BBQ Chicken Pasta: An easy dinner idea that is ready in a flash, especially when using a rotisserie chicken and bottled bbq sauce!
Last week, we had friends over… and we did the standard, “pizza carry-out,” for dinner. We ordered the same ole pepperoni & cheese, but then I wanted to get a little on the wild side and order a “specialty,” pizza. BBQ Chicken pizza was the winner.
Ok, ok… that’s sooo not on the “wild side,” but compared to the standard popular pepperoni option…it’s a little on the crazy side for us.
And in no exaggeration at all, I’ve been trying to justify how I can order that same pizza, every night since then.
But ordering pizza every single night, really doesn’t make a whole lot of sense so I wanted to experiment with how I could get the flavor, without the “pizza”.
Then it was like one of those cartoons where the light bulb literally appears above the character’s head. I swear, I think that really happened to me, in my kitchen.
I had conquered my BBQ Chicken craving by coming up with a dish to satisfy my tastebuds…
BBQ Chicken Pasta Recipe
I ran to the grocery store, grabbed the goodies that I needed, and I was ready to rock and roll.
NOTE: Don’t worry if you don’t have all of the ingredients I list in the recipe below.
I’ve made this numerous times with just chicken, pasta, salt, water, heavy cream, onion powder, and bbq sauce for a super quick and easy dish. I simply boil a little water (enough that will slightly cover my noodles in my saucepan) until noodles are al dente. Then, I throw the chicken, heavy cream, onion powder and bbq sauce right in.
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Tip for a Fast Dinner
Using rotisserie chicken that you can buy at certain grocery stores, can save TONS of time in the kitchen. (Plus, you can make the most of that rotisserie by boiling the bones and carcass to make a chicken stock.)
Or, you could cook chicken in the slow cooker to save for future quick recipes like this one!
Left Over BBQ Chicken Dinners
If you have left over chicken, especially bbq chicken from a cookout, this is a great dinner idea and way to use it!
But if you don’t have any leftovers or you prefer to cook your chicken yourself, that can save money! So whatever you prefer, go for it!
Not only do I love the flavor or this recipe but the fact that it can all be cooked in one-pot, is even better!
After cooking the bacon, the rest of the ingredients (even the uncooked pasta) can be added right to the same dish and cook together!
This is the glorious deliciousness of the pasta before adding the BBQ sauce and shredded cheese.
BBQ Chicken Pasta
- 3 slices bacon cut in to small pieces
- 1 cup shredded or chopped rotisserie chicken
- 2 garlic cloves chopped
- 1/2 cup red onion chopped
- 16 oz penne pasta
- 3 cups chicken broth
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- pinch red pepper flakes optional
- salt and pepper to taste ( I used 1 teaspoon kosher salt & 2 pinches of black pepper)
- 1 cup BBQ sauce
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese plus more for garnish; optional
- fresh parsley for garnish; optional
- In a large saucepan, cook bacon
- Add chicken, garlic, and red onion, and cook over medium heat for about 2 minutes to allow everything to cook and flavor together
- Add in pasta, chicken broth, heavy cream, and spices
- Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and cover
- Let simmer for about 15 minutes, or until pasta is tender
- Add in BBQ Sauce and shredded mozzarella, stirring gently to combine
- When cheese is fully melted, Serve
- Garnish with extra BBQ drizzle, shredded mozzarella, and parsley if desired
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more.
What to Serve with BBQ Chicken Pasta
If you’re whipping this up on a busy weeknight, then keeping your side dishes easy is ideal too, right? Here are our favorites to serve with this pasta: