This Easy Chicken Tetrazzini recipe is the most delicious and cozy pasta dish, ready in no time! A creamy chicken and pasta bake that’s the perfect easy dinner to make ahead and enjoy with family.
A Cheesy Chicken Pasta Bake
Sometimes, finding easy dinners that please everyone is the ultimate weeknight challenge! This easy chicken Tetrazzini is a lifesaver; with only 8 ingredients and loads of creamy, satisfying flavor, it’s the best cozy chicken pasta bake for hungry bellies (in a hurry!).
Chicken Tetrazzini has it all: hearty chicken pieces, creamy pasta, and melty cheese all baked to golden, savory perfection. It’s so easy to prepare and pop in the oven, you can easily make this dish ahead of time to freeze or refrigerate until you’re ready to bake it. Along with family dinners, this chicken Tetrazzini is a great dish to bring along to potlucks and holidays!
What is the Difference Between Tetrazzini and Alfredo?
Alfredo is ingredients cooked and coated in an Alfredo sauce made from an emulsion of butter and parmesan cheese. Meanwhile, Tetrazzini is a baked pasta casserole often prepared with mushrooms and chicken (or another protein) in a cream based sauce.
- Cooked Chicken – A precooked rotisserie chicken, or leftover chicken, are perfect to use for this recipe (and convenient!). Otherwise, simply cook your chicken using your preferred method before getting started.
- Linguini – Or your pasta of choice.
- Cream of Chicken Soup – Tons of creamy flavor packed into a convenient can, and perfect for baking.
- Sour Cream – Another layer of creaminess.
- Chicken Broth – Or chicken stock, just note that you may need to adjust the seasoning.
- Shredded Cheese – I use a combination of shredded mozzarella and grated parmesan.
What Kind of Chicken To Use
How you cook the chicken is up to you. Here are some easy options:
- Rotisserie chicken – Pick up a pre-cooked rotisserie chicken at the grocery store and shred it to use in this chicken tetrazzini. One whole chicken will be enough if you use the white and dark meat, or two chickens if you just use the breast.
- Boil – You can quickly boil the chicken while the pasta for this recipe cooks in a separate pot. Check that the chicken breasts reach an internal temperature of 165°F, and then chop them up to use in the recipe.
- Leftovers – This is a great way to use up leftover chicken! Or, if you’re making chicken for dinner, and have plans to make chicken tetrazzini later, make extras and then chop and freeze them until you’re ready to use them.
How to Make Chicken Tetrazzini
This recipe comes together quickly and easily! Follow these easy steps to prepare your pasta bake:
Cook the pasta. Before you begin, cook the linguini according to the package directions and set aside.
Make the sauce. In a large mixing bowl, combine the sour cream, cream of chicken soup, chicken broth or stock, melted butter, salt, and pepper. This mixture will be very thick and creamy.
Fold in the chicken. Stir in the cooked and chopped chicken pieces until they’re evenly coated.
Combine with the pasta. Add in the cooked pasta noodles and toss until everything is well coated in the sauce.
Fill the pan. Pour the pasta and sauce into an un-greased glass baking dish. Sprinkle a layer of shredded mozzarella cheese over top, followed by grated parmesan.
Bake. Pop the chicken Tetrazzini into a preheated oven to bake until the casserole is bubbly and the cheese is nice and browned around the edges.
Garnish and serve. Finally, garnish your chicken Tetrazzini with a light sprinkle of chopped parsley if you’d like, and serve!
Can I Make This Ahead of Time?
Chicken Tetrazzini is a great make ahead meal option! Make the dish a day ahead, and wrap the unbaked casserole tightly in plastic wrap to store in the fridge until you’re ready to bake it. You can also make and then freeze Tetrazzini – see my instructions below!
Tips for Success
- Use Ready Made Chicken: One whole store bought, pre-cooked chicken is often enough for this recipe. Or, if you’re already making another easy chicken dinner, save and freeze any extra chicken so it’s ready to go for your next chicken Tetrazzini!
- Multitask While Cooking: You can also quickly boil uncooked chicken breasts for this recipe, in a separate pot, at the same time that you’re boiling the pasta. Just be sure the chicken breasts reach an internal temperature of 165°F before cutting them up.
This simple and delicious pasta casserole is great as a quick dinner idea, or as a filling and cozy holiday meal. Here are some options for side dishes to serve along with your easy chicken Tetrazzini:
- Fresh salad
- Steamed or roasted veggies like baby carrots, roasted potatoes, broccoli, green beans, or brussels sprouts
- Garlic bread, bread sticks, or easy homemade dinner rolls. Want to feel fancy? You could also make some popovers.
Storing and Reheating Leftovers
If you have leftover chicken Tetrazzini to keep for later, scoop it into an airtight food storage container to store in the fridge. Tetrazzini can be easily reheated in the microwave or in the oven when you’re ready to serve it again!
Is This Dish Freezer-Friendly?
Tetrazzini is very freezer-friendly! Bake and then allow the casserole to cool completely, then wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and aluminum foil to freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw the pasta bake overnight in the fridge and then bake as usual.
More Creamy Pasta Dishes to Try
- White Mac & Cheese
- Creamy Bow Tie Pasta Salad
- Easy Chicken Spaghetti
- Crab Fettuccine Alfredo
- Cheesy Chicken Stuffed Shells
- Crock Pot Chicken Alfredo
Easy Chicken Tetrazzini
- 1/2 cup butter melted
- 2 cans cream of chicken soup
- 2 cups sour cream
- 1/2 cup chicken broth or stock
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black or white ground pepper
- 4 chicken breasts cooked and chopped
- 16 ounces linguini cooked according to package directions
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the melted butter, cream of chicken soup, sour cream, chicken broth, salt, and pepper. Add the cooked, chopped chicken and mix well.
- Pour the cooked linguini into the mixing bowl and toss until combined into the sauce. Pour the pasta and sauce into a 9×13 inch glass baking dish.
- Distribute the shredded mozzarella cheese evenly over the casserole, then sprinkle the grated parmesan cheese over the top.
- Bake at 350F for 40 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbling around the edges of the pan.
- Cool slightly before serving.