Chicken Alfredo Stuffed Shells

A casserole dish filled with chicken alfredo stuffed shells.

These chicken alfredo stuffed shells are rich, cheesy and a treat for the whole family. It’s easy to assemble, and you can make this recipe in advance to bake off later. Use leftover rotisserie chicken, fresh spinach, mozzarella and parmesan cheese with large shell pasta for an incredible chicken alfredo casserole.

Ingredients to make chicken alfredo stuffed shells.

Who doesn’t love a good cheesy casserole?

From a Classic Tuna Casserole with a crushed potato chip crust to this hearty sausage, beef, and pasta-laden Southwest Style Cowboy Casserole and this rich green chile-infused Pulled Pork Casserole, anything that includes baked pasta and cheese will get our vote.

These chicken alfredo stuffed shells are all of that and more. We use meat from a leftover rotisserie chicken and fresh spinach with two types of cheeses for this Florentine-style chicken alfredo casserole.

Chicken Alfredo shells are a universal crowd-pleaser and will make you a dinner HERO.

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Why you’ll love this recipe:

  • It uses a combination of fresh and convenience items.
  • Makes a big 13 x 9″ chicken pasta bake to feed a crowd.
  • Can be made ahead or frozen.
  • It includes a homemade alfredo sauce – no cans of condensed soup were harmed in making this casserole.
  • It does have vegetables – so not completely hedonistic.
  • Kids and adults alike love these chicken stuffed shells.

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • Jumbo Pasta Shells – You can use any brand of shell pasta, but look for the type meant for filling.
  • Butter – for sauteing the vegetables and making the alfredo sauce for the chicken casserole.
  • Garlic – you’ll need several cloves of freshly minced garlic to season the chicken and spinach mixture as well as for infusing the alfredo sauce — you can taste it in the sauce.
  • Onion – adds to the aromatics and flavor of the dish.
  • Leftover Rotisserie Chicken – I recommend using the breast meat for this chicken spinach casserole, but you can use a combination of dark and white meat. Be sure to use shredded chicken or chop the chicken into bite-sized pieces suitable for stuffing into the shells.
  • Whole Milk – ok, you can use 1% or 2%, but it’s better with whole milk.
  • Heavy Cream – Don’t substitute whole milk or half and half for this. You need the heavy cream so the sauce doesn’t break.
  • Egg Yolks – for thickening and enriching the alfredo sauce and giving it a soft golden cast.
  • Shredded Mozzarella Cheese – I used pre-shredded part-skim Mozzarella cheese for convenience. Don’t use a fresh mozzarella ball, as it contains too much moisture.
  • Parmesan Cheese – I used pre-grated parmesan for convenience, but fresh grated would be even better.
  • Salt and Pepper – for seasoning to taste.

Step-by-step directions:

  1. Cook the pasta to 1-2 minutes shy of al dente in a large pot (according to package directions). Drain and cool in a single layer on a sheet pan.
  2. Heat the milk, cream, butter and garlic in a saucepan until the mixture is hot, but don’t bring it to a boil.
  3. Whisk the eggs in a small bowl and add 1 tablespoon of the hot cream mixture and whisk rapidly to combine.
  4. Add 4-5 more tablespoons, one at a time and whisking after each addition to temper the egg yolks. Add the egg and cream mixture back to the saucepan and whisk to combine.
  5. Stir in about ¾ of the mozzarella and parmesan cheeses and whisk until they have melted and blended into the alfredo sauce. It should be thick with a cheesy pull when lifting the whisk.
  6. In a separate skillet, saute the onion and garlic in butter until the vegetables are tender and fragrant.
  7. Add the chicken and spinach and heat through, just until the spinach begins to wilt.
  8. Spoon the chicken mixture into the shells (or use your clean hands – it may be easier this way)
  9. Spread two tablespoons of the alfredo sauce in the bottom of a 13 x 9″ casserole. (You can also break it up into several smaller casseroles if you want to freeze one for later). Arrange the stuffed shells in a single layer and ladle the alfredo sauce over the chicken spinach casserole.
  10. Sprinkle with the reserved cheeses and bake for 25 minutes.
  11. Garnish with fresh parsley if you like. (I didn’t have any on hand).
Heating milk, cream, garlic, salt, and pepper in a saucepan until hot.


  • Be sure to cook your shell pasta in a large pot; one that holds 3-4 quarts of water. This will ensure that the pasta doesn’t stick together as it cooks and has room to expand.
  • Salt your pasta water with 1-2 tablespoons of kosher salt just as the water boils.
  • Make sure the water is at a full boil before adding the pasta, and stir it several times to prevent the shells from sticking together.


  • Instead of spinach, substitute kale, broccoli florets, frozen peas, or other cooked vegetables. Look for veggies that aren’t naturally watery or have been sauteed (like mushrooms) to evaporate the natural liquid before mixing with the chicken. This will help avoid breaking the alfredo sauce in the casserole.
  • Add a ¼ teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes to the milk and cream mixture while heating for an added spicy kick.
  • Add 1-2 teaspoons of fresh herbs to the alfredo sauce while you’re heating the milk and cream. Chopped fresh thyme, parsley, rosemary or sage would be good additions.
  • Use other types of cheese. Swap mozzarella for gruyere, white cheddar or Jarlsberg. Swap parmesan for Pecorino Romano or Locatelli.
  • Add a 16-ounce container of ricotta cheese to the chicken and spinach mixture after it cools, then stuff the jumbo shells with the filling for an even cheesier baked chicken alfredo recipe.

Make ahead:

This recipe for chicken stuffed shells can be made up to 3 days ahead and kept refrigerated until you’re ready to bake it.


