Vegetables and Chicken in White Sauce
Updated: Jan 12
Comfort food at its best. A bake with veggies and chicken… easy, warming, hearty meal. Bonus: you spend lesser time in the kitchen.
Winter is really the perfect time to makes this recipe of chicken and vegetables baked in white sauce because of the abundance of vegetables in the market! Fresh, seasonal, colourful vegetables are easily available during winters, making it the best time to try out this recipe.
To make a vegetarian version of this recipe, simply skip the chicken and make colourful vegetables baked in creamy, cheesy white sauce.
While this recipe of vegetables and chicken baked in white sauce is a one pot meal by itself, these coleslaw and boiled egg sandwiches can be put together quickly while the vegetables and chicken are baking in the oven, and make an effortless accompaniment to serve a larger number of people or for a perfect brunch!
Instead of chicken, I sometimes like to use this Homemade Herbed Chicken Salami / Terrine in my recipe of vegetables and chicken baked in white sauce.
Time taken: 45-50 minutes
Prep: 15-20 minutes
Baking: 30 minutes
Ingredients to make Chicken and Vegetables baked in White Sauce
For the White Sauce
2 tbsp flour / maida
2 tbsp butter
1½ cup milk
2 cloves / laung
3 black peppercorns
2 garlic cloves
½ cup water / vegetable or chicken stock
2 tbsp cheese (of choice)
Salt to taste
For the Chicken and Vegetables baked in White Sauce
250 gms chicken – preferably boneless, cut in to bite size pieces
1 cup white sauce
10-12 green beans, cut in to 1 inch length pieces
1 medium carrot – cut in to roundels
6-8 button mushrooms – sliced thick
3-4 babycorns – sliced diagonally
6-8 cauliflower florets
6-8 broccoli florets
½ capsicum / colourful bell peppers – cut in dices
½ medium onion – cut in dices, layers separated
½ cup macaroni
2-3 garlic cloves
1 tbsp olive oil
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp red chilli flakes
A pinch of mustard powder
Salt to taste
Method of making Chicken and Vegetables baked in White Sauce
For the White Sauce
Heat one cup of milk with garlic, black peppercorns and cloves – the milk should not come to a boil. Let it cool, infusing the milk with flavours of the aromatics. You could add an onion for more flavour, if you like. I added onions in my veggies mix.
Heat butter on low heat in a thick bottom pan, add flour and mix well. Stir continuously till the flour is cooked, about a minute or two on low heat, without changing the colour of the flour – stirring continuously helps here.
Strain and add half the milk to the flour – whisking continuously again, so there are no lumps.
Once the flour and milk are mixed well, add the remaining milk. Bring this mix to a boil and add water or stock. You could skip the water / stock completely and replace with milk.
Add cheese and salt to taste. Once the white sauce thickens in approx. 4-5 minutes, take it off the heat and let it cool.
Because I was using the white sauce for a bake immediately, I did not let it thicken much – I
cooked the white sauce for 2-3 minutes only. If you plan to make the white sauce and store it, let it cook for a minute or so more.
Cut all the vegetables as per your liking. You could use vegetables of choice – I just happened to have these in the kitchen.
Place raw macaroni or pasta of choice in an oven-proof baking dish. I use uncooked pasta and let it cook in the white sauce while baking, creating a starchy pasta layer at the bottom of my one pot meal. This is also why I add a little water to my white sauce recipe, it helps with cooking the pasta through.
Heat olive oil in a heavy bottom pan on high heat, add chicken and sear on all sides, should take about 2-3 minutes. Place the seared, half cooked chicken in an oven-proof baking dish.
To the pan, add the vegetables in the order of cooking time required i.e. the cauliflower and broccoli florets go in first, next the carrots, beans and babycorn and the onions and capsicum or colourful bell peppers go in last.
Stir fry all the vegetables for 3-4 minutes and then place in the oven-proof baking dish with
the chicken (I let the cauliflower florets cook in the pan for a minute more, after removing the other vegetables, just to get a slightly charred flavour).
Add the garlic cloves, salt, pepper, red chilli flakes and mustard powder to the ingredients in the baking dish.
Pour the white sauce evenly over the stir fried chicken and vegetables. You could sprinkle a little more cheese if you like, sometimes I do and other times I don't.
Bake in a preheated oven for 25-30 minutes at 170-180°C till the cheese browns a bit and the pasta at the bottom of the dish is cooked. Serve this Chicken and Vegetables baked in White Sauce hot from the oven!
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