- 8 ounces elbow macaroni
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup thinly sliced carrot
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 1/2 cup chopped celery
- 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 1/2 cups chicken broth (we used Swanson 33% Less Sodium)
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley (we used Italian parsley)
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper (we used freshly ground black pepper)
- 3/4 cup shredded sharp white Cheddar cheese, divided (we used 1 cup*)
- 3 cups shredded cooked chicken (we used breast meat)
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
- 6 slices American cheese
- 3/4 cup coarsely crushed buttery round crackers (we used Ritz crackers)
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Look at the box your pasta came in and follow it’s directions for cooking. Drain the pasta and place it in a covered container to keep it warm.
- Take a 10-inch cast-iron skillet out and add the butter to it, setting the skillet over medium heat. Once the butter’s melted, add in the carrot, onion, and celery, stirring now and then for 5 minutes or until they’ve softened. Take the flour and sprinkle it over the vegetables, stirring frequently for 1 minute afterwards. Slowly whisk in the milk and broth, continuing to whisk even after you’re done pouring until simmering starts to occur. Turn the heat down to medium-low and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes or until the mixture looks like it’s thickened. Now whisk in the thyme, parsley, salt, and pepper, taking the skillet off the heat afterwards. Immediately add in 1/2 cup of the Cheddar cheese, whisking until the cheese has melted.
- Take a large mixing bowl and stir the pasta, chicken, peas, and sauce together in it, spooning it back into the skillet afterwards (we just mixed everything together carefully in the skillet instead of a bowl), topping with the cheese slices before sticking the skillet into the oven.
- Bake for 10 minutes, taking the skillet out long enough to sprinkle on the crushed crackers and the remaining 1/2 cup Cheddar. Stick the skillet back in the oven for another 10 minutes or until the crackers and cheese look lightly browned (10 minutes did it for us). Pull the skillet out of the oven and let it sit for 10 minutes before serving.
Makes around 10 servings.
*The ingredients list only calls for 3/4 cup but in the directions, they call for a cup’s worth so we decided to go with the 1 cup because when is extra cheese ever a bad thing?
This is a delicious mash-up you’ll want to gobble up ! You have that wonderful creaminess you can get from a wonderful pot pie and that ooey, gooey factor from mac and cheese at the same time. It’s like having two wonderful comfort foods at the same time. ‘Cause the crackers do lose their crispiness with time, you’ll either need to eat it shortly after it’s done or have extra crackers on hand for later to still have that crispy-crunchy texture. We loved eating this dish and hope you do too !
Recipe source unknown.
We weren’t paid in any form to promote Swanson, Kraft, or Ritz.
Take care everybody !