a serving of basil pesto and chicken baked pasta on a grey plate with a fork and a knife
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Basil Pesto and Chicken Baked Pasta

Course Main Course
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 6 Servings
Author Jessica

Ingredients

  • 2 Chicken Breasts diced and cooked
  • 500 g Pasta bowties, penne, rigatoni, medium shells cooked, strained, and 1 cup of pasta water reserved
  • 3 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 medium Red Onion diced
  • 6 cloves Garlic minced
  • 3 Tablespoons Flour
  • 2 cups Chicken Stock
  • ½ cup Parmesan Cheese shredded
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 cup Heavy Cream 33%
  • 1 cup Reserved Pasta Water
  • ½ cup Basil Pesto
  • 1 cup Cheddar Cheese shredded

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375°F
  • In a large deep skillet over medium heat melt the butter. Sauté the red onions and garlic until they are fragrant, and the onions just begin to soften, about 2-3 minutes.
  • Keep over medium heat and sprinkle the flour over top of the onions and garlic. Stir until lumps form, this is called a Roux. Continue to cook for 30 seconds. Whisking consistently pour in the chicken stock into the roux and continue to whisk the sauce until all the lumps have incorporated and the sauce has thickened.
  • Remove from heat and stir in the parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, and heavy cream. If the sauce is still too thick and you would like to thin it out, add some of the reserved pasta water (see above). Add the pasta water in small portions and stir well to reach the desired consistency. * I use about ½-¾ cup of the reserved pasta water*
  • In a large casserole dish add the cooked noodles and cooked chicken. Stir to combine. Pour the Basil Pesto over top of the noodles and chicken, and roughly stir to just incorporate. Next pour all the prepared sauce over top of the noodles and top with shredded cheddar cheese.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes until bubbly and the cheese is melted.