Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti | #italian #recipe

This recipe goes out to all of you rad parents with kiddos heading back to school this week.  You asked for quick and easy recipes in our recent reader survey here.  And let me tell you, this one’s a keeper.  If you were a child of the 80’s like me, you can even pop it in your Trapper Keeper to hold onto for busy school nights ahead.

Ohhh yeah.

Seeing all of the cute first-day-of-school kids pop on Facebook with new backpacks and lunch boxes has totally made me a nostalgic for those annual load-up-the-shopping-cart, try-to-convince-Mom-to-buy-us-new-everything, back-to-school supply shopping trips!

I mean, in elementary school I had to get that 64-pack of Crayola crayons (with vivid tangerine, holla!), Mr. Sketch scented markets, and cool eraser tops and neon grippers for my #2 pencils.  In middle school, it was Lisa Frank everything (oh yes, especially the unicorn stickers), a super-cool Trapper Keeper, and mechanical pencils.  And in high school, you’d better believe we drove all over town until I found The Exact Color of Jansport backpack that I wanted, that would hold all of those Mead’s 5-Star notebooks, my fancy graphing calculator, and every color of gelly roll pin imaginable.

All non-negotiables, clearly.  :)

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti | #italian #recipe

Well for any of you who just broke the bank buying all of your kids’ non-negotiables, or for any of you adults like me who still regularly splurge a little too much on non-essential (but way too cute) office supplies, the good news is that this meal — yes I’m bringing us back to this Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti — also falls in the “affordable” category.  Mine clocked it at under $15 for 6 servings.  So if you use your cool Casio solar-powered calculator to do the math, I’d call this meal a Very Good Deal.

I kept this base recipe pretty straight-forward so that it would also pass the picky-eater test.  But if you happen to have fresh veggies on hand, I’d highly recommend sauteing them up to add in too.

Here’s how to make it!

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti | #italian #recipe

Begin by cooking up a batch of pasta.  I used traditional ziti, but you can use any shape and any type (whole wheat, gluten-free, etc.) of pasta.

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti | #italian #recipe

While your pasta is cooking, cook up your alfredo sauce.  This is the “lighter” alfredo sauce that I used in my Skinny Fettuccine Alfredo recipe.  It’s my fav!

Once the sauce and pasta are done, toss them until combined.

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti | #italian #recipe

Also add in some shredded chicken if you’d like, and toss to combine.  You can use any kind, but I generally either:

1) season two chicken breasts with salt and pepper and saute over medium-high heat in olive oil until cooked through
2) use a rotisserie chicken (to save a step)

When your chicken alfredo ziti mixture is ready, add half of it to a baking pan.  Then sprinkle on some mozzarella cheese.  Then layer with the final half of the pasta, and sprinkle with more cheese.  Bake uncovered until the cheese is good and melty.

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti | #italian #recipe

Then pull it out and top with a bit of fresh parsley if you want some color (totally optional though).

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti | #italian #recipe

Then dive in!

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti | #italian #recipe

Seriously, whether you’re 13 or 31, I’m pretty positive this meal will totally hit the spot.

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti | #italian #recipe

I give it an A+.  ;)


Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti | #italian #recipe

5 / 5 (35 Reviews)
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Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti

Delicious chicken and ziti are tossed with a lighter alfredo sauce and baked up to cheesy perfection.


Chicken Baked Ziti Ingredients:

  • 12 ounces ziti (or any pasta shape)
  • 2 cups shredded, cooked chicken (about 2 small chicken breasts)
  • 1 batch alfredo sauce (see below)
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (I used 2% low fat)
  • (optional toppings: additional shredded Parmesan cheese, chopped fresh parsley)

Alfredo Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 Tbsp. flour
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup low-fat milk (I used 1%)
  • 3/4 cup freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper

*This isn’t a super-saucy dish, so if you like a lot of sauce, you might want to consider doubling this recipe. If you don’t have the time to make your own sauce, one standard-sized jar should be enough.


