Chicken Pasta with Thyme-Mint Cream Sauce

Cubed chicken sautéed in olive oil, served with pasta in a creamy sauce infused with thyme, mint, and honey.

Chicken Pasta with Thyme and Mint
Elise Bauer

What is it about cream sauces with pasta? The ultimate comfort food, right?

This is a quick and easy chicken pasta with a cream sauce infused with thyme, mint, and lemon.

What a great flavor combination! And the kicker is that by the time the pasta water has come to a boil and the pasta is cooked, everything else is ready too, making for a filling, tasty midweek meal.

Chicken Pasta with Thyme and Mint
Elise Bauer

The cream sauce is one that we found by Chef Stephan Pyles in a 2007 Wall St. Journal. He had paired it with fried chicken.

Chicken Pasta with Thyme-Mint Cream Sauce

Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Servings 4 to 6 servings


  • 1 pound pasta, such as linguine or fettucine

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 1/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into 1-inch cubes

  • Salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/2 cup dry white wine

  • 3/4 cup chicken stock

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream

  • 2 tablespoons fresh spearmint, chopped (plus extra for garnish)

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons thyme, chopped (plus extra for garnish)

  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest

  • 2 teaspoons honey

  • 1 teaspoon sherry vinegar or apple cider vinegar

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt and more salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


  1. Heat 4 quarts of salted water:

    (1 Tbsp of salt for every 2 quarts) in a large pot for the pasta.

  2. Brown the chicken:

    As the water heats, prepare the chicken. Heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium high. Season the chicken pieces generously with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

    Add the chicken pieces to the hot pan, spreading them out initially and then not stirring them, so they have an opportunity to brown. Once lightly browned on one side, use tongs to flip the pieces over so they brown on the second side.

    Elise Bauer

    When pieces are browned on both sides, and just cooked through, remove to a paper towel lined plate.

  3. Make the sauce:

    Deglaze the pan with white wine. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.

    Add the chicken stock and let liquids reduce by half (turn up the heat if necessary). Add the cream, mint, thyme, lemon zest, honey, salt, and vinegar. Reduce the sauce by half again.

    Elise Bauer
    Elise Bauer
  4. Cook the pasta:

    Once the pasta water is boiling, add the pasta and cook following directions on pasta package.

  5. Add pasta and chicken to sauce:

    When pasta is ready, reserve a half cup of the pasta cooking water, and drain the pasta. Add the pasta to the cream sauce when cream sauce has been reduced by half and can thickly coat a spoon.

    Add chicken to the pasta and sauce. Add more salt and pepper to taste (be generous with both!) Add back some of the reserved pasta water if after a few minutes the pasta needs more liquid to loosen it.

    Serve immediately. Garnish with a little chopped fresh mint and thyme.

    Elise Bauer
Chicken Pasta with Thyme and Mint
Elise Bauer
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
533 Calories
33g Fat
29g Carbs
29g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 to 6
Amount per serving
Calories 533
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 33g 42%
Saturated Fat 14g 70%
Cholesterol 167mg 56%
Sodium 511mg 22%
Total Carbohydrate 29g 10%
Dietary Fiber 2g 6%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 29g
Vitamin C 2mg 9%
Calcium 52mg 4%
Iron 2mg 13%
Potassium 374mg 8%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.