This cordon bleu-inspired creamy chicken n’ pasta bake is an instant family favorite!
My brother is in town with his wife and twins this week. Last night a bunch of my siblings (not all because, there’s an awful lot of us, it’s hard to get us all in one place) met up at a local park where they were having “Summerfest”. Basically it’s multi-cultural experience with dancers and singers representing different countries, a bunch of vendors selling handmade art and trinkets, and a slew of food carts with different cuisines. Naturally I just went for the food.
Being married is awessssome when it come to trying new foods. My husband and I will get multiple things and then share them all. And my family is a mega-food-sharing family so we all ate off of each other’s plates anyway. My brother in law is cringing right now. In a family of nine kids, it’s really a situation of “personal space? what’s that???”
All in all at the Summerfest I ate pad thai noodles, Huli Huli chicken, cuban sandwich, something called a “thorn underwear” (don’t ask), red curry chicken, kettle corn, and ITALIAN ICE. Mango flavor. Ahhhhhh, angels singing. It was SO good! That was the only Italian cuisine available at the Summerfest, otherwise I would have indulged in a giant plate of pasta, trust me. But I was overly happy with the Italian ice because last night a big plate of pasta is exactly what we had for dinner. Namely chicken cordon bleu pasta bake. I like baked pasta because the top gets a little bit browned and I love the extra crispiness and flavor that comes with it all. And this pasta is suuuuper easy, with no cream of anything (you don’t need it!) and chicken and ham and swiss cheesy goodness! YUMMMMM! An instant family favorite!
Chicken Cordon Bleu Pasta Bake
- 12 ounces bowtie pasta - cooked according to package instructions
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- ¼ cup flour
- 2 cups half and half - OR heavy cream
- 4 slices swiss cheese - (or grated)
- ⅔ cup parmesan cheese - (shaved or grated), divided
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 3-4 thick slices of ham - chopped into 1 inch squares
- 2 cups chopped or shredded cooked chicken - (rotisserie chicken would work fine)
- ½ cup breadcrumbs - (Italian seasoned OR plain + 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning)
- In a medium sauce pan melt butter over medium heat. Add garlic and saute 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Add flour and stir until it clumps up.
- Gradually whisk in half and half (or heavy cream) 1/2 cup at a time until all milk is incorporated and mixture is smooth.
- Add swiss cheese, 1/3 cup parmesan cheese, onion powder, salt, pepper, and dijon mustard. Stir until smooth.
- In a large bowl combine cooked pasta, chopped chicken, chopped ham, and the sauce. Mix until well combined. Transfer mixture to a casserole dish. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup parmesan cheese and breadcrumbs.
- Bake at 400 for 15-20 minutes until breadcrumbs are browned. Serve warm.