This site contains affiliate links. Please see Policies for more information.

This healthy Tuscan Chicken Pasta is a popular menu item at the Cheesecake Factory and Olive Garden. It’s a decadent pasta dish loaded with Italian flavors. My copycat recipe adds a healthy twist to this classic meal.

Creamy Tuscan Chicken Pasta has all the flavors of the restaurant version, without all the calories, sodium, and fat. I love making this recipe in one pot using my Instant Pot, but it can also be made in the Crock Pot or right on the stove.

image with text for tuscan chicken pasta for pinterest

This is one of my favorite healthy pasta recipes, and it’s great for meal prep because it keeps well in the fridge for the week and it freezes and reheats well.

Where’s the recipe?

To better serve all of my readers here at My Crazy Good Life, I’ve made a commitment to put a ton of helpful information in all of my posts that everyone, regardless of cooking skills, can make these recipes.

If you’d like to skip over the detailed instructions, information about freezing, swapping ingredients, and diet information, please simply scroll to the bottom of the page, where you will find the easy to print Tuscan Chicken Pasta recipe.

Ingredients in Tuscan Chicken Pasta

  • Sun-dried tomatoes: You can find these sweet gems in your produce section. They are usually in a bag or jar. Be sure and grab the kind that does not contain oil. If you have trouble finding them, you can substitute with fresh grape tomatoes or roasted red peppers.  
  • Italian Seasoning: This is a space saver for your pantry. A variety of basil, marjoram, oregano, rosemary, and thyme all combined in one bottle. 
  • Garlic: Did you know that in Northern Italian cooking they don’t use garlic? Fresh minced garlic is only used in in Southern and Tuscan cuisine.     
  • Chicken: Cut your chicken breasts into 1 inch cubes or ½ inch thick strips to promote quick and even cooking. 
  • Chicken Broth: You can make your own or grab some from the store. If buying, make sure to get low sodium.
  • Pasta: I use whole wheat noodles, but you can easily swap this for a gluten free noodle but be sure to reduce the cooking time (I use the rule of half the cooking time on the package minus 2 minutes). If using regular pasta, drain the extra water after   
  • Cottage Cheese: Be sure and grab 2% cottage cheese. It will help lower the saturated fat and calories without over-processing, like in the fat-free varieties.  
  • Greek Yogurt: Greek yogurt is a great source of protein, probiotics, and calcium. It works well as a substitute for sour cream and cream cheese in pasta dishes.
  • Spinach: An excellent source of Vitamins A, C, and K, and full of fiber, calcium, and iron.  
  • Basil: Popular in cuisine worldwide for its sweet aromatic flavor. You can also use dried in this recipe, if you don’t have fresh handy. Just reduce the amount to 1 teaspoon.
  • Parmesan Cheese: I love grabbing a wedge of fresh parmesan and grating it myself. The light nuttiness ties this recipe together perfectly. 
ingredients for tuscan chicken pasta

How to make Instant Pot Tuscan Chicken Pasta

  1. Set your Instant Pot to Sauté and lightly spray the pot with olive oil spray. Once your pot is hot add the garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, Italian seasonings. Cook for about 30 seconds until fragrant.
  2. Add your cubed chicken to the pot, and cook 2-3 minutes, stirring often. This will prevent your chicken from clumping together while it’s under pressure. Once your chicken is browned on all sides, add your chicken broth.
  3. Add the pasta to the pot and stir well, ensuring that all noodles are below the liquid.
  4. Close and lock the lid and turn the pressure valve to sealing. Select Pressure Cook (high) and set the time for 3 minutes.
  5. While your chicken is cooking, blend the cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, and parmesan cheese together until smooth, then set aside.
  6. When the cook time is complete, quick release the pressure and remove the lid. Stir the contents of the pot. Drain any excess liquid from the pot, keeping aside 1/4 cup. Add the 1/4 cup liquid to the cottage cheese and Greek yogurt mixture and stir well.
  7. While your noodles are still hot, stir in spinach and basil. Once the leaves have wilted, stir in your blended cottage cheese mixture. Serve immediately.  Garnish with additional parmesan and fresh basil.
collage with pictures showing how to make this tuscan chicken, step by step

