This Creamy Chicken Tomato Pasta recipe is comforting and delicious and loaded with hidden zucchini.
Fresh tomato flavors mix with the decadent texture of cream and melted parmesan to make a fabulous filling pasta dish, perfect for a midweek family meal.
This creamy tomato chicken pasta is a relatively quick and easy dish to make, and it is one of the only ways I can get my kids to willingly eat zucchini. Result!
It is a favorite in our house, I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.
Chicken & Tomato Pasta ingredients
This chicken tomato pasta recipe uses a combination of fresh vegetables, chicken and store cupboard ingredients.
A few notes about these ingredients and possible substitutions:
- Chicken breasts - you can substitute for skinless thigh fillets if that is all you have. This chicken tomato pasta sauce also works really well with leftover chicken - just chop it up and add to the pan in step 9.
- Zucchini - I love that the grated zucchini disappears into the sauce, so my kids hardly notice it. You could also load it up with some grated carrots or other vegetables.
- Fresh Thyme - if you don't have fresh thyme, you can substitute with ½ teaspoon of dried thyme. Don't have thyme? Try using oregano, marjoram or basil, it will still taste delicious!
- Passata - you can substitute with canned diced tomatoes.
- Chicken Stock - As this recipe only uses ½ cup of stock, you want it to be quite concentrated for maximum flavor. I usually use my homemade chicken bone broth for this sauce as it tends to be quite concentrated and so works well. You could use store bought stock or make up a stock cube with just a small amount of water, or even just crumble a stock cube into the sauce.
- Baby Spinach Leaves - when I make this creamy chicken pasta for the whole family, I serve up the kids' helpings before I add the spinach, as they would run out the door if I put spinach on their plates. Then I just stir through the spinach before serving up the adults' meals.
- Pasta - I like to serve this chicken with tomato cream sauce with penne pasta, as shown in the photos here. It would also work well with rigatoni, rotini or cavatappi.
How to make this tomato chicken pasta
This is a very straight forward dish to make. Just make sure you have all your ingredients prepared before you start:
This means finely chopping your onions and garlic, and grating the zucchini. Make sure your parmesan is grated, and your chicken stock is ready to go. Also chop your chicken up into small pieces - around 1 inch cubes is fine.
Then it's just a case of cooking everything up in the skillet.
Firstly you brown the chicken and set aside. Then fry up the onions, followed by the garlic, then zucchini and thyme.
Next you add in the passata, stock and sugar and let it all bubble away for around 10-15 minutes, while you cook the pasta.
Once the sauce has reduced slightly, you add in the cream and parmesan, which gives this tomato and chicken pasta dish its lovely rich, creamy texture.
Then return the chicken to the pan to warm through. (If you are making this with leftover chicken, this would be the time to add the chicken).
Finally you stir in the spinach until it wilts. When making this for my whole family, I usually serve my kids meals before adding the spinach.
Then you just need to stir the chicken and tomato pasta sauce through the pasta and serve!
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- 2 large chicken breasts
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 zucchini, grated
- 2 sprigs thyme, leaves only
- 24oz / 700g jar passata
- ½ cup concentrated chicken stock
- 1 tsp brown sugar
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ½ cup finely grated parmesan
- 2 cups / 60g raw baby spinach
- 1lb / 500g pasta
- Cut the chicken breasts into 1 inch cubes.
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet and cook chicken until lightly browned - approximately 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- Add onion to skillet and cook over a medium heat until soft - approximately 5 minutes.
- Add garlic and cook a further 2 minutes.
- Add zucchini and thyme leaves to the skillet and cook until soft - around 2 minutes.
- Add the passata, stock and sugar and season with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil and then simmer for around 10-15 minutes, until slightly reduced.
- Meanwhile, cook your pasta according to the packet instructions.
- Stir in the cream and parmesan and mix well.
- Return the chicken to the pan and warm through.
- Finally, toss in the spinach leaves and stir through until wilted.
- Stir the chicken tomato sauce through the drained pasta.
- Serve in bowls sprinkled with grated parmesan and a sprinkling of parsley.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 519Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 96mgSodium: 337mgCarbohydrates: 48gFiber: 4gSugar: 5gProtein: 33g