Thursday, July 31, 2014

Chicken Caprese Pasta

Every summer the all the boys in Josh's family go to a Dodger game.  This year's game was last night so Josh and Jake weren't home (Luke has to wait another year or two to go).  Since I was on my own for dinner I decided to make myself some pasta.  I had a small piece of fresh mozzarella leftover so I decided to make a Caprese inspired pasta dish.  This recipe is easily adapted to serve more people but it is also super simple to make for just yourself.  Because this recipe is so adaptable, it really reads more as an ingredient list than an actual recipe.  Don't let that deter you.  It is super easy and delicious.

Start out with enough chicken for however many people you are serving.  Since it was just me I used three frozen, boneless, skinless chicken breast tenders.  Season both sides with a little onion salt, some fresh cracked pepper, and a sprinkling of dried basil and oregano.  Saute over medium heat in a pan sprayed with cooking spray.

Don't flip it a bunch, you want to get that nice golden color.  When the chicken is cooked through, remove it to a cutting board and cut it into bite sized pieces.  Reduce the heat to low and pour a splash of chicken stock into the pan.  Use a wooden spoon to scrape up anything on the bottom of the pan.  Then add in a few tablespoons of olive oil, a clove of minced garlic, and some grape tomatoes (I pierced mine with a knife so they wouldn't squirt at me).  Saute until the tomatoes start to get soft and then add the chicken back into the pan.

Meanwhile cook some pasta al dente according to the directions on the package.  When the pasta is ready, drain it and then pour the chicken and tomato mixture into the pasta pot.  Dice up a little bit of fresh mozzarella, toss in a few fresh basil leaves, and stir it all together.  The heat from the pasta and sauce will wilt the basil and start to melt the mozzarella.

Serve the pasta with a little bit of shaved Parmesan (grated will work too) and a little drizzle of balsamic glaze.  This Chicken Caprese pasta combines all of the great flavors of my favorite salad, the Caprese, with my favorite food, pasta.

This dinner comes together so quickly and easily with no measuring.  It capitalizes on the fresh flavors of summer, the sweet tomatoes and fragrant basil.  Adding in the creamy mozzarella, salty Parmesan, and the sweet tang of the balsamic leaves this pasta bursting with flavor.  I like it with a side salad but if you want it to be a one dish meal, simply stir in some baby spinach or arugula with the fresh basil leaves.  Whether you are eating this alone or feeding it to your family, this Caprese Chicken Pasta is sure to please.

Chicken Caprese Pasta
  • pasta
  • boneless, skinless chicken breast tenders (fresh or frozen)
  • onion salt
  • freshly cracked pepper
  • dried basil
  • dried oregano
  • splash of chicken stock
  • olive oil
  • grape tomatoes
  • minced garlic 
  • fresh basil
  • fresh mozzarella, diced
  • balsamic glaze (you could also use plain balsamic vinegar if you don't have glaze)
  • fresh Parmesan (shaved or grated)
  1. Cook the pasta to al dente according to the directions on the package.
  2. Meanwhile, season both sides of the chicken with onion salt, pepper, dried basil, and oregano.  Cook over medium heat in a pan coated with cooking spray.  Remove and cut into bite sized pieces.
  3. Pour a splash of chicken stock into the pan and use a wooden spoon to scrape up anything from the bottom.  Add in some olive oil, minced garlic, and grape tomatoes.  When the tomatoes start to soften, return the chicken to the pan and continue to cook until the tomatoes are soft and the chicken is heated through.
  4. Add the chicken and tomato mixture to the drained pasta, along with a few leaves of basil and some diced fresh mozzarella.
  5. Serve topped with a drizzle of balsamic glaze and some Parmesan.

I'm linking up with Showcase Your Talent Thursday, Create It Thursday, Thrifty Thursday, Cook It Craft It Share It, Pin Junkie, Pin It Thursday, Link Party Palooza, Strut Your Stuff Saturday, Best of the Weekend, Weekend Potluck, Bakerette, Inspiration Monday, Mix It Up Monday, Craftastic Monday, Busy Monday, Monday Funday, Lou Lou Girls, Tips & Tricks, Mad Skills, Create Link Inspire, Tasty Tuesday, Two Cup Tuesday, Whimsy Wednesday, Wednesday Whatsits, Moonlight & Mason Jars, Tasty Tuesdays, and Wonderfully Creative Wednesday.