Creamy Red Pepper Pasta (easy shortcut!)
An easy meal to put together, creamy red pepper pasta with chicken and spinach is delicious and satisfying. Good enough to serve to company, too!
Put this meal together in less than thirty minutes. Don’t you love the sound of that? As much as I enjoy cooking, I also love a quick easy meal that I can throw together without too much effort.
When it gets towards the end of the week, I usually have to start getting creative, using what I have in the freezer and in the pantry. I also like to use up some of the perishables in the fridge before I head to the grocery store to stock up again for the week, and spend our life savings.
No, really, when did groceries get so expensive? It’s nuts!
I almost always have some frozen cooked chicken in the freezer, so I decided to use that with some pasta sauce I had bought a week or two ago (I had a coupon).
Disclaimer: This is not a paid advertisement for Bertolli, therefore all opinions are mine.
I typically don’t buy cream based sauces (even though they are oh-so-good), because I’m on a (crazy) mission to lose 20 pounds. Which is never going to happen. Really, never. Especially with sauces like this four cheese rosa sauce.
You could mix the same ingredients with a jar of your favorite Alfredo sauce, or you could (gasp!) make your own. In fact, I have a delicious recipe for chicken Alfredo with broccoli that you make from scratch. You could even make a “skinnier” version of Alfredo sauce using cauliflower.
But today’s recipe is all about quick and easy. And even though the sauce is on the high end in the fat department, this is a fairly healthy meal. Whole wheat pasta, lots of veggies, and the ingredient list on the sauce is pretty decent. Nothing crazy in there.
Looking for more easy pasta dishes?
I love how easy it is to prepare this dish. Have you ever tried one pot pasta recipes? You’ll love them! Here’s a few to try:
- 13.25 oz. box rotini whole wheat pasta, uncooked
- 2-3 chicken breasts, cooked and cut into cubes
- 4 to 5 cups baby spinach, loosely packed
- 1 red pepper, roasted and cut into short strips (I use a jar but it is super easy to roast your own)
- 15 oz. jar Bertolli Four Cheese Rosa Sauce or similar sauce
- chopped fresh parsley to garnish (optional)
- freshly grated Parmesan to garnish (optional)
- Cook pasta according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, steam spinach in large skillet over medium low heat until wilted. Add cooked chicken, roasted red peppers, and sauce. Cook over medium heat until all ingredients are heated through.
- Reserve approximately 1 cup of pasta water. Drain pasta.
- Add pasta to sauce. Mix until combined, adding enough of the pasta's cooking water until a desired consistency is reached.
- Garnish with fresh parsley and/or grated Parmesan cheese.
- Serve immediately.
- If desired, add additional vegetables like mushrooms, onions, green peppers, zucchini, etc.
- Use whatever kind of pasta or creamy pasta sauce you like or happen to have in your pantry.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1 of 4
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 508Total Fat: 15gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 106mgSodium: 449mgCarbohydrates: 48gFiber: 5gSugar: 4gProtein: 44g
RachelCooks.com sometimes provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as they are not calculated by a registered dietitian. Please consult a medical professional for any specific nutrition, diet, or allergy advice.
Husband’s take: He likes this too. He said “You made it better,” referring to the jar of sauce. He also said, “You can give it my stamp of approval.”
Changes I would make: Depends on what I have in the house at the time! Mushrooms are good in anything, but they aren’t typically something I have in the house right before I go the store. They are a beginning of the week kind of thing around these parts.
Difficulty: Can’t get much easier than this. Especially if your chicken is already cooked.