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

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.

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

Directions:

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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810 comments on “Chicken Alfredo Baked Ziti”

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  1. Was wondering if this could be made ahead of time and put in the fridge and then baked when it’s time? Thank you!

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  3. I have been making this all year now for every new mom. We always do meal trains at church for people in our community group or mothers of preschoolers group and this is always my go-to. I think I’ve made it about 10 times now and works great with ziti, penne and penne rigate(my fave!). Simple and super easy!

  4. Pingback: Top 20 Best Italian Pasta Recipes – Top 10 Best Recipes

  5. Pingback: Baked Chicken Alfredo- Skinny Style | yummyfitlife

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  7. Tried tonight with some courgette baked in with the pasta and sauce, lovely!

  8. Pingback: 22 Homemade Pasta Recipes - Homemade Recipes|1000's of FREE Homemade Dinner Recipes

  9. Very delicious quick and easy meal my family enjoyed it as well! 

  10. I made this for dinner tonight and it was fabulous! Will definitely make again, thanks for the awesome recipe! 

  11. Made this last night, both kids and the hubby liked it and went for seconds! Thanks for the recipe, I will be pinning this for the future. We went with whole grain pasta, delicious. 

  12. Pingback: Skinny Chicken Pasta Bake | Curly's Cooking

  13. I made this tonight for my son’s 19th birthday and it was the best! I will never buy jarred Alfredo again!! I gave it my personal tweak, because that’s what cooking is to me, but what an easy and amazing meal. Thank you for sharing this!!! #GIVEMESOMEOVEN

    • We’re so happy this was a hit Piper, thanks for sharing with us! And happy birthday to your son! :D

  14. Hi, I finally got the chance to make this and everyone loved it. I thought it would be hard to the alfredo sauce and nope it was easy. I didn’t have any parmesan cheese but I just used mozzarella. I actually cooked the chicken breast in the crock pot with a 1/2 c of chicken broth and a little seasoning. Thank you!

  15. This is a great dish… I used whole wheat pasta to make more healthy. Do you have the calories and serving size? I am tracking with my new fitbit.

    • Thanks Krystal, we’re glad you like it! Unfortunately though, we aren’t sure of the nutrition facts/amount of calories in this recipe. We currently are not publishing nutrition facts on the site, as the nutrition calculators available are not 100% accurate, and we never want to publish anything that might be misleading. However, a lot of our readers love the My Fitness Pal nutrition calculator, so feel free to try that for an estimate. We hope that helps!

  16. I made this for dinner the other night and it was so good! Definitely going into my recipe rotation. Thank you for sharing!

  17. My fitness pal says calorie count for this is 341 calories per serving (6-8 serving size). 

  18. Thank you soo much for the recipe. Made this last night for my boyfriend and some family members and they all loved it. Decided to add some broccoli, red, and  green bell peppers into the mix  and also top it with some bacon and shredded cheese. It was amazing thank you. 

    • You’re so welcome, we’re happy this was a hit with your family, and we think those veggies you added sound delicious! :)

  19. I made this tonight & it was so good! It was a hit in our family! Thank you so much! It’s very hard to find a lighter recipe & I have never found one till now! My husband said I could def make this again!! 

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  21. Can I use cheddar cheese instead of Mozzarella?  I plan to make this tonight but my very picky husband hates Mozzarella…. But I’m worried it might not taste right with Cheddar.   

  22. Love this! We added peas, spinach, and minced sun dried tomatoes and made a bit more sauce to compensate. Soooo good!

  23. Pingback: What’s for dinner? Chicken Alfredo Pasta Bake | Raincity Parent

  24. Made this dish last night and it was soooo delicious!

  25. Just made this tonight for my large family.  I was asked be in charge a group of people who will be cooking a Saturday meal for 150 college age students who will be on retreat.  This may be the winning recipe.  Easy to make and delicious.  The lighter alfredo sauce is also lighter on the wallet.  Have you ever added vegetables to the casserole? 

