Makeover Cajun Chicken Pasta Recipe
Makeover Cajun Chicken Pasta Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Makeover Cajun Chicken Pasta Recipe

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This slimmed-down dish has less sodium, calories and saturated fat than the original, but all the same rich creamy flavor! Heather Privratsky - Greenfield, WI
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Cook: 20 min.
MAKES:6 servings
Healthy Test Kitchen Approved
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Cook: 20 min.
MAKES: 6 servings


  • 6 boneless skinless chicken breast halves (4 ounces each)
  • 2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning, divided
  • 2-1/4 cups uncooked penne pasta
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes, drained
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1-1/2 cups half-and-half cream

Nutritional Facts

1 chicken breast half with 1 cup pasta equals 421 calories, 12 g fat (5 g saturated fat), 93 mg cholesterol, 803 mg sodium, 45 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 33 g protein.


  1. Rub chicken with 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning. Moisten a paper towel with cooking oil; using long-handled tongs, lightly coat the grill rack. Grill chicken, covered, over medium heat or broil 4 in. from the heat for 4-7 minutes on each side or until a thermometer reads 170°; keep warm.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, cook pasta according to package directions. In a Dutch oven coated with cooking spray, saute onion in oil until crisp-tender. Add garlic and remaining Cajun seasoning; cook 1 minute longer. Stir in tomatoes and pepper.
  3. Drain pasta; add to the onion mixture. Stir in cream; heat through (do not boil). Serve chicken with pasta. Yield: 6 servings.
Originally published as Makeover Cajun Chicken Pasta in Healthy Cooking June/July 2009, p25

Full-Bodied White Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a full-bodied white wine such as Chardonnay or Viognier.

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Reviewed Jun. 12, 2010

"My husband is hard to cook for at times. This was a great winner with him. He ask me to invite some friends of ours for dinner real soon, and we must have the Cajun Chicken Pasta . Thank you so much for another fantastic recipe that taste so good."

Reviewed Jun. 12, 2010

"was good but I cut up the cooked chicken into chunks and added it to the pasta and used the curly pasta instead of the penne. It was great hot or cold."

Reviewed Jun. 12, 2010

"Makeover cajun chicken pasta is a simple, easy dish to make and tastes absolutely delicious. It's a keeper and going in my recipe box, as my family simply loves it."

Reviewed May. 27, 2010

"We make this recipe quite a bit and it has become one of my husband's go to recipes when I am at work and he needs something to feed the kids that he knows they like. One change we made though was to do a whole box of pasta; otherwise there is way too much sauce and it ends up being soupy.

Also, I agree about there being big differences in Cajun seasoning and you have to be careful not to overdo it. Try 1T at first and then add to see if you can stand more. Great standby recipe though."

Reviewed Jan. 2, 2010

"My family thought this was OK. We used the Emeril Essence for the rub which seemed to work well. It was not too spicy or overpowering. I followed the recipe exactly. This is not a five star recipe, but for a weeknight dinner it was quick and tasty enough. My picky 7 year old ate it!"

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