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Chicken Tetrazzini is a wonderful Italian-American dish that’s extra cheesy and extremely comforting. This cheesy pasta bake is loaded with tender and juicy chicken, cooked pasta, and a flavorful mushroom sauce. We’ve scaled down this classic, comforting dish to serve one person, delivering all the rich and savory flavors of the traditional dish without any excess.

Complement your classic Chicken Tetrazzini with a fresh green salad drizzled with homemade vinaigrette, warm biscuits or cornbread, and roasted Brussels sprouts for a well-rounded meal.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Easy to make: Chicken Tetrazzini comes together quickly. We use 1 (4 to 5-ounce) boneless, skinless chicken breast or thigh. If you have leftover chicken from a previous meal, consider using it instead, or use cooked rotisserie chicken.
  • Made with easy-to-find ingredients: You won’t find any fancy ingredients in our easy Chicken Tetrazzini recipe. Many of the ingredients you may already have in your pantry.
  • Incredibly delicious: Our single serving Chicken Tetrazzini has it all! It’s hearty, it’s rich and creamy, and it’s filled with flavor.

What Is Chicken Tetrazzini?

Chicken Tetrazzini is a baked pasta casserole created by French chef, Auguste Escoffier at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco in the 1900s in honor of the legendary opera star, Luisa Tetrazzini. Since that time it has remained a classic comfort food ever since.

Ingredients

chicken tetrazzini ingredients on a kitchen counter.

If you have any ingredients leftover from this Chicken Tetrazzini recipe, check out our Leftover Ingredients Recipe Finder.

  • Chicken: For this recipe, choose either 1 (4 to 5-ounce) boneless, skinless chicken breast, cubed, or about 1 cup of cooked, chopped or shredded chicken or turkey. Rotisserie chicken or canned chicken also works well. If you’ve got extra chicken, consider using it to make Chicken Nuggets, Chicken Divan, or Chicken Marsala.
  • Olive oil:  Extra virgin olive oil is recommended for its high quality, less processed nature, and rich olive flavor. It also retains more vitamins and minerals found in olives. However, light olive oil is a suitable substitute.
  • Seasonings: Use kosher salt (preferably Diamond Crystal brand), black pepper, and Italian seasoning. Italian seasoning primarily consists of basil, oregano, thyme, and rosemary. If unavailable, substitute with one or two of these herbs.
  • Vegetables: Include chopped onions, garlic, and sliced mushrooms.
  • Chicken broth: I prefer using low-sodium chicken broth to better control the dish’s saltiness. If using regular chicken broth, consider reducing the added salt. Adjust seasonings and salt to taste after cooking. Consider using leftover broth in Crack Chicken or Lasagna Soup.
  • Sour cream: Greek yogurt is a good alternative. Extra sour cream can be added to a Squash Casserole.
  • Heavy cream: Use either heavy cream (double cream) or heavy whipping cream, as both contain over 36% milk fat and are usually interchangeable. We use heavy cream in many of our single serving and small batch recipes. Consider using any extra cream in Chicken Tikka Masala, Broccoli Casserole, or a small German Chocolate Cake.
  • Spaghetti: Measure 1 cup of cooked spaghetti, equivalent to 2 ounces dry. Linguine or fettuccine can be used as alternatives. Extra spaghetti can be used to make Pasta al Limone or Pasta Carbonara.

This is just an overview of the ingredients I used and why I used them. For the full recipe please scroll down to the recipe box at the bottom of the post.

Chicken Tetrazzini Variations

Although I think this is the ultimate Chicken Tetrazzini recipe and love it just as it is, you might like try any of these recipe variations:

  • Use a different protein. Consider using leftover turkey from your Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner or use ham instead of chicken.
  • Add extra vegetables. For example, try adding frozen or canned peas, corn, extra sliced mushrooms, or blanched broccoli.
  • Use a different cheese like Monterey Jack, American, Gruyere, or Fontina.
  • Add fresh herbs like thyme or rosemary to the pasta dish.
  • Make a crispy topping by adding panko breadcrumbs or regular breadcrumbs to the top of the casserole and dot the top with bits of butter before baking.
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How To Make Chicken Tetrazzini For One

These step-by-step photos and instructions are here to help you visualize how to make this recipe. See the recipe box below for ingredient amounts and full recipe instructions.

Note: If using pre-cooked chicken, start from Step 5.

  1. Preheat Oven: Set your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Heat Oil: Warm olive oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat.
  3. Season Chicken: While the oil heats, season chicken pieces with 1/8 teaspoon each of salt and black pepper.
pieces of raw chicken on a red plate.
  1. Brown Chicken: Place chicken in the skillet and brown for 1 to 2 minutes on each side. Then transfer to a bowl or plate.

