One-Pot Barbecue Chicken Pasta
This One-Pot Barbecue Chicken Pasta is saucy, tangy, smoky comfort food the whole family will love! Not only is this dish super tasty, but it’s lightened up, easy to make and has a generous, satisfying serving size. Plus, there’s bacon in it. What’s not to love? I’ve always loved the flavor combination of barbecue chicken with bacon and cheddar cheese, but making it into a pasta dish takes it to the next level. I saw a few similar versions of this recipe online and couldn’t wait to modify it to lighten it up a bit and make it my way. I absolutely love how it turned out and so did my family. I can’t wait for you to make it too! A (1 ½ cups) serving of this dish is just 442 calories or between 4-10 WW Personal Points, depending on your ZeroPoint foods. To view your WW PersonalPoints for this recipe and track it in the WW app or site, click here.
One-Pot meals are one of my favorite types of recipes. I love the ease and simplicity, and I really love not having to wash a pile of pots and pans. In this One-Pot Barbecue Chicken Pasta, even the pasta cooks right in the sauce using the same pot that cooked the chicken and bacon. Easy-breezy. The entire recipe for this dish made nine cups total, so I divided it up into six servings of 1 ½ cups each. If you decide to divide the servings differently, I figured that information could be helpful! I like to pair this dish with a side salad to add some extra veggies to the meal.
- Barbecue Sauce: I like to use Stubbs Original because it has great flavor and is lower in sugar than a lot of other popular barbecue sauces. Plus, it’s easy to find in store. I definitely recommend that sauce, but if you have a preferred barbecue sauce you can definitely use it in this recipe. If you’re tracking nutrition info or WW points, using a different sauce may affect the values listed below.
- Bacon: Center-cut bacon is my favorite because it’s a leaner cut than regular bacon. If you prefer to use turkey bacon you can substitute that without issue.
- Pasta: I used Barilla Whole Grain Rotini in this dish and it worked out great, but you can substitute another medium-sized pasta shape like penne or medium shells. My husband sometimes isn’t super into wheat pasta, but he didn’t even notice in this dish!
Cutting up the chicken
I often buy a big pack of boneless, skinless chicken breasts at the store and then use kitchen shears to trim them down to make 5-6 oz cutlets to use in recipes. Everything I cut off to make the cutlets gets cut into chunks to either make chicken bites or go in recipes like this One-Pot Barbecue Chicken Pasta! It’s easy to weigh out 1 lb or 1.5 lb of chicken chunks and freeze them for later in a quart size freezer bag. That way, I always have some on hand! Buying the bulk packs of chicken breasts is cost-effective, and cutting them into cutlets and bites ensured I have what I need on hand when I go to make a recipe. I find that kitchen shears make this task go quicker and easier than using a knife, so I highly recommend using shears like these (affiliate link).
More Tasty Lightened-Up One-Pot Meals
Looking for more tasty One-Pot recipes like this One-Pot Barbecue Chicken Pasta? Check out my One-Pot Turkey and Veggie Spaghetti, Chicken Taco Rice Skillet, One-Pot Chicken Florentine Mac and Cheese, Maple Dijon Chicken and Squash Skillet, One-Pot Cajun Chicken and Sausage Pasta, One-Pot Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese, Turkey Sloppy Joe Pasta, One-Pot Spicy Dirty Rice with Chicken and Sausage, Chicken Pot Pasta, Lemon Chicken Orzo, Beefy American Goulash, Rustic Sausage and Potato Skillet, and so many more in the One-Pot Meals category of my recipe index!
One-Pot Barbecue Chicken Pasta
- 3 slices center cut bacon, chopped
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- 1 ½ lbs uncooked boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into small bite-size chunks
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 ½ cups low sodium chicken broth
- ½ cup skim milk
- 14.5 oz can petite diced tomatoes
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 12 oz uncooked whole wheat pasta, I used Barilla whole grain rotini
- 5 tablespoons barbecue sauce, (I use Stubbs original)
- 4 oz 50% reduced fat sharp cheddar, shredded (I use Cabot)
- Place the chopped bacon into a 5 QT Dutch oven or a large pot and bring over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon pieces to a stack of paper towels to drain. Discard the bacon grease and wipe out the bottom of the pot.
- In a small dish, stir together the salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika. Sprinkle this seasoning mix over the chicken chunks and stir to evenly coat the chicken with the spices.
- Drizzle the olive oil into the pot and bring to med-high heat. Add the chicken pieces and cook, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through and a bit browned. Remove the chicken to a side dish and cover with aluminum foil until needed.
- Reduce the heat to medium and add the onions to the pot. Cook for 3-4 minutes until the onions are softened and then add the minced garlic. Stir and cook for another 30-60 seconds until fragrant.
- Add the broth, milk, diced tomatoes, and crushed red pepper flakes and pasta. Increase the heat and stir to release any brown bits from the bottom of the pot. Bring the mixture to a boil and then cover the pot and reduce the heat to med-low. Simmer covered, uncovering to stir occasionally, for 12-14 minutes until the pasta is cooked through.
- Uncover the pot and stir in the cooked chicken pieces, barbecue sauce, shredded cheddar cheese, and bacon pieces. Continue to heat on low for another 1-2 minutes until the cheese is melted into the sauce and the entire dish is heated through.
442 calories, 49 g carbs, 7 g sugars, 10 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 42 g protein, 8 g fiber, 661 mg sodium (from myfitnesspal.com) Weight Watchers Points Plus:
11 per (1 ½ cup) serving (PP calculated using a Weight Watchers PointsPlus calculator and the nutrition info below) Adapted from Damn Delicious, The Country Cook, and The Recipe Rebel