Posts from the ‘Pasta’ Category

Creamy Chicken and Asparagus


1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bit-sized chunks

1 Tbsp olive oil

1 tsp dried basil

1/2 tsp dried oregano

1/4 tsp dried thyme

1/4 tsp each salt and freshly ground black pepper, plus more for sauce

12 oz penne pasta

1 lb asparagus, trimmed of ends, remaining diced into 2-inch pieces and steamed

1 1/2 Tbsp butter

2 Tbsp all-purpose flour

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 3/4 cup milk

1/4 cup cream or half and half

3 oz  light cream cheese

1/3 cup finely shredded parmesan cheese

4 – 5 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled into small pieces (optional)

  • In a small bowl, stir together basil, oregano, thyme and 1/4 salt and pepper. Sprinkle the herb mixture over the chicken and stir to coat. Heat olive oil in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add chicken to skillet. Cook chicken until fully cooked through, about 8 – 12 minutes, occasionally rotating chicken. Transfer cooked chicken to a plate, let rest 5 minutes.
  • Meanwhile cook pasta according to directions listed on package, reserving 1/2 cup pasta water before draining.
  • In a clean skillet (large and deep), melt butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour and cook 1 minute, stirring constantly, add garlic and cook 30 seconds longer, stirring constantly. While whisking, slowly pour in milk then cream (whisk vigorously to break up clumps). Season with salt and pepper to taste (a fair amount of each) and bring mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. Once it reaches a boil and thickens, reduce heat to medium-low, add Neufchatel and parmesan cheese and cook, stirring frequently, until cheeses have melted.
  • Toss in cooked pasta, then add cooked chicken, steamed asparagus and bacon and toss to evenly coat. Add in reserved pasta water as desired (it will thicken as it rests and the pasta will absorb the liquids, so add up to 1/2 cup as needed). Serve immediately

Shrimp Tortellini Skillet

unnamed (1)

2  12 ounce packages of precooked shrimp (thawed)

1  14 ounce bag of tortellini (thawed)

1 1/2 cups cooked broccoli (or thawed from frozen)

1 4 ounce can of mushroom pieces

2 – 2 1/2 marinara or spaghetti sauce

salt and pepper

Extra virgin olive oil

3/4 cups shredded mozzarella

Parmesan cheese

~ Set broiler on high.

Cook the tortellini according to package directions and set aside, drain, and set aside.

Toss shrimp, broccoli, mushrooms with a few tablespoons of olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Place in a large oven safe skillet.

Cook until heated through. Remove from heat.

Toss tortellini with marinara sauce and add to the skillet. Mix all well.

Sprinkle a few tablespoons of Parmesan over the top, followed by the shredded mozzarella.

Place in oven and broil until cheese is bubbly and golden brown.

Sour Cream Noodle Bake


1 1/4 lb ground beef or turkey

1 (15 oz) can of tomato sauce

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

1/4 tsp onion powder

8 oz egg noodles

3/4 cup sour cream

1 1/4 cup small curd cottage cheese

2 cups of shredded cheddar

~Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

1. Brown beef. Season with salt, pepper, and onion powder. Drain. Add in the tomato sauce and simmer on low for 10 minutes.

2. Cook the noodles until al dente, drain and set aside. In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine the sour cream and cottage cheese. Add noodles and stir to coat.

3. Grease a 9×13 inch pan and layer with half of the noodles, half of the meat sauce, and top with half of the cheese. Repeat the layers and end with the cheese.

4. Bake for 20 minutes or until heated through and cheese melted.

Creamy Tomato and Spinach Penne (meat optional)


1 Tbsp EVOO
1 small onion, diced
2 minced garlic cloves
1 15 ounce can of diced tomatoes w/juice
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried basil
Pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
Fresh pepper to taste
1/2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp tomato paste
2 ounces cream cheese
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 lb Penne
1/2 bag (9 oz) fresh spinach

~Cook pasta according to package. Drain and set aside.
While pasta is cooking, heat EVOO in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add onion and garlic and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes.
Add tomatoes and juice, oregano, basil, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Stir until well combined. Add paste and 1/2 cup water and whisk until paste is dissolved.
Turn heat to low. Cut cream cheese into chunks and add to the skillet. Whisk until all is melt and creamy. Add half the Parmesan and whisk. Add the rest of the Parmesan and whisk until well mixed.
Add spinach and cook until wilted, about 3-5 minutes. Add pasta and stir until well coated.

Chicken, Pasta, Cheese, and Trees (can also go meatless!)


1 lb of Penne, Corkscrew Pasta, or medium shells
1 lb of broccoli (fresh or frozen)
3 Tbsp EVOO, divided
2 Tbsp butter, chopped up
3 cloves of garlic, minced (I used dry.)
1 cup of Ricotta cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan or Romano
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 lb chicken, chopped bite-sized

~Heat 2 Tbsp EVOO in a skillet, and add chicken. Brown through, then remove from skillet and set aside.
Cook pasta according to package directions.
If you are using fresh broccoli, cook while pasta is cooking. Put broccoli into a pot and just cover with water. Bring to a boil and add 4 pinches of salt. Boil for 5 minutes. Drain.
Drain pasta.
Pour remaining EVOO and butter into the skillet and heat over low. When all the butter is melted, add in garlic. If using fresh, let it cook 5 minutes. If dry, continue on. Stir in broccoli, chicken, and pasta. Add the Ricotta and Parmesan cheeses and stir well to combine. Season with salt and pepper.

Parmesan Turkey (chicken) Noodle Casserole


8 oz egg noodles
2/3 cup plain bread crumbs
3/4 cup Parmesan cheese
6 Tbsp melted butter, divided
1 1/8 tsp salt
1 1/4 cup mushrooms
1 cup chopped onion
3/4 lb cooked turkey, or chicken
1 cup frozen peas
28 oz chicken broth
6 Tbsp flour
2 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp Thyme

~ Preheat oven to 425°.
Cook noodles according to package, drain and set aside.
In a bowl, mix bread crumbs, 1/4 cup Parmesan, 3 Tbsp melted butter, and 1/8 tsp salt. Set aside.
In a medium saucepan, combine 1 Tbsp butter, mushrooms, onion, and 1 tsp salt. Cover and cook over medium high heat for 3 minutes. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, 3 more minutes. Move to a bowl and mix with turkey and peas. Set aside. 
For sauce, whisk broth, 2 Tbsp butter and flour in the saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, whisking constantly until thickened, 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in 1/2 cup Parmesan, lemon juice and Thyme. Season with salt and pepper.
In a 13×9 baking dish, mix the noodles, turkey mix, and sauce. Cover with bread crumb mixture.
Bake 13-15 minutes.

Lo Mein


3/4 lb spaghetti noodles
1 tsp dry minced garlic
4 Tbsp EVOO
3 tsp sesame oil + extra
1/2 Tbsp dry chives
3/4 cup soy sauce
2 Tbsp peanut butter ( use soy nut butter in place, if you have a peanut allergy)
2-3 chicken breasts cut into small strips or pieces
1 cup broccoli
1 cup matchstick carrots

~ Brown chicken in extra sesame oil, remove chicken and set aside. In same skillet, add a little more sesame oil and vegetables. Cook through and set aside.

Start water for pasta.

In a small saucepan heat the EVOO and 3 tsp of sesame oil. Add garlic. Mix in soy sauce, peanut butter, and chives. Simmer on low.

Cook pasta to al dente. Drain and return to pot.

Add chicken and vegetables. Pour sauce over and stir to coat.

*This can be done with beef, shrimp, pork, or as a vegetable lo mein as well.