Note: The chicken need not be fully cooked; it will continue cooking in the oven.

chicken pieces cooking in a skillet.
  1. Cook Onions: Add more olive oil to the skillet, reduce heat to medium, and cook onions until translucent, about 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add garlic and cook for another 30 seconds, stirring.
onions and garlic cooking in a skillet.
  1. Add Mushrooms: Increase heat to medium-high and add mushrooms, cooking for 2 minutes with occasional stirring.
sliced mushrooms, onions and garlic in a skillet.
  1. Add Broth: Pour in the chicken broth and stir.
chicken broth simmering with onions and garlic on the stove.
  1. Mix Creams and Seasonings: Take the skillet off the heat. Stir in sour cream, heavy cream, cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, additional salt, and Italian seasoning.
pan with sour cream, heavy cream, cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, salt, and Italian seasoning added to broth and onions.
  1. Combine Ingredients: Add chicken and cooked spaghetti to the skillet, tossing to coat evenly.
chicken tetrazzini in a skillet.
  1. Prepare for Baking: Transfer the mixture to a greased 5×5-inch baking dish. Place the dish on a rimmed baking sheet to catch any spills.
chicken tetrazzini in a small baking dish on a rimmed baking sheet.
  1. Bake: Cover the casserole with aluminum foil and bake for 25 minutes.
a covered baking dish filled with chicken tetrazzini.
  1. Final Touches: Remove from the oven, top with Parmesan cheese and chopped parsley if desired, and serve hot.
a single serving chicken tetrazzini on a silver tray next to a brown napkin.

Expert Tips

  • Read through the entire recipe and the Ingredient Notes section of the post and gather your ingredients. This small Chicken Tetrazzini comes together quickly so it’s a good idea to have everything ready before beginning.
  • This recipe doubles well. If you’d like to make Chicken Tetrazzini for two people or to simply have a little leftover, just double the ingredient amounts and split it into two 5×5-inch baking dishes or use one 8×1 ½-inch round baking pan or one 9×5-inch rectangular baking dish.
  • Make Turkey Tetrazzini: You can use turkey in place of chicken. This is an easy way to use up leftover turkey.

Make Ahead And Storage Instructions

  • To Make Ahead: Prepare the casserole dish with the pasta and cooked chicken. Cover the dish and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days until you are ready to bake it.
  • Store Leftovers: Place any leftovers in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • To Reheat: Reheat in the microwave in a microwave-safe dish or in the oven at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes or until heated through.
  • Freezing Instructions: You can freeze Chicken Tetrazzini before baking. Assemble the casserole, cover tightly, and freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw the casserole in the refrigerator overnight and then place the casserole on the kitchen counter for 30 minutes to come up to room temperature. Then, bake as directed in the recipe.

Frequently Asked Questions

What size baking dish is best to use?

The success of this recipe depends on the size of the baking dish you use. I use a 5×5-inch baking dish with a base area of 25 square inches.

If you would like additional information on the cooking and baking dishes I use in our “recipes for one”, please visit our FAQ page.

How can I make Vegetable Tetrazzini?

Make a meatless version by leaving out the chicken and replacing it with blanched broccoli florets, peas, corn, extra mushrooms, or asparagus, and use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth.

What’s the best type of pasta to use in this Chicken Tetrazzini recipe?

The best type of pasta to use in this recipe is spaghetti but you can use any long noodle like linguine or fettuccine.

a mini chicken tetrazzini served in a small black baking dish topped with chopped parsley.

Ways To Use Leftover Ingredients

If you have any ingredients leftover from this recipe, check out our Leftover Ingredients Recipe Finder or you might like to consider using them in any of these single serving and small batch recipes:

For more information on the cooking and baking dishes I use in our “recipes for one”, please visit our FAQ page.

For examples of the dishes used at One Dish Kitchen, please visit our Store page.

If you’ve tried this mini Chicken Tetrazzini recipe or any recipe on One Dish Kitchen please let me know how you liked it by rating the recipe and telling me about it in the comment section below.

Also, if you take a picture please tag us on Instagram (@onedishkitchen) we’d love to see it!


Your Cooking For One Source
Because you’re worth it

Chicken Tetrazzini For One

5 from 7 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings: 1 serving
Chicken Tetrazzini is a comfort food classic. Made with juicy chicken, mushrooms, and pasta in a rich and creamy sauce. This single serving meal is easy to make and incredibly delicious!

