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Chicken Penne Casserole Recipe

Chicken Penne Casserole Recipe

This is my family’s favorite casserole recipe. I make it every week or two and we never tire of it. I like that I can clean my kitchen and then relax while it bakes. It won’t disappoint! —Carmen Vanosch, Vernon, British Columbia
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 35 min. Bake: 45 min. YIELD:4 servings


  • 1-1/2 cups uncooked penne pasta
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped green pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped sweet red pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Romano cheese


  • 1. Preheat oven to 350°. Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add chicken, onion, peppers and seasonings; saute until chicken is no longer pink. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer.
  • 2. In a blender, pulse tomatoes and tomato paste, covered, until blended. Add to chicken mixture. Stir in broth; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until slightly thickened, 10-15 minutes.
  • 3. Drain pasta; toss with chicken mixture. Spoon half of the mixture into a greased 2-qt. baking dish. Sprinkle with half of the cheeses. Repeat layers.
  • 4. Cover and bake 30 minutes. Uncover; bake until heated through, 15-20 minutes longer. Yield: 4 servings.

Nutritional Facts

1-1/2 cups: 579 calories, 28g fat (12g saturated fat), 128mg cholesterol, 1357mg sodium, 36g carbohydrate (9g sugars, 4g fiber), 47g protein.

Reviews for Chicken Penne Casserole

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kramerstacey15 User ID: 5709757 263834
Reviewed Mar. 24, 2017


deanwill62 User ID: 8018204 263345
Reviewed Mar. 11, 2017

"Loved it, and the aroma in your kitchen will dazzle your senses. Followed to the recipe."

ellimaye1 User ID: 1179808 261637
Reviewed Feb. 21, 2017

"So time consuming! I don't think the outcome was worth the effort. I forgot Romano cheese (which I didn't have anyway) so I sprinkled Parmesan on top which improved the taste. I'm sure the taste would be better had I remembered the Romano, but again lots of time required to make this."

DebSueWal User ID: 8449543 260144
Reviewed Jan. 23, 2017

"Awesome! My family nearly fought over who would get to take the leftovers to school and work with them, today! (Do yourself a favor ... double the recipe!) Absolutely one of the best pasta dishes I've had, EVER. Prep time takes a bit longer than noted, but worth every minute. Company and special occasion worthy, hands down!"

Robby1 User ID: 1478802 256945
Reviewed Nov. 18, 2016

"Love the flavors of this dish. As one Vernonite to another, thank you for this recipe!"

TheaB User ID: 6624387 256819
Reviewed Nov. 15, 2016

"Husband loves it"

Medic 716 User ID: 4089259 254918
Reviewed Oct. 2, 2016

"Deconstructed Lasagna, I used cottage cheese as I didn't have any romano cheese."

NikNwo11 User ID: 8054203 252561
Reviewed Aug. 12, 2016

"Yep, it's THAT good!!! :)"

Fee710 User ID: 8902616 251977
Reviewed Jul. 28, 2016

"I love this recipe, it was so tasty and delicious."

MarineMom_texas User ID: 31788 250286
Reviewed Jul. 10, 2016

"I made this recipe tonight and we thought it was delicious. I did read some of the reviews and made some changes. I used Italian style tomatoes without blending and I increased the basil and oregano to 2 teaspoons. It gave the dish plenty of flavor. I baked it for 30 minutes then removed the cover and finished cooking the last 10 minutes. It was perfect. We will be having this again. I highly recommend it.

