Chicken and Pasta in Cheddar Sauce

Baked pasta dishes are easy to make and versatile. This recipe uses long, tubular noodles called bucatini but feel free to use your favorite pasta shape or noodle.

Serves: 6Hands-on: 25 minutesTotal: 1 hour 10 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 6


  • 6 quarts water
  • 1 Tbsp. salt
  • 1 package (16 oz.) bucatini
  • 3 lbs. cooked chicken breast, cubed
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 medium zucchini, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1⁄2-inch slices
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese


  • Set the oven to 350˚F. Grease a large baking dish with 1 Tbsp. olive oil.
  • In a large stockpot bring water to boil. Add 1 tablespoon of salt and stir. Add pasta and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 7 minutes. Reserve 1⁄4 cup of cooking water and drain well. Transfer pasta to a large bowl and toss pasta with 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
  • In large skillet over medium heat, heat olive oil. Add onion; cook, stirring often, for 7 minutes or until translucent. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add zucchini, 1⁄2 teaspoon salt, 1⁄8 teaspoon black pepper and cook, stirring often for 5 minutes, or until tender. Stir in cooked chicken, reserved pasta water, and basil. Cook for 5 more minutes.
  • Transfer to bowl with pasta and toss well. Pour into prepared baking dish and top with cheese. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until cheese is melted and begins to brown around the edges.