Winter and Healthy Chicken Vegetable Casserole

This cartoon seems so appropriate right now.... this winter has been crazy cold for our area and I think others too!  

With colder weather comes the need to "hibernate" - which has been part of my problem.  When it's cold all I want to do is comfort myself with food.  Which is OK if I had made healthy choices with the "comfort food". It's hard to do that!

Unless you try just a little bit to find healthy comfort meals!!  Once again... ironically I have a Pinterest Board named "HEALTHIER CHOICES"!!  I just have to laugh at myself sometimes!  But check it out... there are some great pins on there. 

Back to healthier eating.... I plan to make this one next week!



Healthy Chicken Vegetable Casserole



Minutes to Prepare: 15
Minutes to Cook: 30
Number of Servings: 6



Ingredients
12 oz cooked chicken breasts, diced
2 T all purpose flour
2 T butter, unsalted
10 oz skim milk
1 pinch white pepper
1 t Italian seasoning
1 T parmesan cheese, grated
7 oz penne pasta, whole wheat
2 yellow or orange bell peppers, chopped
1 zucchini, chopped
2 heads, approx. 12 ounces broccoli, chopped
1/3 c monterey jack cheese
nonstick cooking spray


Directions
Prepare the white sauce by placing the butter in a small sauce pot that has been preheated over medium heat. Once the butter foams, add flour and stir for 1 minute; try not to let the mixture turn brown. Add milk to the mixture and continue to stir until it starts to bubble. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add pepper, Italian seasoning and parmesan cheese to the sauce. Stir to combine. Cook pasta according to package directions. While pasta is cooking, preheat oven to 350 degrees. During the last minute of the pasta's cooking, add the chopped broccoli to the water. Allow to simmer for one minute.

Drain the pasta and broccoli. Spritz the bottom and sides of a 9 X 13 oven-proof casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large bowl, combine the pasta and broccoli with the chicken and chopped vegetables; cover with the sauce. Place in the baking dish. Sprinkle with the Monterey jack cheese and cover with foil.

Bake for 20 minutes; remove foil and continue to bake until cheese is melted.


Nutritional Info
Servings Per Recipe: 6
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 320.6
Total Fat: 8.9 g
Cholesterol: 51.8 mg
Sodium: 175.3 mg
Total Carbs: 36.1 g
Dietary Fiber: 8.8 g
Protein: 27.9 g

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