Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti is a comfort food classic made with chunks of chicken, your favorite veggies, and a simple homemade cheese sauce (instead of Velveeta and ‘Cream of X’ soup).
When you have young children, you may find yourself concocting as many different variations of mac & cheese as possible in a quest to cook dinners that your offspring will actually ingest. And truth be told, if you trade the macaroni for spaghetti, keep the creamy cheese sauce, and throw in some shredded chicken and optional veggies for good measure, the resulting Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti will have kids and adults alike coming back for more!
Everyone has probably had an incarnation of chicken spaghetti before. But here’s what makes this version the best… 😉
1. Tasty though they may be, a big block of processed cheese and a gelatinous can of creamed soup are ingredients that I prefer to swap out with real foods whenever possible. As a result, I bring together this Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti with an easy, creamy, homemade cheese sauce. You can’t get more basic than butter, flour, cheddar, Monterrey Jack, and milk…that’s it, folks! And if you’re feeling particularly wild and crazy, you could even substitute different cheeses, such as pepper jack for a spicy kick.
(I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that, in addition to starring in this spaghetti, homemade cheese sauce is popular around our house for enhancing veggies, dressing up a baked potato, or drowning a burrito. Or…eating with a spoon. Ahem.)
2. This recipe can make use of leftover chicken. Or you can shred up an oh-so-convenient rotisserie chicken. Or utilize chicken breasts that have been effortlessly cooked in the slow cooker. Or whip up some boiled, baked, or grilled chicken. In other words? Use whatever chicken is easiest for you to make, buy, or that you already have on hand!
3. Swap out the vegetables for your favorites. My family happens to enjoy peas and mushrooms, so that’s what I like to use in this dish. However, this recipe is also delicious with other veggie embellishments. Pimientos keep things classic. Diced tomatoes and green chiles make for a yummy southwestern twist. If sauteed bell peppers and onions are your thing, go for it. Or leave out the veggies altogether for an unadulterated Chicken Spaghetti! The choice is yours.
The point is, this Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti is mac & cheese at heart…but all grown up. It’s simple to make, easy to customize, and guaranteed to disappear in a flash of comfort food glory. Make it soon and make it your own. I hope you love it as much as we do!
Cheese sauce adapted from Martha Stewart
More comfort food classics…