Equipment

Ingredients 
 

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil , divided
  • 1 (4 to 5 ounce) boneless, skinless chicken breast or thigh cut into 1-inch pieces (or use 1 cup cooked cubed chicken)
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt , divided (I use Diamond Crystal brand)
  • teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • ½ cup chopped onions
  • 1 clove garlic , minced
  • ¼ cup sliced mushrooms
  • cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • ¼ teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • ¼ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup cooked spaghetti This is 2 ounces of dry spaghetti. A 2-ounce serving of dry spaghetti measures 2 ⅛ inches (circumference).
  • Optional toppings: grated parmesan cheese and chopped parsley.
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Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
  • Heat ½ tablespoon of olive oil in a 10-inch skillet on medium-high heat.
  • While the oil is heating, season the chicken pieces with ⅛ teaspoon of salt and the black pepper.
  • Place the chicken pieces in the skillet and brown or 1 to 2 minutes on each side. Then transfer to a bowl or plate.
    Pro Tip: The chicken does not have to be cooked through. The chicken pieces will continue to cook in the oven.
  • Add ½ tablespoon of olive oil to the pan and lower the heat to medium. Add the onions and cook until translucent, stirring frequently for about 2 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds, stirring frequently.
  • Increase heat to medium-high and add mushrooms, cooking for 2 minutes with occasional stirring.
  • Pour in the chicken broth and stir.
  • Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the sour cream, heavy cream, Italian seasoning, cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, and remaining ⅛ teaspoon of salt.
  • Add chicken and cooked spaghetti to the skillet, tossing to coat evenly.
  • Transfer the mixture to a greased 5×5-inch baking dish. Place the dish on a rimmed baking sheet to catch any spills.
  • Cover the casserole tightly with aluminum foil and bake for 20 to 25 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven, top with shredded or grated Parmesan cheese and fresh chopped parsley if desired, and enjoy hot.

Notes

Note: The recipe instructions include cooking the chicken. If the chicken you are using has already been cooked, skip to Step 5.
 
Expert Tips
  • Read through the entire recipe and the Ingredient Notes section of the post and gather your ingredients. It may also be a good idea to look at the process photos in the recipe post. This small Chicken Tetrazzini comes together quickly so it’s a good idea to have everything ready before beginning.
  • This recipe doubles well. If you’d like to make Chicken Tetrazzini for two people or to simply have a little leftover, just double the ingredient amounts and split it into two 5×5-inch baking dishes or use one 8×1 ½-inch round baking pan or one 9×5-inch rectangular baking dish.
  • Make Turkey Tetrazzini: You can use turkey in place of chicken. This is an easy way to use up leftover turkey.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving, Calories: 857kcal, Carbohydrates: 53g, Protein: 45g, Fat: 50g, Saturated Fat: 24g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g, Monounsaturated Fat: 20g, Cholesterol: 116mg, Sodium: 969mg, Potassium: 442mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 7g, Vitamin A: 1285IU, Vitamin C: 7mg, Calcium: 428mg, Iron: 3mg

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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I’m Joanie and I’m incredibly happy you’re here! Our aim is to inspire individuals with access to single serving recipes, education, and a supportive community that will enable them to enjoy the preparation of a meal that will nourish both body and soul.

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Recipe Rating




14 Comments

  1. Jackie says:

    This all turned out well but I didn’t realize I had forgotten the sour cream until it came out of the oven ! It had lots of moisture but no creamy sauce so I added a tablespoon of cream cheese and that fixed it. I also added about 1 1/2 tbsp of pimento drained very well This is a very good recipe I’ll be making it again for sure.

  2. Nancy says:

    This was absolutely delicious! I didn’t have heavy cream so used milk instead. Also added frozen peas. I will be making this again!

  3. kathleen allen says:

    This was really very delicious. I had leftover turkey in the freezer. I only used a cup and diced it small and doubled the remaining ingredients. It made quite a bit. I ate two nights of dinners and will freeze the remainder per your instructions. Thanks so much for another great recipe, Joanie!

  4. Cathy W says:

    I made this tonight it was delicious. I used some rotisserie chicken and it was a fast and delicious recipe. Thanks

    1. Joanie Zisk says:

      I’m so happy you enjoyed it!

  5. Teevoz says:

    Looks great! A question: can you suggest any substitution for the heavy cream? And would whole wheat or gluten free pasta work?

    1. Joanie Zisk says:

      You can use whole milk instead and yes, whole wheat or gluten-free pasta will work just fine.

  6. Debbie says:

    Great recipes to truly be one serving. So many others say that ‘z uou read them and it’s one serving with 4 days of leftovers. I want one serving and this is it. Love them.

    1. Joanie Zisk says:

      Thank you, Debbie.

  7. Mousewoman says:

    Is the spaghetti cooked while the chicken is browning in the skillet?

    1. Joanie Zisk says:

      It could be. Cooking the spaghetti while the chicken cooks is an excellent idea.

  8. Glenna says:

    I tried this recipe last night using rotisserie chicken. Also used Rotini instead of spaghetti because that pasta is easier for us to keep on the fork. I doubled the recipe and it gave us three good servings. This was very good and I will definitely make it again. I have made several of your recipes and appreciate how easy they are.

    1. Joanie Zisk says:

      Thank you for sharing your feedback and substitutions, we appreciate it so much.

  9. J. Hegyi says:

    Terrific recipe.