Chicken and Broccoli Pasta With Pesto
- Ready In:
- Cook the penne in a large pot of water for 8-10 minutes until tender but firm.
- While pasta cooks, heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken and pepper strips and cook for 3-5 minutes.
- Set aside.
- Place the broccoli florets in a colander and drain the pasta over it. Place the pasta and broccoli back into the large pot.
- Add the chicken mixture, pesto and parmesan cheese. Stir to combine.
- Cool. Spoon into freezer containers, seal, label and freeze for up to 3 months.
- Thaw in micro or fridge. Bake in baking dish at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until heated through. Sprinkle with additional freshly grated parmesan before serving.
- Note: I usually undercook my pasta slightly if I am freezing it. It finishes cooking when the dish is reheated.
Questions & Replies
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This was fantastic!! My fiance said probably the best pasta dish I've made in a long time. It was so flavorful, but so simple too. I seasoned my chicken with salt, pepper, garlic & onion powders. The veggies are great in this, and I may add an onion next time. I didn't really measure the pesto, just used enough to coat the pasta to our taste.
I made this before my baby was born and froze it in 2 batches. I did not cook the broccoli at all, just mixed it in while still frozen. I was impatient when it came time to eat it and just cooked it in the microwave on a "casserole" setting. It was still fabulous. I used a Knorr packet to make the pesto - I think it would be even better with higher quality pesto.
Very yummy! Changes I made: omitted peppers (personal preference), used parmesan cheese from a shaker (didn't have fresh), used frozen grilled chicken (as another reviewer did), added a few extra ounces of chicken, and used tortellini for the pasta. I also put the broccoli in with the pasta during the last minute or so of cooking, then drained the entire pot into the colander. I served it with crusty bread and fruit salad. I did not freeze this, instead heating it in the oven right away. Will definitely be freezing some soon. As we sat down to dinner, I realized that every item in our entire meal came from Costco, right down to the milk, butter, bread and fruit in the salad (except for some oranges that were given to us). Would like to try it with fresh parmesan, as I'm sure that would add even more flavor. I was scared that the pesto would be overpowering, so I reduced it by a Tbsp or so. Tasted great!
Since I was only feeding two of us, I made the recipe as directed, baking half to eat that night, and freezing the other half for later. It was so good, we ate the leftover bag three days later! I can't wait to try other variations on this method, I was scared about freezing pasta, but this worked awesome!
RECIPE SUBMITTED BY
<p>My DH and I live in Arizona. We have five children ages 24, 20, 16, and 14 year old twins. I LOVE to cook and find it a lot of fun and very relaxing. I have an extensive cookbook collection and enjoy reading them. <br /><br /><br /><img src=http://i23.photobucket.com/albums/b399/susied214/permanent%20collection/BtoBHosts.jpg border=0 alt=Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket /> <br /><a href=http://photobucket.com target=_blank><img src=http://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b161/tisht/freezer.jpg border=0 alt=Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket /></a> <br /><br /><a href=http://s7.photobucket.com/albums/y254/Missymop/?action=view?t=daringdingos.jpg target=_blank><img src=http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y254/Missymop/daringdingos.jpg border=0 alt=Photobucket /></a> <br /><br /><a href=http://s19.photobucket.com/albums/b161/tisht/?action=view?t=tish2.jpg target=_blank><img src=http://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b161/tisht/tish2.jpg border=0 alt=Recipezaar Challenge 2008 /></a></p>