Volunteer Field Editor"

Aprillouisehoule User ID: 6671395 244880
Reviewed Mar. 3, 2016

"Perfect dinner-spiced perfect-my husband loved it and wants it again soon. 5 stars!"

ssandige User ID: 8337723 244661
Reviewed Feb. 29, 2016

"I made this last night, exactly as the recipe said (extra garlic just to use it up and no wine!). It was AMAZING! Reminded me of a lasagna with the cheesy goodness. I questioned only using 1 1/2 cups of dry penne pasta, but I'm glad I didn't use more. It filled an 8x8 pan to the top (put a sheet underneath to catch drips while baking) and easily serves 6. This is a keeper!"

peterparley User ID: 5619958 243644
Reviewed Feb. 11, 2016

"I would like the nutritional value, Please"

LauraManning User ID: 968398 243499
Reviewed Feb. 9, 2016

"Yum! Added some Italian seasoning. Liked the heat from the red pepper flakes!"

Chynna86 User ID: 8357153 243444
Reviewed Feb. 8, 2016

"I made this for the first time last week. As someone else mentioned, it was quite time consuming but some of the ingredients could be prepped in advance. It was okay in the end (had more flavor the next day eaten as leftovers after it sat in the fridge overnight). I found that the chunks of chicken became overcooked a bit when following the cooking instructions."

angelic0w User ID: 7083663 240862
Reviewed Jan. 2, 2016

"Loved the flavor!! Will definitely make again and again."

Ksmith996 User ID: 5653880 239761
Reviewed Dec. 19, 2015

"EXCELLENT! I have made so many different versions of this it is hard to know where to start. I have increased the spices 2 teaspoons, added fresh spinach, added fresh basil and/or basil paste, doubled the onion, green pepper and red bell pepper, and I have added green onion."

proudmom_2003 User ID: 407137 233045
Reviewed Sep. 17, 2015

"Really enjoyed this recipe!!!! Loved the little bit of heat the crushed red pepper flakes gave it! This is Definitely a keeper!"

pajamaangel User ID: 1603339 229746
Reviewed Jul. 18, 2015

"Still needs more flavor. This will probably be better tomorrow. It takes a very long time to make though, so I'm not sure if I'll make this again. I think it's a great base recipe for sure. I wanted to rate this as is and not make any changes."

angieact1 User ID: 1990802 226043
Reviewed May. 7, 2015

"Delicious! We all loved it and will make it again~"

dschultz01 User ID: 1076910 225833
Reviewed May. 3, 2015

"Very flavorful! Does take awhile to prepare, but its worth it!"

springer0925 User ID: 7369732 223912
Reviewed Mar. 31, 2015

"Made this tonight, full well thinking it would be better tomorrow after the flavors blended. I'm sure it will be, but it was pretty darn fantastic right away! I didn't have Romano cheese, but used fresh-grated Parmesan. Very acceptable substitution!"

Kathy3461 User ID: 7062154 223512
Reviewed Mar. 24, 2015

"I made this for dinner last night, it was awesome. This will be one I make over and over again. My kids loved it for lunch the next day too!"

Zarelle User ID: 2539598 222412
Reviewed Mar. 9, 2015

"Everyone says this is time consuming.... good dishes usually are! But you can also shortcut, I used jarred Arrabbiata Sauce that really upped the flavor!"

bwilkin User ID: 3339114 221989
Reviewed Mar. 4, 2015

"This dish was ok but nothing fantastic to us. Time consuming to put together also. Not likely to make it again."

Sue Zappa User ID: 1094741 220215
Reviewed Feb. 10, 2015

"Made as directed. Thought it was better the next day when the flavors came through better. Was rather bland when we had it for supper the evening I made it."

mrstfaulk User ID: 8163447 215099
Reviewed Dec. 16, 2014 Edited Dec. 17, 2014

"I made this dish tonight and it was delicious. I only used 2 cups of cheese and also used jarred spaghetti sauce instead of processing tomatoes and paste. Turned out great. I also added my own seasonings on top of what's called for in the recipe to give it a lil more spice."

tonienj69 User ID: 1272820 84759
Reviewed Nov. 12, 2014

"Made this tonight,was very good,I used chicken breast also,I also doubled the sauce cause it didn't seem like it would be enough,glad I did it came out awesome!"

