Lemony Pasta with Turkey (or Chicken) and Spinach

February 24, 2015
Lemony Pasta with Turkey (or Chicken) and Spinach

Author Notes: This came about as a way to use leftover roasted chicken; you can use leftover turkey or rotisserie takeout chicken for a quick dinner. The following can be altered to size and taste by adding or decreasing ingredients. It makes a simple family dinner.creamtea

Serves: about 4-6


  • 1 pound spaghetti or other pasta
  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 red bell pepper (optional) seeded deveined and cut into strips
  • 1 white or yellow onion (optional), peeled and sliced into strips
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 5 ounces baby spinach leaves, rinsed and spun dry
  • grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 turkey or chicken breast or thigh meat, skinned, pulled off the bone and torn into shreds
  • juice of 1/2 to one lemon, strained to remove seeds
  • salt and pepper to taste
In This Recipe


  1. Fill a large pot with water, add salt to taste, and bring to a boil. Add spaghetti, turn down heat and simmer until al dente. Reserve about a ladle-full of cooking water to be added to the spinach. Drain.
  2. Into a large sauté pan, over medium-low heat pour a good drizzle of olive oil. Add optional onion and red pepper and sauté until just tender; add garlic and sauté until fragrant. Add baby spinach and sauté; add grated lemon peel when softened. Sauté briefly until dark green and tender. Add juice of lemon and the ladleful of pasta cooking water; if there are any pan juices (liquid if warm, gelled if cold) from the chicken breast, add them in too.
  3. Raise heat to medium high and simmer sauce until slightly reduced, about a minute or two. Add turkey or chicken strips, stir until warm. Stir in pasta, sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste; serve.

More Great Recipes:
Pasta|Italian|Spinach|Turkey|Chicken Breast|Winter|Thanksgiving|Spring|Summer|Fall|Entree

Reviews (4) Questions (0)

4 Reviews

Saffron3 May 7, 2015
It's Spring, and green, and this is clean and this makes me sing! Go chicken!
Author Comment
creamtea May 7, 2015
JanetFL February 28, 2015
Sounds wonderful! I'm always looking for new ways to use leftover chicken. Thank you!
Author Comment
creamtea February 28, 2015
Thank you Janet! I hope you try it.