Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti

This Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti recipe is made with a lightened-up alfredo sauce, it’s easy to customize with extra veggies and seasonings, and it is always so comforting and delicious.

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti Recipe

Creamy, cozy, cheesy, carb-y comfort food alert.

This time of year, when everyone seems to be craving warm pasta dinners around the table on chilly winter nights, this chicken alfredo baked ziti recipe always goes viral here on the blog.  And this time of year, when I make a batch for myself, I’m always reminded how unbeatable this Italian casserole will always be.  I mean, creamy alfredo sauce, savory chicken, hearty pasta, two delicious kinds of melty cheese — what’s not to love?!  There’s a reason why this one will always be a classic.

That said, while this recipe already features my lightened-up alfredo sauce recipe, there are all sorts of other ways you can make this comfort food a bit healthier if you’d like.  From subbing in whole wheat pasta (this one is my go-to), to adding in your choice of veggies (we’re quite partial to broccoli in our house), to making it all gluten-free if you’d like (easy to do with a few simple tweaks), options to customize this casserole abound.  And bonus, it can be ready to serve a big crowd in less than 45 minutes.

Who’s ready for a helping?

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti

My original photo for this recipe from 2014.

DeLallo Penne Pasta | Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti Ingredients:

To make this Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti recipe, you will need:

  • Pasta: Feel free to use any shape (ziti, penne, fettuccine, etc.) and variety (classic, whole-wheat, gluten-free, etc.) of pasta that you prefer.
  • Shredded, cooked chicken: I either shred a rotisserie chicken, or use leftovers from this baked chicken breasts recipe.
  • Shredded mozzarella cheese: Feel free to use part-skim or full-fat.
  • Alfredo sauce: We will use my lightened-up alfredo sauce recipe, made simply with olive oil (or butter), garlic, flour, chicken stock, low-fat milk, Parmesan, salt and pepper.  Also, this recipe is not naturally very saucy.  So if you would like, many of our readers recommend doubling the sauce.
  • Toppings: Freshly-grated Parmesan is a must, in my book.  And feel free to sprinkle on some chopped parsley for extra freshness and flavor.

Also, see below for suggestions on other delicious ingredients you can add in to this easy baked ziti.  (Here’s lookin’ at you, broccoli and Cajun seasoning. )

Alfredo Pasta | Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti

How To Make Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti:

Alright, let’s talk about how to make baked ziti!  Simply…

  1. Prepare the alfredo sauce.  To make the alfredo recipe, just sauté some garlic in olive oil (or butter).  Stir in some flour to thicken, add stock and milk and bring to a simmer.  Then stir in the Parmesan, season with salt and pepper, and you’re ready to go!
  2. Cook the pasta (and chicken).  Meanwhile, do some multi-tasking and cook your pasta according to package instructions in a large pot of generously-salted water.  Also, if you are cooking your chicken from scratch (vs. using leftovers or shredding a rotisserie), go ahead and cook it while the pasta and sauce are being prepared.
  3. Layer everything together. Once your pasta, sauce, and chicken are all ready to go, it’s time to combine everything!  In your pasta pot, stir together the pasta, alfredo sauce and chicken until combined.  Then spread half of the pasta mixture out evenly in a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.  Sprinkle on half of the mozzarella.  And repeat with the remaining pasta mixture, and remaining half of the mozzarella.
  4. Bake. Transfer the pan to the oven and bake (uncovered) for 20 minutes, or until the cheese is completely melted and has started to brown a bit on top.
  5. Add toppings.  Remove and sprinkle with lots of freshly-grated Parmesan and finely-chopped fresh parsley, if desired.
  6. Serve.  Then dish it up while it’s still nice and warm, and enjoy!

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti Casserole Recipe

Possible Variations:

There are so many ways to customize this chicken alfredo bake!  For example, feel free to…

  • Add in veggies. Broccoli, asparagus, mushrooms, cauliflower, and any number of other veggies would be delicious added to this chicken alfredo recipe.  Just note that they won’t get cooked much during the 20 minutes of baking time.  So if whatever veggies you add require a longer cooking time, feel free to toss them into the boiling water with the pasta for a few minutes or sauté (or roast) them for a few minutes before adding them to the casserole.
  • Add in extra Italian herbs. If you would like an herbier chicken alfredo pasta, feel free to add some dried Italian seasoning or chopped fresh Italian herbs into the alfredo sauce.  (Or, you can also sprinkle some chopped fresh basil on top of the pasta after baking.)
  • Nix the protein.  Not into chicken?  Feel free to use shrimp in this recipe instead.  (Or make it vegetarian and add in some extra veggies instead.)
  • Make it spicy. I really love sprinkling lots of crushed red pepper into (and on top of) this casserole to give it a bit of a kick.
  • Make it cajun. To give this recipe a Cajun twist, feel free to stir 1-2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning (to taste) into the alfredo sauce.
  • Make it gluten-free.  Just use your favorite certified gluten-free pasta, and my gluten-free alfredo sauce recipe.

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti with Parmesan

Recommended Side Dishes:

To balance out this chicken alfredo baked ziti recipe, I would recommend the following sides:

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti | Gimme Some Oven

Enjoy, everyone!

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Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti Recipe
4.9 from 68 reviews

Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 0 about 6-8 servings 1x

Description

This Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti recipe is made with a lightened-up alfredo sauce, and is always so comforting and delicious.  See notes above for possible ingredient variations.


