This is one of my family's favorite weeknight recipes

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Take a trip south of the border with this southwestern-inspired cheesy chicken pasta cooked right in your slow cooker or crock pot! Classic Tex-Mex flavors like cumin and chili powder give this recipe a real zing, while the cheddar cheese and sour cream help cool everything down. This meal is a real winner when it comes to balancing flavor and spice!
Kids who like to help in the kitchen can also assist in getting the ingredients ready for the crock pot. The recipe below requires eight hours to fully cook the chicken on low heat, so you'll want to start preparing this meal in the morning to have it ready by dinner time. Remember to serve this dish along with your favorite hot sauce. It's the perfect way to serve up some spice!
Slow Cooker Southwestern Cheesy Chicken Pasta
Cooktop Cove
For the slow cooker:
2 pounds raw chicken breast, cut into bite size
20 ounces Ro-tel (or other canned tomatoes)
1 can corn, drained
1 teaspoon chili powder
½ teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon oregano
Kosher salt & fresh ground black pepper
To add later:
1 pound rotini pasta, cooked & drained
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
16 ounces sour cream
2 green onions, sliced (optional)
Favorite brand of hot sauce (optional)
1. To the slow cooker, add the Ro-tel or other canned tomatoes, corn, chili powder, oregano, cumin, salt, and pepper. Stir to fully combine the ingredients.
2. Add the chicken inside the tomato mixture. Cover the crock pot, and cook on low for eight hours.
3. Right before the cooking time has ended, prepare the rotini pasta according to instructions on the packaging for al dente. Drain the pasta, and set it aside.
4. Add one cup of the cheddar cheese, the sour cream, and a few shakes of your favorite hot sauce (optional) to the slow cooker. Stir to fully combine.
5. Add the cooked pasta to the slow cooker, and stir to combine, being careful not to break up the pasta.
6. Sprinkle the remaining cheddar cheese over the pasta, and re-cover with the lid. Allow to cook until the pasta come back up to temperature, and the cheese is melted on top.
7. Serve directly out of the crock pot into individual bowls. Garnish each with chopped green onion and more hot sauce, and serve hot immediately.
Pro-tip: A tomato-based hot sauce would pair the best with this dish, rather than a vinegar-based.
Pro-tip: If you don't use Ro-tel, feel free to add a few slices of jalapeño pepper into the mix for a little extra heat.
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