Chicken Pesto Pasta

Chicken Pesto Pasta recipe

Chicken Pesto Pasta Recipe

Chicken Pesto Pasta is a quick, easy, and creamy pasta loaded with juicy chicken and tender asparagus!

We love creamy Alfredo pasta like our Chicken Alfredo or Creamy Shrimp Pasta. Pesto pasta takes a cream sauce to the next level!

Chicken Pesto Pasta

This Chicken Asparagus Pesto Pasta was shared by one of our readers, Katie N., and it was love at first bite – an instant hit! You won’t believe how easy it is with a very short list of ingredients. All you need is heavy whipping cream and basil pesto for the sauce. The chicken, asparagus, and sauce are all cooked in one skillet and it doesn’t get any easier.

What is Pesto Sauce?

Pesto is a creamy blended bright green sauce originally from Italy. The ingredients in a good pesto are typical: basil, nuts (often pine nuts), parmesan, garlic, and olive oil. Click here for our best homemade pesto recipe. Adding pesto to the cream sauce adds amazing flavor.

If you’re looking for a good store-bought pesto, our favorite is the Kirkland signature pesto from Costco. Whether you make or buy pesto, you can use the rest to make chicken pesto roll-ups or freeze portions to make pesto pasta another day.

What kind of pasta is best for creamy pasta?

You can use your favorite pasta which is what we love about this recipe. We use what we have on hand but these are pasta varieties that work well with cream sauce pasta:

  • Fettuccini noodles
  • Linguine pasta
  • Spaghetti
  • Penne pasta
  • Pappardelle
  • Rigatoni

What Other Vegetables Can I use in Pesto Pasta?

You can omit the asparagus altogether and the recipe will still work well, or try substituting with these healthy vegetables to make it a meal:

  • Broccoli Florets
  • Snap Peas
  • Blanched green beans
  • Frozen peas (or add cooked peas at the end)
  • 2 cups halved cherry tomatoes (added at the end)

Can Creamy Pasta be Reheated?

The general rule of thumb for reheating a creamy sauce is LOW and SLOW. Warm the pasta on low heat, stirring often or in short intervals in the microwave. If you overheat, the cream can separate and seem oily. To make the sauce creamier, add a splash of water, milk, half and half or cream before heating.

 

Chicken Pesto Pasta

Creamy Chicken Pesto Pasta is an easy 30-minute dinner loaded with juicy chicken and tender asparagus!

  • 1 lb chicken breasts trimmed
  • 1 tsp salt (divided)
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 lb asparagus ends trimmed and cut into 2" pieces
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 4 Tbsp pesto sauce
  • 4 Tbsp olive oil
  • 12 oz fettuccine pasta (or linguine)
  1. Cook pasta in a pot of salted boiling water according to package instructions to your desired doneness. While pasta is cooking, proceed with the recipe then add drained cooked pasta to the sauce in step 5.

  2. Cut chicken breasts in half lengthwise and season all sides with 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp black pepper. Heat a large, deep skillet over medium heat with 2 Tbsp olive oil. When oil is hot, add chicken in a single layer and saute until fully cooked through (3 min per side). Remove from pan and rest 5 minutes, then slice into bite-sized strips.

  3. Add 2 Tbsp olive oil to the same pan with asparagus pieces. Sautee stirring occasionally for 2-3 minutes or until crisp tender.

  4. Add 2 cups heavy whipping cream, bring to a simmer and cook 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in 4 Tbsp pesto then add chicken breasts and cook 2 minutes. Season sauce with 1/2 tsp salt or to taste.

  5. Add cooked pasta, stirring to coat noodles in sauce. Remove form heat and serve right away. 

Main Course
American, Italian
chicken pesto pasta, pesto pasta

Nutrition Information

Chicken Pesto Pasta

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