To Make The Chicken Baked Ziti:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Cook the pasta al dente in a large stockpot of well-salted boiling according to package instructions. Drain. Return pasta to the stockpot and add chicken and alfredo sauce. Gently toss to combine until the pasta is evenly coated.
  3. Pour half of the pasta into a greased baking dish (either an oval baking dish, as pictured above, or a 9 x 13-inch baking dish will work). Sprinkle evenly with 1 cup of cheese. Layer the remaining half of the pasta evenly on top. Sprinkle evenly with the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese.
  4. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the cheese is melted and just barely starts to turn golden. Remove and serve immediately, sprinkled with additional toppings if desired.

To Make The Alfredo Sauce:

  1. Heat olive oil in a large sauce pan over medium-high heat. Add garlic and saute one minute, stirring occasionally, until fragrant. Sprinkle with flour, and stir to combine. Saute for an additional minute to cook the flour, stirring occasionally.
  2. Slowly add chicken broth, whisking to combine until smooth. Whisk in milk, and bring the mixture to a simmer. Let cook for an additional minute until thickened, then stir in Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper until the cheese melted. Remove from heat and set aside.
All images and text ©

If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #gimmesomeoven. I'd love to see what you cook!

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Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti | #italian #recipe

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765 comments on “Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti”

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  1. Lisa Frank all the things! That was me too…in fact, I still have a Lisa Frank journal to write recipes in. It’s ah-may-zing.
    Almost so much so as this recipe. I don’t have kids to send back to school….sooo, more for me! Pinned!

  2. Ali, You have officially made my day and made me chuckle at the memory of back-to-school shopping. I already had my arsenal of Lisa Frank supplies in my mind before I even read that you also rocked the Lisa Frank gear. And Trapper Keepers? Greatest things ever! Especially when covered in graffiti made by a White Out pen, and trying so hard not to get in trouble for making the Velcro noise during class. Those were the days. :)
    Anyhow, this ziti looks insanely delicious and I might just have to make it right. this. minute. And dream of the day when I have a reason to buy every school supply in sight.

  3. Lovely dinner idea Ali! The whole family would really enjoy this one :) xo

  4. Perfect family dinner. I think everyone would eat this. I mean, it looks awesome!

  5. Yum!! I love baked ziti, but I’ve never thought to do it with alfredo. I’d love to try this some day!

  6. I’m going to be craving this all day now! Looks amazing!

  7. This looks fantastic and so comforting on a cold day Ali!

  8. Perfect weeknight dinner!

  9. This looks like the kind of thing that my family would go crazy over. And even though my kids aren’t school-age yet, I did a little back-to-school shopping of my own (gotta have some new boots for the fall!), so I need to balance out the splurge with a LOT of economical cooking. :)

  10. This looks great! What size baking dish did you use?

    • Ah! Just added that in. I used the equivalent of an 11×7-inch baking dish, but any size around there will work. Enjoy!

  11. I saw the picture and I thought, “Is this for real??” This looks absolutely, indulgently delicious! I can’t wait to try this. Pinning!

  12. Thanks for an amazing recipe. . will definitely be making this one soon. . my kids go back to school next week!

  13. Can I pretend I have kids and make this every single night for dinner? lol! Looks fantastic!

  14. This looks so delicious. Can’t wait to give it a try.

  15. That sauce looks incredible!!! Sometimes I find macaroni cheese a bit dry but this looks just wonderful!

  16. You used those gel roller pens in every color to pass notes in class, amiright? ;)

  17. Haha can still smell those scented markers!

  18. Kind of an goofy question, but what types of veggies would you recommend for this? Unfortunately, I go strictly by the recipe and have a hard time being creative with things! Thank you for any input!

  19. AWESOME recipe, Ali! I love your skinny Alfredo sauce version!

  20. totally craving this for dinner now! YUM!

  21. Just so you know, this post didn’t come up on my Feedly! Your posts always come up first thing in the morning, so I wanted to make sure it wasn’t a bug or anything :)

    And the pasta looks delicious!

  22. Ali, yum! You nailed it! I don’t have kids going back to school but I cannot wait to make this for myself! :)

  23. This looks and sounds amazing, yum!

    xx Kelly
    Sparkles and Shoes

  24. This sounds spectacularly delicious. I will hopefully get to try this soon… :-)

  25. My kids and I are back to school and teaching this week, so we are very much in need of easy dinners around here! This looks like the perfect cheesy comfort food!

