Pesto-Chicken Penne Casseroles Recipe

5 88 106
Pesto-Chicken Penne Casseroles Recipe
Pesto-Chicken Penne Casseroles Recipe photo by Taste of Home
Publisher Photo

Pesto-Chicken Penne Casseroles Recipe

Read Reviews
5 88 106
Publisher Photo
Creamy, flavorful and so easy to fix, this meal-in-one will wow family and friends. Get ready for recipe requests for this easy chicken casserole! —Laura Kayser, Ankeny, Iowa
MAKES:
12 servings
TOTAL TIME:
Prep: 20 min. Bake: 40 min.
MAKES:
12 servings
TOTAL TIME:
Prep: 20 min. Bake: 40 min.

Ingredients

  • 1 package (16 ounces) penne pasta
  • 6 cups cubed cooked chicken
  • 4 cups (16 ounces) shredded Italian cheese blend
  • 3 cups fresh baby spinach
  • 1 can (15 ounces) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 jar (15 ounces) Alfredo sauce
  • 1-1/2 cups 2% milk
  • 1 jar (8.1 ounces) prepared pesto
  • 1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Directions

Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the chicken, cheese blend, spinach, tomatoes, Alfredo sauce, milk and pesto. Drain pasta and add to chicken mixture; toss to coat.
Transfer to two greased 8-in. square baking dishes. In a small bowl, combine the bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese and oil; sprinkle over casseroles.
Cover and freeze one casserole for up to 3 months. Cover and bake the remaining casserole at 350° for 40-45 minutes or until bubbly.
To use frozen casserole: Thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Cover and bake at 350° for 50-60 minutes or until bubbly. Yield: 2 casseroles (6 servings each).
Originally published as Pesto-Chicken Penne Casseroles in Simple & Delicious May 2010, p59

Nutritional Facts

1-1/3 cups: 612 calories, 30g fat (13g saturated fat), 111mg cholesterol, 829mg sodium, 41g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 3g fiber), 42g protein.

  • 1 package (16 ounces) penne pasta
  • 6 cups cubed cooked chicken
  • 4 cups (16 ounces) shredded Italian cheese blend
  • 3 cups fresh baby spinach
  • 1 can (15 ounces) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 jar (15 ounces) Alfredo sauce
  • 1-1/2 cups 2% milk
  • 1 jar (8.1 ounces) prepared pesto
  • 1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the chicken, cheese blend, spinach, tomatoes, Alfredo sauce, milk and pesto. Drain pasta and add to chicken mixture; toss to coat.
  2. Transfer to two greased 8-in. square baking dishes. In a small bowl, combine the bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese and oil; sprinkle over casseroles.
  3. Cover and freeze one casserole for up to 3 months. Cover and bake the remaining casserole at 350° for 40-45 minutes or until bubbly.
  4. To use frozen casserole: Thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Cover and bake at 350° for 50-60 minutes or until bubbly. Yield: 2 casseroles (6 servings each).
Originally published as Pesto-Chicken Penne Casseroles in Simple & Delicious May 2010, p59

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Reviews forPesto-Chicken Penne Casseroles

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suzanne2garcia@msn.com User ID: 4530889 269323
Reviewed Jul. 11, 2017

"Very nice change from the usual chicken and pasta casserole. Very flavorful, didn't have pesto so used some finely shredded basil, worked great!"

MY REVIEW
Carol User ID: 8629885 267580
Reviewed Jun. 2, 2017

"Very good. Made several times for potlucks and always asked for recipe and to bring next time."

MY REVIEW
Debglass11 User ID: 6300479 261693
Reviewed Feb. 22, 2017

"Good casserole to feed a family! Once you've cooked the penne, everything else is just mixed together, so it's a very easy dish to make. Would have liked it to be a bit more saucy, so next time will increase the Alfredo and tomatoes. Since I'm not a huge fan of seasoned bread crumbs as a topping, next time I'll try panko bread crumbs tossed with a little parmesan and fresh parsley. The spinach is a nice addition. I like the fact that you can make one and freeze one!"

MY REVIEW
krucook User ID: 517980 259799
Reviewed Jan. 17, 2017

"My family enjoyed this . I've also used the mexican mix of cheeses they sell at Sams Club and that worked well, too. It was what I had on hand one time."

MY REVIEW
dkuglin User ID: 7994611 257675
Reviewed Dec. 4, 2016

"Yum Yum Double Yum"

MY REVIEW
bringithere28@gmail.com User ID: 8937694 256845
Reviewed Nov. 16, 2016

"have made this dish so many times"

MY REVIEW
PrplMonky5 User ID: 6612040 243184
Reviewed Feb. 4, 2016

"Like other's said, this is delicious. After reading the reviews and then first trying it, I was a little disappointed. But after several more bites, I realized this is definitely a keeper. I cut this recipe in half, cooked the chicken beforehand, and as another reviewer suggested, used (undrained) petite diced tomatoes instead of crushed. I actually measured out the ounces instead of estimating "oh, this looks like about half a jar of pesto". I was able to get half of this recipe into a 9.5x9.5 dish, but it was near the top. Not sure how anyone could fit half of this in an 8x8. Secondly, a couple minutes before it was to be "done", I turned on the broiler, waited a few minutes, and stuck the dish back in, uncovered. That gave the bread crumb topping a little bit more crunch (not much, but some). For me and my husband, half of this recipe was WAYYYY more than enough. There are a lot of leftovers, but I'm not really upset about that :)"

MY REVIEW
athom73 User ID: 8703258 242024
Reviewed Jan. 18, 2016

"Very easy to assemble, especially when you use the chicken from a ready made rotisserie chicken. The only down side is that I found it a bit bland. It needs some salt and pepper added to the mixture."

MY REVIEW
doreensanzone User ID: 1270959 237514
Reviewed Nov. 16, 2015

"Superb! It was delicious the first time, and I just used the second casserole tonight. I defrosted it longer than recommended and it still took about 80-90 minutes to heat up, but it was just wonderful once it was reheated. This would be great for company or to bring to a potluck."

MY REVIEW
jpmcatsx3 User ID: 5098913 230157
Reviewed Jul. 25, 2015

"I made this and my family loved it. I made it on the stove top instead of in the oven. I also added peas and mushrooms but I made the sauce according to the recipe and it was delicious!"

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