Chicken Riggies is a popular pasta dish that originates from Utica, New York. It consists of penne pasta tossed in a spicy tomato and cream sauce, with sautéed chicken and bell peppers. The dish is often made with a hot cherry pepper sauce and is typically served with grated parmesan cheese. Chicken riggies is a comfort food that is loved for its bold flavours and creamy texture. It is a staple dish in central New York and is often enjoyed with garlic bread or a side salad.
No matter which method you choose, chicken riggies is a delicious and satisfying dish that is sure to please. Chicken riggies can be cooked using several methods; here are the most common ones:
This method cooks all the ingredients in a large saucepan or Dutch oven on the stovetop. The chicken is first sautéed in olive oil until browned; the vegetables are added and cooked until tender. The sauce is then made by mixing together tomato sauce, cream, and spices and added to the pan. The cooked rigatoni pasta is then stirred in, and the dish is simmered for a few minutes until everything is hot and well combined.
The pasta, sauce, and chicken are baked in the oven in a casserole dish. To make this method, first cook the rigatoni according to package instructions. Then, in a separate pan, sauté the chicken and vegetables. Combine the pasta, chicken mixture, and sauce in a large casserole dish, and bake in the oven at 375°F for 25-30 minutes, until the sauce is bubbly and the chicken is cooked through.
This technique is great for a hands-off approach to cooking Chicken Riggies. Place the raw chicken, vegetables, sauce, and rigatoni in a slow cooker, and cook on low for 4-6 hours or until the chicken is tender.
Authentic Chicken Riggies Recipe
This recipe adds a bit of a twist to the traditional chicken riggies dish but still features all the classic flavours you know and love.
- 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 can diced tomatoes (14 oz)
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 lb penne pasta
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
- In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the penne pasta according to the package instructions until al dente. Drain and set aside.
- Heat a drizzle of olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Add the chicken pieces and cook until browned on all sides, about 8-10 minutes. Remove the chicken from the skillet and set aside.
- Add red bell pepper, onion, and garlic in the same skillet. Sauté until softened, about 5-7 minutes. Add the chicken broth, diced tomatoes, basil, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine.
- Return the chicken to the skillet and bring the mixture to a simmer. Let it cook for 10-15 minutes until the flavours have melded together. Stir in the heavy cream and grated Parmesan cheese until the sauce is creamy and thick.
- Add the cooked penne pasta to the skillet and toss until it is coated in the sauce. Serve the chicken riggies topped with chopped fresh parsley and additional grated Parmesan cheese if desired.
What To Serve Chicken Riggies?
Chicken riggies is a hearty pasta dish that can be served as a main course. It’s often accompanied by simple sides that complement its flavours and textures. Some common side dishes to serve with chicken riggies include:
- Garlic bread or crusty bread: to soak up the sauce and balance out the richness of the dish
- A green salad: to add a fresh, crunchy element and help lighten the meal
- Steamed or roasted vegetables: such as broccoli, asparagus, or green beans, round out the meal and provide some added nutrients
- Grilled or roasted meats: such as chicken or steak, make the meal more substantial and filling.
Remember that these are just suggestions; you should choose sides you and your diners will enjoy. Ultimately, the most important thing is to serve a balanced meal that you’ll enjoy and that complements the flavours of the chicken riggies.
Why Is It Called Chicken Riggies?
Chicken Riggies is a popular dish in central New York, particularly in the Utica-Rome area. The name “Chicken Riggies” is not clear, but it is speculated to have come from the word “rigatoni,” which is the type of pasta commonly used in the dish. Another theory is that the name is a variation of the word “riggies,” which is short for “rigatoni.” Regardless of the origin of the name, Chicken Riggies is a delicious dish made with sauteed chicken, onions, bell peppers, and rigatoni pasta in a spicy tomato and cream sauce.
What Is Chicken Riggie Sauce Made Of?
Chicken Riggie sauce is typically made with a combination of ingredients, including tomato sauce, heavy cream, and a blend of spices. This sauce is the base for chicken riggies and can be adjusted to your personal taste preferences. Some people like to add additional ingredients such as white wine, chicken broth, or parmesan cheese to the sauce for added flavour. A quick look at riggie sauce recipe:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or to taste)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
Steps To Follow
- Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.
- Add the onion and garlic and cook until soft and fragrant, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the tomato sauce, heavy cream, basil, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper.
- Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook for 10-15 minutes or until slightly thickened.
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