You’ll love how delicious this buffalo chicken pasta bake recipe is! Not only is it incredibly easy to make, and made with simple ingredients, but this buffalo chicken pasta recipe is a satisfying and hearty one-dish meal. (Add some haricots verts or air fryer broccoli on the side for some greens!) Think buffalo chicken dip meets baked mac and cheese. YUM.
It’s no surprise that I love ALL THINGS BUFFALO! Whether it’s air fryer buffalo cauliflower bites, buffalo chicken flatbread, crispy buffalo chicken salad, buffalo chicken sliders…I love it all. The star of most of these recipes? Super simple slow cooker buffalo chicken. Make this easy base and then you can turn it into so many different meals or game day snacks. It’s an awesome way to maximize your time in the kitchen.
Estimated reading time: 8 minutes
Table of Contents
- What You’ll Love About Buffalo Chicken Pasta Recipe
- Buffalo Chicken Pasta Ingredients
- How to Make Buffalo Chicken Pasta Bake
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Storage Instructions
- How to Serve Buffalo Pasta Bake to the Whole Family
- What to Serve with Buffalo Chicken Pasta
- More Buffalo Chicken Recipes
- Helpful Tools to Make Chicken Buffalo Pasta Bake
What You’ll Love About Buffalo Chicken Pasta Recipe
- Cheesy buffalo chicken flavors
- Satisfying and hearty dinner
- Easy to make
- Just 15 minutes prep time
- Made with simple ingredients
- Great cook once, eat twice meal
- Tasty option for family dinners
Buffalo Chicken Pasta Ingredients
This cheesy buffalo chicken pasta bake is made with simple ingredients:
- Pasta – Look for corkscrew-shaped pasta like rotini or fusilli.
- Buffalo Chicken – I always use my crockpot pulled buffalo chicken, but you can also easily make your own by mixing shredded chicken with a bit of buffalo sauce.
- Cheese – We are using shredded mozzarella cheese and shredded cheddar cheese. You can shred your own, or buy it already shredded for convenience.
- Butter – Use unsalted butter, this is to make our roux, which will help thicken our cheese sauce.
- Flour – Use all-purpose flour, this is also for the roux, which helps to thicken the cheese sauce.
- Milk – Use whole milk or whatever you have at home.
- Buffalo Sauce – This is really added to taste, so you can add more or less depending on preference. You can also serve it on the side so everyone can add their own.
- Panko Bread Crumbs – These give the buffalo chicken pasta casserole a crunchy topping.
- Green Onions – These are optional, but add a nice touch of color and a delicious garnish to the top of the pasta with buffalo chicken.
How to Make Buffalo Chicken Pasta Bake
Let’s make this buffalo chicken pasta bake recipe! Full directions can be found below in the recipe card, but here’s an overview:
- Cook pasta. Boil pasta according to package directions to al dente, but take it out a minute or two early and drain so the pasta doesn’t get mushy.
- Make creamy sauce. Melt butter in a dutch oven or large pot over medium heat until it foams. Sprinkle in flour and whisk immediately until a smooth paste (roux) forms. Pour in milk, whisking constantly.
- Cook sauce. Cook cream sauce, whisking occasionally, until mixture combines together and thickens slightly.
- Add cheese. Stir in shredded cheese 1 cup at a time and whisk until it melts into sauce completely.
- Assemble buffalo chicken pasta. Stir pasta and buffalo chicken into cheese sauce and transfer to a baking or casserole dish that’s been sprayed with cooking spray or olive oil spritzer. Drizzle with buffalo sauce and sprinkle with panko.
- Bake pasta. Bake for 15-25 minutes, until it’s bubbly and golden brown.
TIP: If you want to brown up the panko bread crumbs a bit, carefully broil for a minute or two.
- Garnish pasta. Sprinkle with sliced green onions, extra buffalo sauce, and ranch dressing if desired.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you use a different buffalo chicken?
