Monday, March 21, 2016

Dump and Bake= Amazing Concept

Dump and Bake? Seriously it's the coolest, easiest concept. Today's recipe comes from none other than my BFF Katie Marks (who seriously just welcomed the most adorable little girl, who I can't wait to meet, Congrats Mark's Family.)

We have been very busy to say the least at the Logan household. Last week we tried to take full advantage of the nice weather that CT was having, this week hopefully my blog will be better, lets just say their is snow on the ground. No park for us! With the whole trying to get two kids under 3 out the door for a little fun at the park I needed something that would be super easy and quick to make before the Mr. got home from work. Katie delivered just that!

We have entered the toddler sleep regression phase, ugh to say the least! I have tried everything under the sun to help the little miss out, so far losing on this battle. Last week I decided to move her nap time up, so park time came in the afternoon, hence why I needed something quick before the Mr. came home. 

The cool thing about a dump and bake recipe is that it literally means dump and bake. I was skeptical at first, because lets be honest I have never cooked noodles in the oven. All the ingredients that are required for this recipe are just dumped into the casserole dish, and baked. How cool is that? I mean there was hardly any prep time, five minutes max. 

The other great thing about a dump and bake recipe is clean up. You only use one pan. You don't have to cook the noodles (1 pan), cook the chicken (2 pans), bake the casserole (3 pans). You simply use one casserole dish and you have all you need. Clean up is a piece of cake. 

The one thing that I did notice about this recipe that I did change up a bit, was that I added a few more spices. When reading the recipe I felt like it sort of lacked some flavor. I opted for adding garlic powder and oregano. You italian lover's out there pick your spices I am sure you can't go wrong. I am actually not sure how much garlic powder I added or oregano. In my grandmothers words "a pinch, or a dash," I know that helps out a lot. My guess is a teaspoon or so, just enough to add some flavor. 

Overall, this is a go to recipe in my families recipe box. I forgot to even mention that the picky eater, Elin, ate this scrumptious meal. Toddler friendly friends! With summer approaching I am sure I will be scavenging the internet for dump and bake recipes. The last place I am probably going to be able to keep either of my kids is indoors, so I am going to need several quick and easy throw together meals such as this one. Hope you had a fabulous weekend, sorry about the poor picture taking (I promise one day it will be great). I hate to say this being spring and all but "Stay Warm Friends."


  • 1 jar (24 oz.) of marinara sauce
  • 1 package (13.5 oz.) uncooked penne noodles (can substitute with other noodles similar in size)
  • 3 cups of water
  • 1 1/2 pounds raw chicken breast tenders (or thinly sliced chicken breast)
  • 1 1/2 cups mozzarella 
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese 
  • 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs 
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder (or to taste)
  • 1 tsp. oregano (or to taste)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste 
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Spray a 13x9 inch baking dish. 

Add pasta, marinara sauce, and water to the dish and stir to combine. Place chicken in a single layer on top. 

Cover tightly with aluminum foil (you want to make sure the dish is tightly covered because you don't want any of the moisture to escape.)

Bake covered for 30 minutes

Uncover, and stir

Spread mozzarella over the top and sprinkle with breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese. Bake uncovered for 5 to 10 more minutes (or until cheese is melted, and top is golden brown). 

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