Baked chicken spaghetti (freezer meal)
When you need an easy meal idea that the whole family will enjoy, or perhaps a stash of freezer meals, you won't go far wrong with this baked chicken spaghetti. Add in some colourful veggies and condensed chicken soup for the ultimate comfort food!
- 1 pound chicken breasts cut into smallish pieces*
- 1 pounds spaghetti broken up into pieces (about 2 to 3 inches long)
- 3 peppers 1 red, 1 green, 1 yellow, if possible!, cubed finely
- 1 onion large, cubed finely
- 1/2 pound mushrooms I used brown
- 1 tablespoon Italian herbs
- pepper to taste
- 20 ounces condensed chicken soup I used Campbell’s** (two 10 oz. cans)
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 3 cups cheddar cheese grated
to serve (optional)
- garlic bread and fresh green salad leaves
Pre-heat the oven to 190C / 375F.
Heat a little vegetable oil in a heavy pan and stir fry the chicken until totally white and cooked through (around 4 or 5 minutes). Remove to a plate and set aside.
Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti pieces in boiling salted water in a very large saucepan for a few minutes less than it says on the packet or until very al dente (around 6 minutes for regular spaghetti - don’t overcook as it’s going to be cooked again in the oven). Drain, tip back into the saucepan, add a drizzle of oil to stop the spaghetti sticking and put on the lid.
Add a little more oil to the pan and cook the peppers and onions together until softened (about 5 minutes). Add the mushrooms and cook for a few more minutes until the mushrooms have started to break down. Add the herbs and pepper and stir for a minute or so longer.
Tip the vegetables into the saucepan with the spaghetti. Then add the chicken, soup, stock, and 1 cup of the cheese. Combine well.
Spoon the mixture into your baking dish or dishes (see notes for suitable sizes to use) and top with the remaining 2 cups of cheese.
Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until golden and bubbling on top, then serve with garlic bread and salad leaves (if you like).
Adapted from Pioneer Woman’s 2007 recipe for chicken spaghetti.
This is a perfect freezer meal!
To freeze, tip the chicken spaghetti into baking dishes or disposable foil trays, then sprinkle over the cheese, cover and freeze. I always write what it is, the date I made it and the cooking instructions on the top of the dish/tray. I usually defrost then cook as normal, but if you want to cook straight from frozen simply add on about 20 minutes to the cooking time.
*Feel free to use cooked chicken instead, if you have it. 2 to 2½ cups is about the right amount. Just omit step 2 in the recipe and add the chicken to the cooked spaghetti along with everything else.
**You could also use mushroom soup, or 1 can of chicken and 1 of mushroom. Your choice!
Suitable baking dish sizes to serve:
8 people: 9 x 13 inches (this is the size Ree suggests in her recipe for 8)
4 people: 6 x 9 inches (or equivalent)
2 people: 5.5 x 7.5 inches (or equivalent – this is the size of the disposable foil trays I used for my batch freezer meals for two!)
Calories: 488kcalCarbohydrates: 54gProtein: 22gFat: 19gSaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 51mgSodium: 853mgPotassium: 461mgFiber: 3gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 730IUVitamin C: 37.6mgCalcium: 347mgIron: 2.4mg