If you’ve been searching for a quick and easy family-friendly meal, look no further than our Easy Cheesy Chicken Pasta Bake! Made with just 6 ingredients (including our secret weapon, a box of Kraft Spaghetti Classics) and only 20 minutes of active cooking time, this chicken spaghetti is the perfect dinner to make at the end of a long day.

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Why We Love This Recipe

As much as we love from-scratch cooking here at CCLS, between work, helping kids with homework, and carting them to and from various after-school activities, we don’t always have the time, energy, or patience. When that happens, we love turning to some smart store-bought hacks to help us out.

This baked chicken spaghetti casserole is one of our favorites! Made with a Kraft boxed spaghetti kit replete with pasta, parmesan cheese, and spices, our cheater’s recipe for cheesy chicken pasta bake couldn’t be easier to get on the table.

Aside from being deliciously cheesy and refreshingly easy, this baked chicken spaghetti is also:

  • Made With Just 6 Ingredients – When we’re tired and stressed, the thought of grocery shopping is almost too much to bear. Luckily, this ingredient list is short and sweet.
  • Takes Just 20 Minutes of Active Cooking – When your portion is done, just pop it in the oven and let it do all the heavy lifting!
  • Cozy & Comforting – It’s creamy, carby, packed with lean protein, and has a decent amount of veggies. In short, it’s everything we (and our kids) want out of a mid-week dinner.

Ingredients & Substitutions

As promised, you only need 6 (!!!) ingredients to make this cheesy chicken spaghetti recipe. Here’s what to grab:

  • Kraft Spaghetti Classics Tangy Italian – At under $2 a pop, we consider this green box a pantry staple. Once you taste the magnificence of this chicken and spaghetti dinner, you’ll understand why.
  • Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts – Using poached lean white meat keeps the fat and calories of this meal in check. Feel free to swap in boneless skinless chicken thighs or use rotisserie chicken instead.
  • Kraft American Cheese – Salty, melty, and oh-so-creamy, you’ll never convince us that American cheese is anything less than a gee-dang miracle. While we’re partial to Kraft brand, feel free to swap in your favorite.
  • Canned Whole Tomatoes – Of all the canned tomato products, we think whole Roma tomatoes are the most flavorful. As an added bonus, they’re packed in tomato purée, which makes them a twofer. 🤓
  • Green Bell Pepper – For a bit of texture and earthy sweetness. Feel free to swap in slightly spicy poblano peppers if you prefer!
  • Butter – Adding just a little butter makes everything better, don’tcha think?

How To Make Cheesy Chicken Pasta Bake

This spaghetti and chicken casserole comes together with just a few simple steps:

Step 1: Poach Chicken. Place the chicken in a large pot and cover it with water. Cook over medium heat until cooked through. (Keep the cooking water in the pot for the pasta.) Cube or shred chicken (depending on your textural preference).

Step 2: Boil Noodles in the leftover chicken water.

Step 3: Baking Prep. Preheat the oven and lightly grease a 13×9-inch baking dish. Create 3 stacks of cheese (4 slices each stack) and cube cheese. Put 4 slices of cheese to the slide.

Step 4: Mix the boiled, drained noodles, chicken, and cubed cheese in the pot.

Step 5: Sauté the chopped bell pepper in butter over medium heat, cooking for 3 minutes. Add the entire can of whole tomatoes (do not drain) and crush the tomatoes in the saucepan with the bell pepper.

Step 6: Finish Sauce. Add the seasoning mix and parmesan cheese from the Kraft box and 1 cup of water to the tomato-pepper sauce. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes.

Step 7: Assemble. Add the chicken, noodles, and cheese mixture to the prepared baking dish and pour the sauce over. Stack the remaining 4 slices of cheese and slice them into 4 strips to create 16 strips of cheese. Place the 16 strips of cheese on top of the mixture in the baking dish.

Step 8: Bake for 35 minutes at 350°F. Enjoy!

Optional Variations

As much as we love this chicken and pasta bake recipe just the way it is written, there’s room for you to adjust the ingredients to fit your dietary needs and preferences. Here are a few variations to consider:

  • Dairy-Free – Swap in your favorite dairy-free American-style cheese slices (e.g. Daiya, Follow Your Heart, or SoDelicious) and use vegan butter.
  • Spicy Chicken Pasta – Use poblano peppers instead of green bell peppers, add a few shakes of crushed red pepper flakes to the tomato sauce, and use the pepper jack flavor of Kraft singles for an added kick.
  • Add-Ins – Feel free to up the veggie ante by adding in steamed broccoli, cauliflower, or peas. You can also add some smoky, salty goodness with bacon bits.

