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Sunday, May 15, 2016

Italian Chicken & Spinach Bake

People love casseroles!
This Italian Chicken & Spinach Bake is easy and tasty.

italian chicken and spinach bake (sweetandavoryfood.com)

The month of May is already half gone and I have no idea what I did two days ago, let alone the start of the Month.  I'm not sure if it is the Spring weather, but I am feeling like every stinking day is flying by me at warp speed.

From the month my eyes dart open in the morning, we are scrambling from here to there and when evening comes I'm beat.  Often sitting down for the first time when all the kids are in bed.  School, youth group, t-ball, appointments, errands they all seem to pile up and keep me going from one hour to the next without so much as blinking in between.

Anyone else feel this way?

In between all of this, the husband tore off our old deck and has since replaced it with a brand new one.  The past three weekends in between events he's been working on this darn thing and at this point we are 95% done.  Yippee!

italian chicken and spinach bake (sweetandavoryfood.com)

I usually have three precious hours in between the first school drop off and my first school pick up {preschool}, during this time I try, really, really, hard to get dinner prepped.  If I don't the day gets away from me and come dinner time I'm not prepared.

This casserole is super, super easy to throw together and minus a bit of Parmesan cheese and cream cheese, it is fairly healthy {and by healthy I mean it has vegetables and it's not drowning in cheese}.  The husband LOVED it.  And the kids both had two helpings.  In my book I call that a WIN.

I made it ahead, threw it in the fridge and baked it off while I took the kids to t-ball practice and the husband stayed home with the little one {who by the way, turned 2 on Saturday!}

If you aren't following me on Instagram, START!  You can see her cake HERE.

italian chicken and spinach bake (sweetandavoryfood.com)

Can I say something?  Don't be afraid to throw fresh spinach in all baked pasta dishes. There really is no taste {if you aren't a fan} and once the kids get used to mom putting the green stuff in things, pretty soon they won't even notice.

At least mine don't.

Make this dish up on a Sunday for Monday night's dinner.  Or for a friend in need or a good comforting meal.  Or if you are single or just a couple make it in ramekins and portion it out into small meals for the week!  I use these and they work perfect.

Italian Chicken & Spinach Bake

8 oz. rigatoni pasta
3 c. diced cooked chicken breasts
4 oz. chive and onion cream cheese
3 c. fresh spinach
1/2 onion, finely diced
14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes in Italian seasonings
1 c. fresh Parmesan cheese

1.  In a stock pot, boil rigatoni in salted water according to directions.
2.  In a large bowl combine the diced chicken, spinach, cream cheese, diced tomatoes, onion and half of the Parmesan cheese.  When the pasta is done combine into this bowl and stir to coat the pasta.
3.  Pour into a greased 9x13 baking dish and top with the remaining Parmesan cheese.
4.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until just golden brown.

italian chicken and spinach bake (sweetandavoryfood.com)

I've got a TON of other comforting pasta bakes.  Here are some of our favorites!

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