Lately, my big boy has LOVED helping me with dinner. When he sees me busy at work, he drags a chair into the kitchen so that he can reach the counter…and he’s always eager to help measure, pour and stir. It’s sweet. And, in those moments I talk up how GOOOODDD it’s going to taste and how HE cooked it! :) …So, yesterday, when he asked what the “green stuff” was, instead of responding with “spinach,” I told him that it was “Incredible Hulk Leaves!” Crazy enough, he bought it! And, when it came time to eat, he LOVED his Incredible Hulk Leaf Pasta! …But, even more ridiculous than the name was my Hulk voice as I encouraged him to eat it. Matt looked at me like I was crazy…and we all determined that I sounded more like a mad robot than Hulk! Oh well…it worked! And, he even asked for more! :)
Chicken & Spinach Pasta Bake
8 ounces uncooked rigatoni
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onion (about 1 medium)
1 (10-oz.) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
3 cups cubed cooked chicken breasts
1 (14.5-oz.) can Italian-style diced tomatoes
1 (8-oz.) container chive-and-onion cream cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 cups (6 oz.) shredded mozzarella cheese
1. Prepare rigatoni according to package directions.
2. Meanwhile, spread oil on bottom of an 11- x 7-inch baking dish; add onion in a single layer.
3. Bake at 375° for 15 minutes or just until tender. Transfer onion to a large bowl, and set aside.
4. Drain chopped spinach well, pressing between layers of paper towels.
5. Stir rigatoni, spinach, chicken, and next 4 ingredients into onion in bowl. Spoon mixture into baking dish, and sprinkle evenly with shredded mozzarella cheese.
6. Bake, covered, at 375° for 30 minutes; uncover and bake 15 more minutes or until bubbly.