Chicken Rigatoni is a flavor-packed Italian meal with juicy chicken and tender pasta, all cooked together in one saucepan. You’ll flip for this easy rigatoni recipe!
Quick and easy meals are the best option when your weeknights are hectic. That doesn’t mean they’re lacking in the flavor department, though!
One pot dinners are delicious and filling, but even better, they save you from having to clean a pile of dishes at the end of the night!
This rigatoni with chicken is just one of my many skillet chicken and pasta recipes. If you like things a bit spicier, you could make Jalapeno Popper Chicken. Or, to add some veggies to your plate, make Creamy Chicken Tortellini – it only takes 30 minutes to make!
In this recipe, the rigatoni is balanced with earthy garlic, sweet onion and scrumptious marinara sauce. Top it off with a blend of Parmesan and creamy mozzarella cheeses and you’ll have a winning combination to please even the pickiest of eaters!
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Lean protein.
I use boneless skinless chicken breast, but feel free to substitute it with boneless chicken thighs or even turkey breast.
I like using rigatoni because the crevices do a great job of holding on to pasta sauces. If you prefer using a different type of noodle, go for it!
Any short pasta will work, as long as there are cracks and crevices to hold the sauce and cheese. Penne, rotini, and ziti are great choices. and even gnocchi works well!
- Optional veggies.
There is a bit of onion in this dish, but spinach, bell peppers, or mushrooms could be incredibly tasty additions to your chicken rigatoni.
- Marinara sauce
To keep things as simple as possible, this recipe calls for a store bought marinara. Don’t let me stop you from making your own though!
Or, for a super fresh tomato flavor without spending hours, consider making my 5 minute homemade pasta sauce recipe.
- Want it spicy?
You can increase the heat by adding a dash of crushed red pepper flakes.
- Fresh herbs
Sprinkle your plated meal with a bit of grated Parmesan for a nice finishing touch
Easy Rigatoni Recipe Notes
- Remember to salt your pasta water.
Please don’t skip this step, as the salt really enhances the flavor of the entire dish.
- Prep in advance: Chop the onion and shred the cheese up to a day ahead of time. Store covered in the refrigerator until you’re ready to throw this dish together.
- Shred cheese yourself: Pre-shredded cheeses have a preservative that gives the shreds a waxy texture, and can also affect the way the cheese melts.
- Topping: If you’d like, toss some breadcrumbs with a little melted butter and sprinkle it over the top of the chicken rigatoni. Then, pop the dish under the broiler for a few minutes to brown.
If you aren’t going to add any veggies to the rigatoni with chicken, you might want to serve a garden salad or something like garlic roasted broccoli on the side.
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Chicken Rigatoni FAQ
Can I adjust the serving size?
This easy rigatoni recipe yields about 5 servings, but you can double the ingredients, or reduce the ingredients for a date night meal or to make pasta for one!
Since the leftovers are fantastic, I recommend preparing the full recipe to enjoy for lunch or dinner the next day!
This dish will stay fresh in a covered container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Be sure to allow the food to cool before transferring it to the storage container.
It freezes well too, so it’s a great potluck dish, or something to pull out of the freezer a day or two before you want to reheat it.
You can reheat it in the oven at 350°F. for 20-25 minutes. I suggest covering the pan with foil to prevent the cheese from burning. Alternatively, you can reheat it in a skillet on the stovetop, or microwave individual portions on high power in 30-second increments until warmed through.
You may need to add a splash of water or chicken stock to keep it from drying out.
With love, from our simple kitchen to yours.
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Chicken Rigatoni + Video
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper, or to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup diced yellow onion
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 12 ounces rigatoni pasta
- 2 cups marinara sauce
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup chopped basil, for garnish
- Season chicken with salt and pepper; set aside.
- In a 12-inch sauté pan or skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and stir until soft, about 3 minutes.
- Add chicken to pan and cook until brown on both sides. Stir in garlic and cook one additional minute.
- Add uncooked pasta, sauce and broth. Stir to combine, then bring to a boil.Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes, or until pasta is cooked to al dente.
- Sprinkle mozzarella and parmesan cheese over the dish, cover pan and continue cooking 2 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
- Garnish with fresh basil, serve, and enjoy!
All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.
Originally published October 2018. Updated and republished June 2022.
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