This Chicken and Chorizo Pasta is bursting with flavour and so easy to make! It's ready in just 40 minutes making it perfect for a tasty weeknight dinner.
Is there anything more comforting than a good big bowl of pasta? I struggle to find anything else more satisfying than a steaming hot bowl of pasta filled with my favourite things. Whether it's a bowl of red pesto pasta or a baked cheese tortellini, pasta is always a good idea!
I've been making this chicken and chorizo pasta for years now and it'a a firm family favourite. This is one of those meals that you can cook all year round and it always goes down a treat! I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.
⭐️ Why You'll Love This
- That Sauce - this sauce is rich and flavourful with just a hint of smoky spice! The smoked paprika compliments the chorizo and that gives this sauce a lovely smoky flavour. The oil that you get when you cook the chorizo is like liquid gold and gives this sauce a deeper layer of flavour so don't ditch it.
- Quick and Easy - ready in about 40 minutes this dish is perfect for busy weeknights!
- Family-Friendly Recipe - with just a little bit of heat this dish is suitable for the whole family!
📝 Ingredients Needed
- Chicken - you'll need 3 chicken breast fillets for this dish, skinless is best.
- Chorizo - Good quality chorizo is really important for this pasta dish so do try and get the best you can lay your hands on. You can also use the small chorizo sausages for this if you prefer.
- Olives - I use Kalamata olives for this but black olive will work well too.
- Spinach - Fresh baby spinach is best but you can use frozen if that's what you have.
- Pasta - Rigatoni is my pasta of choice for this dish as it is big enough to hold up to the sauce, especially with all that chicken and chorizo! Penne or fusilli works well too.
- Herbs and Spices - you will need dried oregano, smoked paprika, dried red chilli pepper flakes and fresh basil.
- Other Ingredients needed - onion, garlic, canned chopped tomatoes, and parmesan cheese for serving.
🥣 How To Make It
1. Start by cooking the onion for about 5 minutes, then add the garlic, dried oregano smoked paprika and chilli flakes. Cook for a minute or two.
2. Nest add the chicken adn cook until the chicken is cooked through. Add the chorizo and cook until the edges of the chorizo are crispy.
3. Pour in the chopped tomatoes, and add a little water. Add the olives, season then simmer for about 10 minutes
4. Cook the pasta, drain it then add it to the sauce along with some fresh basil then toss everything together. Sprinkle with some finely grated parmesan and serve immediately.
👩🍳 Expert Tips
- Don't overcook the chicken, it just needs about 5 minutes to be cooked through. If overcooked the chicken will be tough and chewy.
- Slice the chicken and chorizo into even slices, this way they will cook at the same time.
- Add some pasta water to the sauce, this will help thin the sauce to the correct consistency and help the sauce cling to the pasta.
- Too much oil? If you find that the chorizo releases too much oil when it's cooking you can remove some of it with a tablespoon. Too much oil will make sure sauce oily.
- Always tip the pasta into the sauce, the drained pasta will still be covered in starch so adding the pasta to the sauce it will help the sauce stick to the pasta.
I like a chunky pasta for this recipe as it can hold up to the sauce. The pasta needs to be strong enough for this sauce especially with all that chicken and chorizo. Rigatoni is my pasta of choice for this dish but penne or fusilli works well too. And if you're feeling all healthy then a good wholewheat pasta will also work well here.
This chicken and chorizo pasta is perfect for making ahead or as part of a meal prep, it keeps well overnight in the fridge and is great for bringing to work as a packed lunch. You can eat it cold or heat it up in the office microwave.
Technically you can freeze this but I think this is best made fresh.
🍽 How To Serve it
Big bowls are a must for this pasta, as is a generous shaving or grating of parmesan cheese. Some freshly cracked black pepper will finish this off. Now, if you are feeling extra hungry or greedy, I recommend adding some good garlic bread or crusty white bread to soak up any leftover sauce. This may have happened in my house on more than one occasion.
📌 Variations and Substitutions
- Make it creamy - add in 100ml or ¼ of a cup of double (heavy) cream to the sauce at the end of cooking for a lovely creamy variation of this dish.
- Add in more veggies - you could easily add more veggies to this if you want, chopped bell peppers, courgettes or mushrooms would also work really well.
- Make it hotter - if you like you pasta dishes with more of a kick then go ahead and use a spicy chorizo. You could also add a pinch more of the red chilli flakes if you can't find spicy chorizo.
🍴More Tasty Pasta Dishes
If you're looking for more quick and tasty pasta dishes then I have you covered! Try my Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta with spinach, packed with flavour, and ready in under 30 minutes. Another quick and easy one is my Lemon Garlic Pasta with Kale, bursting with favour this is one of my favourites! If you have more time then try my Creamy Tuna Pasta Bake or my Vegetarian Lasagne.
Chicken and Chorizo Pasta with Spinach
- 1 ½ tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion (220g) finely chopped
- 2 fat cloves of garlic minced
- ½ tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- A small pinch of dried red chilli pepper flakes optional
- 500 g chicken breast fillet (3 fillets) cut into thin strips
- 150 g chorizo skin removed and thinly sliced
- 1 x 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon tomato puree
- 16 pitted kalamata olives
- 100 g spinach
- 350 g rigatoni pasta
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
- A handful of fresh basil chopped
- Parmesan for serving
- Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan, add the onion and cook over a low to medium heat for about 5 minutes.Add the garlic, oregano, smoked paprika and chilli flakes and cook for a minute.
- Now add the chicken and cook over a medium heat until the chicken is cooked, add the chorizo and cook for another 5 minutes until both the chorizo is slightly crispy.
- Pour in the tinned tomatoes, add a little water to the can, give it a swirl then pour that in too. Add the olives, salt and pepper, reduce the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the packet instructions. Drain when done.
- When the pasta is almost ready, add about 3 tablespoons of the pasta water to the tomato sauce then add the spinach and basil, check the seasoning then add the drained pasta.Gently toss the pasta in the sauce, serve immediately with plenty of grated parmesan and freshly cracked black pepper.
- Nutritional Information - is approximate and is calculated using an online nutrition tool and does include extra cheese.
- Serving Size - The serving sizes are for 6 people however if you are feeding a hungry crowd then you may find this will easily feed 4 very hungry people.
- Olives - If you don't have kalamata olives black olives work well too. And if you are not keen on olives you can leave them out, this dish will still taste great without them.
- Chorizo - Prefer your chorizo on the crispy side? Dry fry your chorizo in a pan until it is crispy then add it with the oil to the sauce when you add the tomatoes.
- Making ahead - You can make the sauce a day ahead of time, leave out the spinach and basil and keep it in the fridge until you are ready to use it. Heat the sauce in a large saucepan and add the spinach and garlic before you add the pasta
- Freezing - You can freeze the sauce, it may separate a bit when defrosting but will come back together when you reheat it. Again leave out the spinach and basil before freezing. This will last for a month in your freezer.