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Summer Skillet Pasta with tender chicken is a healthy, vibrant dish perfect for using summer vegetables. No heavy cream or butter, but lots of fresh, zesty flavor.
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Summer skillet pasta with chicken is a delicious, light skillet pasta I came up with recently when I had a ton of veggies from our summer garden and a hankering for a good pasta dish. I didn’t want anything too heavy on that hot summer evening, but something that was filling and fresh and yummy. It was so easy to put together!
The best part of this skillet recipe is its versatility. The possibilities are endless! Mix and match any veggies you have on hand, and toss in with some seasonings and your choice of pasta and you’ll have a hearty and healthy dinner on the table in no time!
Summer Skillet Pasta with Chicken Ingredients
Fresh vegetables, tender chunks of chicken breast, spaghetti, zesty Italian seasoning, and some light cream cheese melt together to create a creamy, healthy pasta dinner that everyone loves! Serve with a simple green salad and some crusty bread for the perfect weeknight dinner.
- Vegetable oil – Add this to the pan to saute the chicken.
- Chicken breasts – Boneless chicken breasts can be cut in half or pounded if you would like a thinner chicken.
- Montreal chicken seasoning – Season the chicken
- Garlic – Saute for a rich garlicky flavor.
- Onion – A fresh onion is sweet and sour with a soft and crisp taste.
- Red and yellow bell peppers – Slice the bell peppers ahead of time. Long thin strips cook well together.
- Zucchini – Wash and dry the zucchini then slice them into bite-sized pieces. You do not need to
- Diced tomatoes – Make it easy by using a can of diced tomatoes.
- Zesty Italian dry seasoning packet – Find this in the seasoning isle and it is life changing! You can add it to poultry of any kind or vegetables when cooking. It is one of the best seasoning packets out there!
- Basil – Everything is better with basil! This is always a favorite fresh herb to throw into a dish.
- Chicken broth – Add extra flavor to the dish with chicken broth. Chicken broth is a great way to cook pasta and enhance the flavors altogether.
- Skim milk – Gives a creamy and smooth sauce overtop the skillet pasta.
- Parmesan cheese – We used the grated kind that comes in a canister with a green lid. This is easy to sprinkle or spread for this summer skillet.
- Light cream cheese – Creamy and decadent, this cream cheese will add just the right amount of sauce over top the pasta.
- Spaghetti – A light noodle is perfect for soaking in the flavor and gives a thick bite each time. Cook the spaghetti according to the package directions.
How to Make Summer Skillet Pasta with Chicken
This summer skillet pasta recipe is low in calories but high in flavor. That’s because instead of using heavy cream, butter, or lots of oil, I use Skinny Cow Creamy Swiss cheese wedges to add creamy texture and flavor to the dish. Those little wedges come in handy for so many recipes! They melt smoothly when tossed in with spaghetti, hot veggies, and chicken.
- Saute chicken – Heat a little vegetable oil in a large skillet. Cut chicken into pieces and add to oil. Sprinkle chicken with Montreal chicken seasoning, to taste. When chicken is cooked through, remove from skillet and set aside.
- Cook veggies – Wipe the skillet clean with a paper towel (or two) and add a little more oil to the skillet. When the oil is hot again, add garlic, onion, peppers, and zucchini. Saute vegetables until they become bright and tender.
- Cook – Return chicken to skillet along with diced tomatoes. Stir in Italian seasonings, basil, salt, and pepper.
- Simmer – Add chicken broth and simmer for a minute or two.
- Stir together – Add milk, parmesan cheese, and cream cheese, and stir until the cream cheese is completely melted and mixed in.
- Combine – Drain spaghetti and add to skillet. Toss until well combined. Serve immediately.
Make it a Vegetarian Summer Skillet Pasta
Bright, crisp vegetables really are the star of this dinner. And you can make this recipe vegetarian in a snap! Just omit the chicken, and use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth. It’s not just for spring or summer either; you can add fall or winter vegetables to create a whole new recipe as the seasons change.
- Summer – Tomatoes, red, yellow, and green peppers, yellow squash, beans, zucchini, greens, eggplant and so many more!
