One-Skillet Chicken Penne with Fennel (Gluten-Free)

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Easiest Gluten-Free One-Skillet Chicken Penne with Fennel – Chicken, Fennel, Lemon, garlic, fresh tomatoes, penne pasta, gruyere cheese and plenty of fresh parsley. So delicious, yet so simple gluten-free penne pasta paired with healthy fennel and cherry tomatoes baked in a creamiest lemon garlic sauce finished with gruyere cheese and fresh parsley.

Today’s weeknight meal is a healthier version of pasta made in one skillet. The star ingredient is the fennel. Have you ever made pasta with fennel? Fennel is an aromatic flowering plant from the carrot family originating from the shores of the Mediterranean.

Fennel bulb looks like a base of a bunch of celery. When fennel is cooked, it is tender with a delicate flavour enhancing sauces, soups or stews and is used in many cuisines


one skillet chicken pasta, gluten free


Why is this gluten-free pasta dish so easy to make?

Simple, first you sear the chicken pieces in butter. Then using the same skillet, you sear the lemon slices, adding a fantastic flavour to this dish. Once the searing is done, again using the same skillet add garlic, fennel, tomatoes and herbs and cook briefly to caramelize the fennel.


Then add remaining ingredients except for the cheese and fresh parsley and bake. Halfway through stir in the tasty gruyere cheese with fresh parsley and finish baking. That is it! Simple, straightforward, most flavourful one-skillet chicken penne with fennel dinner.

This gluten-free pasta dish is for one of those Monday night dinners when we crave soothing comfort food. 




Let’s discuss the amazing health benefits of fennel!

Fennel, fennel seeds and fennel tea are used in many cuisines from Italian to Indian. This impressive plant has many medicinal uses, mostly because of its essential oils. Fennel and fennel seeds are packed with nutrients and is super low in calories. One cup of sliced fennel has only about 27 calories and 2.7 grams of dietary fibre.

Also, fennel is known for vitamin C, calcium, potassium, magnesium and even some protein. To summarize, fennel is highly nutritious and adding fennel to your diet may improve heart health, suppress appetite, reduce inflammation and even provide anticancer benefits.

To benefit from this impressive plant, try and include fennel in your diet such as this chicken penne with fennel or add raw fennel to your salads such as this Cabbage and Fennel Citrus Salad or Classic Thai Celery and Fennel Salad. Enjoy!


  • 2 Tbsp. Butter
  • 1 lb. skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 large lemon, sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 large bulb fennel, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 2 GF bay leaves
  • 1 tsp. GF dried thyme leaves
  • 1 cup whole milk or half-and-half
  • 1 Tbsp. Fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cups GF penne or other short pasta
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded gruyere cheese (you can also use mozzarella)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • Himalayan salt and GF ground black pepper to taste
  • Optional toppings; grated Parmesan cheese, lemon zest, chopped fresh parsley or torn fresh basil, fennel fronds
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  • Preheat oven to 400 F
  • Season chicken all over with salt and pepper. Add to the skillet and sear on all sides. About 5 minutes. Remove the chicken from the skillet
  • To the same skillet, add lemon slices. Sear the lemons 1 minute per side, then remove from the skillet and set aside
  • To the same skillet, add garlic, fennel, tomatoes, bay leaves and thyme. Cook over medium heat while stirring until the fennel starts to golden. About 3 - 5 minutes.
  • Return chicken and lemon slices to the skillet with chicken broth, milk, lemon juice, pasta and generously season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and stir
  • Cover skillet with a lid or foil and transfer to the oven. Bake for 15 minutes, then stir in cheese and parsley and bake uncovered for 15 more minutes. Enjoy!
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