You’ll love this creamy chicken pasta bake — the seared chicken thighs are what makes it!
When I was at ALDI last week doing my grocery shopping, I picked up a package of fettuccine nests in the pasta section.
They were perfect for shrimp pasta the kids and I had the other evening!
Then, last night I decided to use them for a casserole I was throwing together, after originally considering broken up pieces of spaghetti.
This particular fettuccine has sort of an “egg noodle” bite to it, which definitely lends itself to being a perfect casserole base: smooth and velvety, but still with a bit of tooth to it.
This creamy chicken pasta bake is really versatile, too.
I used seared chicken thighs here (an inexpensive and flavorful cut), but you could easily use leftover roast chicken or even pieces from a grocery store rotisserie chicken.
Instead of store-bought stock or broth, which would be perfectly fine, I used my own homemade Instant Pot chicken stock. If you haven’t made stock in yours yet, you must give it a try!
Don’t have an Instant Pot? Try my overnight chicken stock in the slow cooker, instead.
I served a veggie on the side, but instead try folding in steamed broccoli, asparagus or peas just before baking. Yum!
This one, my friends, is grown-up AND kid approved.
- 6 ounces dry fettuccine
- 1/2 cup shredded white cheddar cheese
For the chicken:
- 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
For the sauce:
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 1/2 medium onion, diced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup flour
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 cup whole milk
Preheat the oven to 375°F and grease a 2-quart casserole dish with butter or olive oil. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the fettuccine and cook until just before al dente, about 7 minutes. Drain.
For the chicken:
- Add 3 tablespoons of olive oil to a large skillet, then warm it over medium-high heat. Meanwhile, pat the chicken dry, and then sprinkle the thighs on both sides with salt, pepper and garlic powder.
- Place the thighs into the hot skillet and let them cook for 5 minutes.
- Flip the thighs, and continue cooking them for another 4 minutes. Remove them to a plate to rest.
- Pour the remaining oil and bits into a medium sauce pot.
- Slice the chicken into bite sized pieces.
For the sauce:
- Add 1/4 cup of olive oil to the medium sauce pot (with the leftover bits from the chicken), and warm it over medium heat.
- Add the onion, salt, pepper, garlic pepper, and dried parsley, and continue cooking until the onion starts to become translucent.
- Add the garlic, give a stir, and cook for one minute longer, then increase the heat to medium-high.
- Sprinkle 1/4 cup flour over the onion mixture, and then whisk it until turns into creamy paste.
- Let it cook for a minute, then pour the chicken stock and milk into the sauce pan all at once.
- Whisk the sauce off and on until it starts to thicken and come to a boil, about 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to low.
To make the casserole:
- Add the cooked pasta to the thickened sauce, making sure it's coated completely.
- Toss in the chicken pieces.
- Pour the pasta mixture into the prepared casserole dish, and then top with the shredded cheese.
- Bake it uncovered for 20 minutes, until the cheese is melty and the the edges are bubbly.
Let the creamy chicken pasta bake rest for 5 minutes before serving. Try mixing in a cup of blanched broccoli, asparagus, or peas with the chicken, just before baking!
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- Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet with Assist Handle Holder, 12", Red Silicone
- OXO Good Grips 11-Inch Better Balloon Whisk
- Calphalon 1943876 Classic Nonstick Sauce Pan with Cover, 2.5 quart, Grey
- Corningware French White III Oval Casserole with Glass Cover, 1.5-Quart
- OXO Good Grips 12-Inch Tongs with Black Silicone Heads
- Qimh Collapsible Colander Set of 3 Round Silicone Kitchen Strainer Set - 2 pcs 4 Quart and 1 pcs 2 Quart- Perfect for Draining Pasta, Vegetable and fruit (green,blue, purple)
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 631Total Fat: 35gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 25gCholesterol: 218mgSodium: 1426mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 1gSugar: 3gProtein: 50g