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Chicken Nugget Parmesan Casserole Recipe

If you’re in the mood for a comforting casserole that the whole family will love, look no further than this Chicken Nugget Parmesan Casserole. This family friendly meal combines the classic flavors of chicken, tomato sauce and two types of cheese.

Add in bowtie pasta and it becomes a complete and satisfying meal that’s perfect for busy weeknights or to serve at a casual gathering with friends. Best of all, to save you even more time, you can make this casserole ahead of time.

Simply prepare the recipe and place it in a 9 x 13 inch casserole dish. Then cover it with foil and store it in the refrigerator. 

Chicken Nugget Parmesan Casserole
The Chicken Nugget Parmesan Casserole is a delightful twist on classic comfort food, bringing together the goodness of chicken nuggets, flavorful tomato sauce, cheese and pasta.

When you’re ready to preheat your oven, take the casserole out of the refrigerator. Then preheat the oven while the casserole dish begins to warm to room temperature.

Then you are ready to put it in the oven to bake. Making it ahead of time is a huge time saver on busy weeknights.

Tips For Making Chicken Nugget Parmesan Casserole

Use Non-Stick Cooking Spray

Be sure to spray the casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray before adding the other ingredients. This will help prevent the pasta from sticking to the surface. Also by spraying the inside of the dish clean up will be a breeze!

Cook Pasta Just Until Tender

Use the package instructions to cook the bowtie pasta to al’ dente consistency. Al’ dente simply means the pasta should be cooked until it’s tender, yet firm to the bite. 

This texture is the perfect consistency to allow the pasta to be tossed with the other ingredients and not fall apart. Just remember, the pasta will continue to cook once it goes in the oven, so be sure not to overcook the pasta.

Bowtie Pasta
Be sure to cook the pasta to al dente according to the package instructions.

Mix The Sauce Ingredients Together Before Adding The Pasta

To make the sauce it is best to mix the canned crushed tomatoes, dried Italian seasoning, and garlic salt together into a large mixing bowl before tossing it with the pasta. This will allow the spices to get evenly combined in the tomato sauce before being added to the pasta.

Use Frozen Chicken Nuggets

No need to thaw the chicken nuggets before adding them to the dish. Simply add the frozen nuggets in the mixture and toss them with the other ingredients.

Let The Casserole Rest Before Serving

It may sound crazy to allow a casserole to rest before serving, however, there are two purposes to the rest period. First, the cheese is going to be super hot and will scald the roof of your mouth if you attempt to eat it right away.

Second, the hot, bubbly casserole needs to have a little time to firm up for easy serving. As the casserole sits, the liquid will thicken and the casserole will bind together.

crushed tomatoes for chicken nugget Parmesan casserole
You will definitely want garlic bread with this meal so that you can soak up all that delicious sauce!

What To Serve With Chicken Nugget Parmesan Casserole

Although this meal is hearty and can be served as a complete meal on its own, it also pairs nicely with some other sides. Here are a few suggestions to add to your meal:

1. Garden Salad: 

A refreshing Caprese or garden salad with a light vinaigrette dressing is the perfect accompaniment to balance the richness of the casserole.

2. Garlic Bread: 

When you serve pasta you must serve warm and buttery garlic bread.  This makes a great side to mop up any extra tomato sauce that remains on the plate.

No need to purchase frozen garlic bread at the grocery. It is super easy to make homemade garlic bread with just about any type of bread, or even Leftover Hamburger and Hot Dog Buns.

Simply melt some butter and add in garlic powder or minced garlic. Spread the butter mixture on top of the bread slices and broil for 2-3 minutes.

For added flavor top the bread with Parmesan cheese and fresh chopped parsley.

garlic bread and salad
Make it a complete meal and add a salad and garlic bread to help soak up all that delicious sauce on the plate.

3. Steamed Vegetables: 

To keep things on the lighter side, and to help prevent you from serving yourself a second helping of this Chicken Nugget Parmesan Casserole, serve some steamed vegetables on the side. Steamed veggies like broccoli, carrots, or green beans makes for a great addition to this meal.

