Pantry Chicken Casserole Recipe

"Using pantry items plus a couple of fresh items, you can create a cheesy, comforting casserole your whole family will love. Though it does include RO*TEL® and a can of mild green chile peppers, it’s not spicy, but if you like the heat, choose hot RO*TEL® and peppers. This pantry chicken casserole reheats well, too, but I had to hide it, or there would have been no night #2! A crusty bread and a green salad complete this easy pantry meal."


  • Adjust
  • US
  • Metric
  • cooking spray
  • 1 (16 ounce) package penne pasta
  • 4 tablespoons salted butter
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper – stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped
  • 1 (8 ounce) package sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 (8 ounce) packages processed cheese food (such as Velveeta®), cubed
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes and green chiles (such as RO*TEL®), undrained
  • 1 (4 ounce) can mild chopped green chile peppers
  • 4 cups cooked chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • Directions

  • Prep
  • Cook
  • Ready In
    1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Spray a large casserole dish with cooking spray.
    2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add penne and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender yet firm to the bite, about 11 minutes. Drain.
    3. While the pasta is cooking, melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook until they release their liquid, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, about 1 minute.
    4. Stir in processed cheese food, diced tomatoes and juice, diced tomatoes and green chiles with juice, and mild chile peppers. Cook and stir until cheese has melted, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in cooked pasta and chicken. Pour into the prepared baking dish.
    5. Bake in the preheated oven until heated through, about 20 minutes. Serve warm.


    • Cook’s Notes:
    • You may substitute margarine for butter, any shelf-stable processed cheese food for Velveeta®, and two 12 1/2-ounce cans cooked, flaked chicken for leftover chicken.
    • You can use two 4-ounce cans sliced mushrooms instead of fresh mushrooms–just add them when you add the tomatoes.

    Nutrition Facts

    Per Serving: 502 calories;24.1 g fat;42 g carbohydrates;29.7 g protein;92 mg cholesterol;949 mg sodium.Full nutrition
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