I love one-pot dishes, don't you? It's so nice to cook pasta with other ingredients, not just because it saves time and dirties less dishes, but because the flavorful cooking liquid infuses the pasta. My friends Cassie and Stephanie both raved about this Cheddar, Broccoli and Chicken Pasta Skillet and I couldn't wait to try it.
One thing we both loved about this was the chicken. It was perfectly cooked, very tender and juicy. SP asked me what I did differently and I told him that, unlike other one-pot recipes, you cook the chicken and then remove it from the pan, only adding it back in at the very end so it doesn't overcook. Sometimes I've questioned leaving chicken in the pan too long when I've made other recipes but I didn't think to make that change myself. I will from now on.
Baby Girl ate a huge bowl of this and proclaimed it super yummy. I found that my broccoli didn't cook through in only 5 minutes, so I've increased the time in the recipe below. I also misjudged the amount of cheddar I had on hand so I didn't have quite enough to actually taste it. But not to worry, this will definitely be made again and again so I've got time to get it right.
Cheddar, Broccoli and Chicken Pasta Skillet
As seen on Stephanie Cooks, originally from Center Cut Cook
1 pound chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch chunks
salt and pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
8oz short-cut pasta
1 and 2/3 cup chicken stock
2 and 3/4 cups water, divided
8oz broccoli florets, chopped into small pieces
1/2 cup light cream
8oz cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a very large skillet. Add the chicken chunks and cook until the chicken is browned on both sides, and almost entirely cooked through. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.
Add another tablespoon of olive oil to the pan. Cook the onions for several minutes, until they start to turn translucent. Add in the garlic and cook for another minute or two. Sprinkle in the oregano and red pepper flake.
Add the 1 and 2/3 cups chicken stock and 2 cups water. Stir in the pasta and bring to a boil. Cook for 10-13 minutes until most of the liquid is absorbed into the pasta.
Add the broccoli and 3/4 cups water; cover. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes, or until the broccoli is tender.
Add in the cooked chicken, 1/2 cup light cream and cheddar cheese. Increase the heat to medium high. Continue stirring until the cheese melts and the sauce thickens, about 5-10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
The sauce will thicken as it stands.