Common Recipe Variations

  • Additional seasoning: Feel free to adjust the seasoning of the tomato sauce to best suit your family’s taste. You can add more oregano or a pinch of red pepper flakes for a spicy kick.
  • Cheese substitutions: Although Mozzarella and Parmesan are obvious choices for this Chicken Nugget Parmesan Casserole, feel free to use other varieties as well. Provolone, Italian blend, and a Parmigiano Reggiano are all fantastic choices.
  • Pasta substitutions: Don’t limit yourself to bow-tie pasta. Because the pasta is cooked before it is added to the casserole, you can use just about any type of pasta in this recipe. Just like when making Pizza Casserole rotini pasta is a good variety as it holds the other ingredients well. However you can also use fusilli, shells, rigatoni and small shells are also fantastic choices!
  • Garnish Options: Add a little freshness to your casserole by garnishing the top with some fresh chopped parsley or basil. But don’t stop there, you can never go wrong with adding more grated Parmesan cheese on top!
Parmesan Cheese
Be sure to save some fresh grated Parmesan cheese so that you can garnish the top of each serving.

Chicken Nugget Parmesan Casserole Recipe

*Specific measurements and complete recipe instructions are located in a printable recipe card at the bottom of this article. However, be sure to continue to read the tips and tricks to making this recipe below.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 lbs frozen Chicken Nuggets
  • 16 oz. Bowtie pasta
  • 28 oz. canned crushed Tomatoes
  • 1 Tbsp. dried Italian Seasoning
  • 2 tsp. garlic salt
  • 2 cups shredded Mozzarella Cheese, divided
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan Cheese, divided

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Spray a 9 X 13 inch baking pan with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.

2. Cook the pasta to al dente according to the package instructions and drain.

3. While the pasta is cooking, add the tomatoes, Italian seasoning and garlic salt to a large mixing bowl and stir until well combined.

4. Then add the cooked and drained pasta, frozen chicken nuggets, and half of the Mozzarella cheese and half of the Parmesan cheese to the bowl. Toss to coat.

5. Spread the mixture into the prepared 9 x 13 inch baking pan. Then sprinkle the top with the remaining Mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.

Chicken nugget parmesan casserole
Feel free to switch up the type of pasta that you use. However, be sure that it is cooked just to al’ dente consistency.

6. Place the baking dish in the preheated oven and bake (uncovered) for 50-60 minutes or until the sauce is bubbly around the edges and the cheese begins to turn golden brown.

7. Remove the baking dish from the oven, however let it sit for 5 minutes before serving.

Enjoy! Mary

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Chicken Nugget Parmesan Casserole

bowtie pasta

All the flavors of Chicken Parmesan but made into an easy to prepare casserole with the help of frozen chicken nuggets! A tried and true, family friendly recipe that everyone loves!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Additional Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 lbs frozen Chicken Nuggets
  • 16 oz. Bowtie pasta
  • 28 oz. canned crushed Tomatoes
  • 1 Tbsp. dried Italian Seasoning
  • 2 tsp. garlic salt
  • 2 cups shredded Mozzarella Cheese, divided
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan Cheese, divided

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Spray a 9X13 inch baking pan with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Cook the pasta to al dente according to the package instructions and drain.
  3. While the pasta is cooking, add the tomatoes, Italian seasoning and garlic salt to a large mixing bowl and stir until well combined.
  4. Then add the cooked and drained pasta, frozen chicken nuggets, and half of the Mozzarella cheese and half of the Parmesan cheese to the bowl. Toss to coat.
  5. Spread the mixture into the prepared 9X13 inch baking pan. Sprinkle the top with the remaining Mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
  6. Place the baking dish in the preheated oven and bake (uncovered) for 50-60 minutes or until the sauce is bubbly around the edges and the cheese begins to turn golden brown.
  7. Remove the baking dish from the oven and let it sit for 5 minutes before serving.

Notes

Recipe provided by Make Your Meals

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 503Total Fat: 26gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 72mgSodium: 1459mgCarbohydrates: 42gFiber: 4gSugar: 5gProtein: 27g

Nutritional Information is to be used as a general guideline only . Nutritional calculations will vary from the types and brands of the products used.

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