Monday, November 02, 2009
A fast-cooked slow cooker recipe
Cheesy Chicken-Noodle Casserole
The 150 Best Slow Cooker Recipes Copyright 2001
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 pound ground chicken
2 onions, finely chopped
4 stalks celery, peeled and thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
½ teaspoon each salt and black pepper
1 can cream of mushroom soup
½ cup condensed chicken broth (undiluted)
8 oz. cream cheese, cut into 2 inch cubes and softened
1 12-ounce package of medium egg noodles, cooked and drained
1 cup bread crumbs
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons melted butter
1. In a skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook, breaking up with a spoon til meat is no longer pink. Drain off liquid and set chicken aside.
2. Reduce heat to medium. Add onions and celery and cook until softened. Add garlic, paprika, mustard, poultry seasoning, salt and pepper, cook stirring for 1 minute. Blend in soup and chicken broth. Add cream cheese, stirring until cheese is melted. Stir in reserved chicken.
3. To assemble casserole, spoon 1 cup chicken mixture in bottom of prepared stoneware. Add layer of noodles. Repeat until all ingredients are used up, finishing with a layer of sauce.
4. To make topping, in separate bowl, toss bread crumbs with butter. Add cheese and spread over casserole.
5. Cover and cook on Low for 8 hours or High for 4 hours, until hot and bubbly.
I mixed the noodles with the sauce in a baking dish, topped with topping and baked until bubbly.
I've had my eye on this recipe for a while but I just don't like the idea of pasta in a slow cooker. So I decided to do this as a baked casserole. Next time I will just make it a skillet recipe because I thought that this recipe was at its peak when the pasta was mixed with the cheesy sauce. The topping was really not necessary. I made it one day ahead of time and it was still creamy but on the verge of drying out I think.
I think this is stretching it as a slow cooker recipe. As long as you fully cook the chicken in the sauce, this is basically done before you even put it in the slow cooker so I just don't get what would happen after 4-8 hours in a crockpot.
This was rather good but of course it would be. I didn't make any healthy improvements. There are several things you could do to lighten this - use low-sodium or low-fat soup, use whole wheat noodles (I've had bad luck with whole wheat egg noodles tasting stale) or use light cream cheese - but I didn't do any of them. I suspect it would lighten up beautifully.
The younger boy liked it but my older son didn't try it. I usually don't force him to eat cheesy things but he might have liked this since it was cream cheese. It was just too crazy around the house to think straight. My husband was at the dentist and the time change really screwed up my kids yesterday. Thankfully, they seemed to be doing a bit better so far today.
I will add this to my ground chicken recipe round-up.
Question of the Day: Have you ever cooked pasta in a slow cooker? Would you?