
6. Set the chicken aside. Add little more oil to the pan. Saute garlic until aromatic. Then add onions.
7. Saute until the onions turn golden.
8. Add the pureed tomatoes.
9. Cook until the sauce thickens. It does take some time to thicken. Time to add the chicken and herbs. You may taste test and add more spices or herbs here.
Make Chicken Spaghetti
10. Add 3 to 4 tbsps pasta cooked stock. And cook till it reaches a saucy consistency as shown in the picture.
11. Add cooked pasta.
12. Saute for 2 to 3 mins. Off the heat. At this stage if your chicken pasta looks dry, add little more stock.
Serve chicken spaghetti hot or warm with a bowl of soup.
Chicken Pasta (Chicken Spaghetti)
For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card
Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )
- 5 to 6 ounces (140 grams) spaghetti or pasta of choice
- 5 to 7 ounce (150 to 200 grams) boneless chicken shredded or cubed to ½ inch pieces
- 2 to 3 tablespoons Olive oil or butter (divided)
- 1 tablespoon (3) garlic cloves (fine chopped, divided)
- 1 small onion finely chopped
- 1½ cups (350 grams) tomatoes deseeded and chopped or pureed or crushed
- 1 to 1½ teaspoon red chili flakes (adjust to taste)
- ½ to ¾ teaspoon black pepper coarsely crushed
- ⅛ to ¼ teaspoon allspice (or double garam masala or Chinese five spice, adjust to taste)
- ½ teaspoon salt (more to boil spaghetti)
- ½ teaspoon dried herbs or fresh herbs as needed
- Bring water to a rapid boil in a large pot. Add salt and pasta. Let the water keep boiling and cook the spaghetti al dente & not too soft. Refer the instructions on the pack for the amount of salt and the exact cook time.
- Reserve ½ cup spaghetti cooked stock and drain the spaghetti to a colander.
How to make chicken pasta
- Heat half the oil in a pan or pot. Add half of the garlic and let it sizzle for a minute. Add the shredded or diced chicken and saute until soft and fully cooked.
- Add the ground spices and saute on a high heat for a minute. Set the chicken aside.
- Pour rest of the oil to the pan and add the rest of the garlic. When the garlic begins to sizzle, add the chopped onions. Saute until golden.
- Add tomatoes and cook until the sauce becomes thick.
- Transfer the sautéed chicken and 2 to 3 tbsps of pasta cooked stock. Mix and simmer for a few minutes until the sauce reaches a thick consistency. Taste test and add more salt or spices to taste.
- Add spaghetti and mix well. If your chicken spaghetti looks dry, you may add a splash of pasta stock or more oil.
- If you like to make it cheesy add your favorite cheese over the chicken spaghetti. Serve hot with a side of soup or cheese toast.
Alternative quantities provided in the recipe card are for 1x only, original recipe.
For best results follow my detailed step-by-step photo instructions and tips above the recipe card.
NUTRITION INFO (estimation only)
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I’m Swasthi Shreekanth, the recipe developer, food photographer & food writer behind Swasthi’s Recipes. My aim is to help you cook great Indian food with my time-tested recipes. After 2 decades of experience in practical Indian cooking I started this blog to help people cook better & more often at home. Whether you are a novice or an experienced cook I am sure Swasthi’s Recipes will assist you to enhance your cooking skills. More about me
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