How to make Crockpot Tuscan Chicken Pasta

  1. Lightly spray a large skillet with cooking oil, then add tomatoes, garlic, Italian herbs, and pepper. Sauté over high heat for 30 seconds or so until it becomes fragrant.
  2. Add your cubed chicken to the pan and brown for 1-2 minutes until the chicken no longer sticks together.
  3. Transfer chicken and sun dried tomatoes (all of the contents of the pan) to your crockpot and top with chicken broth.  
  4. Cook on high heat for 2-3 hours, or low heat for 4-5 hours.
  5. About 20 minutes before you’d like to eat, boil the pasta in a separate pot according to package directions. Once cooked, drain and add to the Crockpot.
  6. Drain any excess liquid (set aside 1/4 cup) and add spinach and basil. Stir until spinach is wilted.
  7. Blend cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, and parmesan cheese in a blender until smooth, and add the mixture to the Crockpot.  
  8. Stir the cottage cheese mixture and 1/4 cup pasta water into the contents of the slow cooker.
  9. Stir one last time and serve immediately with extra parmesan cheese and fresh basil, as desired.

How to make Stovetop Tuscan Chicken Pasta

  1. Spray a deep skillet or large pot with cooking oil and then add the tomatoes, garlic, Italian herbs, and black pepper. Sauté over high heat for 30 seconds.
  2. Add the cubed chicken and sauté until browned on all sides, about 1-2 minutes. 
  3. Add the pasta and chicken broth to the skillet. Stir and make sure all the noodles are just covered. Set aside ay extra broth. Once the broth begins to boil, cover your skillet and reduce heat to medium. Simmer for 12-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
  4. Once the pasta is cooked, add spinach and basil. Stir until spinach is wilted, then drain any excess liquid from the pan, setting aside about 1/4 cup of the pasta water in case you need it later. 
  5. Blend the cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, parmesan cheese, and reserved pasta water in a blender or food processor until smooth, then stir the mixture into your noodles.
  6. Stir one last time and serve immediately with extra parmesan and fresh basil, as desired.
tuscan chicken pasta in white bowl with one fork full of food

Recipe Tips

  • In a pinch, you can substitute fresh, halved grape tomatoes in place of sun-dried tomatoes. Reduce your cooking liquid by ½ cup when using fresh tomatoes. 
  • While this recipe tastes best when followed exactly, you can add double the Greek yogurt or cottage cheese if you don’t have one of them on hand.
  • Cut your chicken into equal-sized pieces to make sure they are cooked evenly.
  • Add more spinach to increase your vegetables per serving, or add a salad as a side dish.
  • I don’t typically add salt to my recipes so that you can add salt and pepper to your taste and dietary needs.
  • If using the crockpot or stovetop cooking method, start with 1 cup of water and slowly add more if needed to keep the recipe from becoming watery. *This amount will change if not using whole wheat pasta*
  • If using gluten free pasta, reduce Instant Pot cook time to 2 minutes. 

Healthy Eating Plans

  • 21 Day Fix: For the entire 21 Day Fix Tuscan Chicken pasta recipe: 2 ½ Green Containers, 10 Red Containers, 12 Yellow Containers, and 2 Blue Containers. I give you the count for the entire recipe so its easier to re-calculate the containers if you change something.
    • For each 1 ½ cup serving: 1/3 Green Container, 1 2/3 Red Containers, 2 Yellow Containers, and 1/3 Blue Containers.
  • 2B Mindset: I would eat this as a healthy lunch with extra vegetables. 
  • Weight Watchers: For WW recipe and points information see this post: https://mycrazygoodlife.com/weight-watchers-tuscan-chicken-pasta/

More healthy Instant Pot recipes

More Instant Pot Pasta Recipes

close up of bite of tuscan chicken on fork
4.42 from 387 ratings
click the stars to rate!

