Chicken Spaghetti

Chicken Spaghetti

This final college recipe was also given to me by Connie.  She was full of spunk and personality and self-assurance; someone who owned the room when she walked into any situation.

We were still cooking for apartment 306 when Connie first told me about this chicken spaghetti. I thought that it all sounded very odd.  “I can’t explain it,” she finally said.  “You’ll just have to wait until dinner is done.  I promise you will like it.”

I have to admit that I was skeptical as I watched her make it, especially when I saw her pour a cup of cream over the entire casserole.  However, once the chicken spaghetti started baking I began to see the light.  Then when I tasted it, I became a believer and so did the boys in 306.  This still remains one of my favorite dinner meals.

I have taken the liberty of making a few changes to the original recipe.  They are very simple changes, but add extra flavor and lots of creaminess:

  1. Instead of canned mushrooms I used fresh.
  2. The original recipe called for the vegetables and mushrooms to be sauteed.  I did not saute the vegetables or mushrooms prior to adding them to the pasta, which actually made them quite flavorful and somewhat crisp-tender.
  3. The last change is that I mixed in some of the cheese with the pasta/vegetable mixture instead of only putting it on top.  Mega great idea!

For other recipes in this series see:
College Cornbread
Lemon Bisque

Chicken Spaghetti
Recipe adapted by Terri @ that’s some good cookin’
Printable Recipe

  • 4 chicken breasts (or any equivalent amount of chicken pieces.  I used about 1/2 of a rotisserie chicken.)
  • 1 bell pepper, small diced
  • 8 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced then rough chopped (Leave the pieces chunky.)
  • 1 large onion, small diced
  • 3 stalks celery, small diced
  • 1 (15 ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 8 ounces (weight) sharp cheddar cheese, grated (more if you need it)
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 pound spaghetti noodles, broken into thirds
  • olive oil, optional
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
  2. Boil or bake chicken until done (or use a rotisserie chicken; my personal preference). Cut up in small pieces.
  3. While chicken cooks, prep vegetables and mushrooms.
  4. Cook spaghetti in boiling, salted water until al dente, softened but still chewy.  Do not over-cook.  The pasta will pick up more moisture from the vegetables as it bakes.  It is better to have the noodles somewhat under-done than to have them over-done prior to adding them to the casserole.
  5. Drain the spaghetti noodles in a colander and rinse under cool water.  Drain well.
  6. In a large bowl, mix together the spaghetti, vegetables, drained tomatoes, and mushrooms.  Drizzle with a little olive oil, if desired.  It adds to the creaminess factor, but is not necessary.
  7. Then mix in one or two handsful of grated cheese.  Season with salt and pepper. Mix well.
  8. Put mixture in a 9″ x 13″ baking dish and top with remaining grated cheese.
  9. Pour the cream evenly over the top of the cheese.  (Trust me on this.)
  10. Bake on a middle oven rack, uncovered, for 50 minutes to one hour.
Once the casserole is assembled, pour the cream over the top of the cheese.  The cream will cook down through the casserole adding smoothness and creaminess.  I have also used half and half with good results.  Milk does not work very well; it leaves the casserole somewhat watery.
Chicken Spaghetti
The finished product.  Can you see how creamy it looks?  The vegetables are perfect, full of flavor and ever so slightly past crisp-tender.
Chicken Spaghetti

Comments

  1. says

    Bookmarked to try, I just have to remember what they call whipping cream here. Also, Jeff was talking about a green pea-and-cream soup that Grandma Spencer makes. Any idea what that is?

  2. says

    Do they call it double cream?

    I don’t know about Grandma Spencer’s soup, but I’ll ask her about it. She’ll be thrilled to know that Jeff wants her recipe.

  3. says

    I’m going to try this recipe tomorrow now that I’m back home & cooking again. But, the cream pea thing is Grandma Tucker’s and she is here with us now so I’m going to stalk her in the kitchen tonight as she makes it so I can measure or guesstimate her ingredients & then I’ll let ya’ll know! Oh happy day!

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