This Cheesy Pasta Bake With Chicken And Bacon is a family favourite (and it makes great leftovers too!).
Not a lot can beat a lovely cheesy pasta bake served up with a big side of salad (obviously that makes it healthy…….)

Portrait photo of Cheesy Pasta Bake With Chicken And Bacon in a glass dish with a knife and fork in the background
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Cheesy Pasta Bake With Chicken And Bacon is one of those dinners that the kids can polish off in no time – regardless of how many veggies I sneak in there. Peppers, onions, tomatoes, spinach – it all gets thrown in.

Sometimes I’ll add courgette or kale. If I’m being extra sneaky I might add some finely chopped mushroom too (I’m the only mushroom lover in our house – but they all eat mushrooms if they can’t identify them hee hee hee!).

Overhead landscape close up shot of Cheesy Pasta Bake With Chicken And Bacon in a glass dish with a scoop taken out showing the lovely texture of the bake

I like it cold for lunch the next day too – although you can heat it up in the microwave with a tablespoon of water – to stop it drying out.

I sometimes wonder if I could eat pasta every day of the week and not get bored of it.

Let’s see…

Monday: I’ll kick-off with this chicken and bacon pasta bake.

Tuesday: Cajun Chicken Pasta

Wednesday: One Pan Lasagne Soup

Thursday: One Pot Garlic Chicken Pasta

Friday: Crispy Fried Ravioli with Spicy Tomato Dip

Saturday: Pan Fried Salmon with Creamy Lemon Spaghetti

Sunday: One Pan Spaghetti and Meatballs

Oh yeah, that was easy – I didn’t even start on the pulled pork ragu or the or the penne arrabiata!! Oh and dont forget to check out my new Creamy Chicken Alfredo Pasta Bake too!

Overhead landscape photo of Cheesy Pasta Bake With Chicken And Bacon in a glass dish

Do you have a favourite pasta dish? I’d love some new ideas for my pasta addiction 🙂

The Chicken Bacon Pasta Bake Video

More Super Tasty Pasta Recipes

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In order to make this super tasty Cheesy Pasta Bake with Chicken and Bacon you will need:

4.84 from 71 votes

Cheesy Pasta Bake With Chicken And Bacon Recipe

Cheesy Pasta Bake With Chicken And Bacon – a family favourite (and it makes great leftovers too!).
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 6 people
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American, British, Italian


  • 400 g (4 1/2 cups) dried pasta shapes (I used rigatoni)
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 large chicken breasts cut into bitesize chunks
  • 1 large onion peeled and chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper de-seeded and chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper de-seeded and chopped
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and minced
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree (paste for US)
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp dried thyme
  • 800 g (28 oz) tinned chopped tomatoes
  • 120 ml (1/2 cup) double (heavy) cream
  • 100 g (3 cups) fresh baby spinach
  • 6 rashers cooked bacon chopped
  • 100 g (1 cup minus 1 tbsp) strong cheddar cheese grated
  • 100 g (1 cup minus 1 tbsp) mozzarella grated
  • small bunch parsley roughly torn
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  • Preheat the oven to 190C/375F (fan).
  • Boil a large pan of water and cook the pasta for 1 minute less than recommended on the pack. Drain.
    400 g (4 1/2 cups) dried pasta shapes
  • Whilst the pasta is cooking, heat the oil on a medium heat, in a large frying pan. Add the chicken, and cook until just sealed – about 5 minutes.
    1 tbsp vegetable oil, 3 large chicken breasts
  • Add the onion and cook for a further 3-4 minutes until the onion is softened.
    1 large onion
  • Add the chopped peppers, salt, pepper, garlic, tomato puree, oregano and thyme. Stir and cook for 2-3 minutes.
    1 red bell pepper, 1 yellow bell pepper, pinch of salt and pepper, 2 cloves garlic, 1 tbsp tomato puree, ½ tsp dried oregano, ½ tsp dried thyme
  • Stir in the tinned tomatoes and cream, bring to a gentle bubble, then add the pasta, spinach and cooked bacon. Stir everything together, then transfer to a large baking dish.
    800 g (28 oz) tinned chopped tomatoes, 120 ml (1/2 cup) double (heavy) cream, 100 g (3 cups) fresh baby spinach, 6 rashers cooked bacon
  • Top with the cheddar and mozzarella, and place in the oven for 20-25 minutes, until the cheese is golden brown.
    100 g (1 cup minus 1 tbsp) strong cheddar cheese, 100 g (1 cup minus 1 tbsp) mozzarella
  • Take out of the oven and top with parsley before serving.
    small bunch parsley



Can I make pasta bake ahead?

Yes! You can make ahead up to the point you sprinkle the cheese on, then cool, cover with foil and refrigerate for up to a day
  • Take out of the fridge for an hour before cooking it, to take the chill off the dish (otherwise you mind find you get a cold spot in the middle when baking it).
  • Keep the foil on and heat in the oven at 190C/375F for about 10 minutes, then remove the foil and continue to heat for a further 15 minutes, until hot throughout.
Note: the dish will be a little less saucy if you make it ahead, as the pasta will absorb more of the liquid. You can a few tablespoons of stock or hot water before heating the pasta to ensure it’s still saucy if you like.

