CHICKEN BAKED ZITI INGREDIENTS:
- 12 ounces ziti (or any pasta shape)
- 2 cups shredded, cooked chicken (about 2 small chicken breasts)
- 1 batch alfredo sauce (see below)
- 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (I used 2% low fat)
- (optional toppings: additional shredded Parmesan cheese, chopped fresh parsley)
ALFREDO SAUCE INGREDIENTS:
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 Tbsp. flour
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 cup low-fat milk (I used 1%)
- 3/4 cup freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. black pepper
*This isn’t a super-saucy dish, so if you like a lot of sauce, you might want to consider doubling this recipe. If you don’t have the time to make your own sauce, one standard-sized jar should be enough.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Cook the pasta in a large stockpot of well-salted boiling according to package instructions. Drain. Return pasta to the stockpot and add chicken and alfredo sauce. Gently toss to combine until the pasta is evenly coated.
- Pour half of the pasta into a greased baking dish (either an oval baking dish, or a 9 x 13-inch baking dish ). Sprinkle evenly with 1 cup of cheese. Layer the remaining half of the pasta evenly on top. Sprinkle evenly with the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes until the cheese is melted and just barely starts to turn golden. Remove and serve immediately, sprinkled with additional toppings if desired.
TO MAKE THE ALFREDO SAUCE:
- Heat olive oil in a large sauce pan over medium-high heat. Add garlic and saute one minute, stirring occasionally, until fragrant. Sprinkle with flour, and stir to combine. Saute for an additional minute to cook the flour, stirring occasionally.
- Slowly add chicken broth, whisking to combine until smooth. Whisk in milk, and bring the mixture to a simmer. Let cook for an additional minute until thickened, then stir in Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper until the cheese melted. Remove from heat and set aside.