This Healthy Penne Vodka Sauce with Chicken recipe is one of my FAVORITE 21 Day Fix Meals and my husband couldn’t agree more! This vodka sauce recipe is gluten free and has a dairy free option!
**This post was originally published on August 25, 2015, but I have recently taken new photos and tested a dairy free option, so I am updating it and republishing!
Confession #50 – I made this Healthy Penne Vodka with Chicken dinner last week. Days later, it’s still on my mind.
I shared the recipe with my cousin, and she made it last night.
Enter irrational jealousy.
It was so freaking good, I honestly can’t stop thinking about it.
Even my husband was a huge fan, and sometimes he can be my toughest critic. He definitely lets me know when something tastes “healthy” if it’s not supposed to.
After dinner, I found him in the kitchen cleaning the sauce out of the pan.
With his spoon.
And vodka sauce is one of his favorite meals, so the fact that he said it was “legit” means a lot.
Especially since I used plain Greek yogurt instead of heavy cream. He claims to hate plain Greek yogurt. And I added turkey bacon in place of pancetta or prosciutto. But even with my skinny substitutions, the sauce was creamy, tangy, and oh so savory.
I have recently also tried this with full fat coconut milk, and guys…it’s ridic. So if you are dairy free, you can easily still enjoy this dinner.
Sometimes now I even mix both the Greek yogurt AND the coconut milk together for extra creamy power!!
Come to momma!
How to Make Healthy Penne Vodka with Chicken
First, chop your turkey bacon into bits and sauté until brown. Remove that from your pan.
Next, add olive oil to pan and diced onions. Cook for a few minutes until they begin to soften, then add garlic. Cook for another minute.
Add can of crushed tomatoes to the pan, as well salt, red pepper if using, and the herbs. Stir in bacon and vodka. Simmer for ten minutes on medium low heat.
Add in Greek yogurt or coconut milk and Parmesan cheese. Stir to combine and cook for a few more minutes. The sauce should turn slightly more pinkish.
Plate your penne pasta (or sub zoodles for low carb), add chicken, then top with sauce. Add a bit more Parmesan on top!
If you make this Healthy Penne Vodka pasta, let me know!
I promise to keep my emotions in check.
Want more Healthy Pasta Recipes? Check these out!
21 Day Fix Pumpkin Pasta with Spicy Sausage
Healthy Instant Pot Baked Ziti
Instant Pot Sausage Broccoli Pasta
Spinach and Sausage Lasagna Roll Ups
How to Measure Pasta for the 21 Day Fix + 21 Day Fix Pasta Recipes
Healthy Penne Vodka with Chicken
- 4 slices turkey bacon nitrate-free
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1/2 medium red onion chopped
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 28 oz crushed tomatoes
- 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon of vodka be sure it's gluten free if you need
- 4 tablespoons 2% plain Greek yogurt or sub 1/3 cup full fat coconut milk
- 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese and more for topping for dairy free, sub Violife or another dairy free parm
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
- 2 teaspoon dried oregano flakes
- Sprinkle salt
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes or more to taste (this is optional...feel free to leave out or add at the end to taste)
- 1 lb boneless chicken breasts baked or grilled and cut into bite sized pieces
- gluten free Penne Pasta or Zoodles
- Chop turkey bacon into bits and sautee until brown. Remove from pan.
- Add olive oil to pan and diced onions. Cook for a few minutes until they begin to soften, then add garlic. Cook for another minute.
- Add can of crushed tomatoes to the pan, as well salt, red pepper if using, and the herbs. Stir in bacon and vodka. Simmer for ten minutes on medium low heat.
- Add in Greek yogurt or coconut milk and Parmesan cheese. Stir to combine and cook for a few more minutes. The sauce should turn slightly more pinkish.
- Plate your penne pasta - 1/2 cup per serving (or sub zoodles for low carb), add 3/4 cup of chicken, then top with 1/4 of the sauce (about 2/3 cup). Add a bit more Parmesan on top!
Nancy Forrester says
I loved this recipe! Thank you! I have made lots of your recipes and all of them have been well-loved in my house especially the cheeseburger soup! But, really too many to mention.
I am looking for the calories in each serving. I don’t see it listed, only the points of WW. Am I missing it?
Hi! Thank you so much for trying so many recipes! And yay for loving them – thank you!
As of right now the calorie counts are not listed on the recipes but they are coming VERY soon so please stay tuned!
Darlene Dahlman says
I made this tonight for dinner and everyone loved it! One question though, what kind of parmesan did you use? The reason I ask is because I used shredded parmesan instead of grated and my texture was different than yours. Still very good though, my toddler gobbled it up!