Can I freeze the leftovers from my pasta bake?

Yes, once cooked:
  • Cool quickly, cover and freeze.
  • Defrost in the refrigerator overnight.
  • Reheat in the oven (covered in foil) at 190C/375F for about 20-25 minutes until hot throughout.
Add a few tablespoons of stock or hot water when reheating the pasta to ensure it’s still saucy.

Type of pasta to use for pasta bake:

I love to use rigatoni for this pasta bake, but you can use most pasta shapes. 
Spiralli (pasta spirals), Penne (tubes cut on the diagonal), Fusilli (pasta twists) and Farfalle (pasta bows) all work partcularly well, with no change in amounts or cooking times.

Vegetarian version:

Replace the chicken with chunky pieces of courgette (zucchini) or mushroom. You can leave the bacon out entirely, or replace it with vegetarian chorizo or smoky chickpeas (chickpeas fried with smoked paprika, cumin, salt and pepper). 
Also, ensure the cheddar and mozzarella are vegetarian versions.

Gluten free version:

This recipe works well as a gluten-free dish with a few changes. Swap out the pasta for gluten-free pasta and ensure your tomato paste is gluten free.
Also, if you’re using ready grated (shredded) cheese, ensure it’s gluten free, as it can sometimes be tossed in a little flour to prevent it from sticking.
Nutritional Information is per serving.



Calories: 657kcal | Carbohydrates: 62g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 108mg | Sodium: 637mg | Potassium: 911mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 3040IU | Vitamin C: 82.3mg | Calcium: 300mg | Iron: 3.5mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

If you’ve tried my pasta bake recipe then please rate the recipe and let me know how you got on in the comments below, I love hearing your thoughts and add-ons to my recipes!
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Hi, I'm Nicky and I love to cook! I want to share with you my favourite, delicious family friendly recipes. I want to inspire you to create fantastic food for your family every day.

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  1. Andrew says:

    4 stars
    This recipe was ok on the whole, but it didn’t get better than a 7/10 from our 9yr old. I think using x2off capsicums (Bell Peppers) overpowered all of the other flavours. If I was to make this dish again I would half the capsicum or delete it all together. I did also substitute the bacon for chunky bits of speck and I also added 200gms of chopped mushrooms. Thanks for the recipe 👍

  2. gail Long says:

    loving all recipes, easy to prepare and saving my mind from wondering what to cook tonight ?

  3. Neil says:

    5 stars
    Very tasty, just tried it for the first time. Worked a treat. One to keep. Me and my partner in our early 60’s and my father in law in his late 80’s.

    Took longer as I needed to cook the bacon, chicken & onion one after the other in the same pan (I wanted to keep the ingredients cooked separate first time, not treat it like a slow cook ‘throw it all in a pot’ – which is also excellent in it’s place). I also added some steamed broccoli and cauliflower on the plate to add more veg.

    Something that really did have a nice boost was adding dashes of Worcestershire sauce, once it was dished up. Nice extra depth (not sure US can get this so easily?)

  4. Rachael says:

    5 stars
    I have two pots of cream in the fridge that need using. Can I make just the sauce and freeze it, ready to use when I need to?

  5. riley says:

    5 stars

  6. Amy DeAngelo says:

    4 stars
    Prep time was an hour minimum. Not 15 minutes. But that’s pretty typical on all recipes I find online. I used a quarter of the onion, no bell peppers, and pasta sauce instead of diced tomatoes. I also have no idea what 6 rashers of cooked bacon is but I fried up a pound of bacon, cut it up into tiny pieces and called it a day. That is what added some time. I cooked in a dutch oven on the stovetop and sent that baby right into the oven. Definitely added more cheese than called for and didn’t add parsley. Even with all the changes, this turned out great! Myself, husband, and 1 year old loved it! My 3 year old tolerated it. But he basically tolerates everything. 🤣 I would make again but cook bacon in the oven and prepare everything the night before so all I had to do was stick it in the oven. Thanks!

  7. Martina Burdis says:

    Loved it and so easy as I am not a natural cook – inspired me to try other recipes too – thank you

  8. Jenny Walter says:

    5 stars
    I was looking for a new pasta recipe tonight and found yours. I had most of the ingredients on hand except the meat. I made a half-size batch (20 minutes baking) and it was delicious. I look forward to making it again, with the chicken or maybe beef. My favorite part is how flexible the recipe is, that down the road I can throw in whatever I have that sounds good. Thanks for sharing your creation!

  9. Shira says:

    5 stars
    I didn’t make this at all but sort of used it as a guide. I knew I wanted a “chicken pot pie-sta” thing but without a tomato sauce. I sautéed celery, onions, and carrots and added bacon and chicken and cream like in this recipe, plus her suggested herbs. Mixed it all into a pot of penne and fam added cheese on their servings as desired. Generally I find comments like mine annoying but I am sure the recipe to the letter is delicious too! Regardless, grateful for the base to build off of, thank you!

  10. Laura says:

    You can only watch a few seconds on the video, then it jumps to other recipes. You can’t watch a full one. Any tips…

    1. Jo says:

      I had to enable full screen to watch the whole video 😃