Creamy chipotle pasta

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Are you looking for a creamy pasta recipe that is a little bit sweet and a little bit spicy? Then you should check out this recipe for creamy chipotle pasta! This creamy chipotle pasta features a flavorful sauce that is packed with bold ingredients such as parmesan cheese, honey, lemon juice, and chipotle peppers. Fresh tomatoes, onion, garlic, asparagus, and peas are cooked in the sauce and added to the pasta to give it even more flavor!

All you have to do to make this tasty dish gluten free is use gluten free pasta. No other substitutions are necessary! In addition to being gluten free, this recipe for creamy chipotle pasta is vegetarian, egg free, and nut free. 

Creamy chipotle pasta with asparagus, peas, onions, garlic, and tomato.

How to make a creamy chipotle sauce

What is in this creamy chipotle sauce? This creamy chipotle sauce is made with a few simple ingredients. Here are the ingredients in this chipotle sauce. 

  • Heavy cream. Heavy cream is used as the base of this creamy chipotle sauce. Heavy cream is used rather than milk or light cream to help prevent the sauce from curdling when the parmesan cheese is added. 
  • Parmesan cheese. As with many other cream based sauces, parmesan cheese is added to this sauce to give it even more flavor. 
  • Chipotle chiles in adobo sauce. Chipotle chiles in adobo sauce are added to this sauce to give it a little bit of spice. First the chipotle chiles are minced into small pieces and added to the sauce. Then additional adobo sauce is added to the sauce to make sure the chipotle flavor shines through. 
  • Lemon juice. Lemon juice is added to this creamy chipotle sauce to give it a little bit of acidity. The lemon juice helps to cut through the richness of the heavy cream and parmesan cheese and brighten it up. 
  • Honey. Honey is used in this creamy chipotle sauce to give it a little bit of sweetness. The sweetness of the honey helps to balance out the spiciness of the chipotle peppers. 
  • Tomato. A little bit of tomato is added to round out the flavor of this sauce. The tomato flavor helps to enhance the flavor of the chipotle chiles and ensure that they are not forgotten. In this recipe we use fresh tomatoes but if you do not have fresh tomatoes then you can also add a little tomato paste to the sauce. 

What is in this creamy chipotle pasta recipe?

What is in this recipe for creamy chipotle pasta? This pasta is made with a flavorful chipotle cream sauce and a whole bunch of fresh fruits and veggies. Here are the ingredients for this spicy chipotle pasta. 

  • Creamy chipotle sauce. The creamy chipotle sauce is really the star of the show in this creamy chipotle pasta recipe. This delicious cream-based sauce is made with heavy cream, parmesan cheese, honey, lemon juice, and chipotle chiles in adobo sauce. The creamy chipotle sauce is cooked with the vegetables for a few minutes to allow the flavors to blend together in perfect harmony.
  • Tomatoes. The tomatoes add a lot of flavor to the creamy chipotle sauce. With the addition of the tomatoes, the creamy chipotle sauce becomes more of a pink sauce than a white sauce. This helps to enhance the flavor of the chipotle peppers and make sure their flavor shines through. In this recipe we use fresh tomatoes, but if you do not have any fresh tomatoes you could also add a little bit of tomato paste to the creamy chipotle sauce. 
  • Garlic. The garlic also helps to make the chipotle sauce even more flavorful. The garlic gives the creamy chipotle sauce a little nit of a bite that it would not otherwise have. If you do not have any fresh garlic then you should add a dash of garlic powder to the creamy chipotle sauce. 
  • Onions. Just like the garlic and tomatoes, the onions help to make the creamy chipotle sauce even more flavorful. The onions are cooked until they start to brown and sweeten to bring a little extra sweetness to the creamy chipotle sauce. The sweetness of the onions compliments the sweetness of the honey that is used in the  sauce. 
  • Asparagus. Some fresh asparagus is added to pack in another serving of vegetables. Fresh asparagus goes great with cream based pasta sauces of all kinds. Try adding a little asparagus next time you make pasta with alfredo sauce.   
  • Peas. Just like asparagus, peas taste wonderful in creamy pasta sauces. The peas add an additional extra serving of vegetables to round out this delicious pasta recipe!

Onions, asparagus, tomatoes, and garlic for creamy chipotle pasta.

Preventing the creamy chipotle sauce from curdling

Just like any other sauce that contains cheese, this cheese sauce can curdle if you are not careful with it. Here are some of our best tips for preventing your sauce from curdling. If you want even more tips check out our article on how to prevent cheese sauce from curdling.  

