Creamy Lemon-Pepper Chicken and Kale Pasta



This five ingredient recipe is cooked in one pot and is a family favourite. I chose bone in, skin on chicken thighs because it offers a rich and quick “chicken broth” to cook the pasta in. You could use boneless, skinless thighs but know that they won’t offer as much flavour, but will cook much quicker, in about half the time. Of course you could use store bought stock in lieu of water but that would make this a 6 ingredient recipe, but you do you. Boursin packs a lot of flavour and if black pepper isn’t your favourite you can absolutely use the herb and garlic.



Creamy Lemon-Pepper Chicken and Kale Pasta

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

4.9 from 7 reviews


Serves 4

1 tablespoon olive oil

6, bone in, skin on chicken thighs

2 1/4  cups water

1 1/4 cups ditali pasta

3 cups (packed) chopped kale

150g black pepper Boursin

2 teaspoons lemon zest

2 tablespoons lemon juice

Salt and Pepper


1. Trim any excess skin off the chicken thighs. Pat them dry and season with salt and pepper on both sides. 

2. Place a large skillet over medium heat.  Once the pan is hot, add the olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the chicken, skin side down to the pan and cook for 8 minutes.  Flip the chicken and cook it for another 5 minutes.  Pour the water around the chicken and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook for 20 minutes until the chicken is tender and cooked through. 

3. Transfer the chicken thighs to a plate and allow them to cool slightly. 

4. Stir the pasta into the chicken broth liquid that’s left behind in the skillet. Stir and bring the broth back to a simmer. Cover the pan and cook for 6 minutes, stirring halfway through.  If the pan becomes too dry add about ½ cup of water. 

5. Add the kale and mix it into the pasta.  Cover again and cook for 3-4 minutes until the Kale is bright green and tender. 

6. In the meantime, pull the chicken meat off the bone, discarding the skin.  Roughly chop the chicken and stir it into the pasta and kale mixture.  

7. Add the Boursin cheese and mix until well combined and creamy.  

8. Stir in the lemon zest and lemon juice. Season generously with pepper and serve.

Did you make this recipe?

Share a photo and tag me @andreabuckettcooks — I can't wait to see what you've made!


  1. Carmen Couche

    Thanks, sounds great

  2. Patti Cox

    Very good. I used spinach (hubby is not a big fan of kale). Plan to make again.

    • Jamie Clements

      It was good! I did use spinach instead of the kale. We liked the pepper flavor! Served with a nice piece of garlic bread. TY for sharing.

  3. Victoria Calabro

    Made this tonight. Came out delicious. The only thing is I don’t see how it can be for 4 people. We are 3 and it was just enough for us. I didn’t find the exact cheese so I used the garlic and herb. I will be making this again.

    • Andrea Buckett

      Fair, I guess it depends on appetite sizes and if you serve with something else. I’ll adjust it. Thanks for the input.

  4. Cornelia

    I cut the recipe in half for me and my husband. It was more than enough. I had Rigatoni pasta which was a little large. I used my kitchen shears to cut it in half, once it was tender. It worked. The lemon juice and zest added so much to the dish. We loved it and will make it again. Thank you. I believe I’m going to Love following you.

    • Andrea Buckett

      Sounds fantastic. Tailoring it to what you have in the kitchen is perfections.

  5. CJ

    Just made this and it was delicious, I used macaroni as that’s what I had in store cupboard. I also couldn’t find Boursin with pepper so used garlic and herb, husband loved it, thank you.

  6. Lauren

    I hate kale, but holy moly this is so dang good! I used a curly pasta because I didn’t have the ditalini, but it didn’t matter. So easy to throw together! Packed with all sorts of yum! I made it today to have for dinner and I don’t think it’ll make it that long.

  7. Leslie

    Just made it and tried it! It was delicious!!! I used the garlic and herb Boursin because my store didn’t have the black pepper version. I have never cooked chicken thighs before but these came out great, moist and done. Getting the chicken off the bone was for me, messy and a little tedious but definitely worth the effort. I will be making it again.

  8. Shannon

    Delish! I also used spinach because that’s what I had on hand. Great recipe!

  9. Beth

    Easy and comforting! I think you could get by with a lot less olive oil in the pan just bc the chicken renders so much. Also it would be helpful if the pasta quantity was given by weight rather than volume so it’s easier to swap out a different type of noodle depending on what you have.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

Meet the Author

Andrea Buckett

Andrea Buckett is a renowned chef and food expert celebrated across Canada for her engaging and unique food content. With over twenty years in the food industry, her approachable style and practical cooking tips bring easy, flavorful recipes to the table, tackling mealtime monotony. Regularly featured on television, social media, and in print, Andrea draws on her extensive knowledge in food, recipe development, and nutrition. She is set to publish her first cookbook with Appetite Random House in spring 2025.

Recipes You Might Also Like…

Pin It on Pinterest