Slow Cooker Cajun Chicken Pasta

Slow Cooker Cajun Chicken Pasta is a comforting and easy pasta dish that only requires 10 minutes of preparation while your slow cooker does the rest of the work! This Cajun chicken pasta is packed with rich and vibrant flavors with tender al dente penne pasta – perfect as a hearty midweek family dinner!

Bowl of slow cooker Cajun chicken pasta with fresh bell peppers and parsley on a countertop.

I could eat pasta for days and this slow cooker Cajun pasta is no exception! Every mouthful offers a mixture of juicy pieces of chicken, sweet bell peppers, and tender penne pasta, fully coated in a rich and creamy Cajun-infused sauce, similar in level of deliciousness to this Instant Pot Taco Pasta!

Gone are the days when preparing a wholesome family meal required loads of time and attention. This slow cooker Cajun chicken pasta is here to prove that you can spend minimal time in the kitchen and still be praised by your dinner guests! Give it a try, you won’t be disappointed!

Overhead view of a bowl of slow cooker Cajun chicken pasta with wooden spoon, yellow bell pepper, fresh parsley, and decorative kitchen cloth.

🌟 WHY THIS SLOW COOKER CAJUN CHICKEN PASTA WORKS

This slow cooker Cajun chicken pasta is a one-pot recipe that allows you to prep the ingredients and get on with other daily tasks while the slow cooker works its magic, turning simple ingredients into a satisfying and wholesome meal.

This dish offers a great balance of protein, carbohydrates, and fats. It even includes vegetables in the form of tomatoes and peppers (not too much for the picky eaters!).

If you don’t have time to watch over the cooking of your family’s meal, using your trusty slow cooker is the way to go! Easily adapt this dish by using a different meat, adding your favorite veggies, and changing the type of pasta.

🍽 KEY INGREDIENTS

Ingredients for slow cooker Cajun chicken pasta on a marble countertop.

Chicken – I’ve used boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces.
Cajun seasoning – A key seasoning for this dish. Slap ya mama is definitely one of my favorites!
Bell peppers – Red and yellow, cut into strips or sliced.
Chicken broth – Opt for low-sodium if you can.
Fire-roasted tomatoes – These are sweet and smokey. For a spicy kick, consider using Ro-Tel tomatoes.
Heavy cream – Great for adding flavor and thickening the sauce.
Penne pasta – You can use your favorite pasta instead of penne pasta.
Parmesan cheese – Freshly shredded for best flavor.

Swaps

Pasta – I’ve used penne pasta for this dish, but you can use another favorite pasta type. I always recommend a nice hearty pasta such as: rigatoni, elbow, fusilli, and campanelle. Gluten-free pasta can also be used, but you will have to keep a closer eye on it because it will turn to mushy texture if it gets over cooked.
Tomatoes – Use Ro-Tel tomatoes for an additional kick of heat in this pasta dish.
Chicken – Boneless skinless chicken thighs can be used instead. You can definitely use turkey tenderloins, and smoked sausages in place of chicken.

πŸ₯£ EQUIPMENT

You’ll need an 8-quart slow cooker. That’s it!

πŸ”ͺ HOW TO MAKE

This one-pot pasta recipe couldn’t get any easier! Add the ingredients to the slow cooker and allow it to work its magic. Follow my simple recipe steps to start this recipe a few hours before dinner while you get to focus on other tasks in your day.

Preparations

Prepare the ingredients by dicing the chicken, chopping the vegetables, and gathering the other ingredients. To get ready, I like to turn on the slow cooker to get the warming process started.

Cooking Instructions

Step 1
Add the diced chicken to the slow cooker with 1/2 teaspoon of Cajun seasoning.

Step 2
Add the peppers, onions, and garlic on top of the chicken with the remaining Cajun seasoning. Add the chicken broth, tomatoes, and 1/2 cup of heavy cream.

Step 3
Cook on high for 3 hours.

Step 4
Add the pasta to the slow cooker 30-40 minutes before the end of the cooking time. At the same time, stir in the cornstarch and water, and stir again. Place the lid back on and stir every 10 minutes until the pasta is cooked.

Step 5
Once cooked, add in the 1/4 cup of heavy cream, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. Stir and serve with parsley on top.

πŸ’­ COOKING TIPS

  • Only add the pasta towards the end of the cooking time to ensure it doesn’t overcook and turn mushy.  
  • You can brown the chicken pieces in the slow cooker first for added flavor, but this isn’t necessary.
  • If you want it spicier, please feel free to add in more cajun seasoning.

