Baked Chicken and Rosemary Pasta

Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 30 min
Serves: 6

Fresh rosemary, Parmesan cheese, and chicken combine to create a classic Italian flavour trio in this savoury pasta bake. This recipe will generously feed a family of four, and any leftovers you may have will taste even better the next day.


1 lb (0.5 kg) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 tbsp (15 mL) extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup (250 mL) onions, diced
1/2 lb (0.3 kg) mushrooms, sliced
3 cups (750 mL) Marinara pasta sauce
1/4 cup (60 mL) half-and-half cream
2 tbsp (30 mL) balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) hot red chile pepper flakes
1/2 cup (125 mL) parsley, fresh, minced
1 tbsp (15 mL) rosemary, fresh, minced
1 pkg whole wheat fusilli pasta
1 cup (250 mL) mozzarella cheese, part skim, 16.5% MF
1/4 cup (60 mL) Parmesan cheese, grated
15 Kalamata olives, pitted


1 Preheat the oven to 450°F (230°C). Cut the chicken breast cross-wise into smaller bite-size pieces.
2 Heat the oil in a heavy-based pot over medium-high heat. Sauté the onions, garlic, and chicken, stirring occasionally until cooked through and nicely browned.
3 Add the mushrooms, pasta sauce, and the cream to the pot.
4 Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, reduce to a gentle simmer and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, so that the sauce thickens slightly.
5 Stir balsamic vinegar, pitted chopped olives, cayenne pepper, minced parsley, and rosemary into the sauce.
6 Cook until heated through – about 5 minutes.
7 Cook the whole wheat pasta in unsalted boiling water until al dente, following packaged directions. Cook the pasta less than you normally would, as it will be cooked further in the oven.
8 Drain the pasta and add it to the sauce.
9 Spray a 3 L (3.2 quart) oblong baking dish with non-fat cooking spray.
10 Spread the pasta and sauce evenly in the dish.
11 Top the pasta with the mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses and additional minced fresh parsley.
12 Bake until the cheese is golden brown, about 15 minutes.