Pasta, chicken and mushrooms in a creamy dreamy sauce packed with bacon and cheese, and topped with buttery toasted breadcrumbs. Serve this chicken tetrazzini with a simple salad for a crowd pleasing, complete dinner recipe.
Tetrazzini is an American pasta dish made of mushrooms and shredded or diced poultry in a cream sauce. The sauce itself is loaded with parmesan cheese and often flavored with white wine or sherry. No wine on hand? Sad! But no problem, the recipe below includes instructions sans wine too .
Chicken tetrazzini flavor boosters
To up the flavor factor in this chicken tetrazzini recipe, add bacon! Bacon lends a wonderful rich, salty, and slightly smokey flavor to the recipe. I also added cream cheese to the sauce. This gives the whole dish a wonderful super creamy and slightly tangy taste. Your tastebuds can thank me later 🙂
Left-over turkey or tuna tetrazzini
This recipe is great for using up leftovers — I’ve made this with canned tuna and leftover thanksgiving turkey. It’s a delicious way to vary up all of those leftovers and make some room in the fridge.
Chicken tetrazzini spices
I used herbs de provence in this recipe, which is a mixture of dried herbs typical of the Provence region of France: thyme, oregano, rosemary, savory, marjoram and sometimes lavender. However, any of your classic soup/casserole herbs like oregano, rosemary and/or thyme will work wonderfully. Use what you have on hand. If you’d like to use fresh herbs instead, increase the amount from 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon.
Chicken tetrazzini topping
Toasting the breadcumbs ensures the chicken tetrazzini is covered with a golden, crunchy texture. It also adds a wonderful buttery flavor to the recipe. If you’re rushed for time, you could skip this step, but it really is worth the extra effort.
- 1 lb whole wheat or regular pasta
- 1 1/4 cups panko breadcrumbs
- 6 tablespoons butter divided
- 1 lb mushrooms sliced
- 5 cups chicken or turkey broth OR 4 cups of broth and 1 cup of white wine divided
- 1/3 cup flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon herb de provence optional*
- 8 ounces by weight block of regular or lite cream cheese
- 3 cups cooked chicken, turkey, or canned tuna shredded
- 1 1/2 cups frozen peas
- 4 slices bacon cooked and chopped**
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 cup shredded parmesan cheese
- salt and pepper to taste
- Following direction on pasta box to cook pasta until al dente (about 8-10 minutes in boiling water). Drain and set aside.
- Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a skillet over low heat. Add breadcrumbs and slowly stir until golden brown, about 5-10 minutes. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x13 baking dish. Set aside.
- Melt remaining 4 tablespoons of butter in large pot over medium heat. Add mushrooms and cook until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Add 1 cup of broth or white wine and cook until about half of liquid evaporates, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle in flour and cook while stirring constantly for about 2 minutes. Slowly add the remaining broth, salt and pepper. Stir until sauce thickens slightly, about 5 minutes.
- Cut cream cheese block into cubes and add to pot. Stir until mostly dissolved, about 2-5 minutes. Stir in chicken, peas, bacon, cheddar, and parmesan. Stir in pasta. Salt and pepper to taste. Pour into prepared baking dish, top with breadcrumbs, and bake until center is bubbling hot and breadcrumbs are golden brown, about 25 minutes.
- Let sit for 10 minutes. Enjoy!
*you can also use a combination of oregano, rosemary, and/or thyme.
**I cook my bacon on a broiler pan or wire rack on a baking sheet in a 350 degree oven for 30-40 minutes.