Recipe Weekend: Easy Chicken Encilada Skillet

That makes me feel like I’m typing random words. But like I once said to Buzz when I ordered a Bacon Avocado Ranch Burger- I like all those words!

See, sometimes I make dinner for my family.

This is from Marlene Koch’s Eat What You Love which is one of only two cookbooks I actually own because I’m a millennial and if it’s not on Pinterest does it really even exist? Probably not. But this book I adore. I have her second book too and it is super awesome as well. I like that all the recipes contain vegetables and are relatively healthy for my family. Because I like doing that, I just, you know, don’t want to work too hard at it. Because I’ve got a lot of eyeliner to play with.

Priorities. I has them.

Anyway, this is a super easy meal and really tasty. Like, you’ll want to eat the whole pan. If we’re having a cheap week, I’ll use more noodles and tomato sauce oto stretch it. If I’m feeling generous and like I want my kids to have protein I’ll make some extra chicken and make it bigger that way.

(Guess which one happens more often.)

(Eyeliner isn’t cheap.)

Chicken Enchilada Pasta Skillet

1 ½ cups uncooked penne pasta

1 medium onion, chopped

1 medium red bell pepper, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 ½ tablespoons chili powder

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon sugar

¼ teaspoon dried oregano

⅛ teaspoon salt, or to taste

1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce

2 cups shredded cooked chicken breast

½ cup reduced-fat cheddar cheese

2 tablespoons cilantro, minced for garnish

While preparing sauce, cook pasta according to directions. Drain pasta and set aside.

Spray a large, nonstick skillet with cooking spray and place over medium-high heat. Add the onion and bell pepper and saute for 3 to 4 minutes, or until slightly softened. Push the vegetables to one side of the skillet and reduce heat to medium. On the empty side of the skillet, add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, sugar, oregano and salt, and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.


Pour tomato sauce and 1 cup water over spice mixture, stir well and simmer 2 minutes to blend spices into sauce. Stir to mix onions and pepper with sauce, cover and simmer about 5 minutes.


Add chicken to sauce and stir to coat. Add pasta and toss to combine. Reduce heat to low, sprinkle on the cheese and cover for 1 minute. Remove from heat.


Save some plain noodles for your ridiculously picky son.


Serve with more cheese and sour cream if desired.

I always make my chicken in the crock pot. Put it in with a little bit of chicken broth, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Cook on high for an afternoon or low all day. It will fall apart for you when you go to shred it in the evening. And if you use a slow cooker liner, you don’t even have to wash the pot. I KNOW. SO MUCH MORE EYELINER TIME.

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