Food · Kids Tea Tuesdays!

Chicken and Spinach Pasta Bake

We call this ‘Green Pasta Bake‘, cunningly omitting the word ‘spinach‘ from the title!! The trick is to whizz up the spinach into the sauce, therefore making it unrecognisable as a vegetable. This recipe also makes a little meat go a long way. One large chicken breast can feed the whole family! This recipe feeds a family of 5 with leftovers for my lunch the next day!

Ingredients:
  • 1x large chicken breast or left over roast chicken
  • 1/2 pint of chicken stock (fresh or stock cube)
  • 1 tsp dry mixed herbs
  • 1 tbsp corn flour & a knob of butter mixed to a paste with a fork (add more butter if it’s not forming a paste)

Buzymum - 1 tbsp cornflour and knob of butter combined

  • 6 cubes of frozen spinach
  • Mug of defrosted or canned sweet corn
  • 250g whole wheat penne dry pasta
  • 1 ball mozzarella, chopped
  • 50g cheddar cheese, grated
Method:
  • If using a raw chicken breast, place in a saucepan and cover with cold water (2cm over the chicken) bring the water to a simmer and cook for approx 12 minutes or until cooked through (check the thickest part), chop into approx 1.5cm cubes
  • Use the poaching liquor (foam scum removed) or water if you are using left-over chicken, to make your stock in a small sauce pan (add one stock cube to 1/2 pint of the poaching liquor but keep the remaining liquid to loosen the sauce later if needed)
  • Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the packet instructions minus 1 minute. For whole wheat pasta, I would normally cook for 10 minutes but for this recipe only 9 as it will cook again when baked in the oven
  • Drain the pasta and set to one side
  • Put your stock on a low heat and add the flour/ butter paste, stirring continuously until the sauce begins to thicken and lumps have gone
  • Add the mixed herbs and bring to a simmer for 2 minutes to cook out the flour
  • Take the pan off the heat and add the frozen spinach and allow to defrost and warm through, this will also lose the sauce
  • Whizz the sauce with a hand held blender (a jug attachment on a blender could also be used), if you feel that the sauce is too thick at this point add a little extra poaching liquor or water

Buzymum - Chicken stock with frozen spinach  ⇒  Buzymum - Chicken and spinach sauce after blending

  • In an oven proof dish, mix the pasta, see corn, chicken, mozzarella and sauce.

Buzymum - Before combining ingredients for chicken and spinach pasta bake  ⇒  Buzymum - Combined ingredients for chicken and spinach pasta bake

  • Top with the cheddar cheese
  • Bake at 180C for 10-15 mins until the cheese on top is golden and bubbling and it is hot all the way through
  • Once assembled, this dish can be left to cool and then baked later. When baking from cold, cover (tin foil or oven-proof lid) and bake for 15 mins then remove cover for a further 10 minutes.

Enjoy!!

Previous recipes: Easy Bacon and Monkfish Risotto, Hake in a Cheesy SauceRoasted Vegetable Pasta SauceChinese SalmonChorizo and veg pasta & Homemade fish (or chicken) fingers.

Click here for more quick, cheap and healthy dinner ideas and follow my blog for regular Kids Tea Tuesdays! xx

2 thoughts on “Chicken and Spinach Pasta Bake

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