Cooked chicken breast and frozen chopped bell peppers make this a fairly quick recipe to put together. Add grated cheese, cream and seasonings for a really yummy baked pasta dish the whole family will love.
*this recipe was re-tested and perfected on 3/23/21
- 1 pound fusilli pasta
- 1 to 1 1/2 pounds cooked chicken breast, shredded or cut into bite-sized pieces (2 to 4 cups)
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- 1 16-ounce bag frozen bell peppers
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 16 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, grated (5 to 6 cups grated)
- Optional: ½ to 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- Preheat oven to 425 F.
- Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.
- Add pasta to the boiling water. Cook the pasta 2 minutes less than the pasta cooking instructions, so the noodles are still slightly firm. ( I cook the fusilli for 7 to 8 minutes)
- **Reserve 1 cup pasta water before draining the pasta. Set the 1 cup of pasta water aside.
- Drain remaining pasta water and set the pasta aside.
- While the pasta boils, drizzle a little bit of olive oil in a saute pan and saute bell peppers with garlic. Saute about 5 minutes, to heat the frozen bell peppers until most of the moisture evaporates.
- In a large bowl, toss cooked chicken in olive oil and season with paprika and chili powder. Add salt to taste.
- Add bell peppers and garlic, cooked pasta, cream, reserved pasta water, and 3 cups/8 ounces grated cheese to the chicken. Add salt to taste (about ½ teaspoon salt). Mix really well.
- Add cilantro, if using. Mix again.
- Spread the noodles out in a 9x13 baking pan.
- Sprinkle remaining grated cheese on top.
- Cover the dish with foil and bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove the foil and bake 10 to 15 minutes more, until the cheese is completely melted and bubbly on top
- Category: pasta
- Method: baked
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: fajita pasta, chicken fajita pasta, bell pepper pasta,