Healthy Tuscan Chicken Pasta Recipe

Created by: Becca Ludlum
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 3 minutes
Total Time 28 minutes
Approximate Serving Size: 1 1/2 cups
Servings 6
This healthy Tuscan Chicken Pasta recipe will satisfy your craving for creamy pasta without the calories! It's an easy healthy chicken recipe that your family will love, and you can cook it in your Instant Pot, slow cooker, or on the stove.

Equipment

  • Instant Pot 6 qt
  • Sealing Rings
  • Vitamix Blender

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup sun-dried tomatoes  sun dried with no oil or grape tomatoes, halved
  • 3 tbsp Italian seasoning
  • 2 tbsp garlic minced
  • 2 lbs chicken breast  (about 2 large breasts, diced into 1-inch cubes)
  • 3 cups low sodium chicken broth 1 cup only for Crockpot method. See article above for details.
  • 3 cups whole wheat pasta I used one 12 oz. box
  • ¾ cup cottage cheese 2%
  • ¾ cup plain Greek yogurt 2%
  • 2 cups spinach baby
  • 2 tbsp basil  fresh, or 1 tsp dried basil
  • cup parmesan cheese

Instructions

Instant Pot Instructions

  • Set your Instant Pot to Sauté and lightly spray the pot with cooking spray. Once your pot is hot, add the sun-dried tomatoes, Italian seasoning, and garlic. Cook for about 30 seconds until fragrant. 1 cup sun-dried tomatoes  3 tbsp Italian seasoning 2 tbsp garlic
  • Add your cubed chicken to the pot and cook 2-3 minutes, stirring often. Once your chicken is browned on all sides, add your chicken broth. 2 lbs chicken breast  3 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • Add your pasta to the pot and stir well, ensuring that all noodles are below the liquid. 3 cups whole wheat pasta
  • Close and lock the lid and turn the pressure valve to sealing. Cook on high pressure for 3 minutes.
  • While your chicken is cooking, blend the cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, and grated parmesan together until smooth (in a blender or food processor), then set aside. ¾ cup cottage cheese ¾ cup plain Greek yogurt ⅔ cup parmesan cheese
  • When the cook time is complete, quick release the pressure and remove the lid. Stir. Drain any excess liquid from the pot, keeping aside 1/4 cup. Add the 1/4 cup liquid to the cottage cheese mixture and stir well.
  • While your noodles are still hot, stir in spinach and basil. Once the leaves have wilted, stir in your blended cottage cheese mixture. Serve immediately. Garnish with additional parmesan and fresh basil. 2 cups spinach 2 tbsp basil 

Video

Notes

*For stovetop/crockpot directions, please see original post
Recipe Tips:
  • You can substitute fresh, halved grape tomatoes in place of sun-dried tomatoes. Reduce your cooking liquid by ½ cup when using fresh tomatoes.  
  • While this recipe tastes best when followed exactly, you can add more Greek yogurt or more cottage cheese if you don’t have one of them.
  • Cut your chicken into equal-sized pieces to make sure they are cooked evenly.
  • Add more spinach and tomatoes to increase your vegetables per serving, or add a salad as a side dish.
  • I don’t typically add salt to my recipes so that you can add salt and pepper to your taste and dietary needs.
  • If using crockpot or stovetop cooking method, start with 1 cup of water and slowly add more if needed to keep the recipe from becoming watery. *This amount will change if not using whole wheat pasta*
  • If using gluten free pasta, reduce Instant Pot cook time to 2 minutes. 
Healthy Eating Plans: 
  • 21 Day Fix: For the entire recipe: 2 ½ Green Containers, 10 Red Containers, 12 Yellow Containers, and 2 Blue Containers. For each 1 ½ cup serving: 1/3 Green Container, 1 2/3 Red Containers, 2 Yellow Containers, and 1/3 Blue Containers.
  • 2B Mindset: I would eat this as a healthy lunch with extra vegetables. 

Nutrition

Calories: 467kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 47g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 113mg | Sodium: 318mg | Potassium: 673mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1371IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 201mg | Iron: 3mg

Make This Recipe?

Make sure to follow on Pinterest @bludlum and on Instagram @beccaludlum

Similar Posts

Did you love this recipe?

