Chicken Mac and Cheese Recipe

Chicken Mac and Cheese

Chicken Mac and Cheese. What is it about it that with just one bite, it immediately feels like you are getting a great big hug from your Grandmother? Or like your snuggling up with the coziest of blankets on the coolest of evenings. Chicken Mac and Cheese is one of those comforting meals that makes you feel better no matter what the situation. It also seems like one of those dishes that I make to take to friends and family on so many occasions.

Sick member of the family? Chicken Mac and Cheese will surely make them feel better – or at the very least help them so they don’t have cook for their family.

New baby? A casserole dish full of Chicken Mac and Cheese is great for them to keep in the freezer until just the night when they have no idea what’s for supper. It definitely happens when new babies arrive, doesn’t it?

New neighbor? Nothing welcomes them to the area like a pan of this stuff. They will never want to move away so use it with extreme caution.

Chicken Mac and Cheese just works, y’all. I promise.

The wonderful thing about this recipe, in addition to its pure comfort, is it easily makes enough for two 9×13 casserole dishes. In other words, it even makes enough for a family reunion or church covered dish, to have one for yourself and one to share, to eat tonight and have one ready made in the freezer for another busy evening.

Since it’s already fully cooked, you just have to remove it from the freezer the night before and allow to thaw in the refrigerator. If I’ve not planned that far in advance, I’ll place it in the oven while the oven is preheating and then just cook it until it is well-heated throughout, an extra 10 to 20 minutes or so.

You can also shorten the total initial cooking time of this Chicken Mac and Cheese recipe by using store-bought rotisserie chicken for a quicker-cook meal.

 

Chicken Mac and Cheese-9530

Here’s the recipe for my Chicken Mac and Cheese you can save to your recipe box, print, or bookmark.

 

5.0 from 1 reviews
Chicken Mac and Cheese Recipe
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Chicken Mac and Cheese is a delicious, comforting meal perfect for serving large crowds or sharing.
Author:
Serves: 16
Ingredients
  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs
  • 16 ounces package elbow noodles
  • 16 ounces Monterrey Jack cheese, grated
  • 2 10¾ ounce cans cream of mushroom soup
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • ½ cup onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 heaping tablespoons mayonnaise
  • ¾ cup pimento pepper, chopped (large jar)
  • 1 large sleeve Ritz crackers, crushed (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cook chicken, covered with water, in a large stockpot over medium heat until tender, about 20 minutes. Remove chicken from stockpot with a slotted spoon and set aside to cool.
  3. Pour elbow noodles into stockpot over medium heat and cook until al dente, about 10 minutes. As the noodles are cooking, chop chicken into bite sized pieces. Once noodles are cooked, strain them from chicken stock, reserving the chicken stock for later use.
  4. Add noodles and chicken to a large mixing bowl. Add remaining ingredients and stir until well-combined.
  5. Pour into two 9x13 casserole pans.
  6. Cover with Ritz Crackers on top. (optional)
  7. Bake at 350º degrees for 30 minutes.
  8. Place in preheated oven and cook for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and serve.
Freezing instructions:
  1. For freezing, prepare with the exception of baking. Wrap tightly with aluminum foil and store in the freezer. The night before ready to serve, place in the refrigerator to allow to thaw before cooking. Then cook as normal. If planning to bake frozen, place in the oven while it is preheating and add about 10-20 minutes to the cooking time to make sure heated throughout.
  2. Preheat oven to 350º.
  3. Mix all ingredients except Ritz Crackers in a large bowl. Pour into a baking dish.
  4. Cover with Ritz Crackers on top.
  5. Bake at 350º degrees for 30 minutes.

 

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as our family does. Best of all, I hope you enjoy sharing it with others.

Love ya,
Robyn xoxo

 

If you like this recipe, you may also enjoy:

Avocado Mac and Cheese from Two Peas and Their Pod

Three Cheese and Sausage Mac and Cheese  from Picky Palate

Cajun Chicken Pasta from The Pioneer Woman

+ more pasta on Add a Pinch

+ more quick-cook shortcuts at Cooking Light

DISCUSS

  1. 1

    says

    Oh yeah…I think mac and cheese is just everyone’s favorite comfort food. With chicken? Even better! I’m always a meat lover and I would add ground beef in my mac too. :) Can’t wait to give this a try.

  2. 3

    says

    I can see this being a big hit with my daughter! A perfect comfort food. Maybe I should teach her how to make it before she leaves for college in a couple of years. She may need it. ; )

    • 4

      Robyn says

      Oh yes, she definitely needs to know how to make this before heading off for school. The things I ate my first years of college make me shudder to think of them.

  3. 23

    Mary says

    Two of my favorite things….casseroles and Ritz Crackers. Put’em together and you have one fantastic meal!!! Thanks for sharing this recipe, and I will be sharing it this week.

  4. 25

    says

    This really is the ultimate versatile dish. This is especially perfect for when it (hopefully!) starts to cool down outside, and you just want to stay nice ‘n’ cozy under a blanket watching TV. We’d love for you to submit a similar recipe to The Search for the Ultimate Weeknight Meal, offering a grand-prize to one lucky blogger who will tape a segment to air on national TV!

  5. 28

    Andrea says

    Quick question… the instructions say to strain the noodles from the stock. I assume I am boiling them in the stock then? And then adding the strained and set aside stock to the rest of the ingredients when I do the final mix before baking? Thank you!

    • 29

      Andrea says

      You can ignore the question…just made my own adjustments. I halved the recipe and made only 1 9×13 pan. I definitely needed more chicken stock to boil the noodles. I used 3 cups of stock for 8 ounces of noodles. Strained out the 1 cup of stock needed for the recipe and mixed it in with the other ingredients. Turned out delicious! Will definitely make it again and next time try the Ritz topping.

  6. 30

    Kim Honeycutt says

    Do you have any idea about how many cups of chicken that would be? I’m pinning this for later. Thanks!!

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