No extra pots or pans to wash up, and minimal work with simple ingredients. It will be hard to go back to regular Mac and Cheese after this! Here’s the thing: garlic + sun dried tomatoes + parmesan cheese + mozzarella cheese + spinach + creamy sauce + topped with pan seared chicken = SO MUCH FLAVOUR in this ONE POT Tuscan Chicken Mac And Cheese!
Tuscan Chicken Mac and Cheese
- 2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- ½ tsp onion powder
- ½ tsp paprika
- ½ tsp dried parsley
Mac and Cheese
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 medium yellow onion (diced)
- 8 ounces jarred sun-dried tomatoes (cut into strips)
- 3 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 2½ cups chicken broth (divided)
- 3¾ cups half and half (divided)
- 2 tsp dried Italian seasoning
- 16 ounces elbow macaroni (uncooked)
- 4 cups baby spinach leaves
- ¾ cup Parmesan cheese (finely grated)
- ¾ cup mozzarella cheese (grated)
- ¾ cup cheddar cheese (grated)
- 2 tbsp fresh Italian parsley (chopped)
2 large skinless boneless chicken breasts pounded to 1-inch thickness
1 tablespoon oil, divided (use olive or canola oil)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika (sweet or smokey)
1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
2 tablespoons butter
1 small yellow onion chopped
4 cloves garlic finely diced
8 oz jarred sun dried tomato strips in oil (save 2 tablespoons of oil and drain the rest)
3 level tablespoons flour
2 cups chicken broth
3 3/4 cups half and half (healthier option milk)
2 teaspoons dried Italian herbs
16 ounces (453g) elbow macaroni uncooked (4 cups!)
4 cups baby spinach leaves
3/4 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
3/4 cup mozzarella cheese shredded
3/4 cup grated cheese Cheddar or Gruyere
2 tablespoons fresh parsley chopped
- Season chicken with salt, pepper, paprika, dried parsley and 2 teaspoons of the oil. Heat the remaining oil in a large (30cm or 12-inch) pot or pan over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and sear on both sides until golden brown, cooked through and no longer pink in the middle. Transfer chicken to a warm plate, tent with foil and set aside.
- To the same pan, add the butter and fry the onion and garlic until the onion becomes transparent, stirring occasionally (about 2 minutes). Pour in the white wine and allow to simmer for 5 minutes, or until beginning to reduce down.
- Add the sun dried tomatoes with 2 tablespoons of the sun dried tomato oil from the jar and cook for 1-2 minutes to release as much flavor as possible.
- Stir the flour into the pot and allow to cook for a further minute. Then, add the broth, 2 1/2 cups of milks (or cream/half and half), herbs, salt and pepper, and bring to a very low simmer (lower the heat if you need to).
- Add the dry macaroni and stir occasionally as it comes to a simmer. Reduce heat down to medium low and stir regularly while it cooks (for about 9 – 10 minutes), or until the sauce thickens and the macaroni is just cooked (al dente: tender but still firm). Add the spinach and stir through until wilted.
- Take the pot off the stove and stir all of the cheese in quickly. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. If the sauce it too thick, add the remaining 1/2 cup milk (or cream) in 1/4 cup increments, until reaching desired thickness. Keep in mind the sauce will continue to thicken as it cools.
- Slice the chicken into strips and stir through the pasta (pour in any juices left from the chicken). Sprinkle with parsley, and stir through. Serve immediately!