Yes, if you don’t have the slow cooker buffalo chicken, you have a few other options:
- Shredded chicken – Use pre-made shredded chicken, rotisserie chickens, or store-bought shredded chicken to make it easy. Drizzle with some hot wing sauce before adding to pasta.
- Diced chicken breast – You can use any cooked chicken breast, just dice it and drizzle with buffalo wing sauce before adding to pasta.
Can you make this gluten free?
Yes, you can make this gluten free, but you’ll need to make a few swaps:
- Pasta – Use your favorite gluten-free pasta. Be sure to not over-cook it as sometimes gluten-free pasta is more prone to getting mushy.
- Flour – You’ll need to use a gluten-free flour that acts like all-purpose flour (so not almond flour). I haven’t tested it, but King Arthur Gluten-Free Multipurpose flour has gotten good reviews for thickening gravy so it should work.
- Panko bread crumbs – Use gluten-free breadcrumbs or use your favorite gluten-free crackers that are ground up.
Do I have to make the roux?
Some baked pastas have a sauce made out of cream cheese, but the roux gives a smooth and creamy texture and takes just a few minutes. Don’t skip it!
Store leftover buffalo chicken and pasta casserole in the fridge for 3-4 days.
How to reheat
Reheat leftovers in a 350 degree F oven or in the microwave until hot.
Can you freeze buffalo chicken pasta?
Yes, you can freeze the pasta. I would say it’s best fresh though, the texture may change a bit during thawing and reheating, but it will still taste good! Be sure to thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.
How to Serve Buffalo Pasta Bake to the Whole Family
I get it, feeding kids can be tough! But following the Division of Responsibility and knowing your job and your child’s job makes it SO much more enjoyable. You’ll be able to feed your kids any meal, which will help ensure that they are eating a variety of nutritious foods – with plenty of play food sprinkled in. 😉
This is designed to be very mild and not super spicy so that it works for the whole family. I like to serve extra buffalo sauce on the side so that those of you who want more spice can easily add it, and if not, it will definitely be on the milder side.
What to Serve with Buffalo Chicken Pasta
All this creamy buffalo chicken pasta needs is a veggie side:
- Air Fryer Broccoli
- Easy Haricots Verts
- Kale Apple Slaw
- Celery Carrot Blue Cheese Slaw
- Napa Cabbage Slaw
More Buffalo Chicken Recipes
If you like this recipe for buffalo chicken pasta bake, you’ll probably like my other buffalo chicken recipes…and I’ve got a lot them!
- Buffalo Chicken Sliders
- Buffalo Chicken Quesadillas
- Buffalo Chicken Flatbread
- Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Buffalo Butter Turkey Burgers
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This buffalo chicken pasta bake recipe is an easy and satisfying dinner that’s loaded with cheesy buffalo chicken flavors. Just 15 min prep!
- 1 lb. pasta (like rotini or fusilli)
- 3 cups pulled buffalo chicken
- 8 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese (2 cups)
- 8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese (2 cups)
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/4 cup flour
- 3 cups whole milk
- 1/4 cup buffalo sauce
- 1/3 cup Panko bread crumbs
- sliced green onions
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Prepare pasta according to package instructions to al dente.
- Meanwhile, heat butter in a large dutch oven over medium heat. When it foams, add flour and whisk until combined together and is golden brown in color. Whisk in milk until smooth and heat until bubbles form at the edge of pot. Cook, stirring occasionally for another 2 minutes. Stir in shredded cheese 1 cup at a time and stir until smooth.
- Stir in pasta and buffalo chicken into cheese sauce and transfer into an 8×8 inch baking dish. Drizzle with buffalo sauce and sprinkle with panko.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until bubbly and golden brown. Broil for a minute or two to brown it up if desired.
- Garnish with sliced green onions and an extra drizzle of buffalo sauce if desired.
Keywords: buffalo chicken pasta bake recipe, buffalo chicken pasta recipe, buffalo chicken pasta
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Photo Credit: All photos in this post were take by Loren at Sweet Rustic Bakes