Angel Hair with Chicken and Artichoke-Caper Sauce is a light and healthy pasta dish that is chock-a-block full of Mediterranean flavors. Every bite is brightened with parsley and oregano, warmed by garlic and olive oil, spiked with briny capers and finished off with earthy artichokes. And, it’s easy enough for busy day dinner while elegant enough for entertaining!
Artichoke Chicken Pasta
Eating this scrumptious pasta dish brings back fond memories of meals on the Amalfi coast in Southern Italy. Italian – really most Mediterranean cuisines – are focused on fresh, seasonal, local ingredients. Pastas are typically made from scratch, olive oils pressed and bottled nearby. This dish attempts to bring many of those flavors into the home kitchen but with some pantry shortcuts, utilizing dried pasta and canned artichokes. It also includes steps to layer in flavors at various points in the cooking process, to ensure that vibrant Mediterranean vibe is maintained.
Chicken and Artichoke Pasta Ingredient Notes
While the ingredient list is a bit long for this vibrant pasta, there’s little chopping and it cooks relatively quickly on the cooktop:
- Angel hair pasta, preferably whole wheat
- All-purpose flour
- Dried oregano
- Dried parsley
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Boneless, skinless chicken breasts or cutlets
- Olive oil
- Garlic cloves
- White wine
- Chicken broth
- Canned artichoke hearts in water
- Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Garnish: chopped fresh parsley
I should warn you: This light and healthy pasta is heavy on the garlic! You can leave it out, but personally I love garlic, and the extra dimension it adds to this dish.
How to Make Chicken Artichoke Pasta
This meal is prepared entirely on the cook top, and should take no more than 30 minutes. Here’s an overview of what’s involved:
- Sauté garlic slivers in olive oil, to imbue garlic flavor throughout the dish.
- Dredge small chicken cutlets in flour seasoned with oregano, paprika and parsley, then sauté in the garlic oil. Remove from pan.
- Add wine and chicken broth to the juices in the pan and reduce, concentrating the flavors.
- Add the sautéed garlic slivers to the sauce, along with artichokes and capers.
- Stir in a small pad of butter to finish it off. (My mouth is watering just writing this!)
- Serve atop light and lovely angel hair pasta, and top wiith Parmesan cheese.
Note: I recommend not using a nonstick pan, as the browned bits that stick to the bottom of the pan while cooking the chicken add flavor to the sauce. In this recipe, you’ll do something called “deglazing” the pan, which naturally removes those bits, making clean up easier — so no need for that nonstick surface!
Why Dredge Chicken in Flour Before Cooking?
Dredging – or coating chicken with seasoned flour before frying or sautéing – helps the chicken to brown nicely, and forms a coating that keeps it from drying out.
TIP: always add salt to the seasoned flour, not directly on the chicken. Salt will draw moisture out of the chicken, making the flour coating soggy. The flour coating actually creates a barrier between the chicken and the cooking oil, and helps it brown nicely without being greasy or dry.
Additions or Substitutions for Chicken with Artichokes and Capers
While this recipe is pretty fabulous in its current form, I always encourage my followers to make it their own by adding or substituting different ingredients. Here are a few suggestions to spark your imagination:
- Use different herbs and spices, like dried tarragon in place of the oregano. Or, add in onion powder.
- Serve the artichoke chicken mixture with risotto (or cooked rice) instead of pasta – or use other types of pasta.
- Make it gluten free – Use gluten-free angel hair pasta. Substitute cornstarch or almond flour for all-purpose flour. Use gluten-free chicken broth.
- Toss in some chopped tomatoes.
Serving Pasta with Artichokes and Capers
I like to serve this flavorful pasta with a leafy green side salad, such as:
- Arugula and Tomato Salad with Balsamic Dressing
- Baby Spinach Salad with Lemon Dijon Dressing
- Caesar salad
Storing Chicken with Artichoke and Capers
If you have leftovers, store the sauce separately from the pasta. Put both in airtight containers and refrigerate; they will last for 3 to 4 days. Reheat sauce in the microwave, and reheat pasta by dropping in boiling water for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
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- 6 to 8 ounces angel hair pasta, preferably whole wheat
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
- Salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 2– by 1/2-inch strips
- 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, cut into quarters
- 3 tablespoons white wine
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1 (14-ounce) canned artichoke hearts in water, drained and quartered
- 1/4 cup capers, drained
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1/4 cup (1 ounce) freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
- Garnish: chopped fresh parsley
- In a large pot, bring salted water to boil for the pasta.
- Place flour in a shallow dish and whisk in oregano, paprika and parsley; season liberally with salt and pepper. Dredge chicken in flour mixture, coating both sides and shaking off excess.
- In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-low heat. Add garlic and cook just until garlic begins to turn a light brown. Using a slotted spoon, remove garlic from oil and set aside.
- Increase heat to medium-high, add chicken to oil in pan and cook 6 to 8 minutes, or until golden brown on both sides, adding additional olive oil if needed. Remove chicken from pan, place on plate and keep warm (don’t clean out the pan).
- Add the wine to the pan, reduce heat to medium-low (wine should be at a simmer), scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer and cook 7 to 10 minutes or until reduced by half.
- Place pasta in boiling salted water and cook 3 to 4 minutes, according to package directions. Drain and set aside (don’t rinse).
- Chop cooked garlic slivers; stir into the wine-broth mixture. Stir in artichokes and capers. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes, or until thoroughly heated. Stir in chicken and any juices that may have accumulated on the plate. Bring to a low boil, remove from heat and stir in butter.
- If pasta isn’t done yet, keep sauce warm over very low heat. Spoon chicken and sauce over pasta; sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and garnish with chopped parsley, if desired.
Gluten free: Use gluten-free angel hair pasta. Substitute cornstarch for all-purpose flour. Use gluten-free chicken broth.
- Category: Pasta, light and healthy
- Method: Sauté
- Cuisine: Mediterranean/Italian
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 258
- Sugar: 1 g
- Fat: 8.6 g
- Saturated Fat: 2.5 g
- Carbohydrates: 26.4 g
- Fiber: 4.6 g
- Protein: 19.9 g