Buffalo Chicken Pasta Casserole is an easy chicken dinner packed with cream cheese, buffalo sauce and cheese. Just like buffalo chicken dip, once you start eating, it’s hard to stop!
Table of Contents
Why This Recipe is Best
When you’re looking for a simple family dinner, pasta is usually a crowd pleaser. But if you’re tired of the same old spaghetti sauce based dishes, try something new!
- Can be assembled ahead of time
- Add more or less spice depending on your palate
- Cheesy and flavorful, it’s sure to be a hit!
- Pasta – I love using penne pasta here, but bowtie or another shape would work well, too.
- Cream Cheese – I recommend a full-fat cream cheese for the best, richest flavor in this recipe. Also, the bricks of cream cheese melt in better for the sauce than a tub.
- Buffalo Sauce – We use and love Frank’s Red Hot Wing Sauce.
- Chicken – Your chicken needs to be already COOKED for this recipe, so please plan accordingly. You can make our shredded chicken in the instant pot or boil some chicken ahead of time. Or use a rotisserie chicken from the store or this leftover roasted chicken.
- Dressing – You can top your pasta casserole with Ranch or a blue cheese dressing. It’s optional, but adds a special oomph.
STEP 1: Cook Pasta. Choose your favorite kind of pasta noodle and cook according to package directions. I prefer penne or bowtie pasta, but pick what your family loves!
STEP 2: Make Sauce. While pasta is cooking, heat cream cheese, buffalo sauce and chicken broth in a large skillet. Simmer over medium heat, stirring constantly until cream cheese is melted. Add in garlic powder and salt, whisking until smooth.
STEP 3: Add Chicken. Add 1 pound of COOKED, shredded chicken to the buffalo sauce and stir until well coated.
STEP 4: Add Pasta and Cheese. Remove from heat and add warm cooked pasta. Stir in the shredded mozzarella cheese and shredded cheddar cheese. If needed, heat for a few minutes until cheese is melted and bubbly.
STEP 5: Eat and Enjoy. Top with blue cheese or ranch dressing and dig in!
Tips and Tricks
- Use your favorite pasta shape for this casserole, but choose one that has some ridges to help the sauce cling to the pasta. Penne and bowtie are my favorites for this dish. Medium shells or rigatoni would work well too.
- Add extra cheese when serving, if desired. The mozzarella and cheddar get stirred into the casserole, but you could also sprinkle some extra on the top for a cheesy layer.
- Serving suggestions: My family loves having a salad or side dish along with the pasta. A simple mandarin salad is also a delicious green side! This applesauce recipe is a great palate cooler if the pasta is too spicy for you. And a slice of this Beer Bread goes with any dinner.
Yes! Follow the recipe and assemble the whole dish, then cover with foil and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Then when ready to enjoy, bake at 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes, remove the foil and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes or until the casserole is fully warmed through. Drizzle with extra buffalo sauce and serve!
Leftover buffalo chicken pasta, once cooled, can be stored in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days. Reheat individual portions in the microwave until nice and hot. Makes a great lunch later in the week!
Yes, this freezes well! Once you’ve assembled the pasta, place it in a freezer-safe casserole dish, cover with foil and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator then bake at 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes, or until warmed through.
More Buffalo Chicken Recipes
More Easy Dinner Recipes
Buffalo Chicken Pasta
- 1 pound Penne Pasta
- 1 package Cream Cheese 8 ounce
- ½ cup Buffalo Sauce Frank’s Red Hot Wing Sauce
- 1 cup Chicken Broth
- 1 teaspoon galric powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 pound Chicken breast or thigh, cooked and shredded
- 1 cup Mozzarella Cheese shredded
- 1 cup Cheddar Cheese shredded
- ¼ cup Ranch or Blue Cheese Dressing optional
- Cook pasta according to package directions. While pasta is cooking, make sauce.
- For the sauce, in a large skillet, add cream cheese, buffalo sauce and chicken broth. Simmer over medium heat, stirring constantly until cream cheese is melted and smooth.
- Add in garlic powder and salt and whisk until smooth.
- Add cooked chicken and stir until blended.
- Fold in cooked pasta and shredded cheeses. Remove from heat and serve warm.
- Top with a drizzle of ranch dressing or blue cheese dressing, if desired.
- Once you’ve assembled the buffalo chicken pasta in a freezer safe casserole dish, cover with foil and freeze for up to 3 months.
- Thaw in refrigerator overnight, then bake 350 degrees for about 30 minutes.
Buffalo Chicken Pasta is an easy, 30 minute meal recipe idea. Serve with blue cheese dressing!