mbaulch User ID: 7600486 175362
Reviewed Oct. 12, 2014

"Good but was time consuming."

hchambers User ID: 7140928 102284
Reviewed Sep. 17, 2014

"Great dish! I used chicken breast instead of thighs because that is what was in my kitchen. My family enjoyed it so I will be making it again."

expeditus User ID: 3869607 209556
Reviewed Sep. 11, 2014

"This was absolutely delicious--I made it exactly according to the recipe and it turned out perfectly. I was thinking of adding some spinach or eggplant for a little extra color but I'm glad I didn't. Will be making and sharing this recipe often!"

Spooky123 User ID: 6521366 102282
Reviewed Sep. 3, 2014

"Oh my.... This is an excellent recipe. easy to make and no left overs! Thank you for sharing."

falknermimi User ID: 3056172 99604
Reviewed Aug. 30, 2014

"Amazing recipe, except I use chicken breast instead of chicken thighs and I left off the crushed red pepper flakes due to my Crohn's disease. Thanks for sharing this recipe!"

luigimon User ID: 1692040 111071
Reviewed Jul. 19, 2014

"What an amazing dish!! Follow the recipe exact and you won't be disappointed. Oh my gosh, is this good.......oh, and I just used chicken breast cubed as that is what I had on hand. Will try it with thighs that will be even more incredible, as flavorful as thighs are!"

marisa-h User ID: 6719699 111070
Reviewed Jul. 5, 2014

"I've made this 3 times just as written. It's delicious and a perfect casserole to give away as well. My green and red peppers were twice as large as needed so I froze the remainders chopped, allowing them to freeze on a plastic dish before putting them into a freezer bag. Thank you so much for sharing this, Carmen!"

Medgirl User ID: 7784714 155532
Reviewed May. 6, 2014

"My family loved it"

Nikkimomma User ID: 3879749 111068
Reviewed Feb. 3, 2014

"This was very good!"

hunybun User ID: 5115265 81619
Reviewed Feb. 1, 2014 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"This recipe is very good - when MADE :)"

hunybun User ID: 5115265 171457
Reviewed Feb. 1, 2014 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"This recipe is very good - when MADE :)"

richtercory User ID: 3843046 102479
Reviewed Jan. 31, 2014

"it was ok. maybe use less chicken next time."

melee50 User ID: 2484648 159204
Reviewed Jan. 30, 2014

"kareni1946 - please do not rate a recipe until you have made it. We don't care how you cook your stuff we just want a 'real' review of this recipe"

kareni1946 User ID: 6679433 111065
Reviewed Jan. 29, 2014

"Sounds really good. My hubs isn't fond of green bell peppers; I usually dice up some zucchini and/or eggplant, and sometimes (in lieu of chicken) sauté a pound of ground sweet or hot Italian sausage to the sauce mixture. I make my own all-day marinara."

dogfinder User ID: 6238264 170355
Reviewed Nov. 23, 2013

"Very good receipe. Didn't have green pepper so used a whole red pepper and 6 chesse Italian blend for the mozzarella. The wife wants me to make this next week for her girls card party."

4Huskers User ID: 5191012 111062
Reviewed Nov. 19, 2013

"I made this today and it was very, very good! I used 2 chicken breasts and a can of Italian diced tomatoes. I didn't have the peppers so will plan better next time. We all loved this casserole and I know we will be making it again . . . real soon!"

2princesses2luv User ID: 4369472 155531
Reviewed Oct. 27, 2013

"This was just ok to us."

CkingMomma User ID: 7401592 172788
Reviewed Sep. 9, 2013

"I made this recipe for my family last night and it was a hit. I added 2tbsp of Chinese chili sauce instead of the flakes, added 7 cloves of garlic and used boneless chicken breasts. My picky children and picky hubby loved it. I served this dish with oven toasted Italian garlic bread."

tramar User ID: 1227142 111060
Reviewed Aug. 29, 2013

"This recipe is so versatile.

