Chicken Mozzarella Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomatoes

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Chicken Mozzarella Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Photo by June A.


  • Prep Time

    minutes

  • Total Time

    minutes

  • Servings

    servings


Ingredients

  • 3

    large garlic cloves, minced

  • 1

    small jar (3-4 oz) sun-dried tomatoes in oil, or use 3-4 oz fat-free sun-dried tomatoes

  • 1

    lb chicken breast tenders

  • salt

  • paprika

  • 1

    cup half and half

  • 1

    cup mozzarella cheese, shredded

  • 8

    oz penne pasta

  • 1

    tbsp basil (if using dry), if using fresh basil you can add more

  • ¼

    tsp crushed red pepper flakes (at least, add more to taste)

  • ½

    cup reserved cooked pasta water (or more)

  • salt, to taste

Directions

NOTE: if using sun-dried tomatoes in oil (in jar), make sure to drain sun-dried tomatoes from oil before using them. Reserve 2 tbsp of this drained oil for sautéing as described below: In a large pan, on high heat, sauté garlic and sun-dried tomatoes (drained from oil) in 2 tbsp of oil (reserved from sun-dried tomatoes jar) for 1 minute until garlic is fragrant. Remove sun-dried tomatoes from the pan, leaving the oil, and add chicken tenders, salted and lightly covered in paprika (for color) and cook on high heat for 1 minutes on each side. Remove from heat. Cook pasta according to package instructions. Reserve some cooked pasta water. Drain and rinse the pasta with cold water. Slice sun-dried tomatoes into smaller bits and add them back to the skillet with chicken. Add half and half and cheese to the skillet and bring to a gentle boil. Immediately reduce to simmer and cook, constantly stirring, until all cheese melts and creamy sauce forms. If the sauce is too thick -don't worry - you'll be adding some cooked pasta water soon. Add cooked pasta to the skillet with the creamy sauce, and stir to combine. Add 1 tbsp of basil, and at least 1/4 tsp of red pepper flakes. Stir to combine. Add about 1/2 cup reserved cooked pasta water because the creamy sauce will be too thick (do not add all water at once - you might need less or more of it). This will water down the thickness of the cheese sauce and make it creamier. Immediately, season the pasta with salt and more red pepper flakes, to taste, if needed. Let it simmer for a couple of minutes for flavors to combine.


Nutrition

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