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Chicken Bacon and Spinach Cheesy Pasta Bake Recipe

Chicken, bacon and spinach cheesy pasta bake – one for the regular recipe rotation! Getting the kids to eat plenty of veg can be a real struggle. Often left until the end, when they claim they’re too full to eat any more (yet they miraculously can fit in a bit of dessert!), it can make mealtimes go on seemingly forever.

Chicken, bacon and spinach cheesy pasta bake – one for the regular recipe rotation!

Throwing plenty of veggies into a pasta bake however, seems to work some kind of magic – at least for my kids! Every time I make this the plates are cleared in no time and second helpings are requested.

Chicken, bacon and spinach cheesy pasta bake – one for the regular recipe rotation!

No pushing veggies to the edge of the plate. No bribes or cajoling required, just happy, full kids, and even happier parents!

I used canned tomatoes, mixed bell peppers and spinach in this one, but throw in whatever you have at hand. Zucchini, peas, broccoli – it all works.

I bet you could even hide a sprout or two in there!

Chicken, bacon and spinach cheesy pasta bake – one for the regular recipe rotation!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 4 1/2 cups dried pasta shapes (I used rigatoni)
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 large chicken breasts, cut into chunks
  • 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, de-seeded and chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, de-seeded and chopped
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp dried thyme
  • 2 x 14oz cans chopped tomatoes
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 3 packed cups fresh baby spinach
  • 8 rashers cooked bacon, chopped
  • 1 packed cup strong cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 packed cup mozzarella, shredded
  • Small bunch parsley, roughly torn

Chicken bacon pasta bake ingredients

Steps:

1. Preheat the oven to 375f. Boil a large pan of water and cook the pasta for 1 minute less than recommended on the pack. Drain.

Chicken bacon spinach cheesy pasta bake step 2

2. Whilst the past is cooking, heat the oil on a medium heat, in a large skillet. Add the chicken, and cook until just sealed – about 5 minutes. Add the onion and cook for a further 3-4 minutes until the onion is softened. Add the bell peppers, along with the salt, pepper, garlic, tomato puree, oregano and thyme. Stir and cook for 2-3 minutes.

Chicken bacon spinach cheesy pasta bake step 1 collage

3. Stir in the canned tomatoes and cream, bring to a gentle bubble, then add the pasta, spinach and cooked bacon. Stir everything together, then transfer to a large baking dish.

Chicken bacon spinach cheesy pasta bake step 3 collage

4. Top with the cheddar and mozzarella, and place in the oven for 20-25 minutes, until the cheese is golden brown.

Chicken bacon spinach cheesy pasta bake step 4 collage

5. Take out of the oven and top with parsley before serving.

Chicken, bacon and spinach cheesy pasta bake – one for the regular recipe rotation! So delicious you’ll want to save some leftovers for lunch the next day!

Chicken, bacon and spinach cheesy pasta bake – one for the regular recipe rotation!