Use What You Have… A New Series and A Recipe for Chicken and Pasta Skillet



Disclosure time….I have way too much stuff. Oh, you do too? Keep reading then.

Even better? I mostly can’t find the stuff that I have. Sound familiar? Which means I’m often buying duplicates of things I’m pretty sure I already own. Good thing I don’t have an organizing blog.

There are huge changes coming to Cottonwood Lane in the next few months that are going to require us to ditch most of our belongings. At least I hope there are. Excuse the shameless “stay tuned” drama.

But seriously. Stay tuned.




To get ready for some of these changes, I’ve decided to focus on using what we have and thought this would make for a good series. Because, I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one drowning in stuff.

“Use What You Have” is a great way to reduce our spending and the amount of stuff in our home. Including the mess of food in our kitchen.

It started with last weekend when we cleaned out the fridge. By we, I mean my oldest kid who was visiting and couldn’t find room to chill a bottle of water. After she was finished, I was rather embarrassed to note that we had next to nothing left. I mean I have a thousand condiments but all the real food had spoiled or expired. Except for the moonshine I brought home from Alabama and some weepy kale on the top shelf.



I can’t say the same for the pantry or the kitchen cupboards.







Awful, right? Like how many bags of frozen berries does one person need? Or boxes of cereal and cake mix?

In the interest of trying to work through all the food I had in the house, I pulled out some ingredients from the fridge and pantry and did a Google search for recipes using what you have on hand. I found the best website ever! If you haven’t stumbled across Supercook, get on over there! After you read the rest of this post, of course. Super easy and freakin’ brilliant!

Here’s what I had on hand….tomatoes, garlic, chicken, pasta, Italian seasoning, basil, chicken broth, grated Parmesan.


I entered these ingredients and this recipe for Clock Watchers Chicken popped up. I like pasta. I sort of like chicken. 30 minute prep? Even better. The original Clock Watchers Chicken recipe can be found here.I modified the recipe a little bit to suit our taste. We had whole wheat spaghetti, only 3 chicken breasts, and only had fire roasted tomato. I used fresh minced garlic rather than the garlic powder called for in the original recipe. We like fresh and we definitely like fire roasted tomatoes.

Actually, the littles don’t like anything these days but I like those things. Boogers. They ate leftover pizza. Just keeping it real, y’all.

After tinkering with the ingredients I came up with this version.



This was really easy to prepare and only requires one pan which makes for an easy clean-up.







Let me know what you think about this recipe and other ideas for using what you have. If you have ideas or recipes that you’d like to share for upcoming posts and features, send me an email with your thoughts. I’d love to hear from you.


Liked this article? Sign up to get new posts delivered straight to your inbox.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *