Chicken parm baked ziti

 
Chicken parm baked ziti
 

Growing up, two of my favorite family dinners were baked ziti and chicken parmesan. What kid doesn't love carbs covered in sauce and cheese?

Well, this grown up kid still loves these two dinners so I decided to combine 'em together to make an epic pasta bake for winter. It's a chicken parm baked ziti! Yup, it's half baked ziti, half chicken parm and 100% delicious.

Chicken parm baked ziti!

This recipe is super easy, even for a busy work night. If you're a pasta, sauce and cheese hoarder like me you probably have most of the ingredients for this in your kitchen already. It's really scalable as well depending on how many you're feeding. Even if you're cooking for one, I would make a whole big batch and bring the leftovers to work the next day. It keeps really well and can be freshened up with some fresh parsley. Recipe is below!

Chicken parm baked ziti

Chicken parm baked ziti

  • 1 lb. box of dried ziti pasta
  • 3 chicken breasts, each cut in half and pounded thin into cutlets
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 15 oz container of ricotta
  • 1 24-oz. jar of your favorite tomato sauce
  • 8 oz shredded mozzarella

Start by bringing a large pot of water to boil. Cook the pasta according to the package directions with plenty of salt. Drain and set aside.

To make the chicken, whisk a egg in a large bowl and pour the breadcrumbs onto a large plate. Heat a large pan on medium heat with a shallow layer on olive oil. Coat each chicken cutlet in the egg and then the breadcrumbs. Fry each cutlet until golden brown on both sides and cooked through. Cut each cutlet into bite-sized pieces.

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large baking pan add the pasta. Stir in half of the ricotta cheese and half of the tomato sauce. Add the chicken and half of the shredded mozzarella, stir to distribute. Top with the rest of the sauce, dollops of the remaining ricotta and sprinkle the rest of the shredded mozzarella cheese over top.

Cover the entire dish in tin foil and bake in the oven for 15 minutes. At this point, uncover and bake for another 5 minutes until everything is oozy and gooey. Serve with some fresh parsley.