Chicken and Spinach Linguini Skillet with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

Chicken and Spinach Linguini Skillet with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

This post is sponsored by Grocery Outlet Inc., but the opinions expressed here are entirely my own. Thanks for reading!
#GroceryOutlet #GoGroceryOutlet #Wine #Organic #Sponsored

This delicious Skillet Chicken and Linguine with Fresh Orange and Oven Roasted Tomatoes makes for an impressive dinner party dish or easy weeknight dinner. Head to your local Grocery Outlet and grab a bottle of your favorite crisp white wine (all wine is currently 20% off!!), and enjoy this healthy seasonal dish with your favorite people.

I remember the first time I saw a Grocery Outlet Store. I had just moved to Sacramento and had never heard of them before. To be honest, you guys, I totally wrote them off and never thought about them again. 

That is, until I met my friend Nicole two years ago. Like me, Nicole likes to eat healthy and shop for organic foods as much as possible. However, like most families out there, six dollars for a carton of milk or tub of organic yogurt is just not practical. So one day, like all good housewives do, we talked about where we did most of our grocery shopping (<---totally kidding, you guys!). However, bargain shopping is a frequent (hot) topic of conversation in mommy circles.

Anyway, she mentioned Grocery Outlet.

You guys, I was shocked! I mean, this friend of mine always ate so healthy and always fed her kids organic snacks. What did she mean, Grocery Outlet? That's when I got my lesson about Grocery Outlet and a reminder to never judge a book by its cover (in this case, the book is the market). So I thought, if she can do it, I can do it.

So I went. Like, two hours later.

I felt like I hit the jackpot, literally. Some of Octavian's favorite snacks- Nature's Bakery Fig Bars, Chobani Kids Pouches, Annie's Cheddar Bunnies and Mac n Cheese, etc. were all there. And then there were the organic grains and flours, coconut oil, pasta, yogurt, milk and cheese. All there.

So basically, I was totally wrong about this one.

And then it got better. 

As I turned the corner to purchase our cart full of goodies, I saw it... the wine section. Not even slightly exaggerating, the wine section at Grocery Outlet is legit. And the prices are even better. So, naturally, I stocked up. And, whenever I need to give a last minute gift (to someone over 21, of course), I grab a bottle from my stockpile and I'm good to go.

So in celebration of grocery deals, good food and plentiful wine, I made one of my all-time favorite pasta dishes for you guys today. This is actually my version of a family favorite. I cut out some butter, added some garlic and onion, a little white wine to the cooking process, and finally, some oven roasted cherry tomatoes.

I should mention two very important things about this dish: first, the oranges, both in the cooking and as a side garnish, are essential. The citrus really is the star of this dish. Second, parmesan. Don't skip the parmesan (unless you hate cheese, then skip away!).

Anyway, my mom used to cook this for me and my siblings when we were little. When our family dynamics changed and my big sister took on the role of "mom" she continued cooking this same chicken dish. It was always a huge dinner highlight. 

Nearly five years older than me, I looked up to my sister throughout my high school years. So, when I found myself a pretty serious boyfriend my freshman year of high school and wanted to cook him a nice homemade romantic dinner, this was the meal we (and by we I mean she) picked. Everything went prefect...until he cut into the meat and discovered that the chicken wasn't fully cooked (I don't think "food blogger" would have been on anyone's list of life goals for Jessica at that time). 

Anyway, this chicken and linguini? We go way back.

I think you'll love it as much as I do (just make sure you cook the chicken completely).

And now that I'm old (remember yesterdays post) and can legally drink, I enjoy drinking this dish with a crisp white wine with fruity citrus notes. Some great examples are Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio or Chardonnay. I would not recommend a heavy red or super sweet white.

Chicken and Spinach Linguini Skillet with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

Prep Time: 5 minutes | Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Yield: 4-8 servings
Type: Main Dish, Chicken, Pasta + Noodles, Easy Dinner, Wine, Sponsored

Ingredients

4 tablespoons butter, divided
2-2.5 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded to approximate equal thickness*
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon dried basil
2 teaspoons dried chili flakes
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
6-8 gloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup dry white wine (optional)
24 ounces (2 bags) fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped**
1/2 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
2 packages fresh linguini OR 1 (16 ounce) package dry linguini
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese, plus more for topping
Orange slices, for serving

FOR THE ROASTED TOMATOES

2 pints cherry tomatoes
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt + pepper


Instructions

First prepare the roasted tomatoes:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. In a large mixing bowl toss washed and dried tomatoes with olive oil and salt and pepper. Transfer tomatoes to a large rimmed baking sheet and bake for approximately 18-22 minutes, tossing once halfway through cooking. Tomatoes will be done once they are blistered and beginning to burst. Remove from the oven and set aside until ready to serve.

For the chicken linguini:

  1. Reduce oven heat to 375 degrees F and bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat.

  2. Heat a large oven-safe Dutch oven or cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Add 3 tablespoons of butter. Once the pan is hot and butter is melted, add the chicken breasts.

  3. In a small mixing bowl mix together the Italian seasoning, dried basil, red chili flakes, salt and pepper. Using approximately half the seasoning mix, sprinkle the tops of the chicken breasts. Allow the chicken to cook for approximately 5-6 minutes, or until nicely browned on the bottom side of the chicken. Flip each chicken breast over and season the other half of the chicken breast with the remaining seasoning mixture. Allow the chicken to cook an additional 5 minutes, or until nicely golden on the other side.

  4. Transfer your skillet to the oven and allow chicken to continue cooking until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F. 

  5. When chicken is fully cooked, remove the pan from the oven (with an oven mitt!) and carefully transfer chicken to a clean plate to rest. In the same pan or skillet that the chicken was cooked, add remaining butter, tablespoon of olive oil and diced onion over medium high heat. Sauté onions for approximately 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the minced garlic and sauté for an additional 2 minutes. Increase heat to high and add the white wine. Gently simmer for 2 minutes, allowing alcohol to burn off. 

  6. Working in batches, add the spinach to the pan, allowing the previous batch to wilt before adding a new batch. It took me four batches of fresh spinach to get it all in there (it looks like a lot, but it shrinks WAY down!).

  7. Once all the spinach has wilted and is fully mixed in with the onions and garlic, add the fresh orange juice. At the same time, add the fresh linguini noodles to the pot of boiling water (fresh noodles should only take 2 minutes to boil)***. Simmer the spinach over low heat keeping a close eye on the noodles as you do not want them to over-cook.

  8. Once ready, drain the noodles and transfer to your skillet. Gently toss to combine the linguini with the spinach and onions. If noodles are too dry, add a bit of chicken broth or pasta water, or even some more orange juice! Remove from heat, sprinkle with the shredded parmesan cheese, add the chicken (and chicken juices) back to the pasta and top with your oven roasted tomatoes.

  9. Serve with fresh orange slices and additional shredded parmesan cheese.
     

Enjoy!
 

*Chicken thighs would taste great also, just be sure to adjust cooking time according to meat used.

**You may also use frozen chopped spinach (2 packages), thawed and drained of excess liquid

***If you are using dry pasta noodles, start boiling them when you start sautéing the onions and cook according to package instructions.

Seeing is believing.
Do you see that wine? And there's 10% off Wine Wednesday!

So, I'm curious, what's your favorite wine and food pairing??

Hello! Let's be friends.

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