  26. Yum, yum, yum!! Could totally do with a big plate of this now, looks so delicious!

  27. Ali, this looks like the perfect dinner for weeknights! I love that you made your own alfredo sauce…Thanks for thinking of those of us with school-aged kids:)

  28. This pasta looks absolutely fantastic!! Wow!

  29. I’m sitting here visiting blogs on my laptop with Lucy Goose snuggled up to me…she’s pointing at your photos and saying “Teese, Teese!! MMMMM…..” So I think this DEFINITELY needs to go on my meal plan!

    School supplies are not nearly as fun as they used to be. Jon David’s list requires PLAIN FOLDERS and very specific markers/crayons. Snooze.

  30. Omg I was just talking to Rich about all of the 5 subject mead notebooks I would buy and how I couldn’t wait to get the best colors – lol. Good times!

  31. What a comforting meal to come home to after an exciting first day of school!

  32. looks delish – any thoughts how to make the alfredo sauce gluten free? thanks!

    • I’m working on a new GF alfredo recipe. Coming soon! :)

    • Ali… To save time on this, could it be just as good with a store bought Alfredo Sauce?

    • Hey Nancy! I really recommend homemade alfredo sauces, because the store-bought varieties are usually SUPER processed and full of mystery ingredients and (in my opinion) not nearly as tasty. But it would work as a substitution, so it’s totally your call.

    • Hi Nancy! I’m not a big fan of store-bought Alfredo sauce, due to all of the processed ingredients. But sure, the recipe would still work with it. Enjoy!

    • Ali,
      I’m sure this is obvious to you and you’ve already experimented, but I sub cornstarch for flour when I’m trying to GF my recipes. It’s a good place to start at least! I love this recipe. I add fresh veggies for color – whatever the local market has on hand. Quick, easy, tasty. Thanks!

  33. This looks incredibly delicious! I love everything about it!

  34. I have had no problem substituting unsweetened almond milk for recipes that call for dairy. I also use Gluten free flour blend when I make your homemade cream of soup recipe. It is my favorite cream of soup now.
    I also wanted to tell you my secret for chicken, I put several packages of chicken breasts in the slow cooker with salt and pepper for several hours on low. I shred with a fork, then transfer 2 cups to a freezer safe bag. Defrost as needed for recipes that call for chicken. Delicious and a great time saver.
    I love your blog and have loved everything I have made from your site so far. I pin everything I plan on trying to make…it’s my way of supporting local!

    • Thanks for the tip on cooking chicken in the slow cooker and then freeze the amounts for recipes! Will be doing this.

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  37. Use evaporated milk. You won’t be disappointed!!!

  38. Made this today and it is very good!

  39. Wondering if this could be a make ahead dish and freeze for later? If so how would I go about it? Freeze before bake or freeze after baking?

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  42. Ali…thank you thank you thank you! I currently have this amazing bake in the oven and my kitchen smells amazing. I love how you introduce your recipes with Ali tales, your sense of humor makes your blog even more delicious. Thanks for the step by step instructions too, I am so domestically challenged and even I can follow along and make culinary miracles. Love love love the casserole series, you are the BEST!

  43. Thank you! I was just wondering what to do with the chicken I’d defrosted (clearly I don’t have this whole “menu planning” thing down) and this popped up in my feed! Can’t wait to try it out! :)

  44. Made today with leftover rotisserie chicken my husband and I loved it.

  45. Do you think I can make this ahead and then freeze to use at a later time?

  46. Your description of back to school shopping really hits close to home. Although we didn’t have trapper keepers in the 90s, absolutely everything else is so familiar. The Lisa frank folders, smelly markers and having to get new crayons. Even though we needed almost none of it for school. Ah, memories.

  47. I made this tonight and OMG was it fantastic!! Thank you so much for this recipe. I added bacon bits with the cheese too lol. Everything is a little better with bacon.

  48. This looks delicious, cant wait to make it for the grandkids, just wondering if I can get the nutritional values for this meal..Thank you

  49. Made this tonight. I cooked my chicken instead of buying it already cooked. I used about 3 cups and everything else was exactly the same. This is Soooo good. I can believe how good this turned out. Awesome recipe and definitely a keeper. I will make this again