May 8, 2013

Creamy Ranch Chicken Pasta

Are things getting insane in your neck of the woods? It seems like the entire year of school activity is concentrated into May (and December. Christmas programs). We coast through so many month and then, all of a sudden, everything comes due. I try not to think too hard about our schedule because I’d probably cry.

Quick dinners are, once again, king.How quickly can we put dinner on the table and NOT serve sandwiches.

This recipe was born out of desperation. We had a six o’clock meeting at school and it was 5. I hadn’t been to the grocery store in a week, to further complicate finding a quick dinner in our pantry. I knew I had a couple of good staples :boneless chicken and whole wheat pasta, but then what? Well. This.

Creamy Ranch Chicken Pasta

serves 5 as a main course with a vegetable side


1 lb boneless, skinless chicken cut into chunks

1 box of rotini, penne or your pasta of choice

1-2 block of cream cheese

1 packet of Hidden Valley Ranch Dry Ranch Seasoning

1 cup shredded Italian cheese blend


1.  Start your water boiling for pasta.  If your chicken isn’t already diced, dice it up.  Add pasta to water when the water is boiling.

2.  Throw chicken into a pre-heated pan with your choice of cooking oils (I used a little butter, but olive oil or your choice or oil would be fine).  You can also season your chicken at this time, but I left mine plain, but only because I forgot to put anything on it.

3. Continue stirring your chicken to cook it.  When chicken is mostly cooked, season it with the ranch packet.  Stir your chicken around to distribute the seasoning.

4.  When chicken is cooked, drop the cream cheese on top and stir to melt.  One block is fine, in a pinch.  It does make a for a drier (but still tasty) pasta.  Two will be more creamy, but desperate times and all that.

5. Combine with your cooked pasta.

6.  At this point, you can serve as is.  I opted to drop mine in a casserole dish and melt some Italian blend cheese on top.  Your choice.  Skipping this option, dinner can be on the table in about 20 minutes.

It was even enjoyable al fresco.

Is there anything sweeter than tiny little shoulders?




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