This creamy Cajun chicken pasta recipe is made with seared chicken breast and a light but creamy Cajun sauce with huge flavor. Done in a half hour or less. This is a super easy weeknight pasta dinner.
Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta Recipe
Quick and easy meal alert, my friends! We're serving up a creamy chicken pasta dish with a Cajun-seasoned cream sauce that is immensely satisfying but falls on the lighter side.
We're calling it Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta, and it is super satisfying! I think you are going to love this one.
I mean, it's pasta so I won't claim that it is uber low-calorie, but there are ways to make your pasta nice and CREAMY without resorting to lots of butter and heavy cream, which are quite delicious, YES!
There is a very simple secret combination of ingredients at work here. A great AND flavorful way to achieve a creamy tomato-based pasta sauce is this: Cream Cheese and a bit of Crema or Sour Cream.
This simple ingredient duo works magic into your regular old tomato-based pasta sauce.
Don't get me wrong. I greatly enjoy tomato sauces, especially with pasta, and there are some great ones out there!
But who doesn't crave a wonderfully creamy sauce that is spicy and tasty is also super easy to make?
I know I do!
If you're looking for a simple, quick and easy pasta recipe for dinner, this might be your new go-to recipe. Get ready for big flavor!
Let's talk about how to make creamy Cajun chicken pasta, shall we?
Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta Ingredients
- Oil. Use 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Chicken. I use 1 pound chicken breast here, though you can use chicken thighs if you'd like, or a combination. I like to cut the chicken into bite size pieces.
- Vegetables and Peppers. Use 1 large onion, 1 medium green bell peppers, 2 jalapeno peppers, 1 stalk celery and 4 cloves garlic, basically your Cajun Holy Trinity + garlic and jalapenos. Great flavor base!
- Tomato Paste. Use 6 ounces tomato paste for this recipe. You can also used diced tomatoes.
- Stock. 1 cup chicken stock + more as needed
- Seasonings. Use 2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning, or more to your personal tastes. I like to use a tablespoon or more, but that's me! Also use salt and ground black pepper to taste.
- Creaminess. I use 3 ounces light cream cheese and 2 tablespoons light sour cream or crema. So much better than heavy cream! Who needs all those calories!
- Pasta. 8-10 ounces prepared pasta noodles – I used cavatapi this time, but often use fettucine. Any pasta will do here, honestly. Just cook pasta according to package instructions to al dente.
- Garnish. Sliced lemon, spicy chili flakes and chopped parsley for serving, maybe some freshly grated parmesan cheese.
How to Make Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta - the Recipe Method
Cook the Chicken and Vegetables. Heat a large pan to medium high heat and add olive oil. Add chicken, onion, peppers and celery.
Cook about 7-8 minutes, until the vegetables are softened and the chicken is mostly cooked through.
Add garlic and stir. Cook about a minute.
Sauce and Seasoning. Add tomato paste, chicken broth, Cajun spices and a bit of salt and pepper. Stir to incorporate.
Reduce heat to low and simmer about 15 minutes. You can use a can of tomato sauce if you'd prefer, but if you do, skip the chicken stock.
The Creaminess Factor. Swirl in cream cheese and sour cream. Stir to incorporate. This will thicken the sauce.
Add the Noodles. Add pasta and stir to incorporate all that creaminess.
Serve it Up! Serve your awesome Cajun chicken pasta into bowls and top with lemon, spicy chili flakes and parsley.
Chopped green onions are often nice here, too. Enjoy!
Boom! Done! Ready to serve! Great stuff, isn't it? And doesn't it look delicious? Super easy to make for sure. Such a great recipe.
This can be your new easy weeknight dinner that everyone will be asking for. Maybe begging!
I love this recipe.
Recipe Tips & Notes
- The Creamy Sauce. Once you cook down your initial vegetables with the chicken, the sauce is simple - Chicken Stock with Tomato Paste, then swirl in Light Cream Cheese and a bit of Crema or Light Sour Cream. Then your noodles.
- The Cream Cheese. Light cream cheese has only nearly half the calories of regular cream cheese, so you're saving a lot of calories there. Same with light sour cream.
- Crema or Sour Cream. Crema is typically lower in calories than your typical sour cream, and has better flavor, in my opinion. Just watch out for light versions with too much added sugar.
- The Cajun Seasonings. The big flavor secret here, aside from the awesome peppers we're cooking with, is the Cajun Seasoning blend you're using. You can find any of your favorite Cajun seasonings blends at your grocer, or order from online. Or make your own. I do all the time and hope to get my Homemade Cajun Seasoning Blend online! One of my favorites, though, is Slap Ya Mama Cajun Seasoning (affiliate link, FYI). Try their original blend or the HOT blend, which is the one I typically use. Nice kick! I use this stuff all the time.
- Other Seasonings. You can include other spices here, like cayenne pepper, onion powder and garlic powder, but a good Cajun blend will give you everything you need for this recipe.
Serving Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta
Serve this along with some nice garlic bread or buttered rolls so you can sop up any of that remaining spicy, creamy sauce.
If you're like me, make it extra spicy with a few extra blasts of Cajun seasonings before simmering the Creole tomato sauce. Talk about delicious!
Get that pasta cooking!
I hope you enjoy it!
Storage & Leftovers
Store any leftover creamy cajun chicken pasta in the refrigerator in a sealed container. It will last for up to 3 days. You can also freeze it for 1 month or longer, though this can affect the texture of the pasta.
If you enjoy this recipe, I hope you'll leave a comment with some STARS. Also, please share it on social media. Don't forget to tag us at #ChiliPepperMadness. I'll be sure to share! Thanks! -- Mike H.
Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta Recipe
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound chicken breast chopped into bite size pieces
- 1 large onion chopped
- 1 medium green bell pepper chopped
- 2 jalapeno peppers chopped
- 1 stalk celery chopped
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 6 ounces tomato paste
- 1 cup chicken stock + more as needed
- 2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 3 ounces light cream cheese
- 2 tablespoons light sour cream or crema
- 8-10 ounces prepared pasta noodles
- Sliced lemon and chopped parsley for serving
- Heat a large pan to medium heat and add olive oil.
- Add chicken, onion, peppers and celery. Cook about 7-8 minutes, until the vegetables are softened and the chicken is mostly cooked through.
- Add garlic and stir. Cook about a minute.
- Add tomato paste, stock, Cajun seasoning and a bit of salt and pepper. Stir to incorporate. Reduce heat to low and simmer about 15 minutes.
- Swirl in cream cheese and sour cream. Stir to incorporate.
- Add cooked noodles and stir.
- Serve into bowls and top with lemon and parsley. Enjoy!
NOTE: This recipe was updated on 8/28/20 to include new information, photos and video. It was originally published on 11/7/16.