Rosemary-crusted creamy chicken pasta is a great, easy recipe for fuss-free weeknight dinners and is elegant enough to serve to guests at a dinner party.
Oh hi there glorious creamy chicken pasta. You guys. This pasta recipe is so crazy-good, I can’t wait for you to try it.
The idea for this rosemary cream chicken pasta recipe was born one night when I had very little to work with for dinner (there seems to be a running theme when it comes to my recipes). I wanted something super savory and delicious but didn’t have much in the fridge/pantry and even less want to stand in front of the stove for long. Chicken breasts seem to be my saving grace in these situations. They cook quickly and are versatile so work in almost any dish. That with a pack of pasta means dinner can be on the table in minutes.
Add a creamy sauce infused with fresh herbs (or dried if that’s all you have) and you have a dinner your family will love.
How to cook chicken breast for pasta
Slicing chicken breast and then frying before adding sauce ingredients is a fine way to cook chicken for pasta. However, if you want flavorful, juicy chicken in your pasta, this is the way to do it: Place boneless, skinless chicken breasts onto a chopping board in front of your. Place your non-dominant hand on top of the chicken breast then carefully slice the chicken in half, horizontally. This results in two, thin chicken cutlets. Season the chicken generously with salt, pepper and herbs of your choice. Preheat a large pan or skillet then cook the chicken until golden brown on both sides, approximately 1-2 minutes per side. Remove from the pan, allow to rest for a few minutes then slice and add to the pasta sauce to warm through.
How to make chicken pasta
Prepare the chicken in the same way explained above. Finely chop fresh rosemary (dried rosemary can also be used). Drizzle the chicken breasts with a few teaspoons of olive oil then generously season with salt, pepper and the chopped rosemary. Heat a large pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and allow to brown on both sides. Remove from the pan and set aside while you make the sauce. Add the stock to the hot pan, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom. They add a ton of flavor to the finished sauce. Allow the stock to reduce for a few minutes. Add the chopped garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Pour in the cream and lemon juice and bring to a simmer. You can substitute the cream with 1 cup milk mixed with 1 teaspoon cornstarch if you want a lighter version. Cook the sauce for 5 minutes then season to taste.
While the sauce is cooking, cook penne pasta in a large pot of salted water until al dente. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water and drain the pasta. Slice the cooked chicken then add to the sauce with the cooked pasta. Add a splash of pasta water to emulsify the sauce and toss until the pasta is coated in the sauce. Serve with grated Parmesan cheese.
Chicken pasta recipes:
Rosemary cream chicken pasta
- 4 sprigs fresh rosemary finely chopped
- 4 chicken breast fillets halved horizontally
- 2 tbsp olive oil
For the cream sauce
- 1 cup chicken stock/wine
- 3 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1 cup heavy/whipping cream
- 1-2 tbsp lemon juice fresh
- Parmesan to serve
- 500 g (1lb) penne pasta
- Remove the rosemary leaves from the stalks and finely chop.
- Slice the chicken in half horizontally, resulting in two thin chicken fillets.
- Drizzle the olive oil over the chicken and season well with the rosemary, salt and pepper.
- Cook the chicken in a hot pan until golden brown on both sides and cooked through. Remove from the pan and set aside to rest.
- Pour the chicken stock into the pan and scrape the bottom to release all the caramelized bits.
- Allow the stock to simmer and reduce for 2 minutes then add the garlic and cook for another 30 seconds.
- Pour in the cream and lemon juice and allow to simmer for 5 minutes.
- Season to taste.
- While the sauce is cooking, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add penne pasta and cook for 9-10 minutes or until al dente. Reserve 1 cup of cooking water and drain.
- Slice the chicken and add to cooked pasta then pour over the sauce and toss well. Add some of the pasta cooking water to emulsify the sauce. Add grated Parmesan and serve.
Want to try this tonight! This might be a bit of a dumb question but does a white wine work best for this pasta?
Yes, any white will work.
Oh my gosh this was sooooooo AMAZING!!! It is the most budget friendly, easy, minimal ingredient, yummy recipe ever!!
I would suggest that even if you’re thinking about substituting the rosemary/lemon/garlic for the “non-fresh” version, because it’s more budget friendly… Don’t do it. Use the fresh ingredients, it elevates this recipe to the next level. You can literally taste the freshness of the rosemary and te pungent taste of fresh garlic. Even the lemon juice won’t be the same as the concentrate bottled version. This is such a yummy recipe, I shared it to my whole family!
I’m so happy to hear that Mia!
This was DELISH! My sister and I made this together, she grilled the chicken and it gave a fabulous flavor. I am sure i will make this again, its a family favorite! I Made a few changes/additions, I used linguini instead of penne and I added just a tad but if starch to thicken it up. We also added thinly chopped sautéed collards in with the linguini. Perfection!!
Fantastic dinner recipe.
Thanks for your feedback Christa!
I came for the rosemary cream chicken pasta but then stayed to comment once I saw the short ingredient list. I ADORE short list recipes that allow the ingredients to speak for themselves. I’m going on vacation next week so I’ll be eating nothing but salad in prep for my trip, but the moment I get back and can relax with a great pasta meal and some wine, I’m making this for dinner! PINNING!
Thanks so much Christina! I love a good short ingredient list. 😉
Looks filling and sumptuous! I like the mix of ingredients and how it’s easy to make. Perfect meal for any occasion.
Thanks Nancy! 🙂
We’ve made this pasta every week for the last couple of weeks and it’s always a hot. Even my picky in-laws love it!
Oh that’s so great to hear Faith! 🙂
Absolutely delicious! Perfect for a working week evening meal.
I’m so glad you liked it Sarah!
Laura | Tutti Dolci
You had me at rosemary cream, what a dreamy pasta!
Thanks so much Laura! It’s a firm favourite around these parts.
We loved this recipe! It was a quick, easy but most of all absolutely delicious midweek dinner. We licked our bowls clean!
I’m so glad to hear that! 🙂
I have been craving creamy pasta forever but I’m not eating carbs at the moment so just made the chicken and sauce and had it on zucchini noodles and it was so good. Best chicken pasta recipe I have found on the internet.
What a lovely compliment! Thanks so much. And love the idea of having the chicken on zoodles!
Made this pasta last night but added mushrooms to the sauce and it was very delicious. The chicken was so tasty, I kept out two pieces to make chicken salad with today. Great recipe.
The mushroom addition sounds great! And the chicken is going to be perfect in your chicken salad. 🙂
This chicken pasta looks great. Definitely making this next week.
Let me know what you think once you’ve tried it! 🙂
I’ve started adding mushrooms between step 4 and 5! Just because I love mushrooms.
This recipe is honestly such a winner!
SO happy to hear that Robyn!
Mary Ann | The Beach House Kitchen
I love how easy and delicious this sounds Alida. A nice short list of ingredients for a fabulous busy weeknight dinner!
Thanks so much Mary Ann. It sure is a weeknight winner.