Chicken Penne Florentine

This is the third dish in a series of 4 recipes that I cooked up with many of the same ingredients.  My goal was to demonstrate that with the addition or subtraction of a few additional flavours, you can create a lot of diverse dinners using the same ingredients.  This is a handy tool to have if you can get your produce super fresh and at a good price.


At this time of year, I’m scooping up so much produce at the farmers markets and I don’t want to waste a single bite.  If you liked the Balsamic Chicken with Strawberries and the Spinach Salad I’ve done in the last week, I can almost guarantee that you’ll love this.  If I had some shrimp I would have added it as well.  I’m fairly certain this is the first time I’ve ever looked in my freezer and there was no shrimp – how did that happen??

That’s ok because this was delicious just as it is.  Keep it healthy and use whole grain penne.  The recipe calls for white wine but chicken or vegetable stock can easily be used as a substitute.   Fresh basil only, please – you know the rules!  And no frozen spinach please.  That would just be a disaster!  If you email and tell me you’re living in the Arctic or Yukon, you’ll get a pass.  Otherwise, get to your market, please!

Chicken Penne Florentine | Simply Fresh Dinners

I used cherry tomatoes because I love them but you can use whatever you prefer.  Ummm, I hesitate to say this because I’m getting very bossy today but please use fresh parmesan cheese.  You know that container in the store is just chock full of garbage, right?  Besides, it’s horribly expensive!  I’m probably going to get some emails today, lol.  Awwhh well, I love to hear from you either way!

Chicken Penne Florentine | Simply Fresh Dinners

I had some balsamic chicken already cooked up from the previous recipes so this dish was even quicker for me.  When you have the time, I would recommend cooking up chicken breasts and freezing them for just these types of recipes.  It will make your weekday cooking a breeze.  Hmmm, that gives me an idea.  I should do a roundup of quick and easy ways to use chicken breasts.  Would that be helpful?

I hope you will love this dish as much as I do.  Next up we’re going to use some shiso.  Ever heard of it?  It was brand new to me and I’m excited to share it.   Cheers!


Chicken Penne Florentine
Author: Robyn
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
  • 6 ounces dried multigrain pasta
  • non-stick cooking spray
  • 8 ounces, skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons snipped fresh basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup white wine (use chicken stock if you don’t use wine)
  • 1/2 cup organic chicken stock
  • 1.5 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 6 ounce package of fresh baby spinach
  • 1/4 shredded Parmesan cheese
  1. Cook pasta according to package directions, drain and rinse with cold water.
  2. Meanwhile, coat a large non-stick skillet with cooking spray; heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add chicken and cook 5-7 minutes or until no longer pink. Remove and set aside.
  3. Add mushrooms, onion, garlic, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes; cook for 1 minute on medium heat and add white wine. Cook for 3 minutes. Add tomatoes and chicken stock and cook for 5 minutes. Add spinach, basil, penne and chicken. Turn off heat. Mix well, letting the penne soak up the liquid. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and serve.
Serving size: 2.5 cups Fat: 15 g Saturated fat: 3 g Carbohydrates: 38 g Sugar: 5 g Sodium: 371 mg Fiber: 7 g Protein: 22 g Cholesterol: 41 mg

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Chicken Penne Florentine | Simply Fresh Dinners


  • Reply
    June 27, 2015 at 7:08 pm

    Hi Robyn, never heard of shiso, can’t wait to see the recipe….this dish looks wonderful, love all the bright red and green in your meal.
    cheri recently posted…Cottage Cooking Club JuneMy Profile

    • Reply
      June 30, 2015 at 5:11 am

      Thanks so much, Cheri. I had never heard of shiso either but it’s been fun discovering all about it’s properties. Don’t you love the colour in summer foods?
      Robyn recently posted…Chicken Penne FlorentineMy Profile

  • Reply
    Bam's Kitchen
    June 27, 2015 at 7:59 pm

    You mean to tell me you are having an out of shrimp experience?!!! Oh my goodness it seems like you are having a very significant inventory issue that you need to sort out ASAP. This is a gorgeous dish with fresh vibrant flavours using the bounty of the farmers market harvest. I am with you on using everything fresh and not processed here, especially when we are dealing with the king of the cheeses. Gorgeous photos and can’t wait to my pins to try this recipe later, that top above photo in the pan is absolutely amazing!!! I think even vegetarian without chicken would be very delicious too, don’t you think? Wishing you a super weekend!
    Bam’s Kitchen recently posted…Wasabi Bloody MARRIED Flank SteakMy Profile

