Just one pot, a handful of ingredients and this creamy, filling pasta is ready in minutes.
This week’s theme for my weekly “Simple Everyday Meals” series is- Kids Meals. This one pot pasta is actually a family favourite. What I love about it is that there is no hassle of boiling the pasta and cooking the sauce separately. Everything will be cooked in one pot, which not only saves time and effort but also makes clean up super easy. Isn’t it a perfect definition for a simple-everyday meal?
How can you make your pasta healthier and more filling?
The problem with pasta meals could be that you can have plates full but still not feel satiated. This could easily lead to over eating. It is because pasta contains mostly carbohydrates. To make our pasta filling we need to add proteins and vegetables to our pasta meal. Here is what you can do to make your pasta healthier and more filling:
- Use whole grain (Vollkorn) pasta: Whole grain pasta is made using whole grain flour, which contains all the part of the grains including bran, germ, and endosperm. White pasta is made using refined grains that are milled with the germ and bran removed. The milling process removes many of the grains’ nutrients. Using whole grain pasta ensures that you get more nutrients as well as fibre, which gives you a feeling of satiety.
- Add a variety of vegetables: Adding a variety of vegetables does not only make the pasta more nutritious, but also adds more flavor and textures. Select vegetables of different colors. It makes your dish more colorful and pleasing to the eye. Added vitamins and minerals are a bonus.
- Add a salad on the side: I love having a salad on the side to my pasta. It adds a nice crunch to the meal and helps to fill you up. This also ensures that you won’t be over eating on pasta.
Ingredients at a glance
- Whole grain pasta (vollkorn): I used vollkorn farfalle for my recipe. You could use any variation of pasta that you like. You can find it at any well stocked grocery store in Germany.
- Mushrooms: I like to use organic mini shiitake mushrooms as they don’t need any chopping and compliment the taste of the pasta really well. They are also high in nutrition. You can substitute them with button mushrooms. But you will need to slice them before adding to the dish.
- Green Peas: I use organic frozen green peas for my recipe. You can find them at most of the grocery stores in Germany in the freezer section by the name ‘Junge Erbsen’. You can also use fresh ones instead.
- Cream: I use organic schlagsahne (whipping cream) for my recipe. It is easily available at all grocery stores in Germany near the milk section. You can use single/ heavy cream instead. For a lighter version, substitute cream with whole fat milk.
- Chicken stock: I prefer using my home made chicken stock for this recipe. You can substitute it with store bought stock or with water.
- Dried oregano: This gives a great flavor to the pasta. You can replace it with any herb (dried or fresh) of your choice like basil, thyme, parsley etc.
- Olive oil: Use good quality (organic extra virgin, cold pressed) olive oil for the best taste.
- Salt: I use Himalayan pink salt. You can use any salt of your choice.
- Black pepper: You can’t beat the flavor of freshly crushed black pepper. However, if you do not have excess to a pepper grinder you may use ground black pepper instead.
One Pot Pasta with Chicken, Mushrooms and Peas
- 3 Tbsp Olive oil
- 1½ cups (300 grams) boneless chicken breast (cut into small pieces)
- 1½ cups (200 grams) frozen green peas
- 3 cups (150 grams) shiitake mushrooms
- 2 cloves garlic
- ½ tsp dried oregano (or herb of choice)
- 3 cups (800 ml) chicken stock (or water)
- ⅔ cup (200 grams) cream (Schlagsahne)
- 3 cups (200 grams) Whole grain pasta of choice (we used vollkorn-Farfalle)
- 1 tsp salt
- ¼ tsp freshly crushed black pepper
- ¼ cup chopped parsley (optional)
- Peel and finely chop the garlic. Keep aside for a few minutes to let it develop allicin so you can get its full health benefits.
- Add olive oil in a pot on medium high heat. When the oil is heated, add the chicken, mushrooms, frozen peas and chopped garlic. Season with salt (½ tsp) and pepper. Saute until the chicken changes its color (about 2 minutes).
- Add the dried oregano, pasta, the remaining salt and chicken stock (or water). Mix everything well, then lower the heat and cover. Cook for about 12-15 minutes (the cooking time and quantity of liquid will vary according to the kind of pasta you are using).
- After 5 minutes of cooking, uncover and give a quick mix. Add more stock or water if it looks too dry. Cover and let cook on low heat until the pasta is just a little undercooked (bite into a piece and it should still have a crunch, but not too hard).
- Add the cream, mix well and cover. Cook until the pasta is fully cooked.
- Garnish with parsley and serve hot.
- To make a lighter version replace the cream with full fat milk.
- You can also add spinach or bell peppers to your pasta.