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Screen Shot 2013-09-25 at 2.16.38 PMHey everyone! My name is Leanne and I’m a Customer Service Representative here at Casting Networks. I recently graduated from Western Michigan University and moved to L.A. to utilize my degrees in Communications and Spanish. In my spare time, I love to explore my new surroundings, volunteer, take and instruct Zumba classes, and most importantly: cook! When you grow up in the Midwest, comfort food is a way of life, so it’s not easy to pick a favorite recipe! In keeping with the season, I’ve decided to share one of my go-to meals, a delicious pasta dish which is sure to warm you up on a chilly fall night.

Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta

    • 1 lb mostaccioli or the pasta of your choice
    • 6 strips of bacon, dried and crumbled
    • 1 tablespoon butter
    • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
    • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    • 1 packet ranch dressing mix
    • 2 cups milk
    • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
    • Salt and pepper to taste

1. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain, return to pot, and keep warm.

2. Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp. Drain on paper towels and leave roughly one tablespoon of bacon drippings in the pan.

3. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Add butter to the reserved bacon drippings, then add the chicken to the same skillet. Cook until tender and slightly browned.

4. Sprinkle flour and ranch dressing mix over chicken, stirring to coat evenly. Stir in milk, and cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened and bubbly. Stir in the cheese and half of the reserved bacon; cook and stir until the cheese is melted.

5. Pour mixture over pasta and stir to combine. Sprinkle remaining bacon on top before serving. (Green onions are a great addition too!)