We prefer boneless, skinless chicken breasts instead of thighs. I use Italian Seasoning Blend instead of the individual spices for ease of preparation.
There are also many varieties of Diced Tomatoes available. Fire-Roasted are a nice change as well as using Italian Blend Shredded Cheese."

Evad1963 User ID: 5527676 99603
Reviewed Aug. 24, 2013

"Dish needed more sauce and sausage mixed with ground beef or turkey would've been much better. Overall flavor was good though."

wjamanda User ID: 6518294 99602
Reviewed Aug. 13, 2013

"easy to make and yummy! Will definately be making this again soon!"

jmkasprak User ID: 2880256 172778
Reviewed Jul. 19, 2013

"I have been making this recipe regularly without processing the tomatoes. I also add a whole 6 oz can of paste and just add some water if necessary. Last week I added some chopped salami and pepperoni that was leftover from another recipe, and it really added to the flavor."

tramar User ID: 1227142 157489
Reviewed Jan. 6, 2013

"5 Stars!

I'm always on the lookout for great casseroles and this one fits the bill!
You can use any leftover chopped poultry.
I've even prepared this with our leftover holiday turkey!
I also streamlined the recipe by using an Italian blend seasoning, omitted the salt, as we watch our sodium intake, prepared chopped or crushed garlic. an Italian-blend cheese and grated Parmesan cheese in place of the Romano.
It is delicious and so versatile!"

denise.morales11 User ID: 6888576 170354
Reviewed Sep. 26, 2012

"I love this recipe. It is so easy to make and I will make it over and over agai. My boyfriend is one picking eater. But he absolutely loved it."

amypee User ID: 6378581 102281
Reviewed Aug. 11, 2012

"Faultless! I made this dish exactly the way it's written and I wouldn't change a thing. It was easy and delish! A winner for my house and 'on the menu' from now on! Cheers for sharing!"

CookingLover24 User ID: 6312111 171016
Reviewed Jul. 29, 2012

"Great Recipe that our whole family loved. Very tasty and freezes well too. Definatley on the regular menu list for us."

Milissa009 User ID: 5644057 111058
Reviewed Jul. 20, 2012 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"Great recipe, simple and very tasty. I will definetly add this to my go-to meals!"

pcinant User ID: 3231537 111047
Reviewed Jun. 27, 2012

"My family loved this casserole and I have one very picky eater. It was very easy to make and tasted very good. Will definitely make again !!!"

jennbedient User ID: 6343439 155530
Reviewed Apr. 17, 2012

"Very, very good! Will definitely make again, although hubby asked to skip the red pepper flakes next time."

Jotuba User ID: 6500526 172776
Reviewed Jan. 31, 2012

"Oh, and I also completely forgot the chicken stock, it was still a little thin so I added some cornstarch/water mix and it got nice and dense."

Jotuba User ID: 6500526 102478
Reviewed Jan. 31, 2012

"Fantastic flavor- quite zippy, too! the one major thing I'd change is that the peppers got quite soggy cooking as long as the chicken. Next time I'm going to add them at the earliest half-way through the chicken-cooking time. The rest of it was Fantastic!"

silly girl User ID: 5270321 175304
Reviewed Jan. 23, 2012

"The was amazing! I doubled it and accidentally tripled the chick. stock so i had to cook it longer, which i recommend regardless, and added some more water and a cut potato to absorb the salt of the chicken stock. I added some ricotta i had in the frige, but that was the only change. My family isn't huge on spicy but I decided just to do it exactly as it stated anyway(I refer to the pepper flakes). I am so glad I did!! Just a touch of hotness and the kids loved it too (3 and 5)! Thanks for a great dish!!"

