Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Chicken Spaghetti Casserole

Have you tried Chicken Spaghetti? Like Charlie Sheen is trending in the news right now, Chicken Spaghetti was trending a while back, then everyone forgot about least I did. Then Jim asked me recently to make a casserole that he could reheat at work for lunch all week long. I remembered how GREAT my Chicken Spaghetti Ole tasted as leftovers so I got to it again and developed a new Chicken Spaghetti recipe, taking notes from the Pioneer Woman's recipe from 2007.

I gathered the last of my frozen chicken from the freezer, a box of whole wheat dried spaghetti, a 4 ounce jar of pimentos, a head of garlic, a green bell pepper, an onion, two cans of low fat cream of chicken soup, 3 cups of shredded sharp cheddar cheese, Lawry's seasoned salt and cayenne pepper.

I didn't even bother defrosting the chicken. Instead I put the three frozen chicken breasts in the bottom of my dutch oven, topped with about a tablespoon of olive oil, sprinkled in some salt and pepper, put the lid on and popped the cookware in the oven at 350 for one hour. I even left the house, ran a few quick errands, and when I returned, fully cooked chicken! Once cooked, shred with two forks! You could also give the chicken a small dice if you like that sort of thing. Jim prefers the chunks, I prefer the shred.

After I removed the chicken, I did not rinse the dutch oven. Instead, I added lots of water and a chicken bouillon cube. This pot of chicken stock will help flavor the pasta as it cooks. Once the water boiled, I broke the spaghetti noodles in half and added them to my pot.

We don't want to over cook these, maybe 5-8 minutes tops. The noodles go into the oven - later - for 45 minutes. Overcooking them here, would result in a very mushy casserole in the end. Be sure to remember to reserve at least two cups of the chicken stock before draining the pasta.

I diced half an onion and added 1/2 cup to a big mixing bowl.

Next, I diced half a green bell pepper, and added 1/2 cup to the mixing bowl.

Can't forget the garlic! This is about 3 garlic cloves, minced.
Into my mixing bowl goes the shredded chicken, the minced garlic, diced onion, diced bell pepper and an entire 4 ounce jar of drained pimentos.

Next, I added two cups of shredded sharp cheddar, two cans of cream of chicken soup, 1 1/2 teaspoons of Lawry's seasoned salt and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper.

Mix the whole mess together.

Don't forget to reserve some of the pasta cooking water! (I always forget) We will use this to thin out our casserole.

The last thing to do is add in the "almost" cooked spaghetti and toss to combine.  Add reserved chicken stock cooking liquid as needed. You don't want it to be soupy, but you do want there to be a sauce. I added about one cup.

Spread out into a backing dish, no need to spray with pam or butter first.

Top the whole thing with one more cup of cheddar cheese, if you are feeling particularly naughty. I think panko breadcrumbs would be nice here too.

Bake at 350 for 45 minutes to one hour. If the top starts to get too brown, cover with foil. After 45 minutes I turned the oven to broil and let the top crisp up for about three minutes.

There you go, lunch for a week (in my house at least)! This is very very easy to pull together, and there are so many variations out there. Experiment with what you have on hand.


  1. I must have missed when Chicken Spaghetti was trending which is a shame because it sounds good!

  2. I love your appreciation of food and excellent recipes. Which makes me a bit surprised that you would post anything from the PW. She is a fake and her recipes are not at all original. You can look up most of her recipes online and find the same recipe there, with substantially less fat and butter required. From a long time fan, J

  3. I love me some chicken spaghetti!


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