As we all know, it takes a village to raise a child, or two, or three. Today I want to share the easy recipe I made for my mom-friend, Chelsea. She just had a baby and the night she brought him home, I didn't want her to worry about what's for dinner. She already had two little munchkins: a three-year-old and a one-year-old waiting to greet their new baby brother. I wanted to help, so I made her this casserole and even set up a Meal Train for her. Chelsea was all set with two weeks' worth of meals. Try this recipe for one of your friends, too.
Easy Chicken Casserole
2 cups of organic chicken breast cooked and cubed
1 pound of whole wheat pasta (I like spiral noodles best since they hold on to the sauce)
2 packs of shredded mozzarella cheese (use 1.5 packs here and set the rest aside for sauce)
1 cup breadcrumbs (see my post called Don't Waste the Bread Ends!)
Cook the pasta according to the directions on package and drain
While the pasta is still hot, layer it in a casserole dish with chicken and cheese on top
Continue the layers of pasta / chicken / cheese until you use up all the pasta and chicken
Be sure to end with cheese on the top
Set breadcrumbs aside
2 cups of milk (I like organic almond milk or coconut milk for added sweetness)
4 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
the other 1/2 pack of cheese
1 Tbsp flour + 2 Tbsp water to create a slurry
salt and pepper to taste
In a small saucepan, over low heat, warm the milk stirring with a whisk. I never stop stirring the entire time for fear of burning the bottom. (It has happened to me before)
Add butter and keep stirring until it melts completely
Pour in Worcestershire sauce and continue whisking
Little by little add the shredded cheese as you stir so it melts evenly
Mix the flour and water in a small bowl to create a slurry. (A slurry is a culinary trick used to thicken soups and sauces.) We are getting fancy over here!
Pour the slurry into the saucepan as you do your final stir
You will see the sauce thicken and should now be at a low simmer
Add salt and pepper to taste
Remove from heat
Take your saucepan full of yummy goodness and slowly pour over the entire casserole. I pay special attention to the corners and the edges. It will drip down to coat every morsel, so each bite has a bit of sauce. Sprinkle any more leftover cheese and finish with breadcrumbs on top. Cover with aluminum foil and place in your refrigerator to set.
It takes about an hour to set, but you can certainly make this the night before you are visiting your friend. Then it will be nice and cold for you to travel with it. Keep it refrigerated until it is time to eat.
Preheat oven to 375 and bake for 20 minutes with aluminum foil ON.
Remove foil and continue to bake for 10 more minutes. This will make it nice and crispy. Enjoy!
This is so easy to make and a complete meal for your family or a friend. If you want to set up a meal train of your own visit www.mealtrain.com It is free to use, and your friend will thank you! Plus, you will feel the warm and fuzzies knowing you helped someone in a big way. Happy Cooking!
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