Sun Dried Tomato Chicken Pasta features an ultra creamy Parmesan sauce dotted with sweet sundried tomatoes and fresh basil. Served with fettuccine noodles and sauteed chicken, it’s a quick, flavorful dinner you’ll want to make over and over again.
Dreamy Chicken and Sun Dried Tomato Pasta
This Sun Dried Tomato Pasta has quickly become one of our all-time favorite recipes. It’s easy to make but tastes and feels so luxurious. The flavors will transport you from your tired, old dining room table to a village in Tuscany.
Cream sauces can feel a bit heavy and (dare I say?) even bland, but that’s not the case with this recipe! Here, sun dried tomatoes team up with handfuls of fresh basil to create a sauce that’s subtly sweet, tangy, and yes, oh-so-creamy.
If you’re looking for your next pasta addiction, this Sun Dried Tomato Chicken Pasta might just be the one. This is worthy of any date night, but easy enough to throw together on a busy weekday. The flavors are perfect for summer, but don’t be surprised if you find yourself craving this all year round!
Key Ingredients in Sun Dried Tomato Pasta
- Pasta– Something about long, silky fettuccine feels right for a date night pasta (maybe it’s the Lady and the Tramp vibes), but feel free to substitute whatever you have on hand.
- Chicken- I use boneless skinless chicken breasts, seasoned simply with salt and pepper.
- Shallots– Nothing says fancy like shallots! They’re so delightfully delicate and sweet. Don’t have any? Yellow onion will work just fine!
- Sun dried tomatoes– Grab the kind that are packed in oil. In fact, grab a few! You’ll also want to use them in Mediterranean Stuffed Pork Tenderloin, Chicken, Pesto, and Feta Pizza, or to make a sauce for Skirt Steak Sandwiches.
- Dry white wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio. Pick something you like to drink, so you can enjoy the rest of the bottle with dinner.
- Heavy cream and/or Half and Half– This stuff delivers all the creamy goodness.
- Parmesan cheese– I highly recommend going for the official Parmigiano Reggiano, as pretentious as it might sound. It really is the best!
- Basil– Here’s how you use up a basil plant that’s gone wild! You’ll need a big pile for ALL the flavor.
Tips for Making Sun Dried Tomato Chicken Pasta
This pasta comes together quickly, so prep all your ingredients before you begin. Or you can be like me and run around like a maniac trying to shred cheese while also stirring sauce and draining pasta. Your choice.
Start your pasta water to boil first, and, as always, be sure to salt it. I use a heaping Tablespoon of Kosher salt for a full pot of water.
I recommend pounding the chicken breasts to an even thickness to ensure quick and even cooking. Or, just buy chicken tenderloins, which are already quite thin.
Season the chicken and saute it in oil until browned on both sides. Set aside on a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.
Add the shallots to the pan and saute a few minutes. Stir in the garlic and sun dried tomatoes and continue to saute another few minutes, until shallots are softened.
Now, deglaze! This is one of my favorite cooking techniques, which basically means, “dump liquid in a hot pan, watch it bubble like crazy, then scrape up all the juicy meat bits that are stuck to the bottom of the pan.” We’re deglazing with wine, because we’re classy, and it’s delicious. After deglazing, the pan should look something like this:
Stir in the cream and the sun dried tomatoes and bring it to a gentle simmer. Let it bubble away for a few minutes, just until the sauce is slightly thickened. Add the Parmesan cheese and let it get all melty.
Taste and season with salt and/or pepper if needed. Then, take a big whiff of your pile of basil (there’s no better smell, IMO), and dump it in. Stir until it’s just wilted, and you’re done!
Plate the fettuccine, smother it in the creamy sun dried tomato sauce, top with sliced chicken, and feel like a culinary genius.
Variations and Substitutions
- Make it with shrimp!– When we’re feeling extra fancy, we love swapping the chicken for shrimp, which cooks in just a few minutes! Simply season the shrimp with a little salt, pepper, and garlic powder, and saute for about 2 minutes per side. Remove from heat and continue on with the recipe.
- Add spinach– The fresh basil is really really lovely in this, but during the winter months when it’s harder to get, spinach also works well. You may want to add a little dried basil and oregano for seasoning.
- Substitute chicken stock– Don’t want to use wine? No biggie. Chicken broth will work just fine.
- Use all heavy cream– Make the sauce with all heavy cream for an ultra rich and luxurious sauce.
More Date Night Pasta Ideas
- 8 ounces fettuccine noodles
- 1.25 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded to an even thickness
- Kosher salt and pepper
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 3 shallots, thinly sliced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 ounces sun dried tomatoes packed in oil, oil drained
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- ¾ cup half and half
- ¾ cup heavy cream
- 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
- Boil a large pot of water for the fettuccine. Salt the water with 1 heaping Tablespoon Kosher salt. Once boiling, cook to al dente, then drain and toss with olive oil so it doesn't stick together.
- Heat 1 Tablespoon of the oil in a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper on both sides, then place in the skillet. Cook undisturbed for 4-5 minutes, then flip, cooking an additional 3-4 minutes, or until internal temperature registers 165 degrees.
- Remove the chicken from the skillet and tent with foil to keep warm. Add the rest of the olive oil to the pan followed by the shallots. Saute 1-2 minutes until starting to soften. Add the garlic and sun dried tomatoes, and saute for another 1-2 minutes, until shallots are softened.
- Deglaze the pan with the white wine, scraping up any browned bits at the bottom of the pan.
- Stir in the half and half and cream and bring to a gentle simmer, then lower heat to medium low to maintain the simmer. Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring often, until sauce is slightly thickened. Stir in the Parmesan cheese until melted. Remove from heat and stir in basil leaves, stirring until wilted.
- Serve the sauce tossed with the pasta and sliced chicken breast.
Substitute the white wine for chicken broth if needed.