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yummy recipes for busy people

Chicken Broccoli Pasta Bake [dump and bake]

This chicken broccoli pasta bake is my favorite easy casserole! No boiling needed – just dump and bake and in an hour you have a cheesy, creamy dinner your whole family will love. With two types of cheese!

side view of chicken broccoli pasta bake
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Here’s a list of 5 of my favorite things (in no particular order because otherwise cheese would of course be #1):

  1. Chicken
  2. Broccoli
  3. Cheese
  4. Easy dinners
  5. Bringing my own lunch

And now you know why I love this recipe. It’s full of flavor from two types of cheese, with broccoli hiding beneath all that cheesy creaminess – not to mention, I can dump it all in a pan, stick it in the oven, and do something else for an hour while it cooks.

And after you’ve had your dinner and you’re settling in on the couch to watch some Netflix – you know you have an amazing lunch waiting for you tomorrow. Yes, this is one of those dishes that reheats really well – and is even better the next day.

Looking for something similar, but that cooks quicker? Then try this baked tortellini casserole with spinach. Or if you’re craving seafood – a Baked Seafood Pasta is always a good idea.

Why you will love this recipe

  • Just dump and bake – you don’t even need to cook the pasta. And if cooking the chicken is too much work – you can just make it with rotisserie chicken or any leftover chicken instead.
  • Two types of cheese – one for flavor, one for texture – makes this a cheese lover’s dream.
  • Lots of broccoli so you get a healthy dose of veggies with all that cheese and pasta.
  • Easy to reheat and even more delicious the day after which makes it perfect to bring along for lunch or to a potluck.
a spoonful of chicken, broccoli and pasta bake

How to make this recipe

To make this pasta bake you first need to decide on which route you will take with the chicken. You really have three options:

  1. Follow the instructions for pan-fried chicken in the recipe card below
  2. Use store-bought rotisserie chicken
  3. Put your leftover chicken to good use

Now if you go with #1, then start by cooking the chicken.

Then, whichever type of chicken you decide to use, chop your broccoli and parsley and bring out the rest of the ingredients. Also bring out an approximately 20×25 cm or 8×10” oven dish with high edges, and set your oven for 200 C or 400 F.

process collage showing how to combine ingredients to make a dump and bake chicken broccoli pasta bake

Then butter your oven dish before adding in the uncooked pasta, cooked chicken and chopped broccoli.

process collage showing how to combine ingredients to make a dump and bake chicken broccoli pasta bake

Follow with chopped parsley, whole garlic cloves that have been peeled and slightly crushed with the edge of a knife, and half of both types of cheese.

process collage showing how to combine ingredients to make a dump and bake chicken broccoli pasta bake

Mix it all well, and then add the rest of the cheeses on top.

process collage showing how to combine ingredients to make a dump and bake chicken broccoli pasta bake

Pour over the cream and milk, and make sure all pieces of pasta are fully submerged in the liquid. Place in the oven, and bake for 1 hour, or until the pasta is cooked through.

side view of chicken broccoli pasta bake

Expert tips

  1. Make sure the pasta is fully submerged in the liquid so it cooks well.
  2. You can make this with whatever cheese you like but, for the best result go for one flavorful and one that melts really well. For me – this means parmesan & mozzarella.
  3. If you don’t feel like cooking the chicken, substitute it for store-bought rotisserie chicken or any leftover chicken.
  4. Prep it the day before – and when you get home from work, just stick it in the oven and have dinner ready in about an hour.
a plate with baked chicken broccoli pasta in front of a glass of water and a pan full of pasta bake

Frequently asked questions

How long will it keep in the fridge?

This pasta bake will keep for up to five days in the fridge.

Can I freeze it?

Yes, this dish is perfect to freeze.

side view of chicken broccoli pasta bake

Chicken Broccoli Pasta Bake

5 from 4 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course, Pasta
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 920kcal

Ingredients

Pan fried chicken

  • 500 g chicken preferably thigh filets, cut in bite-size pieces
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp paprika powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt

Chicken Broccoli Pasta Bake

  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 250 g dry penne pasta uncooked
  • 500 g pan fried chicken or other cooked chicken
  • 250 g broccoli chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves peeled and crushed, but in one piece
  • 2 Tbsp parsley fresh or frozen, chopped
  • 2.5 dl neutral cheese for example mozzarella, shredded
  • 2.5 dl parmesan cheese shredded
  • 5 dl cream heavy cream, cooking cream or half n half
  • 5 dl milk

Instructions

Pan fried chicken (skip if using leftover or rotisserie chicken)

  • Place a frying pan over medium-high heat and add in the butter. When the pan is hot and the butter melted, add in the chicken pieces. Season with paprika powder, onion powder, salt and pepper and mix well to spread out the seasonings. Fry for about 2 minutes per side, until the chicken has nice color. It does not have to be cooked all the way through at this stage as it will finish cooking in the oven.

Chicken Broccoli Pasta Bake

  • Set the oven for 200°C / 400°F.
  • Bring out a deep oven dish that measures about 20×25 cm or 8×10''. Using a piece of paper, spread the butter all over the inside of the dish.
  • Place the uncooked penne pasta in the oven dish. Follow with the cooked chicken, including any leftover fat from frying. Then add in the chopped broccoli, garlic cloves, parsley and half of both the shredded neutral cheese and the shredded parmesan.
  • Pour over the cream and the milk, and top with the remaining cheese. Make sure all pieces of pasta are completely submerged.
  • Place in middle of the oven and cook for about 1 hour, until the pasta is cooked through. Then bring out and serve immediately.

Notes

Nutritional information is approximate and only intended as an indication. It assumes half n half is used for cream.

Expert tips

  1. Make sure the pasta is fully submerged in the liquid so it cooks well.
  2. You can make this with whatever cheese you like but, for the best result go for one flavorful and one that melts really well. For me – this means parmesan & mozzarella.
  3. If you don’t feel like cooking the chicken, substitute it for store-bought rotisserie chicken or any leftover chicken.
  4. Prep it the day before – and when you get home from work, just stick it in the oven and have dinner ready in about an hour.
Nutrition Facts
Chicken Broccoli Pasta Bake
Amount Per Serving
Calories 920 Calories from Fat 504
% Daily Value*
Fat 56g86%
Saturated Fat 28g175%
Cholesterol 203mg68%
Sodium 1524mg66%
Potassium 761mg22%
Carbohydrates 45g15%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 7g8%
Protein 59g118%
Vitamin A 1862IU37%
Vitamin C 42mg51%
Calcium 931mg93%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Nutritional information is approximate and automatically calculated, and should only be viewed as an indication.

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I hope you enjoyed this recipe – please let me know what you think! Either leave a comment or a rating below – or why not both?!

/Emmeline