Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Baked Penne with Chicken and Sun-Dried Tomatoes

I love comfort food. Cheesy goodness, pasta, potatoes, etc. I can't really eat this type of food all the time or I'd weigh 500lbs and have seriously clogged arteries. But once a week or so is acceptable, in my opinion. I exercise, I try to eat right for the most part. Except for those times when it's 9pm, I 've had a glass of wine, and I need a cookie. That happens more often than not.


Recently I stumbled across this recipe from The Art of Comfort Baking  for baked penne with chicken and sun dried tomatoes. Yum!!!

Baked Penne with Chicken and Sun-Dried Tomatoes
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 pound Penne
1 boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 tablespoon Spicy Grill seasoning (I always use the kind for steak)
1/4 cup flour, plus 1 tablespoon
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups milk (I used 2%)
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, diced
1 cup mozzarella
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
1/4 Italian seasoning bread crumbs 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Spray a 2-quart baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.  Cook your Penne in a large pot of boiling salted water about 3 minutes short of al dente.  Drain and return to pot.  

Dice chicken into bite size pieces and toss with grill seasoning.  Cook until cooked throughout.  

In a large heavy pot or dutch oven, melt butter over medium.  Add flour and garlic, whisk and cook for 1 minute.  Gradually add milk while whisking and bring to a simmer, whisking frequently until sauce thickens, about 6-8 minutes.  Add tomatoes, cook for 1 minute.  Take off heat and add mozzarella and 1/4 cup Parmesan.  

Add chicken and pasta to sauce and season with salt and pepper.  Pour mixture into baking dish and sprinkle with remaining Parmesan and bread crumbs.  Bake for about 25 minutes until golden and bubbling.  

It is seriously, seriously good stuff. Like, I kind of wanted to just take the baking dish and go somewhere to eat the entire thing all by myself. This recipe includes all the things I love: pasta, creamy goodness, chicken, and bread crumbs. Who doesn't like bread crumbs?

The only problem? The recipe is a little putzy. Meaning, it's not really a whip-it-up-quick type dish that's good for a weeknight. My husband said exactly this "Yea, it's good. But let's not ever make this again, ok?" Say what? That kind of breaks my heart! I think it was all the whisking that did him in. So, we will be making this again, but I think it will be reserved for special occasions. However, if you have plenty of time on your hands and do not have a cranky toddler demanding fruit snacks and movies all night long, then try this! You'll like it!


  1. That looks sooooo good. I think I'm just hungry right now. We're cooking pizza (homemade) and I can smell it! haha. We love pasta dishes. I'll have to pin this for later!

  2. 2 things 2 make your dish easier. 1 use left over chicken. Let's say you had chicken
    For dinner, debone it and tomorrow use it in this lovely casserole.
    2. I think you can speed your 8 min process of whipping that cream just a bit.
    Turn your heat up a tiny bit and you will speed the thickening process. It doesn't need to be compleatly thick because you are baking it.

  3. Is the mozzarella fresh or shredded?

    1. We used shredded, but you could definitely use fresh and shred it yourself ahead of time!

  4. How many servings does this make? Thank you!

    1. Probably 3 at most since there's only one chicken breast.

  5. It is not a whip it up- BUT MAN IS IT GOOD!!!! THANK YOU!!!