Watch how to make chicken Parmesan with penne pasta

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This is a great recipe for busy households, hungry hordes, and lovers of comforting, restorative Italian-style food.  You can prep this in the morning in just a few minutes, which means the only thing you have to do when you get home is cook the pasta.  Use chicken thighs if that's what you have, or ready cubed chicken pieces to save even more time at the end of the day.
This recipe is a great one for those people who can't get enough cheese on their pasta (raises hand slowly); the combination of mozzarella and Parmesan is an absolute winner.  
Cooktop Cove
Chicken parmesan with penne
20 minutes
2 hours
2 hours 30 minutes
2 pounds chicken breast, boneless, skinless, butterflied in half
2 cups marinara sauce
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 cup water
2 teaspoons corn starch
1 cup plain or herb breadcrumbs
5 eggs, whisked
2 cups penne pasta
3/4 cup parmesan powdered
1½ cups mozzarella
½ bunch fresh basil, finely chopped
1 teaspoon dry oregano
1 teaspoon salt
Pepper to taste
Combine penne and corn starch in a bowl. Mix well so that corn starch lightly coats pasta.
In a six-quart slow cooker, combine marinara, water, tomato paste, and oregano. Mix well, being sure the tomato paste is fully incorporated. Add pasta to the mixture; stir.
Season chicken with salt and pepper; set aside.
Beat eggs together. Place them in a bowl or dish large enough to fit the chicken.
In a separate bowl (of a similar size), mix bread crumbs and Parmesan.
Begin breading chicken by dipping into the eggs, then into breadcrumb mixture. Press the breadcrumbs into the meat. Tap off any excess. Lay chicken over pasta in slow cooker.
Top with mozzarella. Cook on high for 2 hours.
Partially open lid and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.
Steamed broccoli would be great with this; as would a dish of warm garlic bread.  In the unlikely event of any leftovers, you could mix the remaining chicken and pasta with a spoonful or two of milk, spread into a lasagna dish, sprinkle with fresh breadcrumbs, drizzle with olive oil, and keep in the fridge or freezer for an instant pasta bake.  In fact, it might even be worth making extra to do this very thing!   
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