Creamy Chicken Pasta In White Sauce With Garlic & Sun Dried Tomatoes

Shhhhhhh … Don’t tell anyone how easy it is to make this crowd-pleasing, almost-gourmet Creamy Chicken Pasta In White Sauce With Garlic & Sun Dried Tomatoes. Minimal prep is needed to create this restaurant-quality dinner. Basic ingredients do the heavy-lifting to create amazing flavors and textures your family will love.

Creamy Chicken Pasta In White Sauce by CampingForFoodies features a blue camping plate filled with a serving of pasta in garlic sauce with sliced chicken, sun-dried tomatoes and sliced mushrooms. Bright green ribbons of fresh basil and shredded parmesan cheese have been sprinkled over the dish.

Why I Love This

This Italian pasta dish is one of my favorite camping dinner recipes because it uses a combination of basic ingredients to develop the most amazing silky-smooth, richly-creamy decadent sauce. You get wonderful layers of flavor from a variety of simple ingredients that make this recipe really stand out.

One of the most important things to do when making almost-gourmet camping meals is to do all of the prep work before you start cooking. For this recipe you’ll only need to chop some garlic and sun dried tomatoes to make the sauce.

No need to cook the chicken because I’m using pre-cooked, pre-sliced grilled chicken breast meat. You’ll be using one pot to boil the pasta and another pan for cooking the sauce. The great thing here is that you can use a propane camp stove, RV stovetop or campfire.


Key Ingredients & Substitutions

Ingredients for Creamy Chicken Pasta In White Sauce With Garlic and Sun Dried Tomatoes by CampingForFoodies features a brown picnic table filled with containers of ingredients including bowtie pasta, sun dried tomatoes, chopped garlic, sliced cooked chicken, salt, black pepper, shredded parmesan cheese, ribbons of green basil, chicken broth, heavy cream, butter and sliced mushrooms.

You don’t have a long list because we’re using basic ingredients that have a ton of flavor. The key ingredients include:

  • Heavy cream
  • Sun dried tomatoes
  • Garlic

Heavy cream: There is no substitute for heavy cream in this recipe. The high fat content is what gives the sauce the creamy texture that clings to the pasta. You can find it in any grocery store. It may be called “heavy cream” or “heavy whipping cream”, they are the same thing. On the other hand, “whipping cream” is not the same thing. Whipping cream has a lower fat content, you may also see it called “light whipping cream”, the name reflects the reduced fat in the product.

Sun dried tomatoes: There is an enormous amount of flavor that comes from sundried tomatoes packed in oil. They have a mild sweetness that is essential in this sauce. Give them a rough chop for a comfortable-sized bite. You can substitute dehydrated sun dried tomatoes. The proper method to rehydrate them is to microwave them in liquid for about 2 minutes, then drain them and toss in a little olive before using in the recipe.

Garlic: The overpowering flavor of raw garlic is transformed into a delicately mild taste. The earthiness and subtle sweetness comes out in the sautéing process. You can use already-minced garlic in a jar here. The ratio is 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic for every clove of fresh garlic.


Key Equipment

  • Saucepan or skillet
  • Large pot
  • Strainer

Saucepan or skillet: This is the vessel needed for cooking the sauce. You can use cast iron over a campfire or non-stick on a stove.

Large pot: This pot needs to be large enough to boil the pasta. Then, you’ll use it to toss the pasta and sauce together. I serve directly out of this pot.

Strainer: Many of my pasta recipes don’t require you to boil pasta then strain it, this one is an exception. You can’t cook the pasta directly in the sauce here because it’s a cream-based sauce.


How To Make

Learn how to make this Creamy Chicken Pasta and watch my VIDEO to see the cooking process in action.

Preparation

Prepare your ingredients, cooking equipment and fuel. Plan enough fuel for 30 minutes of cooking time for two pots.

Cooking Instructions

Step 1. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat.

Step 2. Sauté the garlic and sundried tomatoes in the pan with the butter.

Add sun dried tomatoes and garlic by CampingForFoodies features a saucepan set on a propane camp stove. A wooden spoon is being used to stir the sun-dried tomatoes and garlic.
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Add the mushrooms, let the mixture cook until tender.

Add mushrooms by CampingForFoodies features a carton of fresh sliced mushrooms being dumped into a saucepan. A wooden spoon is set inside the pot resting on the side.

Step 3. Add the chicken broth, turn up the heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Then, reduce the heat and allow the base of the sauce to simmer about 10 minutes.

Add chicken broth by CampingForFoodies features a measuring cup filled with golden chicken both being poured into a saucepan that contains sautéed mushrooms, garlic and sundried tomatoes. A wooden spoon is in the pot resting against the side.

Step 4. Add heavy cream, stir and let the mixture continue to simmer and thicken slightly.

Add heavy cream by CampingForFoodies features a measuring cup pouring heavy cream into a saucepan filled with the base of the mushroom sauce. A wooden spoon is set in the pot and resting on the side.

Step 5. Add sliced grilled chicken and stir to combine.

Add cooked chicken by CampingForFoodies features cooked sliced chicken being slid into a saucepan of creamy white sauce. A wooden spoon is being used to scrape the meat from a gray cutting mat.

Step 6. Cook the pasta in a separate pot while the sauce is simmering.

