Lemon Chicken Pasta

There are a few recipes in my collection that are near and dear to my heart not only because they taste so dang good, but because they remind me of wonderful times.  My mama’s cream scones.  My grandmother’s molasses cookies.  My baby girl’s favorite banana muffins.  The back of the Nestle’s chocolate chip bag recipe for chocolate chip cookies that my friend Lynne and I have been making since we were nine years old.  And this lemony, buttery, easy lemon chicken pasta recipe.

I’ve made this about a million times over the years because it is so easy and delicious, but the time I loved best was on a winter weekend many moons ago up in Vermont with two of our best friends.  We all went up to my favorite place in the world, aka the Vermont Cabin.  It was February, and it was Vermont, so there was snow.  Lots of snow.

The Southern daughter was about five years old at the time, and like five year olds everywhere, she thought hurtling down the hill on her sled was pretty much the best thing she had ever done in her life.
Look at those cheeks!  I miss those cheeks.  They are off at college now.  (How did that happen??)

Anyway, going out to dinner up in my beloved part of Vermont requires a good half hour to 45 minutes in the car, and the cabin has a lovely, cozy kitchen, so one night we decided to cook in. There’s Janet cooking, and the Southern daughter setting the table, and me looking all bossy.  I have no idea what that’s about.

And since we were all tuckered out from our snowy day, we wanted something easy as well as delicious, and yep, you guessed it.  Lemon Chicken Pasta!  A little cooked and shredded chicken, some lemons, some pasta, a handful of herbs, some butter and we were on our way.  A little while later we were eating and laughing around that table up there, and even though it was lo these many years ago, every time I make lemon chicken pasta it zaps me right back to a snowy weekend with best friends.

So from me to you, here’s one of my favorites for you to share with good people you love!



Lemon Chicken Pasta

Serves: 4 servings

  • 8 ounces linguine
  • ½ stick butter
  • 2 cups cooked shredded chicken
  • ¼ cup mixed chopped parsley, chives and thyme, plus extra for garnish
  • ½ cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • ½ cup fresh grated parmesan cheese, plus extra for garnish
  • Thin lemon slices for garnish
  1. Cook pasta in heavily salted water until done. Reserve one cup pasta water and drain.
  2. Meantime, heat butter in large skillet over medium heat until melted. Add chicken and stir for 1-2 minutes until heated through.
  3. Stir in herbs and lemon juice.
  4. Add pasta and cheese to chicken mixture and toss. Add just enough pasta water to form a light sauce.
  5. Divide among plates, garnish with extra herbs, cheese and lemon slices and serve.



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  1. This looks amazing! The lemon looks so fresh and tasty. Special story of good times!!! xoxo

  2. I’ve always loved the lemony buttery sauce that comes with chicken picatta but now that I don’t eat the meat part of it, that sauce hasn’t really appeared in my life in FOREVER. I need it…in the form of pasta sauce.

  3. What a pretty photo. Lemon chicken is one of my favorite recipes. Looks like I’m going to need to try it in pasta form now. :)

  4. Looks delicious. And I concur on the Nestles chocolate cookie recipe. All the recipes we try, we still always go back to the original.

  5. Such a great photo of the dish I can taste it :) looks absolutely delicious!

  6. I made this last night and it was a huge hit!! A nice change up from our normal plain spaghetti and parm. Love the lemony flavor.

  7. I just roasted a chicken and this will be a great dish for some leftovers! So simple and yummy, but mine will of course have a bunch of garlic added to the butter and lemon. 😉
    Thanks, Kate!

  8. Dana Lashley says:

    This was so good, my 4 yr old asked to have it again tonight (we just had it last night)! Thanks for sharing! It was so easy to make, too!

  9. I made this tonight for dinner, and it was perfect. Thanks for sharing such a nice, comforting recipe!

  10. Jennifer Klonsky says:

    Had a roast chicken in the fridge and was looking for something fun to use it in…so I just whipped some of this up! My 10yo helped and she loved the results. It was quick and easy! I also added leftover steamed broccoli and it went really well with the buttery/lemony sauce. Thanks for this one!!

  11. Just came across this on Pinterest–looks delicious! I am a sucker for anything with lemon in it.

  12. Looks Yummy and Simple, my favorite kind of meals!

  13. if one does not have access to fresh herbs, what would be the dried equivalent measurement be?

  14. Catherine Roe says:

    I love the idea of Lemon Chicken Pasta! I also love all your stories..and this one was espicially charming! Boy how I know certain foods bring on Flashbacks of the past! I will be trying this soon! Thank you again for all your wonderful recipes…Catherine

    • My pleasure! And yes, there’s nothing like the memories of meals shared with friends — delicious in so many ways!

  15. judi lord says:

    another good name for this would be “chicken piccata pasta” or “piccata pasta” for those who are vegetarian and good for meatless mondays

  16. This recipe looks great, our household is just getting over a cold and I’m the only one not working today so I’m on dinner duty despite still feeling congested. Needless to say I looked for something that was easy but also that we would still enjoy (last night was pizza night)! I really like your recipe because it creates something of a sauce instead of just squeezing lemon juice over a piece of chicken.

    And I love the nostalgia that comes with your recipe! It’s very similar to my memory of going swimming every summer day when I was in 4th or 5th grade, and my friend’s mom who watched us while my mom was working would alway makes tuna sandwiches & sweet tea. Anytime I go swimming now I always want a tuna sandwich!

    • Favorite meals make for wonderful memories, don’t they? Hope you love the lemon chicken, and here’s also hoping everyone in your family gets well soon…summer colds are No Fun!

  17. paintcan says:

    Not clear as to how the drained pasta is not a sticky clump by the time you cook the chicken.

    • The chicken you are working with is already cooked, so by the time the pasta is cooked and drained the butter and chicken and lemon will all be heated, and you can pop the drained pasta in there right away. No clumping! :)


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