Creamy Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Pasta Bake

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Dive into a comforting bowl of Creamy Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Pasta Bake, where tender chicken, rigatoni, a trio of cheeses, and broccoli come together in a symphony of flavors. Prepared in an oven-safe skillet, this dish is bound to become a staple in your culinary repertoire.

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Creamy Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Pasta Bake

Ingredient Insights and Swaps

  • Chicken: Start with bite-sized chicken breast pieces. They’ll initially sear without cooking through but will finish in the oven. For a twist, try boneless, skinless chicken thighs.
  • Chicken Stock: Enhance the dish with your choice of store-bought or homemade chicken stock. Chicken broth is an alternative, though it might yield a slightly less rich flavor.
  • Cheese Galore: Indulge in the melty goodness of mozzarella, Monterey Jack, and parmesan cheeses, each adding its unique flavor and texture to the bake.
  • Pasta Preference: Rigatoni noodles are ideal for their sauce-holding capabilities and bake-friendly structure. Feel free to substitute with penne, ziti, or cavatappi based on availability.
  • Broccoli and More: Fresh broccoli florets add a crunch and nutrition boost. Experiment by adding spinach or other greens for an extra veggie hit.

Creamy Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Pasta Bake

Alternative Cookware Options

While a large oven-safe skillet simplifies this recipe to a one-pan wonder, a baking dish can also do the job. Simply transfer the skillet-cooked ingredients into a baking dish before popping it in the oven. Keep an eye on the cooking time, as adjustments may be necessary.

Creamy Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Pasta Bake

Storage Solutions for Leftovers

Maximize the lifespan of any leftover pasta bake by storing it properly. Allow the dish to cool to room temperature before refrigeration or freezing.

  • Refrigeration: Keep in an airtight container for 3-4 days, reheating in the microwave for a quick and delicious meal.
  • Freezing: Freeze in a suitable container for up to 2-3 months, thawing overnight in the fridge before reheating.

Creamy Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Pasta Bake

Ingredients for the Bake

  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups (720ml) chicken stock
  • 1 ½ cups (360ml) heavy cream
  • 1 cup (113g) shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 1 cup (113g) shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided
  • 1 cup (100g) shredded parmesan cheese, divided
  • 8 ounces (227g) rigatoni noodles
  • 1 head of broccoli, cut into florets
  • Parsley, chopped for garnish

Step-by-Step Cooking Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Season the chicken with garlic powder, paprika, salt, and pepper.
  3. In a 15-inch oven-safe skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat, add chicken, and sear until golden but not cooked through.
  4. Set chicken aside, then in the same skillet, sauté onions and garlic, sprinkle with flour, and gradually whisk in chicken stock and heavy cream, simmering until thickened.
  5. Blend in half the cheeses until smooth, then mix in the uncooked pasta, broccoli, and chicken, ensuring they’re enveloped in sauce.
  6. Sprinkle the remaining cheeses on top, cover with foil, and bake until the pasta is tender and the cheese bubbly, finishing uncovered to brown the cheese.
  7. Garnish with parsley and serve warm from the skillet.

Indulge in this Creamy Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Pasta Bake, a dish that promises warmth, comfort, and a delightful culinary experience with every forkful.

Creamy Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Pasta Bake

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