This Chicken and Sundried Tomato Pasta Bake is hearty, full of flavor, and a dinner that everyone will love. It’s made with a creamy sundried tomato Alfredo sauce that is mixed with cooked pasta, juicy chicken, and pesto, all baked under a thick layer of mozzarella cheese.
Sundried Tomato Chicken Pasta Bake
This easy Sun-Dried Tomato Chicken Pasta Bake is a delicious family favorite that is the perfect dinner any night of the week. It’s filled with big chunks of juicy chicken, a creamy sun-dried tomato Alfredo sauce and plenty of cheese.
My family loved this chicken pesto pasta with sun-dried tomatoes blended right into the chicken broth. However, if you like your sauce a little chunky, chop them up and fold them in instead. Or, replace them entirely with sauteed mushrooms, broccoli or bell peppers.
Try using just about any kind of pasta that you want, and feel free to mix and match different types of sauces to create unlimited variations. If baked pasta recipes are your jam, we think you'll also love this Chicken Spaghetti.
Chicken Tomato Pasta Bake Ingredients
Sun Dried Tomato Alfredo Sauce
- Chicken Broth - any kind of chicken broth will work great.
- Sun Dried Tomatoes - you can use either the jarred kind or dried that come in a zipped pouch. If you do use the zipped pouch kind, just soak them in warm water for a few minutes before using. Also, if you don’t mind your sauce being a little chunky, you can mince them and fold into the sauce instead of blending with the chicken broth.
- Cream - heavy whipping cream makes the creamiest Alfredo sauce.
- Parmesan Cheese - you can use either shredded or grated Parmesan cheese.
- Garlic Salt - if you don’t have garlic salt, you can mix together equal parts of garlic powder and salt.
- Nutmeg - this is a traditional spice in Alfredo sauce that intensifies all of the flavors.
- Pepper - freshly ground black pepper tastes best.
Chicken and Tomato Pasta Bake
- Pasta - you can use just about any type of bite-sized pasta that you can think of. Most often, I use casarecce, gemelli, fusilli, mini bow ties, penne pasta, rigatoni, ziti or mostaccioli.
- Avocado Oil - you can also substitute olive oil.
- Chicken Breast - boneless, skinless chicken breast works great for this recipe, as do chicken thighs or chicken tenders. You can also use rotisserie chicken or leftover cooked chicken to save a bit of time.
- Garlic - fresh garlic tastes best, but the jarred stuff will work in a pinch.
- Salt and Pepper
- Pesto - if you are feeling ambitious, you can make your own Homemade Pesto. Or, you can buy pre-made pesto that usually stays fresh for a long time and still has great flavor. I like the kind from Trader Joe’s and Costco best.
- Mozzarella Cheese - you can shred your own or buy pre shredded cheese.
- Parmesan Cheese - either grated or shredded Parmesan cheese works great.
How to Make Sun Dried Tomato Chicken Bake
- Make the Alfredo sauce. Blend the chicken broth and sun-dried tomatoes until smooth then set aside. Heat a large saucepan over medium high heat. Boil the cream, reduce to a simmer and simmer for 1 ½ minutes until reduced slightly. Reduce to medium heat, then add the sun-dried tomato mixture, Parmesan cheese, garlic salt, nutmeg, and pepper. Return to a simmer, stirring constantly for 1-2 minutes or until the alfredo thickens. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- Cook the pasta. Cook noodles in boiling salted water until al dente, according to the package directions.
- Cook the chicken. Meanwhile, heat a large saucepan or dutch oven over medium high heat and add the avocado oil. Once shimmering, add the diced chicken and saute until the chicken is cooked and golden. Next, add the minced garlic and saute for 1-2 minutes or until the garlic is translucent. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and set aside remove from the heat.
- Combine pasta mixture. Once the pasta has finished cooking, drain and add cooked pasta to the chicken mixture along with the Alfredo sauce, stirring to combine. Fold in 1 ½ cups of the mozzarella cheese, then transfer to a 9" by 13" baking dish.
- Top with pesto and cheese. Drizzle the pesto sauce over the mixture, then sprinkle the top with the remaining 1 cup mozzarella cheese and the Parmesan cheese.
- Bake. Bake in a preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and golden.
- Serve. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly before serving warm. Enjoy!
Recipe Variations for Sundried Tomato Chicken Pasta Bake
Enjoy your sun dried tomato chicken pasta bake with a twist! Feel free to mix and match ingredients and flavors according to your personal preference.
- Add vegetables: To add more flavor and nutrients to your sun dried tomato chicken pasta bake, consider adding some vegetables. Chopped bell peppers, zucchini, or mushrooms can be sautéed and mixed in with the chicken and pasta before baking.
- Add more cheese: If you're a fan of cheese, experiment with different types for your pasta bake. Mozzarella, cheddar, or Parmesan can be used alone or in combination to add a cheesy goodness to your dish. You can also try using flavored cheeses like smoked Gouda or herbed goat cheese to give your pasta bake a unique twist.
- Make it spicy: For those who prefer a little heat, spice up your sun dried tomato chicken pasta bake with some red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, or hot sauce.
- Fresh Herbs: Add a burst of freshness to your pasta bake by incorporating fresh herbs. Basil, parsley, or oregano can be finely chopped and sprinkled on top of the dish before baking. This will not only enhance the fragrance but also add a pop of color to the final presentation.
