The 80s are back and I totally agree! Give me scrunchies, neon lights and ALL the casseroles. I don’t know why casseroles have such a bad reputation. It’s a dish, they’re creamy, they taste great, and there are almost always leftovers. Chicken spaghetti is one of those casseroles that needs a little Tiktok sparkle because it’s good and more people need it to cook. Why should baked feta pasta have all the fun?
If you haven’t eaten it yet, chicken spaghetti is pure comfort food. Tender pieces of chicken mixed with spaghetti, tomatoes and peppers in a creamy cheese sauce. Back then it was made with canned soup, but we can do better than that! Plus, we can do it all in one pot for minimal cleanup.
What is chicken spaghetti
Chicken Spaghetti is a baked American spaghetti dish made with a cream sauce, topped with cheese and cooked until bubbly. Spaghetti is broken into small pieces before being cooked.
Why these chicken spaghetti
There are, of course, many recipes for chicken spaghetti. What makes this one different is that it’s chicken spaghetti in a pan that can go straight from the stove to the oven to the dinner table. Most pasta dishes, as you surely know, you cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water, drain it, and then add it to the sauce. We are going to use the one pot pasta method where the pasta is cooked directly in the sauce. When you do this, the pasta becomes tastier because it is cooked in sauce instead of water. The result is extremely delicious, creamy and perfectly cooked chicken spaghetti.
How to make chicken spaghetti
- Brown the herbs. In a casserole dish, melt butter and brown the onions, diced red pepper and garlic until tender and fragrant.
- Cook the chicken. Add the sliced chicken and cook until golden brown.
- Stir in the liquids. Add the diced tomatoes, chicken broth and milk to the pan.
- Add the pasta. Add the spaghetti and bring everything to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the spaghetti is tender and cooked through. If it gets too thick, add a little more chicken broth.
- Cheese! Season with S&P and stir in some grated cheese until melted. Garnish the pan with more cheese.
- Cook. Bake until sparkling and golden and enjoy!
What is a pasta pot?
One pot pasta is a method of cooking pasta that was popularized by Martha Stewart in the early 2000s. It is a way of cooking pasta where you don’t need to drain the water from the pasta. Everything, including all the ingredients for the sauce, is put in a large, wide saucepan with additional liquid boiling and cooking the pasta. Once the pasta is cooked, it is tossed until shiny and coated. I love one pot pasta because you can really add a lot of flavor to the noodles because you cook them in sauce instead of water.
Should I break the spaghetti?
You don’t have to, but if you want that classic American style, break that pasta! I chose to keep my spaghetti for a long time because I love to sip noodles, but either way it’s amazing. If your pan is not large enough to fit all the pasta in the pan, flat, I would break the spaghetti to hold.
What about other forms of pasta?
Feel free to use other types of short pasta. I’m pretty sure people used short broken spaghetti back then because there wasn’t as much variety of pasta available.
- Aromatics – to add a maximum of flavor, we will use onions, garlic and a red pepper. Onions and pepper add a bit of sweetness and four cloves of garlic add a huge splash of garlic.
- Chicken – the boneless skinless sliced chicken breast is my favorite but you can also use chicken thighs. You’ll want to cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces.
- Spaghetti– just plain spaghetti, not fancy stuff. But if you want to get fancy stuff, you’re looking for bronze extruded pasta with a rough surface for the sauce to cling to.
- Tomatoes – a can of diced tomatoes will add a little umami.
- Milk – this is what will make our sauce nice and creamy without the cream.
- Chicken broth – instead of using water, a little chicken broth will help our spaghetti cook with extra chicken flavor.
- Cheese – grated white cheddar cheese (or mozzarella) is mixed with the sauce and placed on top to be baked in a golden cheese crust.
What to serve with chicken spaghetti
It’s a rich, hearty casserole that doesn’t need a lot of support from side dishes. If you go all out, serve it with these:
Can I use precooked chicken?
Absolutely. If you want to use roasters or leftover chicken, just shred or chop them. You will need about 4 cups.
Should I use peppers?
If you are not a fan of peppers, you can leave them out. You can even substitute any kind of hearty veg you like.
Can I use another type of pasta?
Any kind of dry pasta will work with this recipe, with the possible exception of lasagna noodles.
What type of baking dish should I use?
If you have a large Dutch oven or a brazier, this is perfect for making one pot pasta and baking it. The wide bottom means you don’t need to break the spaghetti. Of course, any ovenproof pan will work and if you have to crack the spaghetti, it just means it’s more authentic.
Should I cook it?
Nope! In fact, sometimes I just cook it in the pan and eat it like extra creamy chicken spaghetti. It tastes amazing uncooked but baked in the oven is also super comfortable, it’s up to you.
Make chicken spaghetti ahead
Prepare the casserole dish and cover it with cheese, but do not bake it in the oven. Cool completely and cover tightly and refrigerate for up to 2 days. Bake at 375 ° F, covered with foil for 30 minutes, then remove foil and bake until bubbly and golden brown.
How to reheat
To reheat, you can either portion it and put it in the microwave or bake the entire pot, covered with foil, in a 375 ° F oven for 30 minutes, then remove the foil and cook until ‘so that it is bubbling.
Tender pieces of chicken mixed with spaghetti, tomatoes and peppers in a creamy cheese sauce.
- 1/4 cups olive oil or butter
- 1 way onion diced
- 1 pepper diced
- 4 cloves Garlic chopped
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts sliced
- 14 ounce canned tomatoes diced roast favorite (1 box)
- 2 cups chicken broth no sodium preferred
- 1.5 cups milk
- 1 kg spaghetti or pasta of your choice
- 2 cups Parmigiano Reggiano cheese shredded, or mozzarella / white cheddar
Heat the oven to 375 ° F. In a large casserole dish or other ovenproof dish, melt the butter or heat the oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until tender, 3-4 minutes. Add the red pepper and garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Add the chicken to the pan and cook, turning, until lightly browned, about 3-4 minutes. They will continue to cook in the sauce.
Stir the diced tomatoes, chicken broth, milk and spaghetti (break it to fit in the pot if necessary) into the pot and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally so that the pasta does not stick to the bottom of the pot, until the pasta is cooked and tender, about 8 to 10 minutes. If it is too thick, slowly add 1/4 cup of the chicken broth until the desired consistency is reached. Season with salt and pepper.
Stir in half of the grated cheese, then top with the remaining cheese and bake in the oven until bubbly and melted, about 20 minutes. Let cool a bit and enjoy! As an option, you can eat the spaghetti as it is and not cook it.
Quantity per serving
Calories from Fat 122
% Daily Value *
Large 13.5 g21%
Saturated Fat 4.7g29%
Sodium 329 mg14%
Carbohydrates 38.6 g13%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.