When it comes to food, nothing says “home” to me more than a casserole does, and this creamy chicken pasta broccoli casserole is absolute feel-good magic to me.
Casseroles are the best thing ever created. What I really love is that they’re so easy to put together, and they’re very forgiving when you make changes and substitutions.
Ingredients for Creamy Chicken Pasta Broccoli Casserole recipe
For exact amounts and recipe instructions, scroll down to the printable recipe card.
- mini shell pasta
- frozen mini broccoli florets thawed
- canned chicken or cut-upleftover cooked chicken
- condensed cream of chicken & herb soup
- shredded Mexican cheese divided
- herb-seasoned bread crumbs
- cooked bacon crumbled
- poultry seasoning
- salt and pepper to taste
How to make chicken and broccoli pasta
Cook the pasta according to package directions. Rinse and drain. Add the broccoli and chicken to a 9 x 13-inch casserole dish or a 2 1/2 to 3-quart oval casserole dish.
In the meantime, mix together the milk and soup in a large saucepan over medium-low heat and bring to a gentle boil, stirring frequently so it doesn’t scald. Add butter and stir until it melts. Remove from the heat and stir in bread crumbs, poultry seasoning, bacon crumbles and half of the cheese.
Pour the soup mixture over the broccoli and chicken and mix well.
Mix in the cooked pasta. Cover and bake for about 40 minutes.
Add remaining cheese and bake, uncovered for another 5 minutes or until cheese gets melty.
Questions you may have about chicken broccoli cheese pasta
Do I have to thaw the broccoli first? What if I’m in a hurry and it’s still frozen?
It’s best if it’s thawed (or at least partially thawed) because it will affect the temperature of the casserole and it won’t be piping hot when you serve it. So, you’ll need to up the cooking time to give the frozen broccoli a chance to come to temperature along with everything else. I’m not saying you can’t do it… just increase the cooking time to account for it.
Can I cook the broccoli first?
You sure can. That’s the beauty of microwave steamable veggies, right? In that case, you can cut the casserole’s cooking time down to 30 minutes before adding the cheese.
Do I have to use mini shell pasta?
Nope. I just like it because the shells are good sauce grabbers and they’re fun to eat!
Can I use another kind of cheese?
Yep. I use Mexican cheese in a ton of my casserole recipes but you could use any Cheddar variety, Swiss or even Pepper Jack, if you like a little kick.
Can I substitute another protein for the chicken?
This would be delicious with turkey or even ground turkey.
Do I have to use real bacon?
There’s no substitute for real bacon in my opinion and I always have frozen cooked bacon in my freezer for recipes like this. But, you could use the real bacon pieces that come in a jar too. I’ve used those many times with success.
Pyrex Basics 3 Quart Oblong Glass Baking Dish, Clear 9 x 13 inch (Set of 2)CorningWare French White 2.5-quart Oval Casserole with Glass LidHormel, Real Bacon Toppings, 2.8oz Bottle (Pack of 3) (Pieces)
Creamy Chicken Pasta Broccoli Casserole
- 12 oz mini shell pasta
- 2 cups frozen mini broccoli florets thawed
- 1 10 oz can premium white chicken or cook and cut up a chicken breast
- 1 10.5 oz can condensed cream of chicken & herb soup
- 1 cup milk
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup shredded Mexican cheese divided
- ⅓ cup herb seasoned bread crumbs
- 2 tablespoons bacon crumbled
- 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Cook pasta according to directions, rinse in cold water and drain. Add to casserole dish along with chicken and broccoli florets. Mix well.
- On stovetop, gently heat cream of chicken soup and 1 cup milk to a soft boil. Add butter, stirring as it melts. Remove from heat. Stir in poultry seasoning, bread crumbs, bacon and ½ cup of the cheese. Pour over pasta mixture in casserole dish. Cover and bake 40 minutes. Sprinkle remaining cheese over the top and bake, uncovered for 5 minutes or until cheese melts.