  • Add the cheese last. In order to prevent this creamy chipotle sauce from curdling you should add the cheese to the sauce last. Excessive heat exposure is the main reason that cheese sauces curdle so you should make sure the sauce is on the heat as little as possible after the cheese is added. The sauce tastes better if it cooks with the tomatoes, garlic, and onions for a few minutes so you should make sure to do this before you add the cheese.
  • Turn off the heat before adding the cheese. In fact, you are best off if you take the sauce off of the heat entirely before you add the cheese. Even after you take the cheese off of the heat, the sauce will still be warm enough to melt the parmesan cheese on its own.
  • Stir the sauce until the cheese melts. Once you add the cheese to the creamy chipotle sauce you should continue to stir the cheese until the cheese melts and the sauce cools. Stirring the cheese prevents any one area in the pot from getting overly hot. 
  • Use heavy cream rather than milk. In this recipe we use heavy cream rather than milk as the base of the sauce to prevent the sauce from curdling. Sauces made with bases that are rich in fat are less likely to curdle than sauces with less fat in them.
  • Cornstarch. Fats are not the only thing that helps to prevent sauces from curdling. Starch is another useful ingredient that helps to prevent cheese sauces from curdling. Try adding a little cornstarch next time you make a cheese based sauce.

How to store creamy chipotle pasta

How do you store this creamy chipotle pasta? This creamy chipotle pasta should be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container. The pasta will keep for up to 3 days in the refrigerator. We do not recommend storing the pasta in the freezer since it is made with a cheese sauce.

How to reheat creamy chipotle pasta

How do you reheat creamy chipotle pasta? This creamy chipotle pasta can be reheated in the microwave on full power. The pasta should be reheated for 45 – 60 seconds. 

For best results we recommend reheating the pasta in 15 – 20 intervals and taking the pasta out and stirring it occasionally. This will prevent any one area from getting too hot, which will help to prevent the sauce from curdling. This is a good practice to follow any time you are making a cheese based sauce. 

Creamy chipotle pasta

This creamy chipotle pasta is loaded with fresh veggies and bold flavors.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Keyword: egg free, gluten free, nut free, vegetarian
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients

  • 8 oz gluten free pasta (about 2/3 of a standard sized box)
  • 1 white onion
  • 1/2 bunch asparagus
  • 2 large tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tsp vegetable oil
  • salt

Chipotle Alfredo sauce

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup pasta water
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese (vegetarian parmesan style cheese)
  • 1 tbsp cream cheese
  • 3 chipotle chiles in adobo sauce (fewer for a less spicy sauce)
  • 2 tbsp adobo sauce
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • salt

Instructions

  • Heat a medium sized pot of water over medium high heat. When the water reaches a steady boil add your pasta and cook the pasta according to the instructions on the box. Dried pasta usually needs to cook for 7 - 10 minutes.
    While you wait for the pasta to boil you can move on to the next step. When the pasta is done you should reserve 1/2 cup of pasta water to add to the sauce.
  • Chop your tomatoes, onions, and garlic into small pieces. Chop the asparagus into segments that are 1-2 inches long. Mince the chipotle chiles into very fine pieces.
  • Heat a large pan over medium high to high heat and add the vegetable oil. Add the onions to the pan and lightly salt them. Cook the onions for about 10 minutes then add the asparagus. Cook the asparagus for another 5 minutes then add the tomatoes. Cook the tomatoes for another 10 minutes then add the garlic and frozen peas. Cook the garlic and peas for another 5 minutes.

Chipotle alfredo sauce

  • Add the heavy cream and pasta water to the pan with the vegetables in it. Let this mixture cook for 2 - 3 minutes.
    If there is enough room in your pan to add the pasta you can also add the pasta here. If there is not enough room you can pour the sauce and vegetables over the pasta at the end.
  • Mix the cornstarch with 2 tsp of cold water then pour the cornstarch mixture into the pan with the rest of the ingredients. Then add all of the other ingredients for the sauce besides the parmesan cheese.
  • Take the pot off of the heat and wait until the sauce stops simmering then add the parmesan cheese. Mix the dish until the parmesan cheese melts and salt to taste.

Notes

Time saving tip. If you want to save a little more time you can cut the vegetables as the other vegetables cook rather than cutting the vegetables all beforehand. For example you can start cooking the onions then  cut the asparagus while the onions cook. 

Substitutions for creamy chipotle pasta

  • Heavy cream. If you want to make this pasta recipe a little lighter you can make it with whole milk rather than heavy cream. Pasta sauce that is made with whole milk is more likely to curdle than sauce that is made with heavy cream so make sure to take the pasta sauce off the heat before adding the cream.
  • Cream cheese. Adding a little cream cheese to the creamy chipotle sauce helps to prevent the sauce from curdling. It also makes the sauce even more creamy! That being said, if you do not have cream cheese you can omit the cream cheese from this recipe. No substitutions are necessary. 
  • Lemon juice. If you do not have any lemon juice then lime juice will also work. The flavor is not exactly the same, but lime juice will also taste great in this creamy chipotle pasta.
  • Honey. If you do not have honey you can replace the honey with an equal amount of agave or brown sugar. 

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