- Spring – Cauliflower, radishes, and asparagus are best during the springtime.
- Fall – Cabbage, radishes, beets, and garlic can be made during the fall season.
- Winter – Kale, brussel sprouts, carrots, swiss chard, parsnips, and broccoli have the perfect vegetable mixture during the cold months.
“WOW this was delicious! My husband had seconds, then ate what was left on my plate! This recipe is definitely a keeper! So simple and fresh. Thanks!”-Meghan
Frequently Asked Questions
Absolutley, yes! Pasta in a pan is an easy dinner dream! Use a larger skillet with a flat bottom. Cook according to package with a pinch of salt and the noodles are al dente.
Make this skillet pasta just the way you like it! Add in red pepper flakes for extra heat, change the seasoning to garlic powder, add in a zest of lemon juice, or your favorite herbs like parsley and oregano. The possibilities are endless!
More Favorite Pasta Recipes
I really have to stop myself from making pasta every night of the week. There are so many recipes that are full of flavor. Try a few of these tried and true favorites!
Summer Skillet Pasta with Chicken
- vegetable oil to taste
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
- Montreal chicken seasoning to taste
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 onion sliced
- 1 red bell pepper sliced
- 1 yellow bell pepper sliced
- 1 medium zucchini sliced
- 1 can diced tomatoes do not drain
- 1 package zesty Italian dry seasoning packet
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
- Kosher salt and ground black pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1/4 cup skim milk
- 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
- 3 ounces light cream cheese or 4 wedges of skinny cow creamy Swiss
- 1 pound package spaghetti prepared
- Heat a little vegetable oil in a large skillet. Cut chicken into pieces and add to oil. Sprinkle chicken with Montreal chicken seasoning, to taste.
- When chicken is cooked through, remove from skillet and set aside.
- Wipe skillet clean with a paper towel (or two) and add a little more oil to the skillet. When oil is hot again, add garlic, onion, peppers, and zucchini.
- Saute vegetables until they become bright and tender.
- Return chicken to skillet along with diced tomatoes. Stir in Italian seasonings, basil, salt and pepper.
- Add chicken broth and simmer for a minute or two.
- Add milk, Parmesan cheese, and cream cheese– stir until cream cheese is completely melted and mixed in.
- Drain spaghetti and add to skillet. Toss until well combined. Serve immediately.
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We just enjoyed this delicious pasta recipe for dinner this evening. It was a big hit with the family! This recipe’s a keeper.
I love making a batch of this and having it for lunch! So yummy!
Does “1 pkg. zesty Italian dry seasoning packet” mean Good Seasons Zesty Italian Dressing dry mix?
Yes! We do use the Good Seasons Zesty Italian Dressing mix. You can sometimes find generic brands, but this is the brand we prefer. Thank you for asking!
Is there a substitute for the Zesty Italian Dressing mix? I have been to two stores in my area and can’t seem to find it stocked. Thanks!
You can use regular Italian Dressing Mix, or you can also make your own. I’ve used this recipe before from food.com and it works great. Click here: http://www.food.com/recipe/zesty-italian-dressing-spice-mix-413362
Our family loves this recipe! I make it about once a week. It is our favorite meatless meal.
Made this tonight, loved it! I used 1/2 can crushed tomatoes instead of 1 can diced because my husband doesn’t like chunky tomatoes. I was worried it would be too runny if I used the whole can, it turned out delicious!
So glad that you liked it!!! It is one of my hubby’s favs too!
How big should the can of diced tomatoes be? Thanks!
Just the standard 12-14 oz…
How many servings does this make and how much is one serving?
about 6-8 servings. Usually a serving is about 1/8 of a package of noodles.
WOW this was delicious! My husband had seconds, then ate what was left on my plate! This recipe is definitely a keeper! So simple and fresh. Thanks!
I LOVED this pasta almost more than anything! This is definitely a keeper. I followed the recipe almost exactly, but I did use light cream cheese, and I used Montreal Steak Seasoning for the chicken since I don’t have the chicken version. Seriously, SOOOOO good. We enjoyed it for three nights since it makes a ton and we’re a small family. Oh and I only used one chicken breast and it was plenty especially with so many veggies.