This chicken parmesan pasta bake has the same traditional flavors, except it’s so much easier to make, and it’s ready in 35 minutes! The pasta mixture is topped with a layer of cheese, followed by toasted panko breadcrumbs making it the perfect comfort food.
When it comes to easy weeknight meals, I love making a good pasta dish! Especially when it’s a simplified version of one of our favorites! To keep this easy, we use store-bought sauce, but if you have a little extra time, I encourage you to try my homemade marinara!
Serve this Italian dish with a simple salad (Olive Garden copycat) or a side of roasted veggies. For those who can’t turn down a good appetizer, go with these easy fried raviolis or fresh garlic knots. End the night with a sinfully good Italian hot chocolate or the best homemade cannoli.
Why You’ll Love Easy Chicken Parm Pasta
- A nice twist on a traditional Italian meal.
- Quick and easy to make.
- Can be whipped up ahead of time.
- Leftovers reheat well and taste delicious!
What Ingredients do I Need Chicken Parm Pasta Bake?
- rotini pasta – ziti and penne pasta will work as well.
- marinara sauce
- Italian seasoning
- cooked chicken – can also use rotisserie chicken
- mozzarella cheese
- parmesan or romano cheese
- salted butter
- panko bread crumbs
- fresh basil
Pro Tip: Don’t over-boil the pasta. Instead, cook until the noodles are al-dente. They will continue to cook as the casserole bakes.
How to Make Chicken Parmesan Pasta Bake
PREP: Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water following the package directions and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Drain the pasta and return back to the pot. Add the marinara sauce, seasoning, bite-sized pieces of chicken, and the cheese. Stir to combine.
ASSEMBLE: Pour into a 9×13 baking dish and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Mix together the melted butter with the breadcrumbs and cover the pasta bake.
BAKE: Cover and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 3-5 minutes to toast the breadcrumbs.
GARNISH AND SERVE: Sprinkle fresh basil on top and serve!
- To make this dish ahead of time, follow the instructions for assembly then cover and refrigerate. When you are ready to cook, baking time will need to increase to 45 – 60 minutes.
- For a saucier casserole, add an additional ½-1 jar of marinara sauce OR add a can of drained tomatoes.
- This recipe calls for a ½ box of pasta. If you decide to go with a full box, you will also need to double the sauce, chicken, and cheese.
- Add more flavor to the breadcrumb topping by using black pepper, red pepper flakes, parmesan cheese, or additional Italian seasoning.
In Italy, chicken parmesan is known as Pollo alla parmigiana.
Substitutions and Variations
- Tomato sauce can be swapped for the marinara. You may need to add more seasonings.
- Some like to use Italian sausage in place of chicken to try something different!
- For a more traditional chicken filet, use chopped breaded chicken tenders.
Keep leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days or in the freezer for 2 months.
Nothing! Both of these terms refer to the exact same recipe just different names!
Chicken Parmesan Pasta Bake
- 8 oz. rotini pasta
- 24 oz. jar marinara sauce
- 1 teaspoon italian seasoning
- 2 cups diced cooked chicken (chicken breast or rotisserie)
- 2 cups grated mozzarella cheese, divided
- 1 cup grated parmesan or romano cheese, divided
- 4 tablespoons salted butter melted
- ¾ cup panko bread crumbs
- 2-3 tablespoons freshly chopped basil
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Cook pasta in a pot of salted water according to package instructions. Drain pasta and return to pot.
- Add marinara sauce, Italian seasoning, chicken, 1 cup of mozzarella, and ½ cup parmesan.
- Stir mixture together then transfer into a 9×13 casserole dish.
- Top with remaining cheeses (1 cup mozzarella and ½ cup parmesan).
- In a small bowl, mix together melted butter and bread crumbs. Sprinkle bread crumb mixture over the top of the cheese in the casserole dish.
- Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes.
- Remove from the aluminum foil and broil for 3-5 minutes longer, to toast the breadcrumbs.
- Remove from the oven and top with freshly chopped basil.