    • Thanks for sharing, we’re so glad you enjoyed it! And yes, sometimes we’ll add broccoli (par-boil it first, so it will be tender enough once baked in the casserole). We bet spinach would also be a yummy addition. :)

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  27. Is 11/2 a typo?

  28. Could you make this to a certain point and then freeze it?

    • Hi Laura! Yes, you can do everything up to where it says to top with the remaining 1/2 cup cheese. Just make sure everything is cooled completely before freezing. Wrap it/seal it tightly. We hope you enjoy!

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  30. Can this be frozen to eat later?
    If so, how long could holder it in the freezer?

    • Hi Kathryn! Yes, you can freeze this. We would bake it without the cheese on top. Make sure it’s completely cooled before freezing. Then when you’re ready to bake, sprinkle the cheese on top, cover with foil and bake at 375 for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and then bake for another 10-15 min or until the cheese is completely melted, golden brown, and bubbling. We hope you enjoy! :)

  31. Awesome recipe. Gave me an excuse to use my brand new oven. Great addition to an already regular recipe. Great with sautéd mush and onions. Thank you.

  32. Hi gimmesomeoven! I love you’re site! I am making this dish for my Valentine this year and he could not be more excited! He’s been talking about it all week!  It was the first dish I ever made him and remains his favorite! Thank you for a great, easy, and delicous recipe.  I use it over and over!  ♡

    • Hi Lindsey! Thank you, we’re so glad you’re here! :) And that is SO sweet, we hope you and your valentine enjoy this!

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  34. Howabout if you’re 56??

  35. Delicious Thanks!

  36. I added frozen broccoli right before baking…Delish! I also cooked the chicken in chicken broth after saute… this recipe is Yum Yum Yum…

  37. Made this the other night, and it was very good. I would most likely make this again, everyone who ate it really enjoyed it. My only comment is that I ended up making double the sauce, and I think if I didn’t do that it would have been really dry and not nearly as enjoyable. Definitely give this recipe a try though!!  

    • Hi Jess! Thanks for giving this a try, we’re glad it was a hit! We have heard from some others that they prefer to double the sauce in this, so feel free to adjust the quantities as you like.

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  39. Made this last night! It was great. Thanks for sharing!

  40. I made this recipe with gluten free pasta and gluten free flour and it was delicious! Thanks for the skinny alfredo recipe! So good! 

  41. Thank you so much for sharing this! My family loves it, I cook it at least twice a month! I add fresh chopped tomatoes on top and use store bought Alfredo to minimize the time. 

  42. Oh my gosh… I SO enjoyed this post!  Brought back a lot of memories…

    This recipe is destined to land on the custom menus for my personal chef clients next week.  Thanks a bunch!

  43. I made this tonight and it was great! I would recommend using a smaller dish.

  44. Pingback: 15 Super Easy Crock Pot Recipes - Stylish Life for Moms

  45. Can this be assembled then frozen?

    • Hi Jessica! Yes, you can assemble this and then freeze it. We would bake it without the cheese on top. Make sure it’s completely cooled before freezing. Then when you’re ready to bake, sprinkle the cheese on top, cover with foil and bake at 375 for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and then bake for another 10-15 min or until the cheese is completely melted, golden brown, and bubbling. We hope you enjoy! :)

  46. I made this last night and added a bit of a twist! I had some dried tomatoes left over from another recipe in the frig, so I threw those in with a small sprinkling of red pepper flakes. YUM!!! This recipe is a keeper!! Thanks for posting!

    • We think that sounds so yummy Patti! And we’re glad you enjoyed the recipe! :)

  47. Pingback: Tried & True Pinterest Recipes | Meshko Moments

  48. This recipe is one of my favorites! I love everything about it. Thank you for sharing :) I posted a blog post about my favorite Pinterest tried and true recipes and included this one! http://www.meshkomoments.com/tried-true-pinterest-recipes/

    • We’re so glad to hear that Katie! Thanks for sharing the recipe on your blog, we love it! :D

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  50. Are you able to substitute the low-fat milk for heavy cream or whole milk like in other Alfredo recipes?