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Chicken Penna Pasta with Asparagus and Peppers in a skillet with fresh basil and feta cheese on top ready to be served.

Chicken Penne with Asparagus and Peppers

This 30-minute Chicken Penne Pasta (with asparagus and peppers) is a simple, super healthy, and incredibly delicious pasta dinner that stretches a long way. 

Yield: 6 servings 1x
Prep: 18 minutesCook: 12 minutesTotal: 30 minutes


  • 12 ounces whole wheat penne pasta* (or gluten-free chickpea penne pasta)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 1/4 pounds chicken breasts, diced
  • 1 pound asparagus, trimmed and chopped (sub: green beans)
  • 1 onion, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced (or 1 teaspoon pre-minced garlic)
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (sub: fresh lemon juice)
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley (sub: fresh basil)
  • 2 ounces (about 1/2 cup) crumbled feta cheese (sub: grated Parmesan cheese or crumbled goat cheese)

*Note that this is a NOT a full pound of pasta. It’s 3/4th of a 16 ounce box.

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  1. Cook Pasta: Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt it with a palmful of salt. Cook pasta according to package directions. IMPORTANT: Reserve 1 cup of pasta water before draining. Drain the pasta and return to the pot. 
  2. Sauté Chicken: Heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat until it’s shimmery. Add chicken and season with salt and pepper on all sides. Sauté until there’s no more pink, about 3-4 minutes. Remove to a plate and set aside.
  3. Sauté Veggies: Add another tablespoon oil and the asparagus, onions, and peppers. Season with the Italian season and lightly with salt and pepper. Sauté until crisp-tender, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and sauté another 1 minute.
  4. Combine Everything: Add the hot pasta, chicken, 1/4 cup pasta water, vinegar, 4 tablespoons olive oil, parsley, and feta. Stir to combine. Taste and season with more salt and pepper, as needed. Add a little more pasta water, if it’s too dry.


  • Chop all the veggies into bite-sized pieces, so they all cook evenly and fit on a fork.
  • If you forget to reserve the pasta water, use chicken or veggie broth instead.
  • This is a pretty forgiving recipe, so feel free to swap out your protein (shrimp would be yummy!) and veggies (i.e. zucchini, squash, Swiss chard, spinach).
  • Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 4-5 days. Warm in the microwave and add a bit of chicken broth, if it’s too dry.
  • Where We Get Our Chicken: We get our meat from ButcherBox. The chicken is organic and curated from small, trusted farms. We highly recommend this service to source healthy meat–like uncured bacon, wild salmon, and grass-fed beef–and have used it for years ourselves. Read my honest review.

© Author: Rachel Tiemeyer
Cuisine: Italian Method: Stovetop