This simple one pot Spicy Tuscan Chicken Pasta is the perfect winter dinner. Quick, easy, hearty, and so delicious! Pan-seared Italian seasoned chicken in a creamy Italian chili sauce with sun-dried tomatoes and spinach. Cooked together with rigatoni pasta for a quick dinner made in one pot. Truly one of those all-in-one dinners that everyone at the table will love. Elegant enough for a special holiday dinner yet equally great to make at the end of a busy day. You can’t go wrong with this Tuscan-style pasta.
Growing up, Valentine’s Day was definitely more of a holiday celebrated at school than at home. In our house, a house full of boys, no one cared much for Valentine’s Day. Even my mom, who you’d think might have some interest, does not care for the holiday. My dad refers to it as a “Hallmark Holiday“.
But there was one person in my life who always made Valentine’s Day special, my Nonnie. No matter where she was, Florida or Cleveland, she’d send us a small gift for V-Day every year. She always made it special and fun.
I can’t say that Valentine’s Day is my favorite day of the year, but I honestly find the holiday of love to be very sweet. I love any excuse to bake chocolate and make a yummy dinner that feels super special.
On Friday, I shared what I’ll be making for my Valentine’s Day dessert. With today’s pasta we now have a full Valentine’s Day meal (I do have another fun dessert coming tomorrow too!)
And if where you live is as booked up for dinner reservations as it is here in New York, you’re going to want to stay in and cook!! And this creamy Tuscan-style pasta, which also happens to be super easy, is just perfect.
Here are details
I mentioned last week sometime that I’ve really been enjoying cooking with Italian jarred Calabrian chili paste. I’m finding it so delicious and a great way to add a small amount of spice to my Italian-inspired dishes.
I wanted to make a red pasta for Valentine’s Day that was not tomato based. It’s funny, this is actually a request I get often. Apparently, not everyone enjoys a tomato heavy pasta.
You’ll want to start with sun-dried tomatoes in oil. Yes, these are tomatoes, but they’re stirred, and so different than fresh or canned. I love them so much. Drain the oil and save that for cooking. Then chop the tomatoes.
Now add the chicken and Italian seasoning to a big pot that will also fit your pasta. Cook the chicken until browned, then add a bit of parmesan cheese. The cheese melts on the chicken, then turns crispy.
Once you’ve cooked the chicken, add the chilies and other spices/seasonings into the pot with some oil. Let that cook for a minute, then add water to the pot and bring it to a boil. Now add the pasta and let the pasta cook until it’s al dente.
At this point, all you need to do is add some milk or cream and a handful of spinach. Then more parmesan and mix, mix, mix.
As soon as the cheese melts. Serve the pasta directly from the pot with fresh basil on top. It’s going to smell and look incredible, so you’ll want to eat it all up right away!
Then a big Caesar-style salad would be great as well! Super elegant, even romantic meal, right? It could be wonderful for tomorrow night! Hope you all enjoy this as much as I do!
Looking for winter pasta recipes? Here are a few ideas:
Lastly, if you make this Spicy Tuscan Chicken Pasta be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!
Spicy Tuscan Chicken Pasta
Calories Per Serving: 622 kcal
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
- 1 jar (8 ounce) oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
- 4 teaspoons Italian seasoning (see note)
- 1 teaspoon paprika or smoked paprika
- red pepper flakes
- kosher salt and black pepper
- 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons salted butter
- 1 medium shallot, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2-3 tablespoons crushed Calabrian chili paste
- 1 pound short cut pasta
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 cups fresh baby spinach
- 1. Drain 3 tablespoons of oil from the sun-dried tomato jar into a large pot or skillet with sides. Chop the sun-dried tomatoes and set aside.2. Set the pot over medium-high heat. Add the chicken, 3 teaspoons Italian seasoning, the paprika, and a pinch each of red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Cook until golden brown, 5 minutes. Add 1/4 cup parmesan, cook another minute, then remove the chicken from the pot.3. To the same pot, add a drizzle of oil and the butter. Add the shallot, garlic, Calabrian chili paste, and 1 teaspoon of Italian seasoning. Cook until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add 3 1/2 cups water. Bring to a boil, add the pasta, and cook, stirring often, until the pasta is al dente, 8 minutes. Stir in the cream, spinach, chopped sun-dried tomatoes, and remaining 3/4 cup parmesan. Slide the chicken in, and any juices left on the plate.4. Serve the pasta topped with fresh parmesan and basil.
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Italian Seasoning: Mix 2 tablespoons dried basil, 2 tablespoons dried oregano, 2 teaspoons dried thyme, 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, and 1 teaspoon dried sage. Store in a sealed container.