Chicken pasta bake served in a casserole dish

Chicken pasta bake

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(73 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 45 mins


Serves 6

Enjoy this gooey cheese and chicken pasta bake for the ultimate weekday family dinner. Serve straight from the dish with a dressed green salad 

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: Per serving

  • kcal575
  • fat30g
  • saturates14g
  • carbs41g
  • sugars9g
  • fibre5g
  • protein33g
  • salt0.5g
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  • 4 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 1 onion, finely chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • ¼ tsp chilli flakes
  • 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes



    A member of the nightshade family (along with aubergines, peppers and chillies), tomatoes are in…

  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • 6 tbsp mascarpone
  • 4 skinless chicken breasts, sliced into strips



    While it's the traditional Christmas bird, turkey is good to eat all year round, though…

  • 300g penne
  • 70g mature cheddar, grated
  • 50g grated mozzarella
  • ½ small bunch of parsley, finely chopped



    One of the most ubiquitous herbs in British cookery, parsley is also popular in European and…


  1. Heat 2 tbsp of the oil in a pan over a medium heat and fry the onion gently for 10-12 mins. Add the garlic and chilli flakes and cook for 1 min. Tip in the tomatoes and sugar and season to taste. Simmer uncovered for 20 mins or until thickened, then stir through the mascarpone. 

  2. Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a non-stick frying pan. Season the chicken and fry for 5-7 mins or until the chicken is cooked through. 

  3. Heat the oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Cook the penne following pack instructions. Drain and toss with the remaining oil. Tip the pasta into a medium sized ovenproof dish. Stir in the chicken and pour over the sauce. Top with the cheddar, mozzarella and parsley. Bake for 20 mins or until golden brown and bubbling. 

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Comments, questions and tips

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7th May, 2020
perfect recipe, didn't change a thing. I really enjoyed it for leftovers heated up,
Nicoledanielle89's picture
26th Apr, 2020
Really easy to make and so so so tasty! Will definitely be making this again
23rd Apr, 2020
Delicious. Great family meal
12th Mar, 2020
This pasta dish is AMAZING! Good hot or cold, would definitely recommend making a big batch and using for lunches
Megan Williams's picture
Megan Williams
2nd Mar, 2020
Amanda Baillie
20th Feb, 2020
This took a little longer to make than I was expecting but turned out really well! I halved everything as I was only making it for me and it made about 3/4 portions in my opinion (though my portion size is usually quite small) I also added extra garlic, left out the chilli, seasoned my chicken with paprika and oregano and salted the chicken and sauce when they were almost cooked. Really tasty, not too tricky to make, would definitely recommend :)
13th Feb, 2020
Great recipe. As I was making it for two of us I divided the recipe by 3 plus a touch more as I wanted to use one whole tin of tomatoes. After reading the comments I used 1/4 tsp of chilli flakes but this was still a bit too spicy for us - we are oldies so not of the “chilli generation” though enjoy chilli con carne and enchiladas etc. I use quite thick tinned chopped tomatoes (Mutti Italian) and although I reduced the sauce for 20 mins would do so for less time in future to give more liquid. But enjoyed the bake with green beans and broccoli.
Norma. mackey
10th Feb, 2020
Delicious and very cheesy! Everyone took seconds - even fussy eaters. Definitely will make again though may increase the chilli flakes for a bit more heat. I added button mushrooms and spinach. Soooo good!
Nikki Allingham's picture
Nikki Allingham
4th Feb, 2020
Delicious! I added a wee bit more sugar and stirred some spinach through to wilt as it needed using up. Much more flavour than I was anticipating and likely to become a regular. I added more chilli flakes than the recipe suggests (2.5tsps) to suit our taste but it gave a lovely, welcome kick to the cheesy tomato sauce. Served with garlic bread. Delicious
18th Mar, 2020
Good tip re spinach ; ))
2nd May, 2020
Can this be frozen?
lulu_grimes's picture
5th May, 2020
Hi, Lulu from the food team here, yes you could freeze this. If you are planning on making it ahead I'd freeze it before baking it. I hope this helps.
Jane Moldon's picture
Jane Moldon
27th Mar, 2020
What can I use instead of the mascarpone? We are self isolating so I can't go and get any!
Esther_Deputyfoodeditor's picture
6th Apr, 2020
Hello! Esther from the food team here. Other options are the same quantity of full fat cream cheese or creme fraiche. Alternatively you could add double cream. If not you can just leave it out, it'll still work without it and be delicious! Thanks for your question!
3rd Apr, 2020
I'm going to do it with Philadelphia
Naomi Moir's picture
Naomi Moir
9th May, 2020
If you change your pasta up for casarecce rather than penne and add 1/2 teaspoon of chilli flakes rather than 1/4 & add a little more garlic. When cooking chicken add mixed herbs, salt and pepper generously and your dish will taste like ZIZZI’S ‘casareccia pollo piccante’. It’s my favourite dish from zizzis and I’m so happy to be able to make it at home whilst in lockdown!
29th Apr, 2020
You can substitute the mascarpone for creme works really well...add chopped chorizo before it goes in the oven and season chicken with garlic basil and comes out tasting like pizza..loved by family
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