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Baked Ziti with Chicken

close up shot of a plate of chicken baked ziti garnished with basil
This baked ziti with chicken recipe is an easy to put together pasta casserole that the whole family can enjoy!
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian
Servings 10
Calories 375 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 16 ounces ziti noodles
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound chicken breasts, trimmed and cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 28 ounces of your favorite pasta sauce, or make your own
  • 0.5 ounces fresh basil, chopped (about ⅓ cup)
  • 1 cup grated parmesan, divided into two ½-cup portions
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella, divided into two 1-cup portions

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350°F and prepare 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray.
  • Cook pasta to al dente, drain well and return to pan.
  • Generously season chicken with salt and pepper.
  • Heat olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook until the chicken is no longer pink in the middle.
  • When the chicken is done, add two cloves of minced garlic to the skillet and cook another minute, until the garlic is fragrant.
  • Stir the sauce, chicken, and basil into your pasta, making sure everything is evenly coated.
  • Pour half of your pasta mixture into the baking dish. Top with ½ cup of parmesan and 1 cup of mozzarella. Pour the remaining pasta on top.
  • Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes. Uncover, top with ½ cup parmesan and 1 cup mozzarella, and bake, uncovered, for 8 minutes.
  • Top with additional chopped basil, if desired.

Notes

  • Don’t forget to add salt to the water. It adds flavor to the pasta while cooking.
  • Al dente is the ideal consistency for pasta. The pasta will be tender and will still have a slightly firm texture when you bite into it.
  • If you want to brown your cheese slightly, you can turn your broiler on for the last minute of melting the cheese. Make sure to keep a close eye on it so it doesn’t burn.

Nutrition

Calories: 375kcalCarbohydrates: 42gProtein: 26gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 56mgSodium: 780mgPotassium: 589mgFiber: 3gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 832IUVitamin C: 7mgCalcium: 256mgIron: 2mg