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Chicken Broccoli Pasta is an easy weeknight meal that is ready in only 30 minutes! Cook broccoli in the same boiling water as the pasta while you make the simple lemon chicken with creamy parmesan sauce.Pin this recipe for later!
Table of Contents
Why I Love This Recipe
- 30 Minute Meal – A quick and easy dinner that’s perfect for a busy weeknight!
- Little Clean Up – You’ll use the same skillet to cook the chicken and make the sauce to keep clean up simple.
- Lemon Flavor – Lemon zest adds a fresh lemon flavor that pairs perfectly with the broccoli and chicken.
How To Make Chicken Broccoli Pasta
See recipe card below for ingredient quantities and full instructions.
This chicken and broccoli pasta recipe comes together while you cook the pasta and broccoli in boiling water. Easy enough for a weeknight dinner!
Cook Pasta and Broccoli – Cook the pasta according to package directions and add the broccoli florets in the last 3 minutes.
Cook Chicken – Meanwhile, season the chicken pieces with the lemon pepper, salt, and garlic powder. Heat a large skillet with the oil then add the chicken and cook until browned on all sides and cooked through. Set chicken aside.
Make Garlic Lemon Sauce – Add the butter to the same skillet and cook the garlic for just a minute. Add the flour and cook for another minute to make a roux before whisking in the chicken broth then reduce heat and whisk in half and half and salt. Finally remove from heat and whisk in the parmesan cheese and lemon zest.
Toss in Pasta – Add the cooked pasta, broccoli, and chicken to the skillet and toss to coat evenly. Serve and enjoy!
I love that this recipe is a complete meal on its own! But if you want to round it out, especially to feed a large family, I like to pair it with a salad like a classic caesar salad or lemon kale caesar salad, and a loaf of crusty bread or cheesy garlic bread.
Leftovers will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Reheat individual portions in the microwave.
- Lemon Flavor – If you want extra lemon flavor, serve the pasta with a lemon slice to squeeze over individual portions. You can add lemon juice to the sauce, but if heated too much after the addition of lemon juice, you risk the sauce separating and curdling the half and half.
- Baked Casserole Version – You could turn this into a casserole by placing the final dish into a buttered casserole dish, topping with extra parmesan or buttered bread crumbs and broiling on high until the top is browned and bubbly.
- Freshly Grate Parmesan Cheese – It’s best to grate cheese from a wedge of parmesan vs buying pre-shredded as it will melt much better.
- Frozen vs Fresh Broccoli – You can use frozen broccoli instead of fresh. Still add to the pasta in the last few minutes.
More Pasta Recipes
- Creamy Bow Tie Pasta
- Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese
- Penne Pasta Primavera
- Easy Tuna Pasta Salad
- Angel Hair Pasta
Chicken Broccoli Pasta Recipe
- 8 ounces penne pasta
- 2 cups bite sized broccoli florets
- 1 pound chicken breasts or tenders cut into 1″ cubes
- 2 teaspoons lemon pepper seasoning
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt divided
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon neutral oil Canola or vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 cup half & half
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon zest
- Fresh chopped parsley, lemon slices, and extra grated Parmesan for garnish
- In a large pot of boiling water, cook penne according to package directions, adding broccoli florets to the last 3 minutes of cook time. Drain and set aside.
- While the pasta cooks, in a medium bowl season the chicken pieces with the lemon pepper, 1 teaspoon of the salt, and the garlic powder.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the oil. Once the oil is hot add in the seasoned chicken and cook, turning often, until browned all around and cooked through. Remove to a plate and cover.
- In the same skillet add the butter and melt.
- Add in the garlic and cook for 30 seconds until fragrant, then sprinkle with the flour and cook, whisking often, for one minute.
- Whisk in the chicken broth and bring to a boil for 2 minutes. Reduce heat to a simmer and whisk in the half and half and remaining ½ teaspoon of salt.
- Once mixture returns to a simmer, remove from heat and whisk in the Parmesan and lemon zest.
- Add pasta, broccoli, and chicken to the skillet and toss to coat evenly.
- Serve immediately with fresh chopped parsley, lemon wedges and extra grated Parmesan cheese.
- For more lemon flavor, squeeze some fresh lemon over individual portions. Do not add lemon juice to the sauce – there is a risk of the sauce separating and curdling.
- You can substitute the half and half for heavy cream, but the sauce will be a little thicker, alternatively you could use whole milk, and the sauce will be a bit thinner.
- You could turn this into a casserole by placing the final dish into a buttered casserole dish, topping with extra parmesan or buttered bread crumbs and broiling on high until the top is browned and bubbly.