Pesto Slow Cooker Chicken Pasta is a creamy, cheesy chicken and pasta dish made with pesto and sun-dried tomatoes that is sure to please both pasta and cheese lovers alike! Plus, most of the work is done for you in a slow cooker. If this sounds like your kind of recipe, you will also love my Creamy Chicken Tomato Pasta with Pesto.

Pesto Slow Cooker Chicken Pasta in the Slow Cooker Close up.

Ingredients & Substitutions

Chicken: Cut up chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces. Then, season with salt and pepper before adding them to the bowl of your slow cooker. Chicken thighs would also be delicious.

Pesto: Pesto is a delicious sauce made from crushed pine nuts, fresh basil leaves, garlic, and parmesan cheese, blended with olive oil. If possible, make your own. Otherwise, you could use store-bought pesto.

Sun-dried Tomatoes: Chop up about a cup of sun-dried tomatoes. They give the dish a tanginess and a burst of flavor. There is no need to soften the sun-dried tomatoes ahead of time; they will rehydrate in the liquid when cooked.

Chicken Broth: If you don’t have chicken broth, substituting chicken stock would also work.

Pasta: I love cavatappi pasta, but you could certainly use the noodles you have on hand. Or, make homemade shaped pasta to add to the dish! There is no need to cook the noodles ahead of time; it’s all done in the slow cooker.

Cream Cheese: Cream cheese adds creaminess to the dish. Cut a block into small cubes before adding it to the slow cooker.

Cheese: This is a cheesy dish, for sure! Besides cream cheese, I added 3 cups of mozzarella cheese and 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese.

Raw Ingredients for Pesto Slow Cooker Chicken Pasta.

What Does Pesto Chicken Pasta Taste Like?

If you are a fan of cheesy pasta and pesto, you will love this dish. There is plenty of cheese and the pesto flavor really shines through in each bite. The sun-dried tomatoes bring a little tang to it and the chicken makes it a hearty enough dish to serve as a main course.

Bowls of Pesto Slow Cooker Chicken Pasta on a Cutting Board with Towels.

What To Serve With Pesto Slow Cooker Chicken Pasta

With the slow cooker doing most of the work for the main dish, you can definitely get a side dish served to round out the meal. Here are a few of my favorites you could try:

Bowls of Pesto Slow Cooker Chicken Pasta.

How To Store Pesto Slow Cooker Chicken Pasta

If you have any leftover pesto slow cooker chicken pasta, store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It will last up to 3-4 days. Reheat it in the microwave or on the stovetop. You can also freeze the slow cooker chicken in a freezer-safe container for up to 2-3 months. When ready to enjoy, let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

Pesto Slow Cooker Chicken Pasta in the Slow Cooker Close up.
5 from 4 votes

Pesto Slow Cooker Chicken Pasta

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Pesto Slow Cooker Chicken Pasta is a creamy, cheesy chicken and pasta dish made with pesto and sun-dried tomatoes that is sure to please both pasta and cheese lovers alike! Plus, most of the work is done for you in a slow cooker.


  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, diced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 jar (6.7 ounces) pesto
  • 1 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
  • 4 cups (960 g) chicken broth
  • 16 ounces cavatappi pasta
  • 1 cup (238 g) heavy cream
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, diced
  • 3 cups (339 g) shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ½ cup (25 g) grated parmesan cheese
  • fresh basil, chopped for garnish


  • To the bowl of a 6-quart slow cooker, add chicken. Top with salt, pepper, pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, and chicken broth. Stir to combine.
  • Cover and cook on high for 1 hour, or on low for 3-4 hours. Chicken is fully cooked when it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F.
  • To the bowl of the slow cooker, add the heavy cream, cream cheese, mozzarella, and parmesan. Stir to combine, breaking down the cubed cream cheese.
  • Add the uncooked pasta. Make sure the noodles are fully submerged in the liquid. Cover and continue cooking for an additional 25-30 minutes, or until the pasta is cooked through and the cheese is melted.
  • Top with fresh basil. Serve warm.

Did you make this recipe?

You can tag me at @iamhomesteader.

What the Test Kitchen had to say about this recipe:


I loved the pesto and sun-dried tomato combination in this recipe. This would be a perfect weeknight meal. It doesn't need much time in the slow cooker and everything cooks in one pot! Easy and delicious!


This is a simple, but delicious, creamy, cheesy dish. The fact that it is made in a slow cooker makes it even better! It packs a lot of flavor from the pesto, for sure. If you love pesto and pasta, you will definitely love this recipe!


This is delicious pesto pasta with so much flavor and is very easy to put together in the crock pot!


Super flavorful and Easy to make! The chicken was tender and the noodles didn't get overly soft!


This is a wonderful pesto dish. It's rich, cheesy, and savory. The creaminess is absorbed by the pasta noodles and chicken. A great recipe to try if you love pesto!


I adore pesto and love the combo of this dish. It makes for a quick, easy and filling weeknight dinner!

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Reader Comments

  1. 5 stars
    We have a restaurant in Canada called Milestones. One of their most popular dishes is something called “Asiago pesto chicken penne”. My kids love it, and every time we go there it costs a fortune. Looking at this recipe, I thought this looks just like what they offer at a fraction of the cost. And it really was! Delicious! My kids ate several bowls. The only thing I would note is that it took longer to make on my slow cooker. Even putting it on high, the timing was roughly twice what I expected. That said, well worth the wait … We have loads of leftovers. Could just be that we have a super slow slow cooker. Will definitely make again. Super easy and very tasty

  2. It would be helpful if you included carbs in nutritional info. I have a diabetic grandson who needs to count carbs.

    1. There are many apps that provide that information. The one that is available to me is inaccurate at best, so I am not comfortable utilizing it when people’s health is at risk.

      1. I use the Myfitnesspal app, and I just type in all of the ingredients and it calculates it for me. I would recommend your readers try that app.

        Love so many of your recipes that I’ve tried!

  3. 5 stars
    Wait!!! Cheese AND pasta? (My wife believes that cheese deserves its own food group!) And leftovers for her to take to work? You’re going to make me very popular. I’ll be back after I’ve made this!

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