Make sure to comment below so we can chat about it! Or follow on your favorite social network for even more family recipes.

168 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Super good and easy recipe I followed it exactly but did have to add a little extra chicken broth to get noodles covered which was no big deal! Saw some of the negative comments about the flavors and was nervous but I thought it was great could not taste the greek yogurt at all I used the fage total 0% yogurt

    Husband and I both loved it reheats well we will totally make it again!

    Thanks for the great recipe!

  2. I like to cook my pasta on the stove on the side so the leftovers will be better. We use gluten free pasta so I don’t like to have it all mixed up plus I usually eat my portion over veggies. How much broth would I need if not adding in the pasta?

  3. 5 stars
    I made this in the crockpot and made it pretty much exactly as the recipe stated. However the yogurt/cottage cheese mix tasted waaay to yogurt like so all to taste I added Italian seasoning, garlic, a little salt and mixed in some Parmesan cheese and let it sit in the fridge for an hour before mixing with the pasta and chicken mix. It came out absolutely DELICIOUS! I will be making this again.

  4. Hi! I’ve made this recipe probably a half dozen times with the stovetop method, so yummy! We recently got a Ninja Foodi 14-in-1 appliance that has instapot functions and I would love to try this recipe in it. What should I set the temp to? Maybe this is an option only required by my appliance, but it requires me to set a temp when using the saute and all other functions. What would you recommend?

    1. Hey Ally! How fun! I haven;t had a chance to play with the 14 in one yet. It sounds like this cooking device might be best with the stovetop directions?

  5. 5 stars
    So tasty and came together quickly. Definitely will go on the repeat list.

  6. For the instant pot recipe, is 3 minutes SAUTEE plus 3 minutes instapot on high enough time to make sure the chicken is cooked? i’m a little nervous about that. Otherwise, I’m excited about executing this! THANK YOU :)

    1. Sara Anderson says:

      If the chicken is cut into 1 inch cubes, it’ll cook in the time stated :)

  7. Would you eliminate the chicken broth step if making this with fresh pasta? Or would you recommend just reducing the boil time and drain when pasta is cooked?

    1. I’d reduce the boil time and drain after the pasta is cooked (but be sure to drain before adding your cream base).

  8. 5 stars
    Tried it, super tasty! Thank you! It could use salt and maybe some red pepper flakes.

  9. If you are going have an equipment list it would be nice if you listed all of the equipment!!! I cook on the road and picked this based on ingredients and the equipment need. But you did not list that you needed a blender

  10. I’m sorry but why can’t the sun dried tomatoes have oil?

    1. Sara Anderson says:

      Hi Mimi, it’s just to keep the calories and points down. If you’re not following a specific healthy eating plan, sun dried tomatoes in oil are fine :)

  11. All it tasted like was Greek yogurt. I had to resort to making Dino Nuggets for dinner. Followed the directions exactly, would NEVER make again. Literally could smell the Greek yogurt from across my kitchen after I threw it away. DO NOT MAKE.

    1. It sounds like maybe you don’t care for greek yogurt? I’m sorry you didn’t love this recipe :)

  12. Wondering how much chicken broth you suggest for crock pot? I’m just going to cook my pasta separately in the side so didn’t want to overdo the broth. Thanks! Can’t wait to try it.

    1. I’d start with 1 cup and add it slowly as you cook to make sure you don’t add too much.

  13. Hear me out! I’m lactose. I really wanted something like this soooo bad. I purchased all non dairy products. I was scared it was going to come out watery but oh was I wrong! This is simply delicious 10 out of 10!

  14. Sherrie Diehr says:

    5 stars
    Very quick and easy! Family is requesting again!

  15. Anonymous says:

    This recipe is sovery good. It’s a definite keeper.

  16. Anonymous says:

    1 star
    Needs a bit extra salt and not much flavor at all

  17. 5 stars
    Omg!
    This is absolutely positively DELICIOUS!!!
    And so completely healthy!
    This will be made again and again and again at my house!
    Thanks for sharing!🫶

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *