I was pleasantly surprised to happen upon this Creamy Tuscan Chicken and Spinach Pasta recipe with mushrooms and sun-dried tomatoes. If there is one thing I always have in the kitchen it is some kind of pasta and fresh chicken breast. These are staples in my household and I am constantly on the hunt for recipes that offer versatility to these two ingredients.
Any carb loaded spaghetti meal is a winner in my book, but I especially love when I can incorporate fresh vegetables and other fresh ingredients. Better than that is that it is super easy to prepare. Spaghetti dinners make a perfect weeknight dinner for the family.
Vegetables not in season to use fresh? Fret not! This recipe comes out just as well if you need to improvise, which I do!
You’ll be able to show off your cooking skills for this dish that can be made as a romantic meal, or weeknight staple!
Dig into this wonderfully creamy sauce that takes this Tuscan Chicken next level. The best part? It’s a one pot meal!
What is “Creamy Tuscan Chicken Pasta”?
Now, I’m pretty sure associating this dish with anything “Tuscan” can be attributed to a not-so-Italian restaurant chain, regardless this is what we’re calling it! If I’m not mistaken, this was originally found as a copycat recipe from Olive Garden .
While I’ve never been to Olive Garden, or had tried the original, the adaptation I have here is seriously delicious.
Regardless of the naming origination, this is a silky and creamy tuscan pasta sauce with spinach, Sun-Dried tomatoes, and mushroom that can be used as a garlic cream sauce over any type of pasta. I recommend using angel hair, fettuccine, linguine, thin or regular spaghetti.
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What is “Tuscan Seasoning”?
Tuscan seasoning is similar to a traditional Simply Organic Italian Seasoning blend. While you can make your own Tuscan seasoning by using spices you already have, you can also buy it pre-made. It is typically made of basil, rosemary, thyme, marjoram, fennel, garlic and onion powder.
Perfectly Cooked Chicken
When pan searing chicken, you want to be sure you are maximizing flavor in every step to avoid bland, dry chicken.
First, properly trim the chicken (as described in this post) and season with the tuscan spice blend on both sides.
Then, place the sliced chicken in a single layer on a cutting board and cover with a sheet of plastic wrap over the top. Pound the chicken with a meat mallet to bring all pieces to a consistent thickness, and to tenderize. Aim for 1/4 inch thick pieces.
Once prepared, add to your hot skillet and cook evenly on both sides (4-5 minutes each side) until golden brown.
Perfectly Creamy Tuscan Chicken Sauce
When making a perfectly creamy sauce for a pasta dish, it’s important to select the correct base. You always want to use heavy cream, or a thickened product like cream cheese or sour cream. Really, the only thing I do not recommend using is plain milk.
Use heavy cream because it is more fat stable. You can also use heavy whipping cream but it may take a little more time to thicken as it’s a little thinner.
Milk curdles easily, sometimes has a harder time immersing into the rest of the dish, and is thin. You won’t achieve a thick, silky sauce using milk. If you’re in a bind and only have milk on hand, sparingly sprinkle in cornstarch and mix well until you reach your desired consistency.
Non-Dairy Cream Sauce Options
The world of lactose free dairy options have exploded in recent years. Any food store now has a plethora of options that are either off-the-shelf-ready or ingredients to achieve your non-dairy goals.
For a pasta cream sauce using non-dairy products, I recommend starting with a product that has a mild flavor. You can use coconut milk, however I find the coconut flavor always stands out.
For a creamy pasta recipe such as this, I would recommend using one of the follow options from Forager Project’s line of dairy-free alternatives:
- Forager Project Unsweetened Cashew Milk,
- Forager Project, Organic Dairy-Free Unsweetened Plain Cashewmilk Yogurt Alternative
- Forager Project, Organic Dairy-Free Sour Cream Alternative
Creamy Tuscan Chicken Pasta with Sun-dried Tomatoes and Spinach
Recipes You’ll Love!
Creamy Tuscan Chicken Pasta w/ Sundried Tomatoes
- 1 lb Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast
- 1/2 lb Thin Spaghetti
- 1 cup Sliced Baby Portobello Mushrooms
- 1 cup Frozen Chopped Spinach Leaf
- 1/2 cup Sun Dried Tomatoes
- 1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese
- 4 Garlic Cloves
- 3/4 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
- 2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 tbsp Unsalted Butter
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- Clean and prepare chicken breast first by trimming any fat, pat dry with a paper towel, and then slice the chicken in half, lengthwise. You’ll turn 1 thick chicken breast into two thinly sliced breasts.
- Season sliced chicken breasts on each side with salt and pepper.
- Then, evenly space the chicken while on the cutting board and cover with plastic wrap.
- Tenderize the meat with a meat pounder. This will not only tenderize the chicken, but also ensure all pieces are the same thickness and will cook evenly.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of cooking oil in a large skillet over medium high heat with 1 tablespoon of the sun dried tomato oil from the jar.
- Carefully place chicken into the skillet and cook until golden brown on each side, cooked through and no longer pink. Transfer chicken to a plate and set aside.
- Reduce heat to low-medium heat. Slowly add in the heavy cream, butter, and Parmesan cheese to the skillet and stir until the butter and cheese melts. Bring to a simmer for 3 to 4 minutes.
- Once combined, add garlic to the sauce in the skillet and cook until fragrant, stirring occasionally.
- Add a pinch of salt and pepper to taste along with the dried oregano.
- Simmer for another 2 minutes, or until sauce starts to thicken. Add more grated Parmesan cheese if the sauce needs a little help to thicken!
- Add the sliced sun-dried tomatoes and the cooked chicken breast back into the pan and combine ingredients well.