Take your taste buds on a trip to Italy without leaving your house!
- 8 strips of bacon
- 3 Tbsp Olive oil, divided
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 5 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 2 cans diced fire roasted tomatoes, drained
- 8 0z bag of fresh spinach
- 12 oz penne pasta
- 1 1/3 cups half & half
- 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
Cook bacon strips on a griddle or frying pan, until crispy. Remove to paper towel lined plate to cool, then chop it up.
Cook pasta according to directions on the box. Drain and set aside. (I drizzle a little olive oil on it and mix it up so the pasta doesn’t stick).
While pasta is cooking, combine paprika, Italian seasoning, and salt on a large plate.
Press chicken breasts into seasoning mixture, coating both sides of each breast.
Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken breasts and cover pan. Let cook for 3-4 minutes. Turn chicken and cover and cook for several more minutes. Continue to cook until chicken is no longer pink. Turn down heat if chicken starts to get too browned. (I think it would be great to grill the chicken, but it’s winter in NH so that’s not happening right now.) When chicken is cooked through, remove to a plate and when it is cool enough to handle cut it into chunks or strips.
In a large pot, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and red pepper flakes. Stir and cook for about 30 seconds. Add the diced tomatoes, and stir to combine. Add the bag of spinach, stir and cover. Let cook for about 2 minutes. Remove cover and continue to stir until spinach has wilted down.
Add half & half and cook for another minute or two. Add parmesan cheese and cook for another minute, stirring to melt cheese.
Add chopped bacon and chicken and pasta. Stir and cook until heated thru. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with extra parmesan cheese. You can also add more red pepper flakes if you like it hot.