In a large pot, bring water to a boil and season it generously with salt. Add the penne or pasta of your choice and cook it according to the package instructions until it’s al dente, which should take about 8-10 minutes.
Reserve about 1/2 cup of pasta water before draining to use later if necessary. Drain the cooked pasta in a colander and set it aside.
Cook boneless, skinless chicken breasts in a skillet over medium-high heat with a drizzle of olive oil. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, cooking each side for 6-8 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165°F (74°C).
Once cooked, let the chicken rest for a few minutes before shredding or chopping it into bite-sized pieces.
In the same skillet used for the chicken, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Sauté the diced onions until they become translucent and slightly caramelized, about 2-3 minutes.
Add the minced garlic and diced bell peppers, cooking for an additional 2-3 minutes until they become tender.
Pour the cup of BBQ sauce into the skillet with the sautéed veggies. Stir well to combine, ensuring the sauce coats the veggies evenly. Let the mixture simmer for 1-2 minutes to blend the flavors.
Add the cooked pasta and the shredded or chopped chicken to the skillet with the BBQ sauce and veggies. Gently toss everything together, ensuring the pasta and chicken are fully coated with the sauce.
Gently stir in the halved cherry tomatoes, allowing them to mingle with the pasta and sauce. Season the dish with salt and pepper to taste, adjusting the seasoning as needed.
Transfer the BBQ Chicken Pasta to individual serving plates or present it in a large serving dish. For a delightful finishing flourish, top each portion with a generous sprinkle of grated cheese, such as cheddar, mozzarella, or any cheese of your preference.
Your BBQ Chicken Pasta in HOC sauce is set!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can I use any type of pasta for BBQ Chicken Pasta?
Absolutely! You can use any pasta of your choice, such as penne, fusilli, or spaghetti, depending on your preference.
Can I use leftover cooked chicken for this recipe?
Yes, using leftover cooked chicken is a great time-saving option. Simply shred or chop it and add it to the pasta.
Can I make this dish vegetarian or vegan?
Yes, you can use plant-based chicken substitutes and vegan BBQ sauce to make a delicious vegetarian or vegan version.
Can I use a different type of meat instead of chicken?
Yes, you can substitute chicken with cooked shrimp, pulled pork, or even ground beef for different flavor variations.
Can I make this dish gluten-free?
Yes, simply use gluten-free pasta and ensure that the BBQ sauce and other ingredients are gluten-free.
How long does it take to make BBQ Chicken Pasta?
With pre-cooked chicken and store-bought BBQ sauce, you can have this dish ready in about 20-25 minutes.