Who doesn’t love a hearty bowl of pasta? This pasta dish is the perfect fusion of American and Italian cuisines. It is an Italian dish with an American flavor. This creamy pasta has everything! It has delicious vegetables, lots of protein, crispy bacon, and Italian seasoning. Altogether, these ingredients make a lovely meal. This creamy dish only takes about 30 minutes to make. You can make enough for the whole family, though I believe pasta dishes are best enjoyed in couples. Try not to make too much, as the leftovers won’t taste nearly as good as a fresh batch of pasta straight from the pan!
How to make Creamy Chicken Pasta With Bacon?
Cook bacon in a skillet until crispy.
Chop the bacon into small pieces.
Season the chicken with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet and add chicken pieces to it. Cook on each side until browned.
Cover the pan with a lid and cook on medium heat for a few minutes until the middle is no longer pink.
Slice the cooked chicken.
Add butter to a hot pan and let it melt.
Add garlic to the pan and cook until fragrant.
Add tomatoes to the pan and cook for 3 minutes on medium heat.
Add spinach to the pan and cook until it wilts.
Reduce the heat and add paprika, Italian seasoning, crushed red pepper flakes, and salt to the pan.
Add heavy cream and cook on low heat.
Add Parmesan cheese and stir.
Boil some water in a large pot and cook your pasta in it.
Add your bacon, chicken, cooked pasta, and some parsley to the pan. Stir.
Garnish with more Parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes.
Can I make creamy chicken pasta lighter?
Of course! If you want to make the recipe a little bit healthier, you can use turkey bacon instead of real bacon. This substitution is very popular in my household and it tastes just as good. Replace heavy cream with half and half to make the pasta dish even lighter. Go easy on the cheese if your stomach doesn’t agree with it.
Can I use frozen spinach instead of fresh spinach?
I prefer using fresh ingredients because I find them to be more flavorful. Fresh ingredients also tend to have all of their nutrients, while some frozen vegetables are not as healthy as we’d like to believe. However, you can easily replace fresh spinach with frozen spinach in this recipe. It won’t take away from the flavor and it’s just as healthy.
How can I make sure my chicken pasta isn’t watery?
The chicken can make your pasta watery. When the chicken cooks, it secretes its juices and leaves them in the pan. You need to drain the pan to get rid of the chicken juices before you add in all the other ingredients.
- Main Ingredients:
- 6 bacon strips
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound boneless and skinless chicken (thick in size, such as chicken breasts)
- salt and pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 3 garlic cloves (minced)
- 4 small tomatoes (diced)
- 2 cups spinach
- 1 ½ teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning (more, if desired)
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1.5 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup Parmesan cheese shredded (more for garnish)
- 10 oz. penne pasta
- 2 tablespoons Parsley (chopped)
BACON: Add bacon strips to the skillet and cook until crispy. Transfer cooked bacon to a paper towel-lined platter that will absorb extra grease. Chop into 1 inch pieces
CHICKEN: Paper towel dry the chicken and season with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Then set aside.
Heat olive oil in a large deep skillet. Add chicken breasts and cook on each side on medium high heat for about 4 minutes per side (for a total of 8 minutes) until nicely browned. If chicken is still pink in the center, reduce heat to medium and cook covered for several minutes until no longer pink in the center. Remove chicken from pan and slice it.
Add butter to the hot pan and once it melts, add chopped garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
Add tomatoes and cook for 3 minutes on medium high until tomatoes release their juices. Add fresh spinach and cook until it wilts.
Reduce the heat and season with paprika, Italian seasoning, crushed red pepper flakes and salt. Mix.
Next add heavy cream - you are still cooking on low heat. Once heavy cream is slightly simmering, slowly add Parmesan cheese. Once you add the cheese, stir on low simmer until smooth.
PASTA: In the meantime bring a large pot of water to boil, add pasta and cook it according to instructions. Drain the pasta, but do not rinse.
Add sliced chicken, bacon and pasta. Next add chopped parsley. Stir until fully coated in sauce. Season with more salt if necessary.
TO SERVE: Serve with additional shredded Parmesan and red pepper flakes, if desired.