Scale

Ingredients

Chicken Baked Ziti Ingredients:

  • 12 ounces uncooked 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 part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • toppings: lots of freshly-grated Parmesan cheese, finely-chopped fresh basil or parsley

Alfredo Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or butter
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 cup low-fat milk
  • 3/4 cup freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions

To Make The Chicken Baked Ziti:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.  Mist a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray; set aside.
  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 the prepared baking dish. 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.

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Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti Casserole Recipe

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828 comments on “Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti”

  1. I just made this today. It’s tasted really good. Lots of flavor without the after meal heaviness. For my personal taste, i’d add in red pepper flakes next time. 

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  3. I made this tonight! I loved the flavor of the alfredo but mine came out a bit lumpy since i didnt add the flour and broth together well. I would only like to improve my technique in achieving a smoother sauce and I too would double the volume since it was such a great flavor and mine just barely covered the pasta! Thanks!

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  5. Is this something that could be put together as a freezer meal?  I am make some for the college family members so they have something awesome to eat.

  6. This was awesome. Two teenage boys gave two thumbs up! It was great easy to get done in a hurry and there are plenty of leftovers. I didn’t bake w cheese just boiled pasta, poured sauce over and served. Thanks!!!

  7. This recipe is perfection! Super easy to make and delicious.
    Thank you!

  8. I have a hard time finding recipes that my picky 5- and 7-year-olds both like. I just made this, and it was a hit with both of them -and my husband as well! Found your site through Pinterest -looking forward to browsing and finding some other meals to try. Thanks!

  9. Made this tonight and it was delicious, but wish I would have read some of these comments prior. It was a bit too dry for me as well. I will increase the Alfredo sauce next time, which by the way, was my first attempt at homeade sauce and im feeling pretty proud of myself! I also enjoyed the ideas about adding fresh spinach or artichoke hearts. Overall, great recipe.

  10. Im making some right now before the kids come home from school, Im so excited to see if the kids will enjoy this. 

  11. This sounds perfect for my lunch company this weekend! :) I’m wondering…would it be ok to put this together before they arrive and place it in the fridge for a while (30mins-hour)before putting it in the oven?

  12. I added chopped tomatoes, chopped bacon, chopped leeks to the recipe. It added color and much more flavor.

  13. If I use Alfredo sauce from a jar, how much is recommended? Thanks! 

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  15. Love this dish! So simple, yet so filling, and everyone loves it! I used jarred Alfredo sauce and doubled it – I find that with baked pasta dishes, it tends to dry out (unless I’m just using too much pasta!). I didn’t add any veggies to the pasta, but will try it with some frozen broccoli next time! 

  16. That was the best ziti recipe ever, and I’ve tried lot of different recipes. Delicious! My family told me it’s a keeper! I’m so glad I found your page. I’ll be trying out many more of your other recipes soon.

  17. Sounds delicious!  Is it freezable?

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  19. so delicious food, my mouth is watering 

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  21. I’m a newbie at cooking so my sauce was lumpy too :( but it still tasted a million times better than the store-bought stuff in a jar! I subtracted some pasta and added broccoli, and my husband and I really enjoyed it. After cooking the chicken, the pasta, sauce, and broccoli it was 4 pans, tons of measuring stuff, and over an hour of crusty cheesy cleanup though. I’m exhausted! But it was yummy and now we have leftovers for tomorrow. Thanks for the recipe :)

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  28. Could I use whipping cream instead of milk??

    • Yes, although this would be extremely rich and creamy. If you want to keep them a bit lighter, you could whisk in a little water with your whipping cream.

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  31. I made this for dinner tonight and it was fantastic! I added broccoli and it turned out well and the kids even ate their veggies. Thank you for a great recipe that will be added to our dinner rotation.

  32. is there anyway you can ballpark a calorie estimate per serving? 

  33. I was looking for a good chicken dish found my way here via Pinterest. I must admit I am a cook that can’t leave a recipe alone… I did follow yours somewhat close I added fire roasted Mushrooms (love them) and since all I had in my frig was fresh sliced mozzarella I layered the slices in the dish It was awesome and so easy!! thanks for a great recipe! 

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  37. Very good just the Alfredo sauce was to thick

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  39. This recipe was yummilicious. I did not make the Alfredo sauce from scratch instead I used the sauce from the jar since I came from work and I did not have time waste. However it ended up tasting like heaven. I like to add some spice to my food and iadded a pinch of red pepper flakes when I was layering the chicken and a little more on top. I’ll tell you it was GREAT!!

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  42. Ali – What a beautiful presentation! Your camera captures this dish perfectly. :)

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  44. Just made this recipe without chicken as I am testing recipes for a birthday dinner. It was so easy to make and so delicious. I can really see how good it would be to add chicken to this dish. I make mine in ramekins and it worked perfectly. Thanks for the great find I will definitely be making this again.

  45. Can this be made and then put into the freezer for a freezer meal??

  46. Glad I found what looks like a simple yummy recipe that’s kid approved. Making this tonight! PS: we must be the exact same age cause I had the exact same school supply obsessions at the exact same time period. However my Lisa Frank love is still going strong

  47. Do I cook the chicken before mixing it all together and putting it in the oven or do I only cook the pasta and let the chicken cook in the oven? Thanks in advance for the clarification.

  48. This was sooooo yummy! My four kids loved it. My pickiest eater went back for seconds!! I have a tenth month old who was beating the high chair for more. This was hands down the best Alfredo sauce. Thank you:)

  49. Would I be able to use a jar of alfredo sauce instead of making my own? 

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