Although I’m a huge fan of pumpkin everything, my real obsession when Fall approaches is the slow cooker. Not to say I don’t use it in the Summer (because I do!) but in the Fall I feel more confident in talking about my slow cooker obsession. I use it when guests come over, I break it out just about every weekend, and I don’t feel ashamed sharing warm comforting slow cooker recipes on my blog. While it might still be ninety degrees outside, the calendar says September, and to me September means sweat pants, hot tea, pumpkin puree in everything, apple picking, and warm, slow cooked meals. And I guess this fall I’m into chicken parmesan bakes, because last week’s post was a chicken parmesan quinoa bake. I’m a creature of habit.
Have you noticed that some slow cooker recipes involve multiple dishes? Well one of the reasons I’m obsessed with the slow cooker is because generally recipes just include one dish; the slow cooker. This one included the additional step of cooking the pasta, but still overall very minimal dishes.
Slow Cooker Chicken Parmesan Bake
- 4 boneless chicken breast
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
- 1 jar spaghetti sauce **
- 1 Tbsp. dried basil
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 tsp. dried parsley
- ½ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 pound penne pasta **
- 1½ cups shredded mozzarella
- ¼ cup freshly grated parmesan
- Season chicken with salt and pepper, then place the chicken into a slow cooker (at least 6 qt.)
- Add to the slow cooker; tomatoes, tomato sauce, basil, oregano, parsley and red pepper flakes. Stir into the slow cooker and blend all ingredients well, coating the chicken. Cover and cook for 5 hours on low.
- Remove chicken from the slow cooker and shred with two forks (you can also save a dish by shredding it in the slow cooker but it’s easier if you remove the chicken).
- Cook pasta according to directions on the package. Drain well.
- Stir pasta into the slow cooker, and add the chicken back, if it was removed. Top with cheese. Cover and cook on low for 10-15 minutes, or until cheese melts. Serve immediately, garnished with parsley, if desired.
** If you follow a low FODMAP diet, use RAO’s Sensitive Formula spaghetti sauce, or if you can find the Ragu garlic and onion free version, that would work as well. Also, use a gluten free version of the penne.
Serving size: ⅛th of recipe Calories: 428 Fat: 6.7 g Saturated fat: 2.1 g Carbohydrates: 57 g Sodium: 830 mg Fiber: 3.3 g Protein: 35 g
Not a cheese fan? You could also use Vegan cheese or none at all. But, I love cheese, so I actually added extra.
I used Barilla ProteinPlus Pasta, because a) it tastes really good, b) I like to have protein if I’m going to load up on carbs, and c) I took Paige to the doctor the other day and had a tough time naming her protein sources other then eggs and milk. She just, doesn’t like meat (other than chicken nuggets, does that count?).
Paige had me pick out the chicken in this recipe after I put it on her plate (is she going to be a vegetarian? Or is this a phase? Time will tell), but she still obtained some protein with the pasta. Most pasta has a little protein but the Barilla has extra (10 grams in a serving, compared to about 4-5 g), and I like that. She didn’t know it was any different than regular pasta ( I couldn’t tell either). As long as I added extra sauce, she was happy. Win! I hope you and your family enjoy this too.