ARTICLE

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery

chipolte chicken pasta
chipolte chicken pasta

Show of hands. How many of you have eaten at the Tuscan Moon and Grill in Kalona?

Mmm. I love that restaurant. Scott and I tend to go there for special occasions — our anniversary, a birthday or to celebrate the fact that the kids are at the grandparents’ house for a few days.

Call me a food snob, but I order the same thing every time — Chipolte Steak. I love chipolte sauce. Love it! There was a cafeteria at my last job and twice a week the pasta area served Chipolte Pasta. I ordered it every time. It’s the one thing I truly miss about that place.

I have tried to duplicate the recipe and have come close a few times, but my versions tend to be too one flavor, not enough of another. Too much BBQ sauce taste, too much garlic, too much chipolte paste.

Last year, Taco Bell released a line of its sauces and chipolte is one of them. I don’t eat at Taco Bell anymore, thanks to a certain video that was all over the news 6+ years ago, but this made me happy. I have since paired it with my own version of Chipolte Chicken Pasta and love it! It has that taste I want with a little kick (but not so much that my husband can’t handle it – he’s not a fan of spicy food).

And they say fast food is bad for you …

CHIPOLTE CHICKEN PASTA

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 chicken breasts cut in half
  • Season salt
  • 4 ounces heavy cream
  • 3 ounces chipolte sauce
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 9 ounces penne pasta, cooked
  • 2 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 diced rosa tomato
  • 1 tbsp diced onions
  • 1 red pepper, cubed (optional)
Drizzle olive oil on the chicken on all sides. Season the chicken and let marinade for 10 minutes. In a sauté pan over high heat, add olive oil and the chicken. Cook the chicken until both sides are cooked thoroughly. Remove the chicken from the pan and slice them into 1/2 inch thick bites.

In the same pan, add onions, cream, chipolte sauce, salt and pepper over medium heat. When the cream starts to bubble, reduce the heat to low and add the sliced chicken, cooked pasta and the cheese.Serve in pasta bowl and garnish with diced tomatoes and more Parmesan cheese, if desired.

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