This Olive Garden chicken scampi recipe is a copycat dish with a creamy garlic sauce, colorful bell peppers, and juicy chicken, all tossed with perfectly cooked pasta.
Prep Time15 minutesmins
Cook Time30 minutesmins
Total Time45 minutesmins
Course: Main Course
Keyword: Olive Garden Chicken Scampi
½poundthin spaghetti noodles
¾teaspoonItalian seasoning blend
1 to 1½poundsboneless skinless chicken breasts,cut into 1½-inch wide x 4-inch long strips
1small red pepper,cut into thin strips
1small yellow pepper,cut into thin strips
1small green bell pepper,cut into strips
½mediumred onion,cut into strips
1½tablespoonsgrated fresh garlic
¼cupfresh squeezed lemon juice
¼cupdry white wine
2cupslow-sodium chicken broth
2tablespoonsfresh parsleychopped, divided
In a large pot of boiling water, cook your thin spaghetti noodles for 9 to 10 minutes or according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
In a shallow dish (a pie pan works great), add the all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon salt, Italian seasoning, and black pepper. Stir to combine. Remove 2 tablespoons of the seasoned flour and set it aside in a small bowl.
Coat each of the boneless skinless chicken strips in the seasoned flour and place it onto a plate.
In a large skillet on medium-high heat, add the olive oil and unsalted butter. Allow the oil and butter to heat up to approximately 350°F before adding the chicken strips to lightly pan-fry. A quick way to test the temperature of your oil is to sprinkle a little pinch of flour into the oil. If it starts to sizzle, then your oil should be hot enough.
Place half the amount of your coated chicken strips into the skillet of hot oil to lightly pan-fry for 3 to 4 minutes on each side or until lightly golden and fully cooked. You should have no pink remaining, and the internal temperature of the chicken should be 165°F.
Remove the chicken strips and place them onto a plate to rest. Repeat with the second half of the coated chicken strips.
Once all the chicken has been lightly pan-fried and removed to a plate, add the sliced red peppers, yellow peppers, green peppers, red onion, and grated fresh garlic to the hot skillet. Cook the vegetables for 4-5 minutes or until you get a light sear on the vegetables and they are tender.
Remove the cooked peppers and onions from the skillet and place them on a plate.
Turn the heat to the skillet down to medium-low and add the 2 tablespoons of the reserved seasoned flour. Whisk the flour into the butter and oil that is remaining in the skillet until all the flour is absorbed.
Add the white wine and lemon juice to the skillet and whisk until you have no lumps of flour remaining. Add the low-sodium chicken broth to the skillet and bring the liquids to a low boil to allow the sauce to thicken.
Add the heavy cream and 1 tablespoon of fresh chopped parsley. Allow the sauce to simmer for 2 to 3 minutes.
To the sauce, add the reserved cooked and drained pasta and toss to completely coat all the thin spaghetti noodles with the sauce.
Top the sauce-coated pasta with the cooked peppers, onions, and chicken strips.
Garnish with the remaining tablespoon of fresh chopped parsley.
Because this Olive Garden chicken scampi has a few steps, I like to prep my vegetables ahead of time and store them in a zip-top bag in the fridge until I am ready to cook the meal. I will even pre-measure my liquids and store them in labeled lidded containers, as well as pre-mix my seasoned flour to make this a quick weeknight one-skillet dinner.
You can drizzle a little (1½ tablespoons) olive oil over the drained pasta to prevent the pasta from sticking if your pasta is done before you are ready to add it to the sauce.
If your boneless skinless chicken breasts are really thick, then you can butterfly them in half to make the pieces thinner before slicing them into strips.
If your oil has gotten too dark from frying the chicken, you can remove the dark oil from the skillet and add a fresh tablespoon of olive oil and a tablespoon of butter to the skillet before adding the reserved seasoned flour to make the roux (cooked flour in butter) to thicken the sauce. You will need the oil and butter as the butter adds flavor, and the olive oil keeps the butter from burning on the bottom of the pan.
This Olive Garden chicken scampi pasta dish should be served immediately. As the dish cools, the pasta will absorb the sauce. You can reserve ¼ cup of your scampi sauce from the pan to drizzle onto the top of the chicken before serving.