Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Cheesy Chicken Penne - Freezer Meals

I love this dish!  It is easy and fast to throw together for a quick meal.  It is also easy to double the recipe, have one for dinner tonight, and freeze the other.

Cheesy Chicken Penne

1/2 (16 oz) package penne noodles, cooked al dente
1 large can chicken breasts
1 jar Alfredo sauce
1 jar spaghetti sauce or 2 cups of homemade
2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded

In a 9x13" pan layer the noodles, chicken, alfredo sauce, spaghetti sauce and cheese. Bake in 350 degree oven 10-15 minutes or until cheese is melted.

 To boil noodles, follow the directions on the package, allowing them to boil the shortest recommended time (this will cook them to the  al dente stage which means, they are still firm to the bite), drain and set aside.
 Break up the chicken and add it to the bottom of your pan.  I'm using disposable foil pans for easy cleanup and freezing. 
 Pour noodles on top of chicken
 Now evenly drizzle the spaghetti sauce
 and then the Alfredo sauce.
 Sprinkle generously with cheese.
 Bake it uncovered at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
 or cover with heavy duty aluminum foil, press the foil down on top of the casserole to eliminate as much air as possible.
Allow it to cool completely (hot = ice crystals = freezer burn), and then freeze.
Don't forget to label with a permanent marker.  
When you're ready to have this for dinner, allow it to completely thaw, and then follow the regular cooking directions (350 degree oven 10-15 minutes etc).
Or you can cook it frozen in a 300 degree oven for 1-1/2 - 2 hours or until hot throughout.  

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