Expert Tips

When making chicken spaghetti, here are some expert tips to consider:

  • Before cooking the chicken, season it well with salt, pepper, and any other desired spices or herbs. This helps to enhance the flavor of the chicken and adds depth to the overall dish.
  • Consider making a homemade sauce rather than using store-bought. Homemade sauces tend to have a fresher taste and allow you to control the flavors and ingredients. You can use a combination of canned tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, and seasonings to create a rich and flavorful sauce.
  • Sautéing the vegetables, such as onions, bell peppers, and garlic, before adding them to the dish can add extra depth of flavor. Sautéing helps to soften and release the flavors of the vegetables, enhancing the overall taste of the chicken spaghetti.
  • When cooking the pasta, aim for al dente, which means it should still have a slight firmness when bitten. This prevents the pasta from becoming too soft and mushy when combined with the sauce and baked. Undercooking the pasta slightly also helps it to hold its shape and texture better during baking.
  • Layering cheese throughout the chicken spaghetti adds a delicious melty and gooey texture. Consider adding cheese both in the sauce and as a topping for each layer. This allows the cheese to distribute evenly and create a cheesy, flavorful dish.
  • Avoid overbaking the chicken spaghetti to prevent it from drying out. Bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly, and the dish is heated through. Keep an eye on it to ensure the cheese doesn’t burn or become too crispy.
  • Allow the chicken spaghetti to rest for a few minutes before serving. This helps the dish to settle and allows the flavors to meld together. It also makes it easier to portion and serve without the dish being too hot.

By following these expert tips, you can create a flavorful and satisfying cheesy chicken pasta bake that is sure to impress. Enjoy!


Do you boil pasta before pasta bake?

It all depends on the pasta bake recipe. Here, we do boil the noodles first before mixing in the chicken, cheese, and tomato sauce and baking it. For other recipes, like lasagna made with oven-ready noodles, you don’t need the boiling step.

Can you prep a pasta bake the day before?

Sure thing! Simply assemble the casserole and top it with the sliced American cheese, cover it tightly with plastic wrap or foil, and pop it in the fridge. It should be fine for up to 2 days without baking. Any leftovers can then be refrigerated for up to 5 days.

Can you put an egg in a pasta bake?

While that’s not our normal M.O., there’s no reason you couldn’t add some eggs to the mix for extra protein. About 10 minutes before the casserole is done baking, pull it out of the oven and make 8 divots with the back of a spoon. Crack an egg into each hole, sprinkle them with a touch of salt and pepper, then return to the oven to bake until the whites are set and the yolks are jammy.

More Pasta/Chicken/Easy Dinner Recipes

If y’all tried our Easy Chicken Spaghetti Recipe, holler and let us know how it turned out for you by giving us a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating and commenting below. You can also always feel free to tag us (@creamcheeseandlemonsqueeze) in your social media posts so we can cheer you on.

Alright, y’all. Thanks so much for stopping by! For even more down-home coastie cooking inspiration, be sure to follow us on Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, and TikTok. You can also get all of our newest content delivered straight to your inbox by signing up for our weekly newsletter. We can’t wait to see you again soon!


Anna & Ashley

Chicken Spaghetti

Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 362kcal


  • 1 box Kraft Spaghetti Classics Tangy Italian Spaghetti, Spices, & Parmesan Cheese Meal Mix, 8 oz Box
  • 28 oz Rotel tomatoes 1 can
  • 3 boneless chicken breasts
  • 16 slices Kraft American Cheese
  • 1 green bell pepper sliced
  • 2 tbsp butter


  • Place the chicken in a large pot and cover with water. Cook over medium heat until cooked through. (Keep water in pot for next step.)
  • Cube or shred chicken (depending on preference) & cook noodles in chicken water.
  • Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 13×9-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Create 3 stacks of cheese (4 slices each stack) and cube cheese. Put 4 slices of cheese to the slide.
  • Once noodles are done: combine noodles, chicken, and cubed cheese in pot.
  • In a medium saucepan, melt butter and saute chopped bell pepper over medium heat – 3 minutes
  • Add entire can of whole tomatoes (do not drain) and crush tomatoes in saucepan.
  • Add seasoning mix and parmesan cheese Kraft box, and 1 cup of water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Add the chicken, noodles, and cheese mixture to the prepared banking dish and pour sauce over.
  • Stack the remaining 4 slices of cheese and slice into 4 strips (will create 16 strips of cheese).
  • Place the 16 strips of cheese on top of the mixture in the banking dish.
  • Bake for 35 minutes at 350°F


Calories: 362kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 77mg | Sodium: 753mg | Potassium: 239mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 576IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 452mg | Iron: 1mg

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