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Creamy Parmesan, Mushroom and Chicken Pasta

Before we get to the food, and we shall, I have some exciting news!

Evil Shenanigans has been nominated for the first annual Foodbuzz Awards for Best Recipe Blog!  You can see the other nominees, and vote if you like, here.   Voting is open until October 29th. 

I want to thank everyone who nominated me.  You have no idea what a surprise this was and how much I appreciate it!  Ok, back to the food.

Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Mushrooms and Chicken  

This time of year is, for me, perfect for hearty pasta dishes.  For some reason in the Summer I don’t really crave pasta, except for mac and cheese which is a year-round craving, but once the temperatures begin to drop I crave pasta.

Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Mushrooms and Chicken 

So, I started with a healthy recipe from Cooking Light.  I have made  it before and enjoyed it very much, but this time I tweaked it.

Tweak one was to add some roasted chicken.  I used chicken breast because that is what I had, but you could also make it with chicken thighs if that rocks your world. 

Tweak two was to use whole milk and full fat cream cheese in the sauce.  Sure, you can use low fat, or even fat free, if you want to save a few calories, but I wanted smooth and creamy sauce coating my pasta.  I went for whole milk. 

Tweak three, and by far the most flavorful tweak, was the addition of onion and mushroom to the sauce.  These added a nice robust flavor to the creamy sauce.  Sure, you could leave them out but when you can add so much flavor so easily, why wouldn’t you?

Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Mushrooms and Chicken 

Serve this pasta with a green salad and you have an easy, filling, and very tasty dinner!

Creamy Parmesan, Mushroom and Chicken Pasta     Serves 4
Adapted from Cooking Light

For the chicken:
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/2 teaspoon thyme
2 tablespoons olive oil

For the pasta:
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 cup sliced mushrooms (I used button, but crimini or shitaki would also be nice)
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon flour
1 1/3 cups whole milk at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Fresh cracked black pepper
Pinch of fresh grated nutmeg
2 tablespoons cream cheese at room temperature
6 ounces fresh grated parmesan cheese
8 ounces rigatoni pasta

Heat the oven to 375F and line a baking sheet with foil.  Spray with non-stick cooking spray.

Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Mushrooms and Chicken  

In a small bowl combine the oregano, salt, paprika, red pepper, thyme, and olive oil.  Stir well.  Put the chicken breasts on the prepared sheet pan and brush the mixture onto both sides.

Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Mushrooms and Chicken

Roast for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the internal temperature reads 160 F.   Once cooked remove from the oven and tent with foil until ready to slice.

Boil the pasta according to the package directions. 

Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Mushrooms and Chicken 

While the pasta cooks heat the two teaspoons of olive oil in a heavy bottom pot.  Saute the mushrooms and onion over medium heat until soft, about five minutes.   Add the garlic and cook for thirty seconds.

Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Mushrooms and Chicken 

Add in the flour and stir to moisten, then pour in the milk and whisk to combine.  Cook the mixture until it thickens, about ten minutes.  Once it has thickened season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. 

Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Mushrooms and Chicken 

Reduce the heat to low and whisk in the cream cheese until incorporated.  Add the parmesan and whisk until it is incorporated.

Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Mushrooms and Chicken 

Toss in the cooked pasta and mix gently to coat.  Slice the chicken breast and toss into the pasta.

 Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Mushrooms and Chicken 

Serve warm, with a salad or garlic bread.

Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Mushrooms and Chicken

© 2009, Evil Shenanigans – Baking & Cooking Blog. All rights reserved.

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24 Responses to “Creamy Parmesan, Mushroom and Chicken Pasta”

  1. Elle says:

    Ooooh, yeeeeah. (said like the Kool-Aid guy!) It’s all creamy and rich and gooood.

    Love it!

  2. RJ Flamingo says:

    Love your tweaks – especially the ‘shrooms & onions. I can just taste those flavors, now! Mmmmm…

  3. Jessie says:

    my favorite kind of meal! Congrats on the nomination

  4. Alta says:

    So, you basically just made the “light” version of the recipe “un-light” with that whole milk and cream, eh? I’m sure it was totally worth it, for the added flavor! :) Skim milk and such is just not the same. And I love the addition of onions and mushrooms. Yum. I could lick my plate.

  5. Rene says:

    Geez, I don’t think I’ve had whole milk and full fat cream cheese in my house since Clinton was in office.

    Does look yummy, I like the addition of mushrooms and onions.

  6. Eliana says:

    This looks incredible – the perfect fall pasta dish that will stick to your bones and make you feel all cosy inside.

  7. Rachel J says:

    Oh sh*#! I just drooled all over my keyboard.

  8. Yum!! Cheesy, creamy pasta goodness. Just what I like.

  9. ValleyWriter says:

    Looks like a wonderful, creamy, comforting dish – perfect for fall. Congrats on being a Foodbuzz nominee & good luck! (I voted for you for sure!)

  10. Kelly says:

    ValleyWriter – Thank you very much! I’m very excited!

  11. Paula says:

    Congrats on the nomination! hope you win! That pasta looks delish!!

  12. Jessica says:

    That pasta looks heavenly! I love creamy pastas!

  13. Congratulations on your well-deserved nomination! And also on another mouth-watering recipe with this latest.

  14. Miranda says:

    This is fantastic. I love the cream, mushroom and chicken paired!

    I will be voting for you!

  15. Stephanie says:

    This looks awesome! I can’t wait to make it soon.

  16. Congrats on your nomination! Job well done.
    I agree with your tweaks–I’m okay with cutting back on the amount of cream in a recipe, but skim milk is just not happening in a sauce for me…

  17. Your pasta looks phenomenal… Congrats on your Foodbuzz nomination. You deserve it! :)

  18. Nutmeg Nanny says:

    This pasta looks great:)

  19. Donna says:

    Congrats to you!! This dish looks so fabulous, I bookmarked it.

  20. thanks for an awesome recipe. made it tonight for dinner and i really liked it.

  21. MichelleNW says:

    I made this tonight! It came out great and it was easy! I’m not the best cook in the world either!!

  22. gemma says:

    i will try this tonight but im sure its so good

  23. Joni says:

    Very good, but far too cheesy, even for me, who has never met a cheese she didn’t like. I’d make again, but cut down on the grated parm by about 2 ounces.

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