Make pasta more interesting with succulent chicken and smoky bacon in a sweet barbecue sauce.
This barbecue chicken and bacon pasta recipe is one of those happy accidents that came about when I was raiding my fridge trying to come up with something for dinner. I can’t remember what it was I’d been planning to cook, but I went to the fridge only to discover that due to my poor planning, whatever it was had gone out of date (I really really must start checking the labels when my shopping arrives). So it was emergency dinner time.
Whenever I have a dinner emergency I’ll usually head towards pasta. It’s pretty quick, very easy, and can be made to go with pretty much anything. But what to put with it?
Fortunately I had quite a bit to choose from and opted for some leftover roast chicken, smoked streaky bacon, and some experimental barbecue sauce (which was roughly based on this recipe from BBC good food) that I’d made the day before and put into the fridge until I could think what to use it for. Being a fan of hunter’s chicken, I knew that this combination of chicken, bacon and barbecue sauce should work well, so I flung it all together, sprinkled some grated cheese on top and ta dah… yummy emergency dinner 🙂 .
The barbecue sauce isn’t the thick, brown kind that you’d use to dip your chips in to. It’s a tomato based sauce with hints of barbecue flavour, which are then further enhanced by the smoked bacon.
What are your go to foods to cook when you have a dinner emergency?
This recipe can be easily doubled if you’re cooking for more people. Just be aware that it might take a little longer to reduce the sauce to the right consistency. It’s also suitable for freezing (sauce only), just make sure you defrost it thoroughly in the fridge before reheating, and that it is piping hot when you reheat it. If you are planning on chilling or freezing the sauce to use later then I’d suggest cooking the sauce for 10 minutes less than suggested in the recipe. That way it can continue to reduce down further when you reheat it later. If you haven’t done this then simply add a little water to the sauce when reheating to stop it burning.
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Barbecue Chicken and Bacon Pasta
- 4 servings of uncooked pasta - I use 300g of dried fusilli
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion
- 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
- 2 cloves garlic
- 4 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 3 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp soft brown sugar
- 1 large chicken breast - roughly 200g
- 4 rashers smoked streaky bacon
- Salt and pepper
- Bring a pan of salted water to the boil for the pasta.
- Meanwhile, finely chop the onion and crush the garlic.
- In a separate pan, heat half the olive oil (½ tbsp) and add the chopped onion. Cook on a low heat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent it burning.
- After 5 minutes, add the garlic, chopped tomatoes (2x 400g cans), Worcestershire sauce (4 tbsp), white wine vinegar (3 tbsp) and soft brown sugar (2 tbsp) and cook on a low heat for 25-30 minutes until the liquid has reduced, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. Season with salt and pepper.
- Meanwhile cook the pasta according to the packet instructions.
- While the sauce and pasta are cooking, chop the chicken breast (1 large) and bacon (4 rashers) into small bitesized pieces.
- Heat the remaining olive oil (½ tbsp) in a frying pan and add the chicken. Brown for a minute or so and then add the bacon. Cook the chicken and bacon for a further 5 minutes until cooked through.
- Once the pasta, sauce and meat have all finished cooking, drain the pasta. Add the sauce and meat and stir to combine.
Any nutritional information provided is the estimated nutritional information per serving. Please refer to my guide to Charlotte’s Lively Kitchen nutritional information if you would like to learn more about how this is calculated.
Free From/Suitable For…
The ingredients I used to make this recipe are all free from the following allergens. However, please check any labels carefully for allergens you need to avoid as brands can vary and product recipes can change over time.
- Tree Nut-Free
- Sulphur Dioxide & Sulphite-Free
Made this for tea tonight and it was delicious. Definitely need to keep stirring the sauce because it does burn otherwise! Added some paprika just because I could 🙂
A definite weeknight dinner regular, thank you
This looks like a great pasta recipe. It is going on my to do list!
The Old Fat Guy
Charlotte Oates says
Thanks David. I hope you enjoy it