I typically shred right off the block for all my cheeses! It makes sauces, etc. so much creamier!
Nancy Viola says
Recipe didn’t specify how much pasta, 8oz. Or 1 lb.?
For 4 (1/2 cup) servings, it would be roughly 1 1/2 cups of dry pasta
Josh Magnan says
How much is one serving size?
1/2 cup pasta, 3/4 cup chicken, 2/3 cup sauce = 1 serving which is 1 RED, 1 GREEN, 1/4 BLUE, 1 YELLOW
Lisa Purkey says
Made this as Sunday Supper and I shocked myself that I made something so amazing!!! Even before the Greek yogurt it was amazing but put it all together and it’s out of this world!!!!
Yay, Lisa!!! So proud of you!!!!
Loved it! Made this tonight and absolutely loved it. We are not 21dfxers so we are not counting containers. I didn’t use sugar free tomatoes. I am the only one in my family that likes chunky tomatoes, so I always have to blend tomatoes for any recipe. I used one can petite diced and one can hunts fire roasted tomato with garlic. I omitted the red pepper because the fire roasted tomatoes have a little kick to them. I also used 1/4 heaping cup of Greek yogurt. I made turkey meatballs (sweet Italian turkey sausage, panko, grated Parmesan, one egg, and salt) cooked in air fryer at 350 for 13 minutes, turning over halfway through. These turned out great, too, and went so well with the sauce. I made mini farfalle for my kids but my hubby and I ate bird’s eye veggie penne pasta. It is is great substitution for pasta (but still has carbs). Thank you for posting! I’ve enjoyed every recipe of yours that I tried!
Yum Yum!!! Totally kicked my Pasta craving and felt like such a comfort food. Thanks for all the great ideas.
Do you think it will still taste just as good without the vodka? I had this on my to try list and now I found out I’m pregnant!
Sorry – just seeing this! I do think so!
Is the portion servings for just 1 cup of sauce or does it include the chicken and pasta
It includes the chicken and pasta 🙂
Have you tried making it diary free? Just wondering what my options are. Coconut milk instead of yogurt?
It’s on my list to try this week! I was going to do full fat coconut milk!
Is the bacon part of the flavor of the sauce? Just wondering since it isn’t typically used in traditional vodka sauce recipes. How much would the taste change if not used? Have you tried it this way?
My grandma always used pancetta in her vodka sauce, so for me, it does add to the flavor! I think it would be fine without, though!
Must always side with Grandma!! Thank you… cant wait to try this!
Hi, you never mention when in the steps to cook the chicken. Do you cook it in the sauce or separately?
I usually grill it before or use chicken that I have prepped on Sunday…
I made this tonight and it really tastes great. I expected more of a pinkish color. Definitely looks dark red to me still. And I added extra Greek yogurt. But I will definitely make it again! Thank you!!
I’m glad you enjoyed it, even though the color wasn’t the traditional pink :).
Hi there! I made this tonight- and you are right, the sauce is SO good! Definitely one of my new “go to” recipes. I am newer to 21DF- should there be a purple container count for the tomatoes? Thanks for all your great posts!
Hi! Since I don’t use tomatoes with added sugar, I count them as a green! Hope this helps and so glad you liked it, Rachel!
This was 5 stars super delish! I poured it over barilla plus noodles and loved it! Can’t wait to try more of your recipes.
So awesome to hear! Thanks for the great feedback and welcome!
I love this recipe, and was just wondering if the sauce is considered 1 green container? Or are you counting the zoodles as 1 green container?
The sauce alone is 1 GREEN. With Zoodles, you can get 2 GREEN! Glad you liked it :).
I made this last night and it was awesome! In fact I have made several of your recipes and loved them all( sloppy joe sweet potato, blue cheese burger)Thanks you so much for sharing your recipes and I really enjoy reading your blog ?
Thank you SO much, Montyca! Comments like these make my day…thank you for trusting me enough to try my recipes! So happy to hear they were a success!
Hi, the recipe says “1/4 cup plus 1 T of vodka” – A 1/4 cup of what? Vodka? and is the “T” a tablespoon? of Vodka? Confused by that bit. Thanks
Hi! Sorry for confusion. Yes, I use 1/4 cup plus an additional Tablespoon of vodka. A 1/4 cup just wasn’t enough.
Cannot wait….making this tonight!!!
How was it?? 🙂
Hi, this sounds delicious so I was planning on making it for dinner tomorrow (please don’t be jealous 😉 ) but I was wondering what size can of tomatoes do you use? 28oz can or just a 14.5oz one? THANKS!
Hi!!! A 28oz can is perfect!!