Today I’m sharing an easy go-to 30 minute pasta dinner recipe in this post sponsored by Mezzetta. Their delicious sauces really make the dish! All opinions are my own.
Do you ever get to 5pm and realize you haven’t figured out what to make for dinner? The kids are complaining and you’re starting to get hangry. It’s at this point that I usually open the freezer and see what we have on hand or try and convince Ben to go get takeout.
One of my goals for this new year/phase of life is to build a list of go-to recipes that I can make without a lot of forethought or a lot of stress, so by the time we sit down to dinner, we’re ready to enjoy our time together.
New recipes on week nights are hard for me because my kids don’t give me a ton of breathing room around 5pm. You know when you’re trying to measure things out for a new recipe and a toddler needs your attention? Did I already add that teaspoon of paprika? Was it half a tablespoon or half a teaspoon of salt? One second, Lincoln, the stove is burning. You get the picture.
So when I’m working on these go-to recipes, I’m trying to find something that is quick, simple, delicious, and brings us together. Like when you’re out to eat with family and have a really yummy meal and you all just linger around the table talking. That is what I want in our kitchen.
My criteria for a good weeknight dinner:
- Takes under half an hour to prepare
- I don’t have to look at a recipe while making it
- Everyone in the family will eat part of it (we set this bar low)
- It tastes delicious
This meal currently is a 3 out of 4 only because I don’t have the chicken marinade memorized (but it’s hard to mess up, promise). You probably almost always have everything on hand for this recipe (frozen chicken, pasta, sauce, seasonings) and if your kids are like mine, they’re always up for pasta.
The punch of flavor from the Mezzetta sauces is what takes the whole recipe up a notch. We tried this recipe with the Mezzetta’s “Regional Recipe” line and have been SO impressed with the flavors. They’re interesting, bold, and inspired by Jeff Mezzetta’s travels. So far my favorites are the Italian Plum Tomato, a simple and fresh tomato sauce that goes really well with the burrata and balsamic chicken, and the Caramelized Onion & Butter where they have swapped olive oil for butter to make an extra creamy + velvety sauce (this one is my favorite canned sauce to date).
You can work this recipe into your regular rotation more often by switching up the pasta sauce for a new flavor, too. Next on my list to try is the Truffle, Porcini & Cream. How decadent does that sound?
A few others from Mezzetta’s Regional line worth trying:
- Truffle, Porcini & Cream
- Whole Garlic & Sweet Basil
- Caramelized Onion & Butter (personal favorite)
- Parmigiano Reggiano
- Italian Plum Tomato
- Calabrian Chili
30 Minute Chicken Pasta Dinner Recipe
What You Need for the chicken marinade:
- 3 cloves Garlic, minced (or 3 tbsp of minced garlic from the jar)
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- ½ teaspoon rosemary
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
- 4 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar
What else you’ll need:
- 1-½ pound Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts (4)
- 1 can Mezzetta pasta sauce (for this recipe I like either the Italian Plum Tomato or the Carmelized Onion and Butter)
- 1 box of fettecini (or pasta of your choice)
- 4 slices burrata cheese, optional
- Parmesan, for garnish
What you’ll do:
- Place chicken in shallow bowl or dish and add ingredients for marinade. Coat completely and let sit for 15-30 minutes.
- Boil water for pasta and cook according to directions on package.
- Grill chicken or cook on stove top in pan with 1 tbsp olive oil 3-4 minutes each side (confirm it’s cooked through).
- Heat Mezzetta pasta sauce on stove top.
- Serve pasta topped with sauce, grilled chicken, and cheese. Garnish with additional parmesan and fresh basil if desired.
This recipe doesn’t have a ton of vegetables and when we make this for dinner I like to roast a bag of broccoli florets to go with it. If I don’t have that on hand I might just chop up cucumbers and bell peppers as a cold side. You could also serve with salad or roast zucchini and squash to add into the sauce.
What would you use these sauces for? Which one do you want to try first?