Monday, September 10, 2012

Three Cheese Chicken Penne Pasta Bake

Hello everyone! I hope you all had a better weekend than I did (I was stuck inside studying all weekend. Boo!). While I was taking a break from studying, I decided to make dinner and what I decided on was this delicious recipe! It just sounded so yummy that I HAD to make it! The only problem I had was finding a particular kind of cheese that this recipe uses called Neufchatel cheese. So, since I couldn't find it, I decided that ricotta cheese was a good substitution. And for those of you who are trying to eat healthy, ricotta is actually lower calories than Neufchatel cheese. So, I got all of my ingredients together and got started!

Three Cheese Chicken Penne Pasta Bake


The best way to save money on this recipe is to buy your food when your grocery store is having a sale or use coupons. We bought our chicken in bulk and froze the majority of it; that way, when we're making a dish, we can just thaw the chicken and we're ready to go! My grocery store has regular sales on pasta, so keep your eyes out for those deals too!

This recipe said to use fresh basil when you cook the chicken, but I didn't have any on hand (and frankly, I think fresh basil is a bit strong), so I used Italian Seasoning mix instead. 

The recipe said to use pre-made sauce in a jar, but my roommate makes amazing sauce, so she made some up and we used that! :) Feel free to make your own sauce if you feel up to it!

Addition of diced tomatoes to the chicken


Addition of sauce to the chicken and tomato mixture

I like this recipe because it saves you time by letting you cook two different things together so you don't dirty up more pots than you need. So, when you cook the pasta, once it is done you add your spinach leaves into the pot and let them cook for a minute or two. 

The spinach cooks really fast, so make sure to keep an eye on it!

This is the addition of the ricotta to the sauce and chicken mixture. I might have added a little bit more than the recipe called for....ok, maybe it was a lot more ;)

This is what it looks like after you add the ricotta cheese

Then you mix all of your yummly ingredients delicious!

Transfer your pasta mixture into a casserole dish, but before you do make sure you spray the dish with non-stick cooking spray! I forgot to and it was very difficult to scrub the dish afterwards (I had to soak it forever!).

Pop it in the oven for about 20 minutes and sit back and relax. After 20 minutes, you'll take your dish out and top it with mozzarella cheese. It should look like this delicious mixture right here:

Transfer your serving onto a dish and serve with a niece piece of bread with butter!

Hard to resist...

I absolutely loved this recipe!! Mostly because it was so delicious, but also because it was really easy to whip together! If you can find Neufchatel cheese, then you should try it, but it was really yummy with the ricotta cheese! I would definitely recommend this recipe for anyone to try and I know that I'll be making it again in the near future :)

Thank again for stopping by and reading my blog! Don't forget to subscribe to my blog so you can be updated whenever I put up a new post (the button is on the right hand side below the search bar). Come back soon for my next review of a Pinterest recipe and don't forget to leave a comment if there's a recipe you want me to try! See you all soon!

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