Casseroles are very popular at dinner time because of the multiple ingredients that can be added to them and the ease of making them. Casseroles can contain various meats, vegetables and starches. People usually make either pasta or rice casseroles but the recipe below uses both along with chicken, cheese and vegetables to deliver the best of both worlds in a dish. The casserole can be cut and served 6 times.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 1 cup of penne pasta
- 1/2 cup of parboiled rice
- 4 chicken breasts, skinned, boned and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 1 (10 3/4 ounce) can of cream of chicken soup
- 1 (10 3/4 ounce) can of cream of mushroom soup
- 1 1/2 cups of chicken stock
- 1 1/2 cups of frozen mixed vegetables
- 1 cup of baby spinach leaves, chopped
- 1 cup of plain breadcrumbs
- 1 tablespoon of Parmesan cheese, grated
- 1 tablespoon of cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 tablespoon of garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon of onion powder
- 1 tablespoon of cayenne pepper
- 2 tablespoons of parsley flakes
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- Salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Start off by preheating the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Spray a casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
- Add the chicken stock to a medium saucepan. Cook the rice for about 20 minutes or until the rice grains are soft. Once the rice is cooked, drain the remaining chicken stock.
- Next, add enough water to cover the pasta to a large saucepan and add some salt and extra virgin olive oil. Bring the water to a boil and add the penne. Cook the pasta according the instructions on the package. Once the pasta is cooked, drain and set aside.
- In a large skillet, heat some extra virgin olive oil over medium heat. Add the chicken breasts, finely chopped onion minced garlic and baby spinach leaves, and sprinkle with the garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper and parsley flakes. Cook the chicken until it is tender. Add the rice, pasta, cream of chicken soup, cream of mushroom soup and mixed vegetables. Transfer to the casserole dish.
- Combine the breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, cheddar cheese and butter in a small bowl. Spread over the top of the unbaked casserole and place the dish in the preheated oven.
- Bake the rice and pasta casserole for 30 minutes or until it appears slightly brown. Remove from the oven and serve hot.