One Pot Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Pasta that comes together in less than thirty minutes. This healthier pasta dish has half the calories of a restaurant version, is easy to make, and it has so much flavor. Jump to Recipe
A healthier version of Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Pasta that is all made in one pot in under 30 minutes. Tender mushrooms and chicken breast in a creamy Parmesan sauce all with pasta - there isn't a dinner much better than that in my mind. With just 437 calories (9 Weight Watchers SmartPoints), this is comfort food without the guilt.
I have been really into one pot pasta dishes the last few weeks. I think it is a symptom of feeling stressed and overwhelmed. By the end of the day, I want a meal that I can make in less than thirty minutes and something that is seriously comforting. And this creamy chicken pasta with mushrooms delivers. It is so easy to make and you won't believe how delicious the sauce is without using a ton of heavy cream.
The key to making a thick and creamy sauce without using tons of heavy cream is to cook the pasta in just enough broth to create a sauce. The broth cooks down and combines with the natural starch in the pasta to create a flavorful, surprisingly creamy sauce. Then by adding just a touch of half & half and some Parmesan cheese, you take the sauce to the next level. I am talking a smooth, garlicky, cheesy sauce that is delicious. Especially with the chicken and earthy mushrooms. Yum.
There are all kind of ways to switch up the flavors in this recipe. I have suggested a few below to give you some ideas, but the possibilities are endless.
Ways to Personalize this One Pot Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Pasta
- Protein: There are all kinds of options for protein in this dish. I reached for chicken breast since that is the traditional option, but chicken thighs would work as well. You could also use chicken or turkey sausage - so good. Shrimp would work too. For a vegetarian option, use chickpeas or white beans and swap in vegetable broth.
- Add tomato: If you love having tomatoes with your pasta, you could add a drained can of diced tomatoes or fresh cherry tomatoes to the mix.
- Spice: There are very few recipes where I don't add just a touch of heat. If you like spice, I would recommend adding some red pepper flakes to the mix while you saute the onions.
- More veggies: To kick up the nutrients in this dish, consider adding some more veggies. Spinach, asparagus, or broccoli are my favorite options.
How to Make Chicken and Mushroom Pasta without Cream?
There are many ways to make this creamy chicken pasta recipe without cream. The best option is going to depend on the reason that you are looking to make the dish without cream. If you simply prefer not to use cream due to the fact that it is high in calories and fat, then there are tons of options. You can use canned nonfat evaporated milk, fat free half & half, milk, reduced fat cream cheese, or even Greek yogurt or light sour cream. All of these would still turn out great but would be made without cream.
If you need a dairy free option for this recipe to substitute for the cream, there are a few options. Personally, I think using vegan cream cheese is the best option for a super delicious and creamy pasta dish without using cream. Another option is to use soy milk or almond milk. I find that soy milk comes out creamier since it tends to be thicker. You can also use canned coconut milk or coconut cream. This recipe only uses 1/4 cup so it won't really change the flavor and will create the same creamy texture. You can use nutritional yeast or a vegan Parmesan to keep the whole recipe dairy free.
Is this Creamy Chicken Pasta healthy?
Normally Chicken and Mushroom Pasta is not the healthiest dish. Since it is typically made with a lot of heavy cream, it usually is high in calories, fat, and saturated fat. Some recipes have more than 700 calories per serving. This recipe is significantly lightened up and offers a much healthy option. Here are some highlights of what makes this recipe healthy:
- Chicken breast is a great lean protein source that is low in fat and calories. It is also high in minerals and vitamins, making it a great healthy protein option for a pasta dish.
- The mushrooms in this recipe are an excellent source of nutrients including potassium, selenium, B vitamins, vitamin S, and copper. Plus they are full of antioxidants, low in calories, high in fiber, and a good source of plant based protein.
- Using high fiber or whole wheat pasta in place of traditional white pasta will save you about 47 calories per cup and provide an extra 4 grams of fiber.
- Many people do not know that there are tons of health benefits to eating onions. Packed with nutrients and minerals, onions help with iron absorption, reduce inflammation, and have been shown to help regulate blood sugar.
Can I make this as a pasta bake?
This recipe can easily be converted into a chicken and mushroom pasta bake with a few easy changes. First, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Start by cooking the chicken, onions, mushrooms, and garlic as the recipe directs. Then add the pasta, chicken broth, onions, mushrooms, and garlic to a baking dish covered with cooking spray. Cover with foil tightly and bake at 400 degrees for about 50 minutes. Remove the foil and add the sliced chicken and half and half, Top with Parmesan cheese. Return to the oven for 10 minutes or until cheese melts.
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One Pot Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Pasta
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- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast, sliced
- 2 tsp. grill seasoning
- 1 U onion, diced
- 4 U cloves garlic, minced
- 8 oz. cremini mushrooms, sliced
- 3 1/2 cups fat free chicken broth
- 8 oz. high fiber pasta (break spaghetti or linguine in half)
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup half and half
- Salt and pepper
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* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.
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