BEST CHICKEN ALFREDO BAKE


INGREDIENTS

16 ounces penne rigata pasta
6 tablespoons butter
3 teaspoons minced garlic
4 cups heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
2 ounces cream cheese
salt (to taste)
2-3 chicken breasts, cooked and diced
chopped parsley, for garnish (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Prepare pasta per package directions, to the al dente stage. (Pasta will cook further in the oven, so do not overcook.)
  2. While pasta is cooking, melt butter in large saucepan or dutch oven on stovetop over medium heat.
  3. Add the garlic, cream, pepper and 1 cup of the parmesan cheese. Stir to combine and melt cheese.
  4. Allow sauce to simmer for 8-10 minutes until thickened, stirring frequently to avoid burning or scorching. Once thickened, remove from heat.
  5. Add in mozzarella and cream cheese and stir to combine and allow cheese to melt. Add salt to taste (if needed).
  6. Drain pasta then place back in pot. Add in sauce and diced chicken to pasta and stir to combine.
  7. Pour pasta and sauce mixture into a 9x13 baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining parmesan cheese.
TO FREEZE:
  1. Allow to cool. Cover and label, then place in freezer. (You may want to use a disposable aluminum pan for the freezer.)
  2. When ready to use, remove from freezer the night before and allow to thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
  3. TO BAKE:
  4. Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 15-20 minutes, until top begins to brown slightly and sauce is bubbly. Remove from oven, garnish with parsley (if desired) and serve.

NOTES

I like to use grilled chicken in this recipe when possible, as it adds a subtle extra layer of flavor.

Recipe updated May 10, 2019 to remove olive oil, which was causing the sauce to separate after freezing for some people.

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