I made this spicy bacon ranch pasta a few weeks back and then forgot about it which is shameful because it’s the only thing I’ve made lately that my husband has said, “You should make this again! And soon!”
It follows the formula that I know always works well for my family: pasta, chicken, and dry salad dressing mix. Plus bacon? Yeah, you see why we liked it so much. The recipe came together so fast and I’m thinking it could even be made in the slow cooker (cook the bacon & pasta separately – and maybe use a can of cream of something soup instead of the milk/flour mixture) to make things even easier.
The spicy ranch mix isn’t super spicy so don’t worry about your kids not enjoying it – it has just enough spice to make it interesting.
- 1 pound skinless boneless chicken breasts
- 6 slices bacon
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 package Spicy Ranch Dry Salad Dressing mix
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese plus more for topping
- 1 pound pasta ziti, rotini, shells, whatever you like
Cook pasta according to package instructions.
In a large skillet, cook the bacon until nice and crisp. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate to drain. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of bacon fat.
Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces and add it to the hot skillet. Cook thoroughly, making sure all sides of the chicken brown. Transfer the chicken to the plate with the bacon.
In the same skillet (add olive oil if needed), sprinkle in the flour and Spicy Ranch Dry Salad Dressing mix and whisk constantly for about a minute. Pour in the milk, while whisking. Bring to a simmer and allow to cook for a couple minutes, until it thickens. Add the chicken, bacon, and Parmesan and stir until the Parmesan melts.
Once the pasta is cooked, drain it and add it to the pan with the sauce. Stir it all together and allow it to cook for an extra couple minutes just so the pasta absorbs some of the sauce. Serve with extra Parmesan.