This BBQ Chicken Pasta is easy to make and uses simple ingredients. It’s saucy, cheesy, quick and absolutely bursting with flavour!
The Perfect Chicken!
Behind every great chicken pasta is perfectly seasoned, soft and juicy chicken. It’s one of the main ingredients here, so we need to get the most out of our chicken.
It’s important to season the chicken well to not only to let the chicken shine, but also inject flavour into the sauce itself. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Smoked Paprika
- Garlic Powder
- Cayenne Pepper
- Salt & Black Pepper
Here you’ll want to butterfly the chicken breasts right through to make 4 even sized thinner breasts. This will help them cook quickly and more evenly. It will also increase the ratio of seasoning to chicken.
Once you’ve sliced the chicken, coated it in seasoning and a drizzle of oil, you just need to fry over medium-high heat until it begins to char and is just about cooked through. From there, allow it to rest (important to retain juices) then slice into thin strips.
Making BBQ Chicken Pasta
Once you’ve got your chicken it’s a breeze from there. I recommend leaving the char/flavour from the chicken in the pan and starting from there.
I highly recommend adding bacon to this pasta, not only for it’s crispy texture, but also to inject a gorgeous smoky flavour (which goes perfectly with BBQ sauce and chicken!)
Surprisingly (or maybe unsurprisingly) the bulk of the sauce isn’t actually BBQ sauce. I use around 1/2cup, alongside chicken stock and chopped tomatoes. I find too much more overpowers the pasta and turns it too sweet/BBQ saucy. In all cases make sure you use a good quality BBQ sauce!
How to make BBQ Chicken Pasta (quick summary)
- Fry bacon.
- Add red pepper and red onion.
- Fry until charred/soft.
- Add chicken stock, chopped tomatoes and BBQ sauce.
- Add cooked pasta with a splash of pasta water.
- Stir in chicken and cheddar.
BBQ Chicken Pasta FAQ
Can I use cooked/rotisserie chicken?
Sure! About 2 cups of diced/shredded chicken should suffice. I still recommend coating in the seasoning for extra flavour.
Can I reheat this pasta?
Yup! Tightly cover in the fridge then reheat on the stove, using leftover pasta water, chicken stock or just water to thin out as needed. Make sure chicken is piping hot.
What to serve with BBQ chicken pasta?
If you like the sound of this pasta then definitely have a ganders at my similar recipes!
Recipes using BBQ Sauce
Chicken Pasta Recipes
- Spicy Chicken Pasta
- Chicken and Mushroom Pasta
- Chicken and Chorizo Pasta
- Cajun Chicken Pasta
- Chicken Avocado Pasta
Alrighty, let’s tuck into the full BBQ chicken pasta recipe shall we?!
How to make BBQ Chicken Pasta (Full Recipe & Video)
BBQ Chicken Pasta
- Large Deep Skillet
- Large Pot & Colander
- Wooden Spoon
- Cheese Grater
- Sharp Knife & Chopping Board
- Jug (for stock)
Ingredients (check list):
- 2 Chicken Breasts, bring close to room temp (approx 7oz/200g per breast)
- 1 tsp Smoked Paprika
- 1/2 tsp each: Garlic Powder, Salt
- 1/4 tsp each: Black Pepper, Cayenne Pepper (or to spice preference)
- Olive Oil, as needed
- 10.5oz / 300g Penne Pasta, or other short cut pasta
- 3.5oz / 100g Bacon, diced
- 1 cup / 100g Cheddar, grated
- 1x 14oz / 400g can of Chopped Tomatoes
- 1/2 cup / 125ml Chicken Stock
- 1/2 cup / 125ml BBQ Sauce
- 1 medium Red Onion, finely diced
- 1 small Red Pepper, finely diced
- Salt & Black Pepper, to taste
- Butterfly your chicken breasts right through to create 4 thinner, equal sized breasts. Coat in 1 tsp smoked paprika, 1/2 tsp garlic powder & salt, 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper and black pepper and a drizzle of olive oil.
- Fry over medium/high heat for a few mins each side until starting to char and just cooked through the centre. Remove from pan and allow to rest. Just before needed, slice your chicken into thin strips, ensuring you cut at a slight angle and against the natural grain of the chicken.
- Meanwhile, fry 3.5oz/100g bacon over medium heat in the leftover oil from the chicken (add more if needed) until it starts to brown. Add 1 finely diced medium onion and 1 finely diced small red pepper and continue frying until the bacon is crisp and the veg is soft and starting to char.
- Pour in 1/2cup/125ml chicken stock, 1 can of chopped tomatoes and 1/2cup/125ml BBQ Sauce. Stir until fully blended then allow to simmer on low for 10-15mins, or until the tomatoes start to soften/burst and the sauce begins to thicken.
- Meanwhile, add 300g/10.5oz pasta to salted boiling water and cook until al dente. Just before draining, retain a cup of starchy pasta water.
- Combine pasta with sauce and pour in 1/4cup/60ml of your starchy pasta water. Once combined, stir through your chicken strips and 1cup/100g cheddar until the cheese melts and goes gooey. Thin out with a dash more starchy pasta water if needed. Season to taste.
- Serve hot and enjoy!
Quick 1 min demo!
Your Private Notes:
If you loved this BBQ Chicken Pasta Recipe then be sure to pin it for later! Already made them or got a question? Give me a shout in the comments below and pick up your free ecookbook along the way!