|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Servings: 4 to 6|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 27g||34%|
|Saturated Fat 15g||73%|
|Total Carbohydrate 23g||8%|
|Dietary Fiber 2g||8%|
|Total Sugars 3g|
|Vitamin C 4mg||18%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
When it comes to family meals, macaroni and cheese and one-dish casseroles are often on the menu. This recipe combines the two in a flavorful macaroni, cheese, and chicken dish. Instead of a typical cheddar sauce, however, the sauce is made with smoked Gouda, bringing a unique flavor to this comforting meal.
As with most macaroni and cheese recipes, this bake begins with a roux, which is a mixture of melted butter and flour that is cooked until blended; then chicken broth and cream are added slowly before the shredded cheese is stirred in and cooked until melted. Once the sauce is nice and thick, the cooked cubed chicken and thawed frozen peas and carrots are added. The mixture is then combined with the cooked macaroni and turned into a baking dish. Buttered breadcrumbs finish it off before the casserole is baked until bubbly and golden brown.
This recipe is a great use for leftover cooked chicken or rotisserie chicken, and can easily adapt to any cooked vegetables you may have in the fridge, such as broccoli, cauliflower, or asparagus. The buttery soft breadcrumbs add a great texture to the chicken and macaroni bake, and are easy to make by simply tearing up pieces of fresh bread.
8 ounces elbow macaroni, or small shells
Salt, to taste
4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup heavy cream
3 to 4 ounces smoked Gouda cheese, shredded or cut into small pieces
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley, optional
1 1/2 to 2 cups cubed cooked chicken
1 1/2 cups frozen peas and carrots, thawed
1/2 cup soft breadcrumbs
Steps to Make It
Gather the ingredients. Preheat the oven to 350 F and butter a 2-quart casserole dish.
Cook the macaroni in boiling salted water as the package directs. Drain and set aside.
In a saucepan over medium-low heat, melt 3 tablespoons of the butter; add the flour and cook, stirring, until the flour is well blended and cooked, about 2 minutes.
Gradually stir in the chicken broth and cream. Add the cheese and cook, stirring, until melted and smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste, along with the parsley, if using. Cook, stirring, until thickened.
Add the cooked chicken and thawed vegetables; cook for about 1 minute longer.
Combine the sauce mixture with the cooked and drained macaroni. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan.
Melt the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter and toss with the breadcrumbs; sprinkle over the casserole.
Bake for about 25 minutes, until bubbly and browned.
Serve hot and enjoy.
This chicken and macaroni bake is a great dish to make ahead of time. You can prep it in the morning, or even the night before, cover well, and then store it in the refrigerator until ready to bake. The dish can also be frozen; cover the baking dish with a layer of plastic wrap and then aluminum foil and freeze for up to two months. Keep in mind you will need to double the cooking time.