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Whole Wheat Pasta Bake

With a casserole this rich and saucy, it’s tempting to skip the crunchy topping and dip a fork straight into the skillet. But as one taster noted: “The bread crumbs on top make this one extra special.” —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
  • Total Time
    Prep/Total Time: 25 min.
  • Makes
    4 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 cups uncooked whole wheat spiral pasta
  • 1/2 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
  • 3 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 cups half-and-half cream
  • 3/4 pound process cheese (Velveeta), cubed
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • TOPPING:
  • 1 cup dry whole wheat bread crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions

  • Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, saute chicken in 1 tablespoon butter until no longer pink. Remove and keep warm.
  • In the same skillet, saute zucchini and onion in remaining butter. Stir in flour until blended; gradually add cream. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Reduce heat. Stir in cheese and Italian seasoning until cheese is melted; add chicken.
  • Drain pasta; add to cheese mixture. Transfer to a greased 8-in. square baking dish. In a small bowl, combine the bread crumbs, butter, Italian seasoning and salt; sprinkle over top. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 10-15 minutes or until heated through and topping is golden brown.
Nutrition Facts
1-1/4 cups: 849 calories, 50g fat (30g saturated fat), 190mg cholesterol, 1582mg sodium, 60g carbohydrate (12g sugars, 7g fiber), 39g protein.

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Reviews

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Average Rating:
  • Jennifer
    Jun 15, 2020

    My family loved this dish. The crunchy top was nice. It was a good way to use leftover pork, instead of chicken.

  • pammywammy
    Aug 8, 2012

    my daughter absolutely loved this dish. she ate leftovers for several days and she does not ever eat leftovers. the zucchini was an interesting ingredient. i did not use whole wheat pasta or bread crumbs.

  • KScales
    Nov 7, 2011

    Upon further review, we discovered the amount of bread crumbs should have only been 1 cup. We apologize for the error. It has been fixed and will be updated here soon.Taste of Home Test Kitchen

  • TicTak86
    Nov 6, 2011

    Terrible... The amount of breadcrumbs must be a mistake because you end up with an inch-thick layer on top if you use the 8 in square pan it calls for. Even after scraping most of them off, they still coated every bite. There was pretty much no flavor otherwise. I could only bring myself to eat half a serving of this and pitched the rest.

  • adhondt
    Nov 6, 2011

    The dish was quite tasteless. I'm on the weight watchers program and calculating the points showed that one serving is worth 23 points. That is almost a full days allotment of points. The dish wasn't anywhere good enough in taste to sacrifice that amount of points.

  • Ab0628
    Nov 2, 2011

    I didn't think this had much flavor, and I thought there were way too many bread crumbs.