How to Make Chicken & Spinach Skillet Pasta with Lemon & Parmesan
This chicken pasta dinner is a family-friendly weeknight favorite. Made in just one skillet, clean-up is a breeze.
1) Start the Pasta
To get this dinner on the table fast, get the pasta cooking first. We call for penne pasta but any shape will work. If you have a gluten sensitivity, gluten-free pasta works well here. If not, using whole-wheat pasta will give you a boost of fiber without taking away from the flavor of the dish. Make sure not to overcook the pasta which can make the dish mushy at the end.
2) Cook the Chicken
While the pasta cooks, start the chicken. (You will want a high-sided skillet here or a large pot big enough to hold all of the ingredients.) You can use chicken breast or chicken thighs in this recipe. chicken breast is the better choice if you want a leaner dish with less trimming. Chicken thoughts offer a meatier flavor, but usually need to be trimmed. Make sure the pieces are cut about the same size so they cook evenly.
3) Finish the Dish
Once the chicken is cooked through, you finish the dish by making the sauce! Garlic adds a savory baseline flavor. Wine and lemon juice (and zest) are added to make the sauce bright and tangy. Bringing the sauce to a simmer helps meld the flavors and gets the pan hot enough to rewarm the pasta and wilt the spinach which is added at the end. This dish is at its best served right away sprinkled with Parmesan cheese.
- 8 ounces gluten-free penne pasta or whole-wheat penne pasta
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast or thighs, trimmed, if necessary, and cut into bite-size pieces
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground pepper
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup dry white wine
- Juice and zest of 1 lemon
- 10 cups chopped fresh spinach
- 4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, divided
- Step 1Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
- Step 2Meanwhile, heat oil in a large high-sided skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken, salt and pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until just cooked through, 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in wine, lemon juice and zest; bring to a simmer.
- Step 3Remove from heat. Stir in spinach and the cooked pasta. Cover and let stand until the spinach is just wilted. Divide among 4 plates and top each serving with 1 tablespoon Parmesan.
scant 2 cups
335 calories; protein 28.7g; carbohydrates 24.9g; dietary fiber 2g; sugars 1.1g; fat 12.3g; saturated fat 2.7g; cholesterol 66.9mg; vitamin a iu 7100IU; vitamin c 30.8mg; folate 154.8mcg; calcium 143.6mg; iron 3.3mg; magnesium 107.9mg; potassium 684.5mg; sodium 499.2mg; thiamin 0.2mg.
3 lean protein, 2 fat, 1 starch, 1 vegetable