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I love all of the fresh vegetables in pasta primavera. This version incorporates alfredo sauce and chicken for a chicken alfredo-pasta primavera combo that is as delicious as it is easy to make.
Alert: Valentine’s Day is exactly 1 week from today! If you haven’t already made dinner reservations, you better get on that asap. We sometimes will go out for Valentine’s Day but never on the actual day, maybe the day before or after to avoid the crowds. Instead we like to stay in and cook together. Since Valentine’s Day falls on a weekday, that means finding a meal that is not just fitting for the holiday, but also quick and easy to prepare.
We love pasta in our house, but we have also been trying to incorporate more lean meats and vegetables into our diet. So after I picked up a trusty box of Barilla® Classic Blue Box pasta, I also grabbed all the veggies to make a alfredo primavera. This authentic brand is simple yet wholesome, which helps in my desire to create an easy and delicious “Wonderful Your Way” meal for Valentine’s Day. And the availability of perfectly matched, great tasting sauces makes like even easier. Hello garlic alfredo!
So how easy was this dish to throw together? Well, while the pasta boiled in a pot of water, I sauteed the onion and garlic and briefly cooked all the veggies – just enough to warm them up while still retaining their crunch factor. After removing the veggie mixture from the pan, I then seared some chicken breasts lightly seasoned with salt and pepper. Once the chicken was cooked and placed on serving plates, I added the alfredo sauce to the same pan to warm it up, followed by the pasta, veggies, and fresh basil. Season with salt and pepper and maybe a little bit of the pasta cooking water to reach the preferred sauce consistency and you are done!
Of course don’t forget some freshly grated parmesan cheese on top. Then, after your done savoring your meal with your loved one and cleaning up the minimal dishes (hooray!), you’ll have plenty of time left to cuddle on the couch. As an added bonus, there is plenty leftover to enjoy for lunch the next day and I’m a huge fan of leftovers for lunch. And who is going to complain about another serving of primavera?
I hope you make this for Valentine’s Day dinner or your next date night in, I think you will love it! But if you are looking for more Barilla “Wonderful Your Way” recipe inspiration, click HERE.
Two years ago: DIY No Sew Faux Roman Shade
Three years ago: Valentine’s Day Recipe Roundup
Four years ago: Lip Balms
Five years ago: Whole Wheat Blueberry Cottage Cheese Pancakes
Six years ago: Velveeta Chicken & Veggie Mac
CHICKEN ALFREDO PRIMAVERA PENNE
4 Tbsp olive oil, divided
1/2 onion, fined diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/2 cups bite-sized broccoli florets
1 large carrot, sliced diagonally
1 red bell pepper, sliced into strips
1 zucchini, sliced diagonally
1 medium yellow squash, sliced diagonally
1/2 cup frozen peas
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 (1 lb.) box Barilla® Classic Blue Box Penne
1 (14.5 oz.) jar Barilla® Garlic Alfredo Sauce
5 basil leaves, finely sliced, plus more for garnish
Grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add pasta to boiling water and cook to al dente. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking liquid.
- Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium-high heat, add 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add onion and cook for 1-2 minutes, or until translucent. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds, or until fragrant. Add broccoli, carrot, pepper, squash, zucchini, and peas, stir, and cook for only 1 minute. Transfer to a large bowl.
- In the same skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and cook for 3-4 minutes per side. Remove from pan.
- Add sauce to the skillet to warm. Stir in basil leaves and then add veggies and pasta. If the sauce seems a little thick, add some of the reserved cooking water. Top with more Parmesan, salt, pepper, and basil to taste.
Source: The Spiffy Cookie original
Just want to let you know that I followed your request and made this for Valentine’s day dinner. It was excellent. I did cut the chicken up to mix it in, and at the last minute sent Harry to the grocery store to get a jar of Alfredo sauce. The dish is wonderful. I used about ¼ cup of pasta water to thin the sauce slightly. This recipe is definitely a keeper (It would have been much easier to make if I’d started my pasta water earlier; several lessons learned). Happy Valentines day!!
Awesome, excited to be a part of your Valentine’s Day!
I once had an Italian roommate and after sampling all the different brands that make pasta, sauces and olive oil, this was the only one she would buy again. Their stuff is sooo good ????
Heck yea Italian approved!
Chicken Alfredo is definitely my fav pasta dish and your recipe looks so good. I love that it’s cheesy enough and has a good amount of veggies too. Always like to have a good mix of veggies+meat.
I’m horrible at remembering to make side dishes so I love it when it’s worked into a dish like this!
This is such a classic comfort food that’s perfect for Spring time! Love all the yummy veggies you added!
Though “primavera” means springtime, pasta primavera is delicious year round! The veggies can even be adjusted to what is seasonal and the pasta still tastes great! All of the flavors and colors of the veggies you included, the sauce, and the cheese topping make this a celebration dish!
Totally agree and thanks Wendy!
I’m not doing A THING for v-day (don’t celebrate it ever), BUT I do love me some pasta! I’ll eat that every day! Haha
I don’t typically go out for Valentines day either. I prefer to stay home and cook. I’m a big fan of alfredo sauce with lots of veggies and the freshly grated parmesan used in this just makes it even better.
I hope you try it out!
The garlic alfredo sauce sounds perfect with all of the fresh veggies and chicken! Yum.
I’m swooning over all the veggies you used in this pasta. This is a perfect dish for my family as I know they’ll eat everything in it! Delicious!
Thanks Megan, it’s totally swoon-worthy!
Very colorful and very tasty sounding. Pasta with veggies is such an easy dish to put together and it ends up being special without too much effort. We don’t go out for Valentine’s Day, we much prefer sipping on wine and cooking at home. Your recipe would be perfect enjoyed at home.
Sounds like my kind of night! And yes this recipe would be right up your alley.
Looks fantastic! Such a different recipe than what I normally expect from The Spiffy Cookie. :) I tend to visit your blog for baking ideas. I love the pasta dish – and look at all those vegetables! Yum!
Haha I do about 50% savory so I appreciate you checking me out this time for pasta! THanks for depending on me for my desserts too though ;-).
I guess all are making preparations for valentine’s day. Though it’s not part of our culture, it has surely caught up and I am full of ideas of on what to make. That pasta surely looks inviting.
I hope you try it, regardless of the holiday!
This is definitely an intriguing recipe. I like the idea of having the chicken pre-cut into chunks so it can be mixed into the sauce/veggies/pasta. And I would probably choose to make my own Alfredo sauce. I will be back to cooking on Valentine’s day, so it might be fun to try this. (I don’t think we even celebrate Valentine’s day any more; we did go out one year, to Cattleman’s Steakhouse – the best, most special place around here – and the crowds were huge, but very pleasant. But no desire to try that again!)