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Chicken Tomato Basil Rigatoni Recipe – super simple weeknight rigatoni pasta meal with chicken, smothered in delicious tomato basil sauce. Quick and easy, cooks in 30 minutes.
I am always on a lookout for a good, simple recipe to use my leftovers chicken. Very often I would roast the whole bird on the weekend. Usually I’m ending up with plenty of leftovers to use during the week and with some bones for a chicken broth (I’ll tell you about it later). Then I use these leftovers to make a quick dinner during the week.
Recently, I came across this chicken tomato penne on Recipe 30 website (which somehow I cannot locate now) and thought that this recipe will go really well with my leftovers chicken. That’s how I came up with this chicken tomato basil rigatoni recipe.
This recipe is very quick and easy. It doesn’t require a lot of preparation and it comes up super delicious. Just a few little steps:
- Just add carrot, garlic and oregano
- Add tomato pure
- Add parmesan cheese, blend
- Add chicken
- Add cooked pasta
- Add more parmesan cheese
- Sprinkle with basil and dinner is served (See the photos below and for detailed instructions, please see the recipe)
As I mentioned before, I often roast the chicken on the weekends. My husband loves it and he feels like it is a “Game of Thrones” type of meal, so we often have it on Sundays. After dinner, he strip all the leftovers meat from the bones and through the bones to the crockpot. Then I add, carrots, celery, onions, garlic, parsley and salt to the crockpot and set it up overnight. The next day I portion the broth out and freeze it. This way I have a perfect base for any vegetable soup that I cook often for my son. Not to mention that it is one of the healthiest things you can eat. It goes without saying that the chicken quality is very important.
Anyways, I usually have almost two chicken breast left. It’s 2 dinners during the week! Now, the challenge is to find a creative way to use them. Sometimes I would add them to my Margarita Pizza Quesadilla or this amzaing Spanish Rice or if I have this vodka sauce ready I would add them to my Penne Alla Vecchica Bettola, but I am so happy that I came across this amazing recipe with tomato and basil sauce. It is my new addition to the easy meals during the week list.
If you don’t have a leftover chicken, but you have a fresh one, you can just slice it, season and cook on a little bit of butter and add to the pasta. You can also make this pasta as a vegetarian meal and skip the chicken altogether. There are options here, so choose whatever works for you. You can make this chicken tomato basil rigatoni recipe and serve it with my Homemade Dutch Oven Crusty Bread. Happy pasta dinner friends 🙂
- 5 small cloves of garlic , roughly chopped
- 1 large or two small carrots , roughly chopped
- 2 cans of Tomato Puree (28 oz each)
- 1 cup of bail leaves
- 1/3 cup and 2 tablespoon of grated parmesan cheese
- 10 oz of Rigatoni Pasta
- 3 tablespoon of butter (+ extra if you have fresh chicken)
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 1 cup of cubed cooked chicken or one fresh chicken breast , sliced into little pieces
- 1 tsp of dried oregano
- Heat up olive in Dutch oven or other deep pot with a lid
- Add garlic, carrot and oregano and cook for a couple of minutes until caramelized
- Add 2 cans of tomato pure and cook for a minute
- Add basil, salt, stir it and cover
- Let it cook for about 15 minutes on a low heat
- In the meantime, if you don't have leftover chicken, heat up butter in a skillet
- Season the sliced chicken with salt and pepper and cook it on each side until golden brown
- Boil large pot of salty water and cook pasta according to instructions
- After the sauce was cooking for 15 minutes, add 1/3 cup of grated parmesan, mix it, cover and cook for another 15 minutes
- Once sauce is cooked, blend it either by using handheld blender or in a standing blender in batches until smooth
- If using standing blender, place the sauce back into your pot, add butter and let it dissolve
- Then add cooked chicken
- Add pasta (reserving one cup of pasta water) and and sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoon of parmesan cheese
- Mix everything well and and sprinkle with some more basil
- If the sauce is too thick add some pasta water to thin it out
You can cook your pasta for a little less then instructed as it will continue cooking in the sauce
I used leftover chicken from my roasted chicken, but leftover turkey will do well as well.
If you like this recipe, you may also like:
2. Leftover Turkey Spanish Rice