    • Reply
      June 30, 2015 at 5:14 am

      Haha! Once I realized there was no shrimp I was off to the store that day, Bobbi. Can’t have that!! Thanks so much for your kind words. Weird thing is, I didn’t even use a tripod for that last shot. Funny how you can spend all morning with a tripod and not get the shot you want and then you take a couple freehand shots and boom – there it is!
      Yes…love the idea of a vegetarian dish with this!
      I’m off to see your steak – hmmm.. .didn’t get an email about that one!
      Robyn recently posted…Chicken Penne FlorentineMy Profile

  • Reply
    June 27, 2015 at 9:01 pm

    Love the look of this dish (seriously I could see your close up last photo on the cover of a food magazine!) and it sounds delicious. I am fascinated how you used similar ingredients in several different ways. I have never heard of shiso so will be awaiting your next post : )
    Mindy recently posted…Now and LaterMy Profile

    • Reply
      June 30, 2015 at 5:19 am

      You are SO sweet, Mindy – I’m going to cut your comment out and paste it to my bathroom mirror, lol. Photography is definitely a journey but I finally feel like I’m making some headway 🙂
      You’ll love shiso! I think maybe you can even grow it 🙂
      Robyn recently posted…Chicken Penne FlorentineMy Profile

  • Reply
    Debbie Harris
    June 27, 2015 at 11:13 pm

    Oooh eeee… That looks wonderful Robyn!
    Fresh basil, you sold me when I saw that.:-)
    I just happen to have some shrimp that I need to use up, so it looks like this is going to be a dish for tomorrow.
    Your photo is amazing!!

    Yes,I would love to hear more about your easy chicken recipes. This time of year, easy sounds great.

    Sweet blessings to you, Robyn.

    • Reply
      June 30, 2015 at 5:21 am

      I had a feeling you’d like this dish, Debbie 🙂 I know the shrimp will be so delicious with this! I’ll get to work on a chicken post for you!
      Thanks for your visit and kind words, sweet friend. Hugs to you. xoxo
      Robyn recently posted…Chicken Penne FlorentineMy Profile

  • Reply
    Anita Rivera
    June 28, 2015 at 7:01 am

    My dear friend, GOOD MORNING!

    Your photos, oh they are lovely! In the RAW? I am yet to discover how that works, but now I am going to try my hand at photographing food….this will be a challenge, you know it too well! But your dishes are always a treat to behold and they send my imagination and stomach to places of WANT! teehehehhe

    Lovely as always dear friend. Let’s chat again soon! Anita

    • Reply
      June 30, 2015 at 5:23 am

      Hi Anita,
      Yup, I only shoot in RAW now. Once you try it, you’ll never go back. Ohhh, I love that you’re going to shoot food and I know your results will be spectacular! You’re a natural for sure.
      Love to chat – email and we’ll set up a time! Thanks for your kind words as always, friend.
      Robyn recently posted…Chicken Penne FlorentineMy Profile

  • Reply
    June 29, 2015 at 9:23 am

    Another lovely dish and great photos. You have really got the photography down! Great using leftover chicken or whatever for another day’s meal. What is shiso? LOL Have a fabulous week my sweet friend. Lots of love from W.W. xo
    Linda recently posted…Paradise Beyond the New Gate!My Profile

    • Reply
      June 30, 2015 at 5:25 am

      I’ve got a ways to go yet, Linda, but it’s coming – thanks so much! Shiso is an ingredient that I think you will love 🙂
      Hope your week is off to a great start, Wonder Woman. xooxox
      Robyn recently posted…Chicken Penne FlorentineMy Profile

  • Reply
    June 29, 2015 at 5:13 pm

    this looks and sounds like a really nice summer meal!!!!
    Debbie recently posted…Hydrangeas From The Garden!!My Profile

  • Reply
    Michelle @ Vitamin Sunshine
    June 29, 2015 at 11:39 pm

    Beautiful pasta– and so simple. Just perfect for a summer meal 🙂 Pile on the basil!
    Michelle @ Vitamin Sunshine recently posted…Coconut Mint Iced Mocha + HOT Summer RecipesMy Profile

