Ree’s Cajun Chicken Pasta

Ree's Cajun Chicken Pasta 1My family is made up of pasta monsters.  At least that’s what I call my kids whenever they request something over and over again because they like it so much.  They are Oreo monsters, ice cream monsters, spaghetti monsters, pizza monsters and…you get the idea.  I’m pretty sure we could have some form of pasta every other night and not get tired of it.  I’m sure like most of the cooking world I am a Pioneer Woman fan.  This recipe is all her and the only thing I’ve changed is to use milk and flour as a thickening agent instead of cream and whole wheat linguine as opposed to fettuccine.  This pasta is different than most of the others I make because the sauce is very light.  It has chicken broth and white wine, which I’m usually hesitant to use because I honestly don’t like the taste of wine too much, but in this case you don’t notice it at all.  It also has a slew of vegetables; red onions, red and green bell peppers, tomatoes,  which as a mom makes me super happy knowing my kids are going to be getting a variety in one bowl.  I hope you like this as much as we do!

Ree's Cajun Chicken Pasta 2

Ree's Cajun Chicken Pasta TitleIngredientsRee's Cajun Chicken Pasta 3

  • 1 pound whole wheat linguine
  • About 3 teaspoons Cajun spice mix (I use McCormick Perfect Pinch Cajun)
  • 3 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into cubes
  • 2 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 whole green bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1 whole red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1/2 large red onion, sliced
  • Salt
  • 4 whole Roma tomatoes, diced
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cups white wine
  • 1 cup milk (I use 1% so any will do)
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • Cayenne pepper, for sprinkling
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish

Directions

  1. Cook the pasta al dente according to package directions.
  2. Sprinkle 1 1/2 teaspoons Cajun spice (or more) over the chicken cubes. Toss around to coat. Heat 1 tablespoon butter and 1 tablespoon oil in a heavy skillet over high heat. Add half the chicken in a single layer; do not stir. Allow the chicken to brown on one side, about 1 minute. Flip to the other side and cook an additional minute. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on a clean plate. Repeat with the remaining chicken.
  3. Remove the chicken, leaving the skillet on high heat. Add the remaining butter and olive oil. When heated, add the garlic, peppers and onions. Sprinkle on the remaining Cajun spice, and add salt if needed. Cook over high heat for 1 minute, stirring gently and trying to get the vegetables as dark/black as possible. Add the tomatoes and cook for an additional 30 seconds. Remove all the vegetables from the skillet.
  4. With the skillet still over high heat, pour in the chicken broth and wine. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes, scraping the bottom of the pan to deglaze.  Reduce the heat to medium-low.
  5. In a small cup add the milk and whisk in the two tablespoons of flour until well combined.  Pour the milk/flour mixture into the sauce whisking constantly. Cook the sauce over medium-low heat for a few minutes, until the mixture starts to thicken. Taste and add freshly ground black pepper, cayenne pepper, and/or salt to taste.  I tend to use less on the pasta as a whole and then Mike and I sprinkle extra as we need but then it’s not too spicy for the kids.
  6. Finally, add the chicken and vegetables to the sauce, making sure to include all the juices that have drained onto the plate. Stir and cook until the mixture is bubbly and hot, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the drained linguine and toss to combine.
  7. Top with chopped fresh parsley and enjoy!

Recipe only slightly adapted from Ree Drummond

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