Cajun Chicken Pasta with Andouille is a skillet meal that the family is certain to love. The Cajun spiced cream sauce is simple to make and the amount of heat can be adjusted to your personal taste. Serve it family style as a one pot meal they're sure to enjoy any day of the week.
Cajun Chicken Pasta with Andouille
Pasta is always a welcome addition to our dinner menu. Whether we're entertaining friends and family or making dinner for the kids after a hectic day, pasta is a winner. Dishes like Cowboy Spaghetti and One Pot Chicken Fettuccine with Bacon always bring my boys to the table in a hurry. While this Cajun chicken pasta isn't complicated, it does require a few simple steps to make. It's well worth it, and results in a skillet filled with kicked-up flavor.
Cajun Chicken Pasta Making Tips
A few things to consider:
- When making this dish, I like prepping the chicken in advance. I cut it into pieces, sprinkle with seasoning and chill to give extra time for the spices to permeate. It's a wonderful time saver, too.
- Please note, prepared Cajun and Creole seasonings vary in sodium content and heat from brand to brand. Feel free to use your favorite brand of seasoning and adjust the amount to your personal taste. Both Zatarain's and Tony Chachere's have seasonings that are readily available in most grocery stores and inexpensive.
- I recommend that you wait to add salt to the sauce until after all of the ingredients have been added. The main reason being, there may be ample salt in the Parmesan cheese, Creole seasoning and andouille sausage that no additional will be needed. Make the sauce first, then taste and adjust.
- The thickness of the sauce for this dish can also be adjusted using more, or less, cream cheese. Start initially with 4 oz and only add more after the pasta, chicken and andouille have been added back to the pan. The pasta will also thicken the sauce.
- Pasta generally comes in 1 lb packages but, occasionally you can find a smaller 8 oz box. When using the larger, cook the whole pound of pasta. Use half in this recipe and freeze the other half for a future meal. Take care not to overcook and you'll have cooked pasta ready to go for a busy day dinner.
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Helpful Kitchen Items:
Cajun Chicken Pasta with Andouille
- 1 8 oz box penne pasta
- olive oil
- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts 1-inch cubes
- 14 oz smoked andouille sausage sliced
- 1 Tbsp Cajun or Creole seasoning, plus 1 tsp divided
- 1 medium sweet onion diced
- 1 small green bell pepper seeded and diced
- 1 rib celery diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tsp lemon pepper
- 2 cups half and half
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 10 oz can diced tomatoes and green chilies
- 4 oz chive and onion cream cheese softened
- seasoned salt See Cook's note
- chopped Italian Parsley and diced Roma tomato for garnishing
- Cook the pasta per the package directions in salted water until al dente. Drain well.
- Season chicken with 1 tsp Cajun/Creole seasoning. In a large deep skillet or deep pot, cook seasoned chicken and sausage in a couple drizzles of olive oil over medium-high heat. Cook for 5 minutes or until chicken is browned and cooked through. Use a slotted spoon to remove from pot.
- Add onion, pepper and celery to the drippings. Cook for 5 minutes until softened and beginning to brown. Add garlic cooking for 1-2 minutes longer.
- Add half and half, tomatoes, 1 Tbsp Creole seasoning, lemon pepper to pot. Bring to a gentle simmer then mix in the Parmesan and cream cheese. Cook stirring until slightly thickened for about 2 minutes. Add more half and half to thin to your taste. Taste and add salt, if needed.
- Add pasta, chicken and sausage back to the pot add 1 Tbsp parsley. Simmer just until heated through and combined. Mix well.
- Serve immediately topped with parsley, diced tomato and a sprinkle of additional Parmesan, if desired.
- The chicken may be tossed with seasonings and chilled in a storage bag overnight for a time saver.
- Prepared Cajun and Creole seasonings vary in sodium content. Depending on the brand of seasoning used, the amount of salt may need to be adjusted using more or less to your taste.