  • Reply
    Michelle @ Healthy Recipe Ecstasy
    June 30, 2015 at 9:14 am

    I love love love a fresh pasta! And this looks so fresh Robyn!
    Michelle @ Healthy Recipe Ecstasy recently posted…Roasted Red Pepper, Goat Cheese and Fennel PastaMy Profile

    • Reply
      July 5, 2015 at 6:07 am

      Hi Michelle,
      I was off pasta for awhile and now I’m back with a vengeance, lol. I can’t seem to stop eating it! Next up, I’m making that delicious dish you just posted. It’s beautiful!
      Robyn recently posted…Pappardelle with Salmon and Sugar Snap PeasMy Profile

  • Reply
    Shannon Gauger
    July 3, 2015 at 11:16 pm

    This looks wonderful! Found you on Food and Fitness Friday 🙂
    Shannon Gauger recently posted…Food and Fitness FridayMy Profile

  • Reply
    July 4, 2015 at 4:51 pm

    Wow, this sounds delicious. I love how bright and colorful it is.

    By the way, I would love to have you post on my new blog hop—the Weekend Blog Hop at My Flagstaff Home ( It begins on Thursday evenings and lasts through the weekend, if you’re interested.


  • Reply
    Brian Jones
    July 5, 2015 at 2:24 am

    This looks beautiful, vibrant and fresh! I often cook from the garden so end up with many of the same ingredients at the same time and it is amazing how you can vary them up and get a really diverse set of meals 🙂

    • Reply
      July 5, 2015 at 5:19 am

      Thanks so much, Brian. I love these ingredients so I’m always trying to find different ways to use them, lol. Do you have a big garden? That’s my next project!

      • Reply
        Brian Jones
        July 5, 2015 at 5:33 am

        You’re welcome 🙂 You could say our garden is large, it is 5,500m² of which 1,200m² are set aside for vegetables… It has really changed the way we eat and cook as you often end up with gluts of produce all at the same time, it is challenging but fun!
        Brian Jones recently posted…Balsamic & Garlic Mushroom RavioliMy Profile

        • Reply
          July 5, 2015 at 5:37 am

          Wow, that IS a big garden! I may be asking you for some advice during the coming winter months for next Spring. Now – I have to check out the ravioli again. I only had a peek of it on FB!
          Robyn recently posted…Pappardelle with Salmon and Sugar Snap PeasMy Profile

          • Brian Jones
            July 5, 2015 at 5:43 am

            Growing food really depends on your climate, even our crops are different in Eastern Hungary than they are in Western Hungary just 400km away. We have brutally cold winters and long hot and dry summers and something fails every year and there is no way of predicting what it is, but mother nature is a kind mistress. So long as the soil is well turned over and crops are watered and there is no frost stuff just seems to grow 🙂
            Brian Jones recently posted…Balsamic & Garlic Mushroom RavioliMy Profile

  • Reply
    July 5, 2015 at 9:34 am

    Hi Robyn,
    Great recipe. I love chicken and with all these wonderful healthy ingredients is sounds extra special and looks fabulous with all the colors. Thanks for sharing on Real Food Fridays. Pinned & twitted.
    Marla recently posted…Real Food Fridays #95 – Be Patriotic The Healthy, Organic WayMy Profile

  • Reply
    July 6, 2015 at 9:45 am

    what great colors in a dish.. simply love it
    Fareeha recently posted…Hyderabadi Bagare Baingan recipeMy Profile

  • Reply
    Miz Helen
    July 8, 2015 at 4:21 pm

    I just love the photos and the awesome dish! Thanks so much for sharing this awesome recipe with us at Full Plate Thursday!
    Come Back Soon,
    Miz Helen
    Miz Helen recently posted…Skillet SuccotashMy Profile

  • Reply
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    July 9, 2015 at 9:35 am

    What a colorful and yummy-looking dinner! I will have to try this with some gluten-free pasta. This post will be featured on tomorrow’s #FoodandFitnessFriday. Thanks for sharing!
    Jebbica recently posted…Review: FAGE Total Split CupsMy Profile

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    Michelle @ A Dish of Daily Life
    August 13, 2015 at 12:35 pm

    I am always on the lookout for dinners like this! I’ll be adding it to our fall lineup! Thanks, Robyn!
    Michelle @ A Dish of Daily Life recently posted…Chicken Lettuce Wraps with Avocado Mango SalsaMy Profile

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