πŸ“– RECIPE VARIATIONS

A few easy tweaks can be made to this satisfying pasta meal. While I love this recipe as is, here are some of my recommendations:

  • Make it Vegetarian: You can easily use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth, and keep the chicken out and use a heartier style produce, such as mushrooms.
  • Creamy Cajun Spinach Alfredo: You can completely omit the tomatoes in the recipe. This will help balance out the acidity. Baby spinach can be added in at the last minute, since it doesn’t long to cook. Use a bag of fresh baby spinach, which is approximately 7 cups of UNCOOKED baby spinach. Empty contents into slow cooker and cover with the lid for about 5 minutes. Then start stirring and folding baby spinach into pasta.
Overhead view of a bowl of slow cooker Cajun chicken pasta with fresh bell peppers and parsley on a countertop.

πŸ₯— WHAT TO SERVE WITH SLOW COOKER CAJUN CHICKEN PASTA

Bread

Enjoy this Cajun chicken pasta with homemade dinner rolls, cornbread, sliced bread, or garlic bread.

Veggies or Salad

A side of grilled or roasted vegetables, or a simple green salad pairs beautifully with this pasta dish.

πŸ™‹ FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

CAN I COOK THE PASTA SEPARATELY?

You could cook your penne pasta separately from the rest of the ingredients and add it to the slow cooker just before serving. I think it is convenient to add the pasta to the slow cooker. I’ve only added the pasta after cooking the chicken to avoid the pasta turning mushy. The pasta also absorbs a lot of flavor from being cooked with the other ingredients.

DO YOU HAVE TO BROWN THE CHICKEN BEFORE ADDING IT TO THE SLOW COOKER?

No, I’ve added the raw diced chicken straight into the slow cooker to cook without first browning it. That said, you could brown it first, but be careful that you don’t overcook the chicken.

IS IT BETTER TO COOK CHICKEN ON HIGH OR LOW IN CROCKPOT?

Cooking chicken on low is usually recommended to ensure that the chicken cooks evenly. In this recipe, there is less risk of the chicken cooking unevenly or being undercooked as it has been diced into smaller pieces.

Bowl of slow cooker Cajun chicken pasta on a wooden board with decorative kitchen cloth, fresh ingredients, and a wooden spoon.

🧊 STORING AND ♨️ REHEATING

FRIDGE

Once completely cooled, store leftover Cajun chicken pasta in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days.

FREEZER

This Cajun pasta dish can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months and thawed overnight in the fridge before reheating.

REHEAT

Reheat single portions in the microwave or on the stovetop for larger portions with a splash of broth or cream to loosen it.

🍳 MORE SATISFYING PASTA DISHES

πŸ‘ͺ SERVING SIZE

This recipe makes 6 servings. It can be halved or doubled, depending on the size of your Slow Cooker.

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πŸ“‹ RECIPE

Yield: 6 Servings

Slow Cooker Cajun Chicken Pasta

Bowl of slow cooker Cajun chicken pasta with fresh bell peppers and parsley on a countertop.

Slow Cooker Cajun Chicken Pasta is a comforting one-pot meal consisting of juicy chicken, sweet peppers, fire-roasted tomatoes, al dente penne pasta, and a thick and creamy Cajun-infused Parmesan sauce.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast (cut into bite sized pieces)
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Cajun seasoning
  • 1 red pepper (cut into strips)
  • 1 yellow pepper (cut into strips)
  • 1 red onion (sliced)
  • 2 garlic cloves (minced)
  • 2 cans of chicken broth
  • 1 can fire roasted tomatoes
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 12 oz penne pasta
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 3/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • A sprinkle of parsley

Instructions

    1. Add diced chicken breast to an 8 quart slow cooker, add 1/2 tbsp of cajun. Add all the peppers, onions and garlic on top and add the remaining Cajun.
    2. Add in the chicken broth, tomatoes and 1/2 cup heavy cream. Cook on high for 3 hours or until the chicken is cooked.
    3. About 30-40 minutes before done, add in the uncooked pasta and stir. Add the cornstarch and water mixture and stir again, put the lid back on and stir every 10 minutes until pasta is cooked.
    4. Once done add in the 1/4 cup heavy cream, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. Stir and serve with topped parsley (optional)

Notes

You can change the timing to cook on LOW heat for 4 -5 hours

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