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Skillet Chicken and Noodles

Cheese — the king of comfort foods — complements chicken and noodles in this hearty, crowd-pleasing meal.

January 15, 2018

Cheese (the king of comfort foods) turns this chicken and noodle combo into a cozy dinner the whole family will love. Don’t have an ovenproof skillet? Make it in a 9 x 13-inch pan. Easy and delicious!

Serves four to six people.


  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
  • one 12-ounce package cut pasta, such as penne or fusilli
  • 1 yellow onion, peeled and diced
  • 4 large cloves garlic, grated or minced
  • 2/3 cup sherry or white wine, or chicken broth
  • 8 ounces baby spinach (about 5 handfuls)
  • 1 lemon, juiced and zested
  • 8 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Shredded Parmesan cheese for garnish (optional)
  • 1 cup toasted slivered almonds
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Heat a 12-inch cast iron or heavy oven-proof skillet to medium-high. Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta.

Start the skillet by adding about 2 tablespoons olive oil and adding chicken pieces to the hot pan. Generously season with salt and pepper, and let sit for 1 minute to brown. Cook about 4 more minutes, stirring occasionally, until chicken has lost most of its pink color. Add onions and cook for about 2 minutes, until they start to become translucent. Reduce heat to medium and add garlic. Stir in, cooking for 1 additional minute, until garlic is fragrant. Add wine or broth, and stir and scoop up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.

Generously salt the pasta water and add pasta, cooking to al dente according to package directions. If it finishes before the skillet is ready, drain and toss with a drizzle of olive oil, and set aside.
When the pasta has just a few minutes left to cook, add spinach to the skillet and stir in. The leaves will quickly wilt, but cover if desired to speed up the process. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice and zest.

Add drained pasta to the skillet and add the mozzarella and most of the grated Parmesan, leaving about 2 tablespoons. Stir to combine. Sprinkle remaining Parmesan over the top of the pan, cover skillet loosely with foil and place in the center of the hot oven. Bake for 20 minutes, then remove foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes. The cheese should be bubbly on the edges.

Serve, topped with shredded Parmesan and toasted almonds.

Cook’s note: Make this dish in a 9 x 13-inch baking dish after it has been buttered or sprayed. Baking time should be the same. Toast almonds in a dry skillet over medium heat, stirring until they become fragrant and start to turn golden brown. Spice up the dish by adding 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper as the chicken cooks. If you want to stretch the dish by adding more pasta or veggies, make it in the baking pan.