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Cheesy, creamy, and spicy, this Jalapeño popper chicken pasta casserole combines the mouth-watering flavor of jalapeño poppers with the comfort of a chicken pasta casserole. This zesty casserole is perfect for game day or an easy weeknight dinner.
When you want a delicious meal to make for a busy weeknight dinner, look no further than this decadent dish. Combining all of your favorite flavors into one amazing meal, this jalapeño popper chicken pasta casserole is the ultimate comfort food.
An irresistible combination of tender pasta mixed with chicken, crisp bacon, melted cheese, jalapeño popper chicken pasta casserole is filled with so much flavor. Serve it with a fresh salad or some homemade dinner rolls for a hearty meal.
Oozing with cheesy goodness and a creamy sauce, the spicy jalapeños provide a delicious kick to this casserole. This recipe, that’s a twist on the favorite appetizer, will be a huge hit with family and friends.
Jalapeño Popper Chicken Pasta Casserole Ingredients
- Cream cheese
- Sour cream
- Onion powder
- Garlic powder
- Jalapeños - pickled jalapenos, diced and drained
- Chicken - chopped rotisserie chicken meat
- Bacon - cooked and crumbled
- Cheese - grated jack cheese
- Cheese - grated cheddar cheese
- Pasta - rotini pasta, cooked and drained
- Jalapeños - Fresh jalapeños, for garnish (I used 1 whole)
- Green onions - green parts only, sliced
Using diced, pickled jalapeños is both extremely convenient and also infuses more of that delicious jalapeño flavor into the dish. If you prefer you can substitute 3 freshly diced jalapeño peppers for the pickled jalapeños. You can also remove the seeds and ribbing for a milder dish. No matter what kind of jalapeños you use we recommend using gloves when handling them to prevent the oils from irritating your skin.
Using a combination of sour cream and mayonnaise in the filling gives a nice balance of richness and light creaminess. You can substitute all sour cream if preferred in this easy casserole.
Rotisserie chicken makes this dish easy to make. If you have leftover cooked chicken breasts or chicken thighs, you could chop them up and use them instead.
How to Make Jalapeño Popper Chicken Pasta Casserole
FIRST STEP: Preheat the oven to 350°F.
SECOND STEP: In a medium mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, mayonnaise, sour cream, onion powder, garlic powder, and diced jalapeños. Use a hand mixer for quick blending.
THIRD STEP: Add 1 cup each of cheddar and jack cheeses and stir to combine.
FOURTH STEP: In a large mixing bowl, toss together pasta, chicken, and most of the bacon, reserving about ½ cup to sprinkle over the top.
FIFTH STEP: Add the cream cheese mixture to the pasta mixture and stir gently until the mixture is evenly combined.
SIXTH STEP: Spread filling into a 9x13-inch casserole dish.
SEVENTH STEP: Top with remaining cheeses. Sprinkle reserved bacon and fresh jalapeño slices over the cheese.
EIGHTH STEP: Bake for 20 minutes, until the cheese is melted. Remove from the oven and top with freshly sliced green onion. Serve hot.
Can I use a different pasta shape for this Jalapeño popper pasta bake?
Any bite-size pasta shape would work well in this creamy chicken casserole. No matter what kind of pasta you use, you should cook the pasta to al dente in boiling, salted water to season the pasta before it goes into the casserole. We will not add additional salt to the casserole itself.
Can I use pre-shredded cheese?
Pre-shredded cheeses have additives added in the bags to prevent clumping, and they do not melt as well as a block of cheese that you shred yourself. We recommend shredding the cheese yourself for the best results.
Is this casserole really spicy?
This dish does have spice from the jalapeños. You can adjust the spice level of this pasta recipe by removing the seeds and ribbing from the inside of the jalapeños before adding them as well as adjusting how many peppers you add to the casserole.
How to Store Jalapeño Popper Chicken Pasta Casserole
IN THE FRIDGE: Store leftover jalapeño popper chicken casserole in an airtight container or covered with plastic wrap in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days.
IN THE FREEZER: Leftover chicken casserole can be stored in the freezer for up to three months.
Jalapeno Popper Chicken Pasta Casserole
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- 16 ounces cream cheese (softened)
- ½ cup sour cream
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 7.4 ounce pickled jalapenos (diced and drained)
- 3 cups rotisserie chicken meat (chopped )
- 1 pound bacon (cooked and crumbled)
- 2 cups grated jack cheese (divided)
- 2 cups grated cheddar cheese (divided)
- 1 pound rotini pasta (cooked and drained)
- Fresh jalapeños (for garnish (I used 1 whole))
- 3 green onions (green parts only, sliced)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, mayonnaise, sour cream, onion powder, garlic powder, and diced jalapeños. Use a hand mixer for quick blending.
- Add 1 cup each of cheddar and jack cheeses and stir to combine.
- In a large mixing bowl, toss together pasta, chicken, and most of the bacon, reserving about ½ cup to sprinkle over the top.
- Add the cream cheese mixture to the pasta mixture and stir gently until the mixture is evenly combined.
- Spread filling into a 9x13-inch casserole dish.
- Top with remaining cheeses. Sprinkle reserved bacon and fresh jalapeño slices over the cheese.
- Bake for 20 minutes, until the cheese is melted. Remove from the oven and top with freshly sliced green onion. Serve hot.