Foodsy Tuesday: Italian Chicken Casserole
This is a super favorite recipe in the family. Our entire household devours this meal I make it. It is hearty, delicious, full of flavor, and quote filling. It is easily amended to whatever food preference you have, whether Trim Healthy Mama, Gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, or none of the above! I hope you enjoy it as much as we do, though I am sure you will =0) [Tweet “Must-make #TrimHealthyMama dish “Italian Chicken Casserole”…yes, please!”]
Italian Chicken Casserole
*If following Trim Healthy Mama, keep it a secure “S” with Dreamfield’s pasta (or spaghetti squash, cooked, strung, and drained), and regular dairy. You could also swap it to an “E” by using whole grain noodles, lean ground turkey, and low fat/fat free dairy products. I’ve made it both ways with great success and tongue-pleasing results. Those who need a gluten-free meal simply need a gluten-free noodle (I’ve made it with brown rice noodles and corn, so find whatever suites your needs and it will work great!)
1 cup onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups cubed, cooked chicken breast
24 oz can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup half and half (fat free or regular, depending on needs/preferences…”S” can use either, “E” needs Fat Free)
1/2 cup water
1 package 1/3 less fat cream cheese
2 tsp basil
1 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
1/4 tsp pepper
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (fat free for “E” meal)
16 ounces pasta of preference as discussed above*
1. Preheat oven to 350F, lightly spray 9×13 inch baking dish with nonstick spray.
2. In large skillet, heat pan and spray lightly with cooking spray. Sauté onion until translucent, adding garlic at the end for a few minutes until fragrant.
3. Stir in cooked chicken, tomatoes, cream, and water.
4. Add seasonings and stir thoroughly.
5. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes, or until slightly thickened.
6. During this time, begin cooking your noodles. Once finished, drain and set aside.
7. To the chicken sauce, add cream cheese, and 1/2 cup mozzarella. Heat through, stirring frequently until cheeses are melted through.
8. Since I do not have a skillet large enough to add the noodle directly to the sauce, I tend to pour my cooked noodles into the sprayed 9×13 baking dish and then pour the chicken sauce over top. Whatever works best for you, go ahead and combine the sauce and the noodles together, and then pour everything into the prepared baking dish, if you did not already mix everything together in the dish.
9. Top with remaining cheese, sprinkling evenly all over.
10. Bake for 30 minutes, or until lightly browned on top.