To store leftovers, cover the casserole dish well with plastic wrap or aluminum foil or transfer to an airtight container. Keep in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. Reheat in a warm 350° oven for 10-15 minutes or microwave in 30-second bursts until heated through.


You can freeze the spinach chicken casserole before and after it has been baked. Wrap the casserole in plastic and freezer paper for up to 3 months. Thaw to bake or reheat.

Sauteing the chicken and spinach filling in a saute pan.

How to prevent curdling, scrambling or breaking alfredo sauce:

  • To avoid curdling, don’t boil the milk and cream mixture; instead, heat it slowly over medium heat until it steams, then remove it from the heat.
  • To avoid scrambling the egg yolks, don’t add them directly to the hot cream mixture; instead temper the yolks with a small amount (1 tablespoon) of the hot cream to acclimate them to the heat. Do this several times, whisking well after each addition, then adding them to the cream mixture. This will give you a smooth, enriched alfredo sauce.
  • To avoid breaking the sauce, use gentle heat, without boiling, and whisk the sauce briskly. Sometimes, when a sauce breaks, it just needs a few minutes of whisking and a bit of butter (1-2 pats) to bring it back into a silky smoothness.


How many calories is in one stuffed shell?

Depending on how large your chicken alfredo stuffed shells are – and how much filling in each, there will be between 120-140 calories per chicken stuffed shell.

Can I halve the chicken alfredo stuffed shells recipe?

Yes. This recipe can easily be halved for a smaller group.

Just look at this alfredo pasta bake. You’ll love the tender pasta with the crispy golden edges and oozy cheesy alfredo sauce.

The spinach and chicken balance the dish’s richness, while the irresistibly lush alfredo sauce will keep you coming back for another bite.

The chicken stuffed shells hot from the oven.

What our tasters said:

“Why haven’t we had this before? It’s delicious — I’m claiming leftovers for my lunch.” — Scott

“That sauce is so cheesy and rich – how did you make this?” – Ana

A casserole dish of chicken alfredo stuffed shells.

Because this recipe for chicken stuffed shells is fairly rich, I recommend serving it with a vegetable side dish, but hot garlic bread wouldn’t go amiss.

What to serve with chicken alfredo stuffed shells:

Serving the chicken stufffed shells with a green salad.

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A baked chicken alfredo stuffed shells casserole.
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5 from 3 votes

Chicken Alfredo Stuffed Shells

Rich and cheesy, this alfredo casserole uses rotisserie chicken, fresh spinach, and an enriched parmesan cream sauce. The ultimate comfort food.
Author: Lisa Lotts
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian
Keyword casserole, rotisserie chicken, shell pasta, spinach
Prep Time 35 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 8



  • 12 ounces large shell pasta
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 large garlic clove minced
  • 1 cup chopped onions
  • 2½-3 cups leftover rotisserie chicken I used breast meat
  • 6 ounces fresh baby spinach


  • cups whole milk
  • 1 cup cream do not substitute half and half or milk
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 large cloves minced garlic
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • ¾ cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 cups part-skim grated mozzarella cheese


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.


  • Fill a large stock pot ¾ with water and bring to a boil. Salt the water with one teaspoon of salt. Add the 12 ounces large shell pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until the noodles are not quite al dente (about 1-2 minutes shy of the package directions).
  • Drain the noodles and spread in an single layer on a rimmed baking sheet to cool.


  • In a large saucepan, combine 1¼ cups whole milk, 1 cup cream, 3 tablespoons butter and 2 large cloves minced garlic . Heat over medium heat until the mixture is hot, BUT NOT BOILING. Remove from the heat.


  • In a small bowl, whisk 2 large egg yolks and add 1 tablespoon of the hot cream mixture to the eggs, whisking constantly. Continue to add 4-5 more tablespoons of the hot cream mixture to the yolks to temper them, then whisk the egg mixture back into the pot of hot cream to combine.


  • Season the egg and cream mixture with ¼ teaspoon kosher salt and ¼ teaspoon black pepper.
  • Add about 1⅓ cups of the 2 cups part-skim grated mozzarella cheese and ½ cup ¾ cup grated parmesan cheese and whisk together until the cheese has melted and the sauce is smooth. (The residual heat from the cream mixture will melt the cheese). Set aside.


  • In a large saute pan over medium heat, melt the one tablespoon butter and add 1 cup chopped onions and 1 large garlic clove, minced. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion softens and becomes slightly translucent and the mixture is fragrant.
  • Add the chicken and spinach and heat through, just until the spinach begins to wilt.


  • Spoon 2 tablespoons of the alfredo sauce into the bottom of a 13×9 inch baking dish (or other casserole dishes) and spread in a thin layer over the bottom.
  • Fill the pasta shells with a spoonful of the chicken and spinach filling and arrange in the casserole dish.
  • Ladle the alfredo sauce over the chicken stuffed shells and top with the remaining mozzarella and parmesan cheese.
  • Bake for 25 minutes or until the stuffed shells are bubbly and golden.


Calories: 607.01kcal | Carbohydrates: 39.54g | Protein: 39.18g | Fat: 32.64g | Saturated Fat: 17.59g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.43g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6.88g | Trans Fat: 0.23g | Cholesterol: 196.19mg | Sodium: 756.53mg | Potassium: 380.56mg | Fiber: 2.21g | Sugar: 5.15g | Vitamin A: 2945.67IU | Vitamin C: 7.98mg | Calcium: 412.46mg | Iron: 1.45mg

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One Comment

  1. 5 stars
    These came out great – and my family loved them! Thank you for the recipe.