1burrill User ID: 1992174 157456
Reviewed Dec. 5, 2011 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"Excellent!!! A perfect amount of spice!!! Loved it. Will make it again and again."

jmkasprak User ID: 2880256 140118
Reviewed Nov. 13, 2011

"I wanted to share my changes since I make this quite often. I skip the blender step and add a whole 6 oz can of tomato paste. Instead of chicken broth, I just add a half cup of wine. I've also been using a shredded italian cheese blend which adds another layer of flavor."

Cottage1 User ID: 1698672 157448
Reviewed Nov. 3, 2011

"This recipe is a keeper, if my husband goes back for seconds. Very good."

Jan2 User ID: 116031 175301
Reviewed Oct. 9, 2011

"Delicious. Used 1 lb. leftover cooked chicken and added 1/2 cup mushrooms to the vegetable mix as i had them and wanted to use them up."

witzken User ID: 445254 102279
Reviewed Sep. 25, 2011

"Delicious and easy! A definite "weeknight winner" in our house. You can use chicken breast if you don't have the thighs on hand, and I just use a can of crushed/pureed tomatoes or tomato sauce along with the paste. That way I don't have to get out my blender; I can just dump it in the pan and save time. Great blend of spices and seasonings too!"

stephanieann1983 User ID: 6213014 171012
Reviewed Sep. 20, 2011

"The spiciness made me step back and go "Where did that come from?" It was absolutely fantastic. Much better than your average chicken penne casserole."

love2beMom User ID: 5558560 175300
Reviewed Jul. 10, 2011

"This is delicious! My husband's favorite casserole - and my kids love it, too!"

jmkasprak User ID: 2880256 84758
Reviewed Jun. 22, 2011

"I've made this recipe a couple of times. We like that it uses chicken thighs and the kick that it gets from the red pepper flakes. It's a nice alternative to a ground beef pasta dish. I usually keep Parmesan cheese on hand, so I used it instead of Romano."

kellys1061 User ID: 5531754 171456
Reviewed Mar. 21, 2011

"We just tried this. Hubby is VERY satisfied! I want to try it with sausage instead of the chicken. DELICIOUS!!! THANKS FOR SHARING THIS ONE!"

Arlene Lopez User ID: 5855041 81618
Reviewed Mar. 3, 2011

"Made this last night with a salad and garlic bread... Are you kidding me??? Fit for company. I will make this over and over, my picky kids loved it. Best thing when Ie was done it looked just like the picture my kids thought I was a genius....

Thanks for making me a dinner Hero!!"

Mary Royston User ID: 5262167 102194
Reviewed Mar. 2, 2011

"I made this last night. I added 1/2 cup chopped mushrooms and a whole zuchinni, quartered lengthwise & sliced, and added a 8 ounce can of Hunt's Tomato Sauce. There were 3 of us and I barely have enough left for a lunch-size serving. Everyone couldn't stop raving about it!!!"

Adan5912 User ID: 5844291 111046
Reviewed Feb. 25, 2011

"Me and my mom are going to make this and i have a BIG feeling its going to be the best recipe we've made!!!"

norena70 User ID: 5192480 81617
Reviewed Nov. 15, 2010

"We love this recipe and I make it often. It is also great left over.

Dorothy also from Vernon"

shady519 User ID: 3152261 111045
Reviewed Oct. 4, 2010

"Recipe was easy and a quick after work fix. Taste was good. Will definitely make a again."

marciaoakley User ID: 1474421 171453
Reviewed Aug. 15, 2010

"I used boneless chicken breasts instead of thighs. The sauce is really good and hubby said that this is a keeper!"

5xamom User ID: 787516 102476
Reviewed Feb. 15, 2010

"My family really enjoyed this casserole! It gave a little different taste then the usual spaghetti or lasgana. I have five children and every one of them enjoyed this. I used chicken breast marinated in a garlic dressing instead of the thighs since I don't care for dark meat. Thanks for the great recipe!"

