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Creamy Chicken Pesto Pasta is a delicious 30 minute recipe that is packed with flavor, quick and easy to make, and will satisfy the whole family. |

Creamy Chicken Pesto Pasta

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  • Author: Sam Hu | Ahead of Thyme
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings


Creamy Chicken Pesto Pasta is a delicious 30 minute recipe that is packed with flavor, quick and easy to make, and will satisfy the whole family.


  • 8 ounces dry pasta, spaghetti, linguine, or fettuccine

For the chicken:

  • 2 boneless and skinless chicken breasts (about 1 pound)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon pesto sauce, homemade or store-bought
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

For the sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 small red onion, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons pesto sauce, homemade or store-bought
  • salt and pepper (to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon pine nuts (for garnish)


Make the pasta:

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add spaghetti noodles and cook until al dente (fully cooked but still firm) according to package directions, about 10-12 minutes.
  2. Rinse the spaghetti under cold water to cool off completely and set aside in the pot.

Prepare the chicken:

  1. Use a paper towel to pat the chicken breasts completely dry. Season well with salt, pepper, and pesto. Set aside for 5 minutes.
  2. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat for 2 minutes until the hot oil is sizzling hot.
  3. Sear the chicken until golden brown and cooked through, about 5 minutes on each side. The internal temperature for the chicken should reach 165F as read on a meat thermometer.
  4. Cut the chicken into strips and set aside on a plate.

Prepare the sauce:

  1. In the same skillet, add butter and allow it to melt until starting to bubble, about 1 minute. Add onion, garlic, and tomatoes. Sauté until the tomatoes burst, about 4-5 minutes.
  2. Whisk in heavy cream, chicken broth, and pesto sauce. Bring the sauce to a simmer and stir occasionally until thickened to a desired consistency, about 3-4 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.


  1. Add the cooked chicken to the sauce, and toss well to coat. Add in the pasta and toss again to combine.
  2. Garnish with pine nuts and serve warm. 


Make ahead: You can cut down on preparation time by making the sauce ahead of time! Try making it a day or two in advance when you have a few minutes to spare. Your future self will thank you!

How to store: Allow the pasta to cool to room temperature, then place leftovers in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.

How to freeze: Place in a freezer bag or airtight rubber storage container and freeze for 2-3 months. Allow it to defrost in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

How to reheat: Reheat creamy chicken pesto pasta in a skillet on the stove over medium-low heat until warmed through. Add a splash of water if the sauce has thickened up too much in the fridge. You can also reheat it in the microwave (covered) on medium-low heat for 30 seconds to 3 minutes, until warmed through. The time will vary based on how much pasta you are reheating.

  • Prep Time: 10 minuts
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Pasta
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian