Pioneer Woman’s Chicken Spaghetti

When I told my kids I was making this dish, they got very excited. My daughter, for all of the wrong reasons.

You see, she thought I was making regular marinara spaghetti (her favorite), but with chicken in it. So, you can understand why this would be a disappointment to her when a white creation gets set down in front of her instead of a red marvel from her dreams.

But the rest of us?

Well, we can’t stop thinking about it.


I first made this recipe about a year ago. I am going to be honest. I thought it was good, but I just wanted to tweak it a bit. You see, I always make a recipe the first time, exactly the way it is written down. I think that is only fair.

After that, I will either leave it alone. Or play with it.

For this recipe, I thought it needed just a few adjustments.

First, I wanted to make it easier.

Second, I wanted a tad more flavor.

Third, I have to have my vegetables cooked in a casserole. I cannot stand crunchy onion.

Fourth, I love the Pioneer Woman. This is still entirely her creation. I just changed it a tiny bit.


Diced chicken meat from one rotisserie chicken
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1/3 cup reserved water from boiling noodles
1 minced clove garlic (or 1 handy dandy frozen packet)
1/4 cup diced onion
1 diced green bell pepper
1 package of spaghetti noodles
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/4 tsp salt + 1/2 Tbsp. to salt the water the spaghetti noodles cook in
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1/8 – 1/4 tsp. ground cayenne pepper
3 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
1 jar pimentos
1 tsp. Lawry’s seasoned salt
1 tsp. knorr’s chicken seasoning
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. ground paprika
1 Tbsp. Butter
2 Tbsp. Olive oil



Preheat oven to 350 degrees or 325 degrees convect bake.

Cut chicken up from rotisserie chicken. Set aside.

In a stockpot, boil water. Break up spaghetti noodles into small pieces (about 1/3 their original size). Add 1/2 Tbsp. salt to the boiling water. Add noodles to the pot of boiling water. Cook according to al dente directions on noodle package. Carefully reserve 1/3 cup boiling water before draining.


In a large skillet or dutch oven, heat butter and olive oil. Add onion and green bell pepper and sauté over medium low heat for approximately 8 minutes until softened but not brown. Add garlic and sauté one minute. Add pimentos and cook for one minute. Turn off heat.


Add drained spaghetti noodles, chicken, all of the seasoning & spices, chicken stock, reserved 1/3 cup boiling water, the 2 soups, and 2 cups of the shredded cheese (if you are adding broccoli, and I sometimes do, steam it in the microwave. Do not overcook it! It will be a soggy mess in the casserole. I’m not going to say how I know this. ; ). Then add the broccoli during this step, too) to the vegetable mixture. Stir until very well combined.


Pour mixture into casserole dish (if you do not care about it being pretty. You can just leave it in the dutch oven as long as your dutch oven is oven-safe). Top with remaining 1 cup of cheese.


Put the casserole into the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes until cheese is melted and the edges are beginning to bubble.


Remove the casserole from the oven with oven mitts. Turn off the oven. Serve onto plates and eat up! That reminds me…

While I was adding a few spices to tweak this recipe, I made it twice in one week.

When I told my daughter I was making it again, she responded in jest,

“It’s not really spaghetti! I will not fall for your lies again!”

I hate to say this, and please do not tell her I said this, but she’s right.


It’s not spaghetti.

It’s heaven.

P.S. I shared this on Savvy Southern Style.

And My Romantic Home.

Overheard In October


Wow! October is over?! This is my regular feature at the end of the month, but it got pushed back a day for Thursday’s “It’s The Little Things.” I hope everyone had a fun and safe Halloween!

Well, I overheard so many things this month. I could not include most of them. I think the closer we get to the holidays, the crazier people become. Just last night, I overheard something that made me simultaneously blush, feel like a prude, and have to have a conversation about respecting oneself and what text messaging should be used for with my children (after they overheard, too). But let’s leave that behind and listen in on some funny conversations this month, instead:


I realize this is a conversation I had, but it was too cute not to share. And it made me smile:

My two year old nephew came over to visit. He had a bag of gold fish. This is like crack to my dog. I warned him that Murphy was going to try to steal them.

He looked thoughtful and then he said, “Okay. I’ll keep them safe… In my mouth.”


I was leaving Nordstrom rack, and right outside the sliding doors, a man was standing there. For some reason he had his phone on speaker. I do not know why he thought this was a good idea.

Screeching from the phone was a woman’s voice. “You’re a bachelor! You live alone! You work from home! Tell me why you can’t do this?”

The man replied, “No. No. No. It’s not a problem. I can do it.”

Then he paced back and forth waiting for the next bite to come.

I wandered to my car and wondered what it was that he was going to do that would require those three conditions. I had many ideas. Do you?


At the park, a cute chubby little boy of about five years old:

“Grandma! Grandma! Watch me!

I’m sorry I’m growing too much. I can reach the roof of this.

Look! I’m not even standing on my piggy toes!”


I went in to grab a bottle of water at the gas station. I was wearing my Anthropologie Toadstool blouse. The employee looked at me.

He said in a daze, “That is the coolest shirt. I really like it.”

I smiled and said, “Thank you! I collect gnomes. I had to have it.”

He smiled in return and said, ” OOOHHHH. I was going in the other direction with that.”

I knew what he meant and laughed and said, “yea, well, I guess it could mean that too.”

