Kitchn Love Letters

My Family Requests This Creamy Chicken Tuscan Pasta at Least Once a Week

published Jun 2, 2024
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Tuscan chicken pasta  made with penne pasta in a bowl with a wooden spoon.
Credit: Kelli Foster

We eat pasta at least once a week in my house. Among my kids’ all-time favorites are creamy miso butter pasta, garlic noodles, spaghetti carbonara, and penne alla vodka. My husband and I love them too (these four recipes are seriously good), but let’s be real — it’s the opinions of our offspring that dictate what we eat most days. My working theory is that if it’s not buttered noodle-esque and it must involve tomatoes, then they want it to be creamy. I’m delighted to report that Kelli’s creamy Tuscan chicken pasta checks off all the boxes and then some. 

This “creamy tomato-kissed sauce” (as Kelli refers to it) is similar to the one in her Tuscan chicken recipe. Oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes make it extra-luxe and Parm adds body and more umami. But unlike in her skillet chicken recipe, there’s also bacon. And it’s this added smokiness that really makes people fall in love. I brought this over to my neighbors one night and they talked about it for months. 

Get the recipe: Creamy Tuscan Chicken Pasta

What Makes Creamy Tuscan Chicken Pasta So Good

I know some people scoff at the idea of chicken in pasta, but I’m a major fan. The pan-seared chicken breasts, along with the (very generous amount of) baby spinach makes this a hearty and satisfying one-and-done type of dinner. I don’t need to worry about cooking a separate protein or roasting a sheet tray of veggies. My focus is solely on the penne. 

Bonus: If you have any onion-haters in your house, you’ll be delighted to discover there are none here. And they’re absolutely not necessary because the cream sauce is anything but bland. Beyond the deliciousness that bacon adds, finely chopped rosemary and minced garlic add an earthy, savory flavor undetectable by toddlers. And it sounds silly to say, but the creamy sauce isn’t too creamy. Thanks to pasta water and plenty of Parm, you only need a cup of heavy cream to generously coat each tube of pasta. Long story short: It’s the dinner of my family’s (and my neighbors’) dreams. 

Get the recipe: Creamy Tuscan Chicken Pasta