Cheesy Chicken and Bacon

This is the second time that I’ve made this for the family and it’s still a hit.  The first time I made it, the pictures didn’t look good because it was dark out and my external flash had broken the night before so the pictures looked gross.  Completely unappealing!  This time around, there was a little bit of daylight left and I actually plated it.  Not that the composition is world class but it worked for me at the time.  It’s hard to get nicely composed shots when your family is waiting for you to sit so we can bless the food and eat.

Now this recipe is a lot for our family of three but we had plenty left over for dinner two nights later and lunch the next day.  Adjust according to your family’s size.

Here’s a tip:  If your have someone in your life that loves bacon, please hide it.  As I was checking on my chicken, I noticed Suga Booga in the living room chewing something while playing with her Legos.  Of course I feared that she was eating plastic so I asked her what she had in her mouth and she said “bacon” with a grin.  I asked her where she got it from (thinking she’d stashed her leftover slices from breakfast) and she said, “Off the counter” then started eating another piece she had stolen!  I didn’t even notice that she’d come in under the guise of getting a cup of water and helped herself to two slices of bacon that I had on the cutting board, waiting to be diced!  I promptly diced it and about 5 minutes later she came in and asked where her bacon had gone.  She has gone from being the “Baconator” to the “Bacon Burglar”.

Ingredients:

8 chicken tenders

8 slices of bacon (we eat turkey bacon)

1/4 medium white onion (diced finely)

1 and 1/2 cup of your favorite pasta (this time Suga Booga chose veggie Penne, last time we used Farfalle)

1 package shredded cheddar cheese

2 cans cream of chicken soup (low sodium)

salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste

olive oil (enough to saute, not fry, your chicken)

Preheat your oven to 375, start your water to boil your pasta, and oil/spray a casserole dish.

Then you’ll want to clean and dice your chicken into chunks then season with the salt, pepper, and garlic powder.  Go easy on the salt!  The bacon and cheese will be plenty for the dish overall but you need a little salt  on the chicken so that it doesn’t taste weird.  By this time, your water should be boiling and add your pasta if it is.  If not…wait.  ;).  Once your pasta is in the boiling water, set your timer according to the package for al dente then go ahead and saute your chicken in your pan with the olive oil over medium heat–we want this to cook slowly and not dry out because you’ll be putting it in the oven later.  Once your chicken is in, go ahead and start your bacon.  You’ll want to make sure it’s fully cooked but not too crunchy.

While that’s all going, go ahead and open your two cans of soup and dump them in a mixing bowl with about 1/2 the package of shredded cheese and your onion then set aside.

When your bacon is done, drain on paper towels then dice and add it to the bowl of soup and cheese.  Your pasta should be ready to be drained and added to your bowl of soup, cheese, and bacon.  Make sure you drained nearly all of the water off before dumping it in.

Now once your chicken is done, dump it in the bowl with everything else then stir your ingredients until everything is creamy, cheesy, and you want to eat a spoonful of it just to make sure that it’s good.  Pour is into your oiled casserole dish then cover it with cheese and put the lid on the casserole or simply cover with foil.  You want the cheese on top melted but not crispy, unless that’s your thing.

Bake for 20 minutes or until it starts to bubble.  You want everything hot, melty, cheesy, bacony, and delicious.  Can you tell I like this dish?

I didn’t do this but if you have the time, go ahead and add toasted bread crumbs on top after everything is done or even crispy bacon–just to give your dish a little crunch.  That Guy and Suga Booga had toasted strips of whole wheat bread to go with theirs.

cheesy chicken and bacon

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Chicken Taco Bowls with Warm Corn Salsa

This dinner started as a creamy chicken taco casserole but ended up as the title above states.  The reason why is because I forgot to pick up cream cheese when I went to the grocery store on my lunch break and it was raining when I got home so…I had on flats which do not mix well here in Florida.  You would think that I would have learned my lesson by now but nope.  I love flats and I’m not afraid to admit it!  I’m rambling…here’s the recipe!

Tacos:

Chicken breasts (I used cutlets)

Chicken Broth

Taco seasoning (I used my own mix)

Mexican style cheese

Tortilla shells

Ovenproof bowls

I started by cleaning then seasoning the chicken, making sure that it was thoroughly coated.  If the chicken had more time to marinate, I would have used a lot less than in the pictures.  I then poured the chicken broth over them, opting for that instead of water because I was afraid that the chicken would be tasteless, not having ample time to marinate.  Once they were covered and coming to a boil, I took the tortilla shells and made a taco shells then baked them in the oven for 10 minutes.

Salsa:

Canned corn

Diced stoplight peppers

Diced onions

Diced tomatoes (i used canned)

Cilantro

Olive oil

I started the salsa by sauteing the peppers and onions in the oil then put the corn on top, followed by the tomatoes and cilantro then added some of the broth from the chicken to make sure that the taste was cohesive throughout.  I then covered and let simmer over medium heat.

Assembly:

Once the chicken was done, I chopped it and layered it in the taco bowl followed by the warm salsa and cheese.

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Grilled BBQ Chicken

As stated in the previous post, tonight’s dinner was BBQ chicken and veggie packets on the grill.  Thankfully the weather held up.  Suga Booga helped spear the chicken tenders on bamboo skewers while That Guy turned on the grill.

I seasoned the frozen chicken with:  Lawry’s Seasoned Salt, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and pepper then drizzled with olive oil before I tossed them in a covered bowl and placed in the fridge overnight to thaw.  The veggie packets consisted of:  asparagus, white onion and zucchini with “stoplight” peppers and seasoned simply with salt, pepper, and olive oil, rolled in foil and grilled right along with the chicken.  About 5 minutes before the chicken was done, I spread Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce over all but two…Suga Booga needed a layer of ketchup before her BBQ sauce.

Dinner was a hit and That Guy doesn’t think the leftovers are going to make it for his lunch tomorrow.  🙂

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