- Grains and Legumes: For a heartier and more filling pasta bake, consider adding some grains or legumes. Quinoa, couscous, or lentils can be cooked separately and then mixed in with the chicken and pasta before baking. This will not only add texture but also make the dish more substantial and nutritious.
- Add seafood: Try swapping the chicken for shrimp or salmon. Simply cook the seafood separately and mix it in with the pasta and sauce before baking.
- Gluten-Free Option: Try using gluten-free pasta or substitute pasta altogether. Instead, try using spiralized zucchini noodles or cauliflower rice as a low-carb alternative. Just make sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly to avoid overcooking the vegetables.
Frequently Asked Questions
Absolutely! You can substitute about 1 ½ jars of any kind of jarred Alfredo sauce or pasta sauce. This will save you a bit of time and still taste delicious.
I like to use pasta shapes like casarecce, gemelli, fusilli, penne, rigatoni, ziti, and mostaccioli that are large enough to hold up well while baking, but still bite-sized. They also collect all of the yummy sauce, chicken and cheese inside.
Sure! If you want to save a little time by using a rotisserie chicken, or use up some leftover chicken that you have lying around, all you’ll need to do is saute the garlic first, then toss in the cooked chicken, and season with salt and pepper.
You sure can. Since it does tend to be a little dry after being frozen and reheated, I like to add about ⅓ more Alfredo sauce if I know ahead of time that I will be freezing it. Just make sure to cool completely, wrap in plastic and aluminum foil and store frozen for up to 2 months.
Once you are ready to eat it, transfer to the fridge to thaw overnight. The next day, pull the pan out to room temperature while you preheat an oven to 350 degrees. Heat, covered with aluminum foil, until warmed through or about 20-30 minutes.
Storing and Reheating
- Refrigerator: store leftovers covered in the fridge for up to 3 days.
- Freezer: cool completely, wrap in plastic wrap and aluminum foil and store frozen for up to 2 months.
- To reheat: pull your casserole dish from the fridge to room temperature while you preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Cover the pasta bake with aluminum foil and reheat for about 15-20 minutes, or until warmed through.
- Make-ahead: you can make the entire recipe up until baking. Instead, cover with foil and store in the fridge overnight. Bake the next day as directed.
Sun-Dried Tomato Chicken Pasta Bake
Sun-Dried Tomato Alfredo Sauce
- 1 ½ cups Chicken Broth
- 2 Tablespoons Sun-Dried Tomatoes roughly chopped
- 2 cups Heavy Cream
- 2 cups Parmesan Cheese grated
- ½ teaspoon Garlic Salt
- ¼ teaspoon Nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon Pepper
Chicken Pasta Bake
- 1 lb Pasta
- 2 Tablespoons Avocado Oil
- 1 ½ lbs Chicken Breast cut into ½" dice
- 2 Tablespoons Garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- ¼ teaspoon Pepper
- ¼ cup Pesto homemade pesto or store bought
- 2 ½ cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese divided
- ¼ cup Parmesan Cheese grated
For the Sun-Dried Tomato Alfredo Sauce
- In a blender, add the chicken broth and sun-dried tomatoes. Blend until smooth, then set aside.
- Heat a large saucepan over medium high heat. Add the cream, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and simmer for 1 ½ minutes until reduced slightly.
- Reduce to medium heat, then add the sun-dried tomato mixture to the cream and add the Parmesan cheese, garlic salt, nutmeg, and the pepper.
- Bring the mixture back up to a simmer, stirring constantly for 1-2 minutes or until the alfredo thickens. Remove from the heat and set aside.
For the Chicken Pasta Bake
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Cook noodles in boiling salted water until al dente, according to the package directions.
- Meanwhile, heat a large saucepan or dutch oven over medium high heat and add the avocado oil. Once shimmering, add the diced chicken and saute until cooked through and golden. Next, add the minced garlic and saute for 1-2 minutes or until the garlic is translucent. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and set aside remove from the heat.
- Once the pasta has finished cooking, drain and add to the chicken mixture along with the Alfredo sauce, stirring to combine. Fold in 1 ½ cups of the mozzarella cheese, then transfer to a 9" by 13" baking dish.
- Drizzle the pesto sauce over the mixture, then sprinkle the top with the remaining 1 cup mozzarella cheese and the Parmesan cheese.
- Bake in a preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and golden.
- Remove from the oven and let cool slightly before serving warm. Enjoy!
More of the Best Pasta Dinners to Try
- Penne Pasta With Italian Meatballs
- Baked Mac & Cheese
- Feta Cheese Pasta
- Chicken Alfredo Pasta
- Lemon Ricotta Pasta
- Slow Cooker Tortellini Pasta Bake
- Ground Beef Pasta Bake
- Chicken Pesto Pasta
- 4 Cheese Stuffed Pasta Bake
- Chicken and Cheese Stuffed Pasta Shells
- More Pasta Recipes
- More Dinner Ideas
This Chicken Pesto Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomatoes is a delicious family favorite that's perfect for any night of the week. It's full of juicy chicken, creamy sun-dried tomato Alfredo sauce, pesto and plenty of cheese.