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Spicy Chorizo Pasta

In our Spicy Chorizo Pasta you'll find little bits of salty spice-filled Mexican chorizo in each creamy puddle-filled shellbow bite, tender seasoned chicken, and just enough creamy sauce to coat the noodles ever so slightly. This easy, unassuming pasta is a recipe you'll want in your back pocket when you're cravin a little cmfort, a little spice, and whole lotta pasta.

Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword chorizo pasta, chicken and chorizo pasta, spicy chorizo pasta
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 8 people
Calories 577 kcal
Author Nicole


  • 14 oz chicken tenders, cut into bite-sized pieces (about 1-inch)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 1 tsp salt, divided
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 14 oz Mexican chorizo
  • 3 large garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 lb shellbow pasta
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup pasta water or more


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Season with a generous amount of salt It should be almost as salty as the sea. Add chicken to a large bowl. Drizzle with a teaspoon of olive oil. Sprinkle with 3/4 teaspoon salt, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, and black pepper. Use hands to coat the chicken. Set aside.

  2. Heat a large cast iron skillet (we use a 12") or a similar sized skillet with high sides to a medium-high heat. Add the chorizo. Spread it out in the bottom of the pan and let it brown. Try not to move it too much so the surface can brown. After the chorizo has cooked for a bit, use a wooden spoon to break up the meat. Continue to brown  until the chorizo is cooked through, it should take about 8-10 minutes.

  3. When the chorizo has been fully cooked, use a slotted spoon to transfer the chorizo to a colander so the fat can drain. If there is any more than a tablespoon of fat left in the skillet, remove it. Add the marinated chicken to the skillet. Let the chicken brown and then flip over. Continue to brown until cooked through. Remove from the pan and transfer to the same plate as the chorizo. 

  4. Turn the heat down to medium and add two teaspoons of olive oil to the pan. When the oil is hot, add the onion. Saute the onion until it starts to soften, about 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another 1-2 minutes. Be sure the garlic doesn't burn. 

  5. Add in the white wine. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up all the bits at the bottom of the pan. Simmer for 1-2 minutes and then stir in the chicken stock, cream, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Simmer until the sauce has thickened, about 5-6 minutes.

  6. When the sauce has thickned, drop the pasta into the boiling water. Cook it about 1-2 minutes shy of aldente. 

  7. While the pasta cooks, add the chorizo and chicken back to pan with the sauce. Toss. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Use a sieve to transfer the pasta to the sauce and chorizo. If you don't have a sieve, remove 1 cup of the pasta water. Drain pasta in a colander and then transfer to the sauce. Add 1/2 cup of starchy pasta water, parmesan cheese and lemon juice to the pasta, sauce and meat. Gently stir everything together until the cheese has melted. Season to taste with salt and pepper. 

Nutrition Facts
Spicy Chorizo Pasta
Amount Per Serving (1 serving)
Calories 577 Calories from Fat 252
% Daily Value*
Fat 28g43%
Saturated Fat 13g81%
Trans Fat 1g
Cholesterol 108mg36%
Sodium 1067mg46%
Potassium 406mg12%
Carbohydrates 46g15%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 30g60%
Vitamin A 804IU16%
Vitamin C 3mg4%
Calcium 118mg12%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.