Creamy Tuscan Garlic Chicken (Dairy Free)

Today we talk another easy dinner idea in the form of this creamy tuscan garlic chicken!

And let me tell you, there is absolutely a lot to love about this meal. Between the crazy flavorful sauce, tender chicken and the fact that it cooks up in ONE skillet, it’s kind of a weeknight dream.

Creamy Tuscan Garlic Chicken in a white bowl with zucchini noodles.

Now, if tuscan chicken sounds at all familiar, that’s because it is. Umm, well, as long as you have frequented an Olive Garden restaurant. They used to carry this dish on their menu and I had family members who ordered it ALL the time.

So of course, I needed to come up with a healthier and lighter spin that also ditched the dairy (for more info on why I had to give up dairy head over to this post).

And while there’s no heavy cream or tons of parmesan cheese involved in today’s version, I promise you that it still delivers in flavor.

Because between a boatload of colorful veggies (bell pepper, fresh baby spinach, onion, garlic, sun-dried tomatoes!), an easy homemade cashew “heavy cream” and plenty of flavorful spices, this dish is wholesome comfort food at its best. No boring chicken here.

And did I mention that it comes together in about 35 minutes or less?

Yep, don’t fight it – make this dreamy restaurant inspired dish at home today!

Chopped bell pepper, yellow onion, spinach and diced chicken breast in bowls.

How To Make This Healthy Tuscan Chicken

So, we start by blending up that dreamy cashew-based “heavy cream” – with raw cashews, almond milk, broth and a touch of dijon mustard for some flavor. It all gets processed in a blender until nice and smooth.

Next, we cook up some cubed chicken breasts in a skillet, before removing to a plate to rest.

Finally, we pull together our sauce by sautéing some onion and bell pepper until tender, stirring in plenty of garlic until fragrant and then mixing in baby spinach leaves until wilted. The chicken and cashew heavy cream get added back in, along with some spices, sun-dried tomatoes and a touch more almond milk to give it the perfect final consistency.

And then, we eat!

Dairy free cashew heavy cream in a large glass measuring cup.

Tips & Tricks For This Creamy Tuscan Garlic Chicken

  1. Remember to plan ahead and soak the cashews for the heavy cream. Personally, I do this right before bed – throw them in a bowl and cover with water. Literally takes one minute or less.
  2. HOWEVER. If you forget, you can use a quick soak method instead. Place the cashews in a heatproof bowl, then cover with boiling water. Let them soak for about 30 minutes to 1 hour and then proceed.
  3. While I recommend using a high speed blender to make the cashew heavy cream (as it will blend up SO smooth) – you absolutely do not need one. I used a regular blender for years. Just process / blend until it’s as smooth as possible – it may not be perfect but that’s totally okay. You won’t notice in the final dish.
  4. And finally, keep in mind that the sauce will thicken up a bit as it sits and cools down (i.e. for seconds or leftovers). So I’d suggest having some extra plain almond milk on hand to thin it out if desired.

Serving Ideas

You can serve this dreamy dairy free tuscan chicken over pasta, veggie noodles, roasted potatoes, brown rice or even cauliflower rice. Lots of different options.

I personally tend to serve with zucchini noodles – SO GOOD.

How To Store

Let the chicken cool to room temperature, then transfer to an airtight container and place in the fridge. It will keep like this for about 3 to 4 days. Reheat briefly before enjoying.

One last note on storage – if you are serving these with cooked zucchini noodles, I’d suggest keeping leftovers in separate containers – i.e. the noodles in one and the chicken in another. Because of the water content in the zucchini, it sorta messes with the sauce if you store them together (it waters it down in an odd way – take my word for it!).

A large white bowl filled with Creamy Tuscan Garlic Chicken, zucchini noodles and a silver fork.

Additional Dairy Free Dinner Recipes You Might Enjoy!

Did you make this recipe? Rate and review it down below! I’d love to hear from you.

Creamy Tuscan Garlic Chicken (Dairy Free)

Creamy Tuscan Garlic Chicken (Dairy Free)

Yield: about 4 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Easy creamy tuscan garlic chicken! This copycat version of the Olive Garden recipe is healthier, lighter and dairy free! Packed with juicy chicken, colorful veggies and dreamy cashew heavy cream! Cooks in one skillet for a simple dinner!

Ingredients

For the cashew heavy cream:

  • ¾ cup raw cashews, soaked overnight*
  • ½ cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • ½ cup unsweetened plain almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard

For the chicken:

  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into chunks
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

For the sauce:

  • ½ tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (5 ounce) container baby spinach leaves
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon dried basil
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ cup chopped sun dried tomatoes**
  • ½ cup unsweetened plain almond milk

Instructions

For the cashew heavy cream:

  1. Add the cashews, broth, milk and mustard to a high speed blender. Process until completely smooth, then set aside.

For the chicken:

  1. Sprinkle the chicken lightly with some salt and pepper.
  2. Add the olive oil to a large nonstick skillet set over medium heat. When hot, add the chicken pieces to the pan and cook for about 5 to 7 minutes, or until cooked through and lightly browned. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside. 

For the sauce:

  1. Set the same skillet back over medium heat and add in the olive oil. When hot, add in the onion and pepper and cook for about 5 to 6 minutes, until tender. Stir in the garlic and cook for 30 seconds, until fragrant. Add in the spinach (you may need to do this in batches) and cook until wilted, stirring frequently. Stir in the salt, pepper, basil, oregano, sun dried tomatoes, almond milk, cashew heavy cream and the chicken (and any accumulated juices). Continue to cook for about 1 to 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until everything is warmed through and well combined. Remove from the heat. Taste and season with additional salt / pepper if needed, then serve as desired!

Notes

*Add the raw cashews to a small bowl. Cover with water and allow the cashews to soak for at least 8 hours (or up to overnight). Drain and rinse well. 

**You want to use sun dried tomatoes that are packed in oil for this recipe. Pat them dry with a towel, then chop and measure out what you need.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 436 Total Fat: 21g Saturated Fat: 4g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 15g Cholesterol: 96mg Sodium: 437mg Carbohydrates: 20g Fiber: 4g Sugar: 8g Protein: 44g
Nutrition data shown is an estimate provided by an online calculator and is for informational purposes only. It should not be considered a substitute for a medical professional’s advice.