Geneviev00 User ID: 1610174 170347
Reviewed Nov. 12, 2009

"My husband and I both agreed that this dish was OK, but not fabulous. It's easy to make, but tastes a bit bland."

murrell006 User ID: 2357453 140117
Reviewed Oct. 10, 2009

"aweseom, great flavor, changed a few things but that red pepper gives it a nice kick"

lydiawoz User ID: 1016707 111035
Reviewed Oct. 5, 2009

"This was very good and kid-friendly. My teen-agers had three helpings!"

emilyanne1229 User ID: 4477915 102475
Reviewed Oct. 4, 2009

"made this for the first time ever tonight to take to some friends house to eat. It was SUCH a HIT!!! Turned out great! I added a little more cheese than what it called for, because my family and i love cheese!! great receipe and cant wait to use it again!!!!"

cactuslady User ID: 1762767 175298
Reviewed Mar. 25, 2009 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"This recipe is a "keeper", as my husband puts it. The only thing I did different was add some finely shredded carrots, to boost the nutritional value. This will be a recipe I make over and over. Linda B.S. California"

Ginny_in_PA User ID: 3899483 102474
Reviewed Mar. 10, 2009 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"Good recipe! I used a can of crushed tomatoes with puree instead of processing diced tomatoes and paste."

mumofthree03 User ID: 3267768 102193
Reviewed Feb. 26, 2009

"my family gobbled this right up i had 3/4 of jar of spaghetti sauce i used this in place of tomatoes and still added the extra herbs. delicious i will make this again. mum of three saginaw mi."

JanleeSiebert User ID: 3897825 102471
Reviewed Feb. 24, 2009 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"I agree, the chicken penne casserole was good. Usually my husband does not like casseroles,but he liked this one."

Maggie Munoz User ID: 3910569 102192
Reviewed Feb. 23, 2009 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"I boil the chicken with carrots, onions, a?stalk of celery and garlic?then shred it. The chicken can be kept in the freezer until you need it for something like this dish. If you're using the chicken right away, use the broth instead of the canned stuff."

Debbie1880 User ID: 1515881 111033
Reviewed Feb. 23, 2009

"Tried chicken Penne casserole for the first time today. It was so good. I will make this again soon."

timber2 User ID: 2365742 102468
Reviewed Feb. 23, 2009 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"Had this casserole at my daughter-in-laws. Its a keeper."

kimsklutter User ID: 3635054 157445
Reviewed Feb. 23, 2009 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"This looks like a GREAT casserole for church potlucks.? I'm always looking for new recipes.? Thanks!"

vbange User ID: 1656569 102464
Reviewed Feb. 23, 2009

"From Mastercook 7:

Per Serving: 569 Calories; 19g Fat (30.9% calories from fat); 54g Protein; 42g Carbohydrate; 4g Dietary Fiber; 111mg Cholesterol; 1202mg Sodium. Exchanges: 2 Grain(Starch); 6 1/2 Lean Meat; 1 1/2 Vegetable; 2 Fat."

eawinters User ID: 2493786 84756
Reviewed Feb. 13, 2009

"I don't understand, in this day and age, why every recipe doesn't have nutritional information."

obnurse1cla User ID: 3757629 99600
Reviewed Feb. 10, 2009

"I made this for the first time tonight. I took some liberties and used a different pasta and didn't puree the tomatoes. My husband LOVED it - said it was the best thing I've cooked recently. I will definitely make this again!"

WJSymons User ID: 2585705 102191
Reviewed Jan. 29, 2009 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"My family loves this, too."

InaJakobs User ID: 1501041 175296
Reviewed Jan. 24, 2009

"This recipe is great! It's become a family favorite."

Anngelgurl3 User ID: 1829833 84663
Reviewed Jan. 7, 2009 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"This was great!!!"

ang19317 User ID: 1361367 111030
Reviewed Nov. 7, 2008 Edited Feb. 5, 2016

"This dish was fantastic. I have passed this recipe on to many friends."

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