Friday, January 14, 2011

Creamy Italian Bake

This is one of the few of the recipes that I actually "made up". =) I had a frozen dinner-type thing one time, and decided to try to make my own (better) version of it. It's adaptable, so if you want you can make more or less of it to fit your family, this is just the perfect amount for us 5. You can add any other seasonings you want- one that would probably taste good is red pepper flakes, if you want it a little spicy, or you could add more garlic (something I might do next time). Parmesan cheese would be good on the top, too! But for now, this recipe is pretty good!

Creamy Italian Bake
Printable version here

1/3 cup whipping cream or half & half
16 oz. can tomato sauce
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp. salt
1/3 cup halved pepperoni slices (half of a 3.5 oz. package)
6 oz. diced, cooked chicken (about 1 1/4 cups)
7 oz. dry noodles, cooked (about 2 1/2 cups, when measured with penne)
1 cup mozzarella cheese (about 4 oz.), divided

1. Boil water and cook noodles until al dente. Meanwhile, heat cream, tomato sauce, Italian seasoning, and salt in a saucepan over medium meat. Simmer for 3-5 minutes on low.

2. Mix sauce, noodles, pepperoni, chicken, and 1/2 cup of cheese. Pour into a glass baking dish (mine fit in a 2.2 quart, 11x7 dish).

3. Bake, covered, at 350ยบ for 20 minutes. Top with remaining cheese and bake uncovered until cheese is melted, about 5 minutes. Serves 4-5.  (I've also made this with only 1/2 cup cheese, mixed into the noodles, and none on top- and it was still great.  It's done after the initial 20 minute bake.)

Why I love it? The sauce is good; I like the creaminess of it . Last night I made it with half & half, which was good... the cream is even better if you choose to use that! You can prepare the chicken, pepperoni, and grated cheese beforehand, and if you do that, it's a pretty quick dinner to throw together. It just takes the amount of time to cook noodles, throw it all in a pan, and bake. I also like having both chicken & pepperoni in this dish. The chicken adds healthy protein, while the pepperoni adds great taste! I hope you like this!

By the way, I just added this to! I think this link will work:


  1. Yum! Will have to try it! Only thing is I don't like pepperoni. Think Italian sausage will work? Any suggestions?

  2. I think it would be good even without the pepperoni. It's mainly just in there for flavor. :) I would probably do just chicken, but you could always try it with sausage too!

  3. I made this last night for dinner and it was great! I didn't have any cooked chicken on hand so I just added more pepperoni. Fabulous!

  4. Thanks for sharing! I'm glad you liked it!