Penne with Chicken and Pesto

Penne with Chicken and Pesto

485 Reviews 31 Pics
  • Prep

    20 m
  • Cook

    10 m
  • Ready In

    30 m
Recipe by  MARYSTEVE

“I sometimes substitute chicken broth for half the heavy cream called for in the recipe to reduce calories. I also use additional Parmesan.”

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Adjust Servings

Original recipe yields 8 servings


  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.
  2. Heat butter and olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute chicken and garlic until chicken is almost cooked. Reduce heat and stir in salt, pepper, cream, pesto and Parmesan cheese. Cook until chicken is no longer pink inside. Stir in cooked pasta.

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Reviews (485)

Rate This Recipe
Dung Beetle

Dung Beetle

Very very good! Fast and easy too! First off, I NEVER use chicken breasts because I feel they are too dry, and lack flavor. I ALWAYS substitute boneless skinless chicken thighs in all recipes that call for chicken. I trim off most excess fat from the thighs. I used fat free half and half for the heavy cream and then just thickened the sauce with a LITTLE cornstarch. Also, I prepared extra sauce to pour over the pasta when served. I think the sauce is best made THE NIGHT BEFORE so the flavors can blend through(it's also easier that way if you're potlucking at work as we often do). Keep the sauce and pasta separate until serving or the pasta soaks up too much of the sauce. I agree with many about bumping up the Pesto. I make my own Pesto so it packs plenty of flavor punch. Fast, easy and not fussy to make. A hit with the crowd.

Sarah Stephan

Sarah Stephan

The best pasta dish I have ever had! I love pesto so I added a couple extra tablespoons of that and I used 1 cup of half and half and 1/4 cup chicken stock to cut some calories.

Casey M

Casey M

If you haven't figured it out yet...this is an easy, fool-proof, flexible dish. My standard calorie and saturated fat decreasing tactic is to substitute Fat Free half & half with some flour or cornstarch. I will give up some flavor for the healthier aspect. At least pesto is made from "good oil" (Olive). Next I add vegetables like brocolli, mushrooms, and onion (others mention sun-dried tomatoes) etc, maybe more garlic and use a whole wheat or Omega 3 boosted pasta of my choice (used rotini as pictured). I like adding some garlic and Smart Balance Light sauteed Prawns with the chicken (or alone...). Another option is smoked salmon by itself, or with the chicken and/or prawns (like I said...flexible). Do anything else you like...experiment, you can't go wrong if you put stuff you like in it!!!

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Amount Per Serving (8 total)

  • Calories
  • 497 cal
  • 25%
  • Fat
  • 26.1 g
  • 40%
  • Carbs
  • 42.6 g
  • 14%
  • Protein
  • 24 g
  • 48%
  • Cholesterol
  • 97 mg
  • 32%
  • Sodium
  • 164 mg
  • 7%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet



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Pesto Chicken Florentine


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Creamy Chicken Piccata with Penne Pasta