Creamy Chicken Pasta Casserole

This recipe is family-friendly, serves a crowd and is delicious alongside your favourite vegetable.

Prep Time: 60 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 8

Ingredients
  • 2 Tbsp (30 mL) olive oil, divided
  • 1 lb (454 g) boneless, skinless chicken breast, large diced
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) garlic powder, divided
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) paprika, divided
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) oregano, divided
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) salt, divided
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) ground black pepper, divided
  • 3 cups (750 mL) sliced mushrooms
  • ¼ cup (60 mL) butter
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • ¼ cup (60 mL) flour
  • 4 cups (1 L) milk (2%, 3%, UHT, or diluted canned)
  • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) mustard
  • 2 ½ - 3 cups (~ 250 g) uncooked penne pasta
  • 1 cup (250 mL) frozen peas
  • 1 cup (250 mL) grated cheddar cheese
  • ½ cup (125 mL) bread crumbs
  • Optional: 1 Tbsp (15 mL) chopped fresh parsley
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 175°C (350°F).
  2. Cook pasta according to package directions.
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon (15 mL) of oil in a large pot over medium heat.
  4. Season the chicken with half of the garlic powder, paprika, oregano, salt, and pepper and cook for about 5 minutes in several small batches. Remove from pot and set aside in a large bowl.
  5. Add 1 tablespoon (15 mL) of oil to the pot and cook the mushrooms for 2 minutes. Add mushrooms to the chicken in the large bowl.
  6. Add the butter and onion to the pot. Cook for 2 minutes without browning. Add the flour and cook for 2 minutes, stirring continuously with a wooden spoon, to make a thick paste (roux).
  7. Add 1 cup (250 mL) of milk and blend well using a whisk.
  8. Slowly add remaining milk, 1 cup at a time, bringing mixture back to a boil each time.
  9. Add the rest of the garlic powder, paprika, oregano, salt and pepper and simmer for 8 minutes.
  10. Remove the pot from heat and add the mustard. Mix well and pour the sauce over the mushrooms and chicken.
  11. Add the peas and pasta and mix well.
  12. Transfer the mixture into a 9” x 13” (23 cm x 33 cm) ovenproof casserole pan.
  13. In a small bowl, mix the cheddar cheese and bread crumbs. Sprinkle the mixture on top of the casserole.
  14. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown.
  15. Sprinkle with chopped parsley, if using, and serve hot.

Tips

  • When making a cream sauce, UHT or canned milk is a great alternative. If using canned milk in this recipe, be sure to dilute it with an equal amount of water first.
  • Chill leftovers for up to 3 days in the fridge.
  • To freeze, let it cool, then transfer pasta to food safe containers, removing all excess air, and freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to use, thaw in fridge overnight and heat to serving temperature (165°F/74°C or higher).
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