One-Skillet Cheesy Ground Chicken Pasta


Make this cheesy ground chicken pasta recipe for a busy weeknight dinner. Serve with a simple side salad and a glass of red wine.

Active Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
30 mins
Nutrition Profile:

What Type of Pasta Should I Use?

We use whole-wheat penne for this recipe, but feel free to use whole-wheat mostaccioli, ziti, fusilli, rotini, gemelli, cavatappi or any other short pasta. Shorter pasta is easier to stir during cooking and sticks less than longer-shaped pasta. Make sure the pasta is cooked al dente before stirring in the spinach.

How to Serve One-Skillet Cheesy Ground Chicken Pasta

This main dish pairs well with vegetable sides, including Balsamic & Parmesan Broccoli, Green Beans with Pine Nuts & Gremolata, Roasted Asparagus Parmesan and Crispy Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Panko. Serve with crusty bread and a simple side salad to round out the meal.

Additional reporting by Jan Valdez


  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 pound ground chicken

  • 1 cup chopped red onion

  • 1 cup halved grape tomatoes

  • 2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • 8 ounces whole-wheat penne

  • 2 cups unsalted chicken broth

  • 1 cup marinara sauce

  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream

  • 5 ounces fresh baby spinach

  • ½ cup chopped fresh basil, plus more for garnish

  • ½ cup low-moisture part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese

  • Grated Parmesan cheese (optional)


  1. Heat oil in a large, high-sided skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook, stirring often to break up the meat, until cooked through and beginning to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Add onion, tomatoes, Italian seasoning and salt; cook, stirring often, until the onion is softened and the tomatoes are breaking down, 4 to 5 minutes.

  2. Stir in pasta, broth, marinara and cream; bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is al dente, 10 to 12 minutes. Stir in spinach (in batches, if necessary), basil and mozzarella; cover and cook until the spinach wilts and the cheese melts, about 2 minutes. Garnish with more basil and Parmesan, if using.

    One-Skillet Cheesy Ground Chicken Pasta
    Victor Protasio


Large, high-sided skillet or Dutch oven

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

410 Calories
19g Fat
38g Carbs
24g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Calories 410
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 38g 14%
Dietary Fiber 6g 21%
Total Sugars 6g
Protein 24g 48%
Total Fat 19g 24%
Saturated Fat 8g 40%
Cholesterol 95mg 32%
Vitamin A 2533IU 51%
Sodium 469mg 20%
Potassium 831mg 18%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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