Ultra creamy with layers of bewitching flavor, this Sun Dried Tomato Pasta recipe is special enough for a romantic dinner, but so easy anyone (even my husband) can make it with absolute success.
Why You’ll Love This Creamy Pasta Recipe
- A Tried-and-True Winner. This is one of the most popular recipes on Well Plated, and why wouldn’t it be?! It’s creamy, it’s easy, and it’s loaded with chewy, sweet sun-dried tomatoes. (Why are sun-dried tomatoes so good? Because they take the flavor of tomatoes and concentrate it, giving you more bang for your buck!)
- Let Me Repeat: It Is Easy. Like other simple weeknight pasta recipes (Chicken Pesto Pasta, Penne Alla Vodka, and Ricotta Pasta) it tastes stunning with minimal effort (if my husband can make it, anyone can make it!).
- Perfect for a Date Night In. Do you ever go to an Italian restaurant for a dinner date and then wonder why you’re paying $25 for a plate of spaghetti? Save your money and whip up this sun dried tomato pasta with chicken for dinner instead.
5 Star Review
“Absolutely delicious, my family said it was like restaurant food!”— Kirstie —
How to Make Sun Dried Tomato Pasta
- Whole Wheat Pasta. Go for bowties. They’re a gentleman’s pasta. Penne pasta or another bite-sized shape will work too.
- Unsalted Butter. Far superior to extra-virgin olive oil in this recipe.
- Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts. Or leave them out for a vegetarian version
- Sun-Dried Tomatoes. Do you see that little red jar of sun-dried tomatoes? It’s your new best friend (it’s also used in this Italian Sausage Pasta). Open the jar, add it to the pan, and your chicken pasta will taste like you were just chillin’ with Giada.
- Herbs and Spices. The always essential garlic, oregano, salt, and pepper—both black and cayenne. Red pepper flakes are a simple swap for the cayenne if you prefer.
- Dry White Wine. A few splashes for the pasta. Some for you and your date. More for you and your date. (Also a star in this Mushroom Pasta.)
- Whipping Cream. A little goes a long way, and it’s worth it!
- Parmesan Cheese. Go the extra mile and grate your own.
- Spinach. It’s packed with things like iron, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin, K, and folate. (Lov the healthy addition? Consider this Tuscan Chicken Mac and Cheese for your next dinner.)
- Cook the Pasta. Drain it and set aside.
- Cook the Chicken. Using butter gives rich flavor right from the start.
- Stir in the Flavor-Makers. Sun-dried tomatoes and wine.
- Finish. After the wine has reduced, remove the pan from the heat and toss in the pasta along with the cream, spinach, and Parmesan.
- Serve. Stir everything together until the spinach is wilted. ENJOY!
- Add Fresh Herbs. Stir in fresh basil, thyme, or rosemary at the end of the cooking time.
- Make It Vegetarian. Skip the chicken and add a can of chickpeas or white beans, or your favorite plant-based chicken.
- Try Different Greens. Swiss or rainbow chard or arugula would also work here.
- Add Some Umami. Fancy Italian olives—or even just pitted kalamata olives—add some briny, umami flavor to this creamy sun-dried tomato pasta recipe.
- To Store. Refrigerate leftover sun dried tomato pasta in an airtight container for up to 2 days.
- To Reheat. Warm gently in the microwave or on the stovetop, topped with a little drizzle of chicken stock or heavy cream to keep it from drying out.
- To Freeze. Freeze the pasta in an airtight, freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
What to Serve with Sun Dried Tomato Pasta
- Salad. Round out your meal with Arugula Salad or Burrata Salad.
- Vegetable Sides. You can never go wrong with roasted veggies! I like this pasta with Roasted Green Beans and Roasted Eggplant.
- Bread. Yes, we’re serving carbs on top of carbs here, but you know you want to soak up any leftover creamy sauce with a slice of Rosemary Olive Oil Bread or No Knead Focaccia!
Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe
- Cheese Grater. Just like the ones they use at your favorite Italian restaurant.
- Colander. I love this one because it fits onto the sink.
- Skillet. Skip the trendy brands and candy colors and buy a skillet that will last a lifetime.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- Use a Big Skillet. You want to have room to stir without the pasta spilling out over the sides of the pan. No one wants to clean up that mess!
- Have a Mise en Place. In other words, make sure you have all of the ingredients ready to go before you start cooking. This is a quick recipe, which means you won’t have time to pause and prep ingredients.
- Grate Your Own Cheese. This is so important! Freshly grated Parmesan melts smoothly into the cream sauce, while the store-bought grated Parm (“shaky cheese,” as the kids call it) never fully melts, giving your sauce a weird texture.
Sun Dried Tomato Pasta
- 8 ounces whole wheat pasta any shape you like (recommended: bowtie or linguini)
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1 jar julienne-cut sun dried tomatoes packed in olive oil (7 ounces) drained
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt plus additional for cooking the pasta
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/4 cup dry white wine (such as Pinot Grigio) or low sodium chicken stock
- 2/3 cup whipping cream
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese plus additional for serving
- 2 cups baby spinach
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Sprinkle in a few teaspoons of salt, then add the pasta and cook according to package directions, just until al dente (lightly firm and chewy, but not hard). Drain and set aside.
- Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Once the skillet is hot, add the chicken and cook until lightly golden brown on all sides, about 3-4 minutes.
- Reduce heat to medium-low, then add the drained sun dried tomatoes, garlic, oregano, salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper and cook just until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the wine and for cook 2 minutes, until the liquid evaporates, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat.
- To the skillet, add the whipping cream, then the pasta, spinach, and 1/2 cup Parmesan. Stir for 30 seconds to allow the spinach to cook down. Sprinkle with additional Parmesan cheese and serve.
- TO STORE: Refrigerate leftover sun dried tomato pasta in an airtight container for up to 2 days.
- TO REHEAT: Warm gently in the microwave, topped with a little drizzle of chicken stock or heavy cream to keep it from drying out.
- TO FREEZE: Freeze the pasta in an airtight, freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
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Frequently Asked Questions
While I have only ever tested this recipe as it is written, you can try swapping the cream for a can of full-fat coconut milk with success. If you choose to experiment with this non-dairy substitution (or others) I’d love to hear your results.
If you only have access to sun dried tomatoes sealed in a pouch, as opposed to packed in a jar with oil, I would suggest rehydrating them in warm water for 10 minutes before adding them to the dish. This ensures the tomatoes will be perfectly tender as opposed to tough or leathery.
If you’d like to make this pasta recipe gluten free, swap the whole wheat pasta for your favorite gluten free pasta variety. As always, be sure to check the labels of your other ingredients to confirm they were processed in a gluten free certified facility and do not contain any gluten-containing additives.