This Creamy Chicken Meatball Pasta takes simple homemade chicken meatballs turned into a one pot meal! This comfort food dinner recipe is ready in 30 minutes!
Chicken Meatball Pasta:
This simple one pot meal turns easy chicken meatball pasta into a dish that will ignite your taste buds and please the entire family. Pasta makes its way to our dinner table at least once a week. Pasta itself is quick, easy and simple to make - not to mention cheap and filling. Some of our family favorites are a one pot Asian Ground Chicken Noodles and this tasty Cajun Shrimp Pasta. This Cajun Chicken Meatball Pasta is a bit of a morph between the two - the ease of a one pot pasta dinner with the delicious cajun spice.
This meatball pasta starts with homemade chicken meatballs. I form mini meatballs as I love to have a bit of meatball and pasta in every bite - plus they cook quicker and are less likely to be over-cooked. If you’re serving meatball pasta to kids, I think mini meatballs are the way to go as they’re just the perfect size. My favorite part of this Cajun Chicken Meatball Pasta is that there’s no need to cook the pasta separately - you prepare it in the chicken broth as part of the recipe. This not only infuses the pasta with flavor but provides a flavor base for the entire dish!
Recipe Tips and Notes:
- When mixing the chicken meatballs, you have a bit of an option on how spicy you want to make them. If you’re a fan of spice, add in cayenne pepper. I recommend 1 teaspoon. However, if you’re not a fan of spice or will be serving to little ones, you can omit the pepper completely and still retain the flavor of the dish with the cajun seasoning.
- For tender meatballs, be sure to combine all of the ingredients well but avoid over-mixing.
- Some cajun seasonings can be spicy, so choose one based on your preferences. I happen to love the Slap Ya Mama or Tony Chachere brand, and both are super easy to find in the spice aisle!
- You can use pork, beef or turkey meatballs as well but I think chicken suits the recipe best.
- I like to serve this one pot cajun pasta with sliced sourdough bread. I also find that it pairs nicely with a bright, green side salad or Roasted Green Beans to get a nice side of veggies in too!
Creamy Chicken Meatball Pasta
- 16 Ounces Ground Chicken
- 1 ½ Cups Panko Breadcrumbs
- 1 Large Egg
- 2 ½ teaspoons Cajun seasoning
- 1 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper OPTIONAL or to taste
- 3 tablespoons Minced Garlic
- ½ teaspoon Black Pepper
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 8 Ounces Penne pasta
- 1 Cup Heavy Cream
- 1 Cup Pepper Jack Cheese freshly shredded
- 3 Tablespoons Butter
- ½ Cup Parmesan Cheese freshly grated
- 3 Cups Chicken Broth
- In a large bowl, mix the ground chicken, breadcrumbs, egg, 1 teaspoon of the Cajun seasoning, ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper if using, 1 tablespoon of finely minced garlic, black pepper and salt together until combined.
- Form the meat mixture into mini meatballs and set aside on a plate.
- Heat a large skillet or soup pot over medium heat and add olive oil.
- Cook half of the meatballs, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Remove them from the pan and cook the remaining meatballs. Remove them as well and set aside.
- Add the butter to the pan and cook the remaining garlic for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add the pasta and simmer for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally until pasta is cooked through.
- Once cooked, turn the heat down to low and pour in the heavy cream, the remaining cayenne pepper powder, remaining Cajun seasoning, pepper-jack cheese and parmesan cheese and stir to combine.
- Then add the cooked meatballs and stir gently until the meatballs are coated in sauce and cheese.
- Serve immediately. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Aimee O. says
Absolutely delicious! I prepped the meatballs early in the afternoon and kept them in the fridge until i was ready to throw dinner together. Served it with a simple side salad and garlic bread. This dish will definitely be in our meal rotation.
Is there a recipe for just the pasta itself without the meatballs?
Yes, you can just make it as directed and skip the meatballs
THANK YOU, NICHOLE! I made this for dinner tonight. DELICIOUS! I used frozen meatballs from Costco, it didn't matter, it came out perfectly delectable!
marquis williams says
This pasa dish is excellent. At first I thought that my mom and I would not like it at all. But we tried it and we was very surprised.
It was tasty and very flavorful. I will definitely made this dish again. Two thumbs up.
This is a great recipe. I prepped everything while the kids were napping so it was simple to throw it all together come dinner time. Made some garlic bread and steamed broccoli to go with it. My husband, 2 toddlers, and grandparents loved it. Will definitely be making this again!
Kelly Cox says
I made this a couple of weeks ago - Sooooo good. I'm making again this Saturday for guests. Thank you for the recipe! I might try adding shrimp some time too
So do I drain the 3 cups of broth after penne is cooked and before cream is added?
Hi! No, the broth cooks down with the pasta. 🙂
No. Keep it in and add the cream into it
Lola Osinkolu | Chef Lola's Kitchen says
Pasta is a must on our table every week as well! Surely saving this!
SAMANTHA BROADDUS says
How much olive oil do I use to cook the meatballs in?
2 Tablespoons 🙂