Cook pasta in boiling water by CampingForFoodies features bowtie pasta being poured into a blue camping pot with boiling water.

Step 7. Drain the pasta and return it to the pot.

Return drained pasta back to the pot by CampingForFoodies features a black colander filled with cooked bowtie pasta that is being poured into a blue camping pot which is set on a propane camp stove burner.

Step 8. Add the sauce to the pasta and toss. Serve family-style. Garnish with basil or parsley and parmesan cheese, if desired.

Combine pasta and sauce by CampingForFoodies features a sauce pan filled with sliced chicken and mushrooms in a white cream sauce, a wooden spoon is being used to transfer the food into a pot of cooked bowtie pasta.

Expert Tip

Heavy cream is a critical component in this recipe. It is made from milk fat that collects on top of non-homogenized fresh milk.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the regulating authority in the U.S., has set guidelines for what constitutes “heavy cream” and what doesn’t. Legally, heavy cream must contain 36% – 40% fat (the rest of the liquid can be milk).

Normal consumers can usually only find 36% fat heavy cream in a grocery store. You typically don’t find 40% fat heavy cream unless you go to a restaurant supplier.


Camp Cooking Tip

The next time you are grilling chicken, make a few extra pieces. Let them cool, then place them in a labeled food storage bag in the freezer. You can defrost them to make a quick dinner at the campsite. These are great for pasta recipes, burritos and salads.


Pairings

Because this dish is a little indulgent with the heavy cream, I like to serve it with a crisp side salad and a light dressing. It’s also good with my Homemade Caesar’s Salad Dressing. A nice crunchy bread or garlic bread is also a nice side option. It’s perfect for mopping up extra sauce!


FAQs

Is heavy whipping cream the same as whipping cream?

No. Heavy whipping cream (also known as heavy cream) must contain at least 36% milk fat. Whipping cream (also known as light whipping cream) must contain between 30–36% milk fat.

What type of pasta works best with cream sauce?

Flat, long noodles and pasta with pockets are best with heavy cream sauces. Those shapes endure the heaviness of meat and cream sauces. Don’t use delicate strands of long, thin noodles unless you are serving a light sauce.

How do I know when the pasta is cooked perfectly?

Cook pasta according to the directions on the package, but begin testing a few minutes prior to the recommended time. Take out one noodle, let it cool a bit and take a bite. The pasta is done when it is tender but not mushy. It should have a slightly firm texture that is often called “toothsome” or “al dente”.


Leftovers

  • Let leftovers cool, then store in an airtight container in a cooler or refrigerator. Reheat in a covered pan over low heat with a little liquid, like chicken broth or water, until heated through.
  • I don’t recommend freezing cream-based sauces because they tend to separate and become grainy during the thawing and reheating process.

Servings

This recipe serves 6. If you are cooking for two or for a huge crowd, this meal (as well as most camping pasta recipes) are great because they are easy to scale. By that I mean, increasing or decreasing the number of portions is a cinch and the flavor never suffers! You can adjust the number of servings in my recipe card.


Similar Pasta Recipes

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Watch How To Make It

Recipe

Creamy Chicken Pasta In White Sauce by CampingForFoodies features a blue camping plate filled with a serving of pasta in garlic sauce with sliced chicken, sun-dried tomatoes and sliced mushrooms. Bright green ribbons of fresh basil and shredded parmesan cheese have been sprinkled over the dish.

Creamy Chicken Pasta In White Sauce With Garlic & Sun Dried Tomatoes

Camping For Foodies Dinner Camping Recipes: This creamy white sauce uses garlic, sun dried tomatoes and heavy cream to envelop the pasta in a silky texture with a decadent flavor.
4.73 from 11 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dinner Camping Recipes
Cuisine: Italian
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 6 Servings
Calories: 287kcal
Author: Kim Hanna

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 cloves garlic finely minced
  • 1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes packed in oil roughly chopped
  • 1 (4 oz) package fresh mushrooms sliced
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 grilled boneless skinless chicken breasts thinly sliced (see Note 1)
  • 1 (12 oz) package dried bowtie pasta
  • Water for boiling pasta
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Optional Toppings

  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh parmesan cheese grated

Instructions

  • In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt butter.
  • Stir in garlic, sundried tomatoes and mushrooms and sauté until tender.
  • Now add chicken broth, increase to high heat, cover and bring to boil. Then, reduce heat and let simmer uncovered about 10 minutes.
  • Add heavy cream to pan with sauce and simmer till slightly thickened.
  • Add sliced grilled chicken to pan with sauce and simmer till chicken is heated through.

Cook The Pasta While The Sauce Is Simmering

  • While the sauce is simmering, cook the pasta in a separate pot according to package directions. Al dente, firm is recommended.

Combine The Pasta With The Sauce

  • When pasta is cooked to your desired firmness, drain it and return it to the pot.
  • Pour the sauce over the pasta, toss together and serve family-style. If desired, top with basil, parsley, parmesan cheese and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Notes

NOTE 1: Have grilled chicken breasts in your home freezer and you can quickly defrost them for speedy meals like pastas, wraps, salads etc.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 287kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 102mg | Sodium: 291mg | Potassium: 354mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 952IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 95mg | Iron: 1mg

What do you think?

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