Super Easy Creamy Tomato and Chicken Baked Penne.

Welcome back to the adventures of “I can’t make anything without adding cheese.”

It’s true. Not that you didn’t know.

I try. I really do. And then… well. Then, I fail.

Things are just so much better with cheese. So much freaking better.

I’m almost embarrassed to share because it’s definitely one of those throw-together-what’s-in-your-fridge meals. But in the spirit of the holiday rush and let’s be honest – the season of cookies for dinner – I decided that any quick and easy meal deserves a little spotlight. Especially when it can produce leftovers and leave more time for cookie baking. Because that’s what I’m really all about. Cookie baking. Mmmm.


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30 Minute Baked Chicken Penne

Yield: serves 2-4

Total Time: 35 minutes

Ingredients:

1/2 pound whole wheat penne
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 red onion, chopped
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1/2 red pepper chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
2 (14 ounce) cans diced tomatoes
1/4 cup cream
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
1/3 cup freshly grated mozzarella cheese

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Bring water to a boil and prepare pasta according to directions. Cut chicken into 1-inch cubes and season with salt, pepper, paprika and basil.

Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add olive oil. Stir in onions and peppers with a pinch of salt, cooking for 5 minutes until soft. Add in garlic and stir. Increase heat to medium-high and add chicken in a single layer. Cook for 5-6 minutes until browned, then flip and cook for 5-6 minutes more. Stir in diced tomatoes, cream and parmesan cheese, mixing well to combine. Stir in penne.

Transfer mixture to a baking dish and top with mozzarella. Bake for 10-15 minutes, just until cheese is melted and pasta is warmed through. Serve immediately with extra cheese for grating.

I’d promise no cheese tomorrow buuuut… you know me better than that.