Tasty Tuesday: Baked Chicken Parmesan Ziti

I was searching for a new recipe to try and ended up making up this Baked Chicken Parmesan Ziti by making a few changes to this recipe I found on Pinterest so that the meal was a little more customized to my family’s tastes and the convenience I always require in my meal preparations. It was so good that Jenny had eaten her entire first helping and gone back for seconds before I even had a chance to sit down. A definite keeper for our household!

For convenience, and because I passionately love my Crockpot, I started this one in the Crockpot. I placed three chicken breasts in the Crockpot with a little Italian dressing and diced tomatoes.
Baked Chicken Parmesan Ziti

After cooking on high for a little over three hours, I shredded the chicken as a delicious base for the Baked Ziti.
Baked Chicken Parmesan Ziti

I love shredded chicken from the Crockpot. When I was ready to build the casserole, I went ahead and cooked my pasta. I chose ziti, but any short noodles would work. I then tossed the chicken on top of the cooked pasta in a large bowl.
Baked Chicken Parmesan Ziti

And then I added about half a large jar of my favorite spaghetti sauce (Mid’s Meatless – I think I’ve mentioned it before because it’s so good) and some shredded Italian cheese.
Baked Chicken Parmesan Ziti

I mixed everything up and spread into a casserole dish.
Baked Chicken Parmesan Ziti

I topped with the rest of my cheese.
Baked Parmesan Chicken Ziti

And then the special secret ingredient. Panko bread crumbs – mixed with salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and a little olive oil so that it would brown nicely.
Baked Chicken Parmesan Ziti

I spread this deliciousness over the top and then it was ready to bake.
Baked Chicken Parmesan Ziti

Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes and it’s perfectly browned and crispy on top – and SO good.
Baked Chicken Parmesan Ziti

It looked a little too brown in a couple spots, but it tasted perfect.

Baked Chicken Parmesan Ziti

Ingredients:

3 chicken breasts
1/2 can diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons Italian dressing
1 pound short pasta
2-3 cups shredded Italian cheese
3 cups spaghetti sauce
1 cup Panko bread crumbs
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt, pepper, Italian seasoning to taste

Instructions:

1. Place chicken breasts in Crockpot with diced tomatoes and Italian dressing. Cook on high for 3-4 hours OR low for 6-8 hours. Shred.
2. Cook pasta according to instructions.
3. In large bowl, mix pasta, shredded chicken, spaghetti sauce and 1 cup of cheese.
4. Spread in 9 x 13 inch casserole dish. Top with remaining shredded cheese.
5. In a small bowl, mix Panko bread crumbs with olive oil and seasonings. Spread over top of cheese.
6. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 30 minutes until cheese and Panko are browned.

Note: If I were to make this again, I would double everything because I used relatively small portions of chicken and only half a can of tomatoes, a small amount of dressing, half a large jar of spaghetti sauce, etc. I would double and freeze one batch before baking (without the Panko – I think it would be better added at baking time). Then I’d have another meal ready for another busy day! I love freezer cooking – and it’s so helpful during the busy school days we’re heading into at this time of year!

5 thoughts on “Tasty Tuesday: Baked Chicken Parmesan Ziti

    • Totally. We ate it again last week and it was just as good as the first time (obviously I’m way behind on my comment replies – again).

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