Chicken, Spinach & Artichoke Casserole

With Fall in the air, it is definitely home food time and nothing says that better than a casserole.  Now, I will preface this recipe with a quick note: although I try my best to make all the food I cook healthy, sometimes there is just no getting around certain ingredients.  In the case of this meal, it’s the Alfredo sauce.  I’m sure there’s a way to make this from scratch so that it’s healthy but frankly, I just don’t want to.  I came up with the idea for this from seeing the title Spinach & Artichoke Casserole while searching recipes online, but I didn’t have the time to actually read the recipe.  But the title was good enough – I had artichokes and spinach sitting around waiting to be used so this was perfect!  It was obviously a vegetarian recipe and given the fact that I’ve eaten more red meat in the past two weeks than I have in the past year, I probably should have gone ahead with something vegetarian but, hey, again, I didn’t want to!

Growing up, our family did not sit down to too many casseroles – my father was not and is not a fan so few were served.  In fact, I was tempted to try and come up with another name for this other than a casserole (some psychological issues at play here perhaps?) but figured, who would I be kidding?  Once I moved out on my own, I realized casseroles are good and they can be economical.  This is both – leave out the chicken and cream cheese and it’s downright cheap.

As with all things I make, as I mentioned, I try to use lower fat ingredients when I can get away with it.  Here, I use light cream cheese since no one will ever be able to tell the difference.  I was also going to use mozzarella cheese in it but by the time I mixed everything together I thought that it would be overkill – this is pretty darn rich without it.  Also, I always try to use as many vegetables as I think will work with a dish so that they, if not cancel out the fatty stuff, at least help balance it a wee bit.  You’ll notice there are no onions in this – for some reason I don’t like onions in anything creamy, but feel free to add them if you’re not as fussy.  I will try and keep this one short and sweet!

Ingredients:

Canned artichokes, drained, rinsed and chopped

1 package of frozen spinach – thawed and squeezed dry

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and diced (I poached mine)

Approximately 2 cups of mushrooms, sliced and cooked

1 large red pepper, diced and cooked

1 jar of Alfredo sauce

½ 8oz. package of light cream cheese, softened (or… 4oz. of cream cheese!)

1 cup of light sour cream – don’t use fat free sour cream, ever – you might as well use Elmer’s Glue

Pasta – rotini, bow tie, penne – something that will hold up well in a casserole and will hold the sauce – cook per the box directions minus a minute or three – I used approximately 3 cups of bow ties

A few dashes of Tabasco

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions: (heat oven to 375)

This is easy: mix all the vegetables, the chicken and the pasta in either a large bowl or pot.  Next, put the Alfredo sauce and cream cheese in a pot to heat up – this melts the cream cheese into the sauce.  Take the sauce off the heat and add the sour cream and Tabasco.  Lastly, pour the sauce over the veggie/chicken/pasta, stir and pour into a greased casserole dish.  Cover with tin foil and put into the oven for about 40 minutes.  Take the foil off and continue cooking for another 5-10 minutes.

Serve up and enjoy!!!

~Trisha~

Not pretty but super delish!

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5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. sameetah
    Sep 18, 2012 @ 22:31:51

    hhmmm! it seems really delicious 🙂

    Reply

  2. Trackback: Country Casserole Dishes « USA Country
  3. Trackback: Chicken Casserole | familyrecipebooks
  4. Trackback: Tortellini Spinach Casserole | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen

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