He looked lost in a moment as if remembering the last time he had partook of my “magical” shirt of memories. Then he said, “Just don’t wear that shirt in Oregon!”

I smiled and walked away. So what do you think he meant by that? My husband is from Oregon and he has no clue.


We were at a play at a farm. It was almost ten o’clock on a very long night. I rounded the corner outside. I knew what I would see. There had been the same man lounging in a chair drinking beer all night.

Well, I did find him. But he had visitors. Standing over him was a mother and her little boy of about four years old. I took a guess that they were old family friends.

I heard the man say to the little boy, “Do you know who I am?”

The little boy did not pause with his answer. I (and the mother) did not pause in our sharp intake of breath at his reply.

“Yes.” He said quite loudly and very clearly. “You’re a loser.”

The mother quickly bent down and admonished her child.

I took that as my key to leave. It was a long night… For everyone.


Have you heard anything good this month? Please share!

It’s The Little Things: Measuring Spoons

Well, it doesn’t get much smaller than measuring spoons, does it? I have to admit, I have a ton of measuring spoons. I cook a lot, so this comes in handy. Over the years, I have purchased my spoons as soon as they hit sale.


My favorites are still my handy dandy plain ones. It’s funny how that works out. This is because I know the measurements are right on them.



I recently purchased some owl ones from World Market for $4.50 with a coupon.



And some Toadstool measuring spoons also from World Market for the same price as above.





But how did they “measure up”? I decided to test their functionality.*



It turns out they all measured slightly differently. The biggest difference was in the owl tablespoon purchased from Anthropologie. It was much larger than a regular Tablespoon. The closest measurement was the toadstool tablespoon. Although the teaspoon version of it ran short. As did the owl tablespoon from World Market. So, what is a girl to do?

Well, now that I know this, I am going to be more careful in my measurements with my cooking. The Anthropologie tablespoon will be used for insignificant items such as coffee, where an exact measurement is not necessary.

I am also considering these Color Tab Measuring Spoons currently on sale at Anthropologie. But I would want to see them in person.

Do you have any fun measuring spoons? How do they perform in terms of accurate measuring?

It’s the little things: fun functionality.

* This experiment was done for fun. I tried to be very accurate, but I am only human. Please take my experiment with a grain of salt…Or flour, if you will. Your measurements may vary.

* My monthly giveaway will start at 12:01 a.m. on October 11th. I pushed it back a day so “It’s The Little Things” could run on its regular day. Don’t forget to enter! : )

The Winners Are… Plus My Picks Of The Month


Thank you so much to everyone who entered my recent giveaway. The winners of one necklace each are: Alissa and Stephen Liddell!

Congratulations! I will ship them out tomorrow! Enjoy!

I had so much fun with this giveaway. Who am I kidding? I am just having fun, period.

I also want to say, “Thank you!” to my sweet mom who has been so supportive through this whole experience. She diligently reads everyday. It has been a really hard year for her and I feel so lucky to have her in my life. I also feel awful for not mentioning her in my “Reflections” post. Sorry Mom! I love you!

This is also the time of the month where I like to take a moment to reflect on things that are interesting to me or that I am currently lusting after. And I mean lusting, because I am being very good and not buying anything (else) this month.


Photo courtesy of Casey from Veggies and Glitter. : )


1. First, Casey from the blog Veggies and Glitter nominated me for the Versatile Blogger Award. She is such a sweetie. Her blog is really interesting. Reading her blog feels like hanging out with a great friend! She talks about fashion and life. Her recent date night post was sweet and the pictures of the food are enticing! I wish I lived closer to her, because that restaurant looked amazing. Yum! Fortune cookie martini? Yes please!

I wanted to give her a big, “thank you,” for the nomination. I am so lame, in that I will not be forwarding it on. However, I am very honored she thought of me.

“Thank you, Casey!”


2. I bought these refrigerated noodles. And now I cannot wait to create or try a homemade chicken noodle soup recipe. That shouldn’t be too hard, right? ; ). Stay tuned in the coming month for the outcome of this!


3. The New Target Threshold Line (pillows) looks interesting. I am loving the woodsy wonderland theme stores seem to have going on right now.

The cutest squirrel toss pillow for fall

These Cableknit Pillows in Gold Rush



4. I wrote about these Dr. Scholls shoes that you keep in your purse last month (in case your feet hurt). They were very inexpensive. I wanted to do an update. I have tried them on. I am a true size 8. These are 7/8. They are a bit snug, but definitely doable. They seem super comfy. You could not use these for “regular” shoes, but they are wonderful for high-heel-aching-feet emergencies. I have a wedding to attend Sunday evening and I plan to utilize the heck out of these little babies!



5. My top five fashion picks this month (I own the first two. I have not tried on the last three. I just think they are cool).

Anthropologie’s Sketchbook Dress.

Anthropologie’s Toadstool Shirt

Modcloth’s Pop In Stand Out Sweater

Modcloth’s Wizard of Ostrich Sweater. I will probably be getting this for my winter wardrobe. I have very few sweaters.

Free People’s Mod Stripe Tunic in red. This will more than likely be an October purchase.

* If you want to see more cool Fall picks, check out Roxy’s Free People Wishlist on Effortless Anthropologie. She has great taste!

What are you wanting this month? Are you being patient or indulging? Please tell!