Texmex Chicken Pasta Bake

45 min.
Enjoy a flavourful favourite with our chicken pasta bake. This dish features a golden, crispy crust atop a delicious combination of juicy chicken, al dente pasta, and creamy tomato sauce. It is a true feast for any pasta lover. The top is sprinkled with Tex-Mex cheese, the special touch you need for that cheesy, gooey texture. This cheesy favourite will quickly become a staple in your repertoire, offering you a delicious and straightforward dinner option.

Ingredients

4 portions

Instructions

Questions about chicken pasta bake

Whether you are an experienced chef or new to the kitchen, our chicken pasta bake is sure to please. It is a true comfort dish and easy to make. Below, we answer some common questions so you can get the best result.
How do I keep the cheese from burning?

There are a few steps to take if the cheese keeps getting burnt. You can cover the dish with foil for most of the baking time and remove it in the last few minutes to allow the cheese to brown. Adding the shredded cheese during the last 10–15 minutes of baking also helps prevent burning, as well as adjusting the oven rack so the dish is not too close to the heating element. Remember to keep a close eye on the dish during the final minutes so you can take it out or cover it if it gets too dark brown.

How should I store leftover chicken pasta bake?

Enjoy your delicious leftovers by storing them correctly in the fridge. Place them in an airtight container after cooling and store them in the fridge for up to 3 days. When you are ready to reheat them, warm them thoroughly in the oven or microwave. To keep the pasta from drying out in the microwave, add a bit of water. If you are using the oven, cover the dish with foil and heat it at 190 °C for 20–25 minutes until it is hot throughout.

Can I freeze the chicken pasta bake for later use?

Yes, you can freeze chicken pasta bake. Let it cool, cover it well, and put it in the freezer. You can freeze the whole dish or divide it into individual serving sizes. It will stay good for up to 2 months in the freezer. When you are ready to eat, let the leftovers thaw in the fridge overnight. Reheat them in the oven at 190 °C with foil on top for 20–25 minutes until it is hot all the way through.

Other recipes you will love

Tips: Perfect your chicken pasta bake

Get ready to impress with this recipe! Read our tips below to make sure it becomes a true success on your first try.

Prepare ahead of time

Save time by preparing the dish the day before if you are busy or just want something quick and easy the next day. Follow the recipe up until you mix pasta and sauce and put it in a baking pan. Cover it with cling film and foil, or transfer it to an airtight container instead. Store it in the fridge for up to 24 hours. When ready to bake, top with shredded cheese and bake in a preheated oven.

Perfectly cooked chicken

Cut the chicken breasts into uniform, small cubes to ensure they cook evenly. This prevents some pieces from being overcooked while others are undercooked. You should also ensure the pan is not overcrowded. If needed, cook the chicken in batches. This lets the cubes brown better and more evenly.

Good sauce consistency

Let the sauce simmer, not boil. Boiling can cause the cream to separate, resulting in a grainy texture, while simmering keeps the sauce smooth and velvety. If the sauce appears too thick, you can make it thinner by adding a splash of pasta water, milk, or chicken broth. If it is too thin, let it simmer a bit longer.

Enjoy our delicious chicken pasta bake recipe

Savour the flavours of our easy chicken pasta bake. With just a few simple steps, you can create a dish that is both comforting and satisfying. Ideal for busy weeknights or a special family dinner, this cheesy bake will quickly become a favourite in your household. The combination of juicy chicken, perfectly cooked pasta, and a rich sauce makes this recipe unbelievably delicious.

Tender chicken coated in creamy tomato sauce

Our chicken-packed pasta dish features tender chicken pieces coated in a rich and creamy tomato sauce. The aromatic blend of garlic, onions, and oregano-seasoned chicken creates a mouth-watering experience that is hard to resist. The tomato and cream sauce provides tangy and rich flavours with a velvety texture that ensures every bite is filled with smooth, creamy sauce and tender, flavourful chicken.

With fresh vegetables and herbs

Our chicken pasta bake is enriched with the earthy flavour of sautéed mushrooms and the fresh, crisp texture of broccoli. The mushrooms bring a rich, umami depth, while the broccoli offers a fresh, slightly crunchy bite. Fresh parsley infuses the dish with a vibrant herbal note that enhances the overall flavour and adds to the green bursts of colour.

Perfect golden-brown crust from grilled cheese

The crowning glory of this dish is the perfect golden-brown crust created by broiling flavourful Tex-Mex cheese sprinkled on top. You get a bubbly, slightly crispy cheese topping that adds a wonderful contrast to the creamy pasta and sauce beneath. The Tex-Mex cheese has a subtle hint of spice with notes from Tex-Mex cuisine, adding a flavourful layer to the dish. This golden crust also adds visual appeal and brings a delicious, savoury crunch that makes this pasta bake irresistible.

Serve with different sides

This cheesy, creamy pasta dish is the perfect midweek dinner when you need something simple and quick. Serve it straight from the oven in the baking dish to keep it hot and inviting, and enjoy it on its own or with sides. It is delicious with a crisp salad dressed in a tangy vinaigrette or a fresh cucumber and tomato salad to balance the creamy pasta. A side of garlic bread is delicious for soaking up the rich sauce. You can savour it with a side of steamed or roasted vegetables.

For other easy, baked dishes, try our recipes for mushroom carbonara, pasta carbonara with cream, autumn-inspired harvest pasta, or chicken fettuccine Alfredo.

Add your own touch

While our recipe calls for Tex-Mex cheese, you can easily mix in different types of cheese. Choose a strong cheddar cheese or a mild mozzarella, and before baking, top with grated Parmesan. You can also top it with breadcrumbs and Parmesan for a crispy, golden crust.

Although we opted for penne, you can try different shapes to add more variety. Rigatoni, fusilli, or farfalle excel at scooping up the creamy sauce, guaranteeing a rich and textured bite every time. Other short pasta types like macaroni, ziti, or shells work well, too, and are ideal for holding the sauce.

Pack the dish with extra vegetables like spinach, peas, diced tomatoes, or red peppers. Simply sauté them with the onions to add more colour and different textures to the dish. Adding chickpeas or beans, for example, white, black, or red beans, will also improve flavour and texture.

For a spicy kick, sprinkle in some chilli flakes. And for a classic flavour combination, consider adding fried beef bacon to the mix. The crispy beef bacon pairs wonderfully with the chicken and adds a salty, savoury touch.

Tasty. Yummy. Good!

Breakfast inspiration

Easy breakfast recipes to make mornings good.
Read more