Tender garlic and herb-flavored chicken pieces are cooked and tossed together with broccoli and ziti in a cheesy butter sauce. This Chicken Broccoli and Ziti is a hearty pasta dish the whole family will love and just might become a staple in your dinner repertoire.
Quick Chicken Broccoli and Ziti
This is the broccoli dish that I make to get my anti-broccoli-loving child to eat. Because who doesn't love pasta with butter, cheese, and chicken? The key in our family is to make sure the broccoli is cooked just enough for it to start to fall apart. The pieces get all mixed up in the sauce, and even though one of my kids isn't a broccoli fan, he'll concede that you can't "taste" the broccoli even though it's everywhere.
And for the pro-broccoli crowd? This pasta is perfect! Buttery pasta tossed with cheese, herbed chicken, and just enough garlic to let us know this one is an Italian-American classic.
So let's get to making it! The text below offers some tips for making it, or you can scroll down to the bottom for the complete recipe.
More of a visual learner? Check out the video of me making it (below near the recipe) to see just how it's done!
Ingredients Needed and Substitutions
Here is a brief overview of the ingredients needed for this recipe. The full recipe with quantities is listed below this text in the recipe card. If substitutions are available for this recipe, they'll be listed here. If you don't see a substitution you are looking for, feel free to leave a comment below.
- rigatoni or ziti pasta (another pasta medium pasta is fine to use here)
- frozen broccoli florets (you can also use fresh broccoli)
- olive oil
- boneless skinless chicken breasts
- salt and pepper
- dried oregano
- garlic cloves and garlic granules
- unsalted butter
- fresh lemon juice (or white wine vinegar)
- parmesan cheese
- red pepper flakes
Tools Needed to Make this Recipe
Here are the tools used in this recipe. You won't necessarily choose to use them all, but sometimes tools make for quicker work in the kitchen! Some of these links may contain affiliate links.
- large pot
- medium to large saute pan
- essentials: knife, wooden spoon, measuring spoons
Overview of Steps to Make It
While this isn't a one-pot dish (we sure do love those!) this is a relatively easy recipe to make. Here is an overview of the steps needed to make this Chicken Broccoli and Ziti:
- Cook the pasta and broccoli together, and then drain
- Cook the chicken with seasoning
- Combine the pasta and broccoli with the chicken, and mix in the remaining ingredients for the sauce.
What to Do with Leftovers
This pasta dish reheats nicely, and I've even frozen leftovers with success (though upon reheating from frozen the pasta will be a bit softer).
To reheat you can heat it in an oven-safe container. I love using these (affiliate link) Glass Pyrex Containers because they double as storage and baking dishes. Or, you can reheat briefly in the microwave until warmed through. It's best to add a few tablespoons of water to the dish when you are reheating it.
Making the recipe? Be sure to leave a comment with a star review on your experience! Have a question? Leave a comment below and I'll get back to you as quickly as I can!Print
Tender garlic and herb-flavored chicken pieces are cooked and tossed together with broccoli and ziti pasta in a cheesy butter sauce. This Chicken Broccoli and Ziti is a hearty pasta dish the whole family will love. Don't forget to check out the video of me making it below!
- 1 lb. rigatoni or ziti pasta
- 12 ounces frozen broccoli florets (see notes for fresh)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced into bite sized pieces (about 1-½”)
- 1-½ teaspoons salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon garlic granules
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice or white wine vinegar
- 1 cup reserved pasta water
- ½ cup grated parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
- red pepper flakes, for serving (optional)
- Fill a large pot with water and a big pinch of salt. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, add pasta and set the timer to cook the pasta according to package instructions. When there are just 8 minutes left on the timer, add the frozen broccoli. Continue to cook until the timer goes off. Set aside 1 cup of pasta water. Check the pasta to ensure it’s cooked to your desired tenderness. Drain the pasta once done and return to the large pot.
- Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large saute pan over over medium heat. Once hot add chicken, salt and pepper, cook until chicken is cooked through to 165 degrees, about 6-8 minutes.
- Add garlic, oregano, garlic granules, and cook for 30 seconds. Shut off heat.
- Add chicken to the pasta, along with the butter, lemon juice, ½ cup of the reserved pasta water and parmesan cheese. Taste and adjust seasoning, adding more salt, pepper and pasta water as necessary. Sprinkle with additional parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes, as desired.
- Serve immediately.
Keywords: Chicken, Broccoli and Ziti