Cheesy Crack Chicken Casserole
Cheesy Crack Chicken Casserole is the perfect dish to feed a large crowd. Deliciously cheesy and loaded with tender chicken and topped with crispy bacon.
- 3 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 12 slices bacon (diced into 1-2 inch pieces)
- 1.5-2 lbs uncooked chicken (cubed)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 tablespoon paprika
- 1 green bell pepper (diced)
- 1 medium onion (diced)
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 3 cups milk
- 1 package Dry Ranch Mix (optional)
- 1 package (8oz) cream cheese (room temperature)
- 3 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
- 1 can (10 3/4 oz) cream of chicken soup, condensed
- Cooked bacon
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup panko crispy bread crumbs (optional)
- Heat oven to 375°F.
- Cook and drain macaroni as directed on package.
- In a large skillet, over medium-high heat, melt two tablespoons of butter and cook the bacon, stirring frequently, until crispy. Remove from skillet and set aside. Drain grease, leaving only about 2 tablespoons in the skillet.
- Add the cubed chicken to the skillet, season with salt, pepper and paprika. Cook stirring frequently, until golden and no longer pink in the center. Remove from skillet and set aside.
- Add diced onion, diced bell pepper and minced garlic to the skillet and cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft and tender. Remove from skillet and set aside.
- In same skillet, on medium heat, melt 3 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Stir in flour with whisk until a paste forms.
- Gradually stir in milk, beating with the whisk.
- Stir in Ranch Mix if using.
- Stir in condensed cream of chicken soup and cream cheese until fully combined.
- Stir in 3 cups of cheddar cheese. Remove from heat.
- In a large bowl combine: cooked pasta, chicken, veggies and cheese mixture. Stir well to combine and transfer to a 13×9-inch (3-quart) baking dish.
- Top with the cooked bacon, 1 cup shredded cheese and sprinkle some bread crumbs on top if desired.
- Bake for 20-30 minutes or until mixture is bubbly and cheese is fully melted.
- Serve and enjoy!