Spicy, wing-inspired casserole is ‘Buffalo’-key delicious

Buffalo chicken casserole combines Alfredo sauce and pasta with Buffalo wing sauce and chicken to create a cheesy, spicy dish that comes together quickly for dinner.

 

I was gone for a few days last week, and while Joey and I were catching up on our respective adventures from when we were apart, I learned that he made homemade Buffalo wings. Without me.

Now, I’ll forgive him his betrayal, because in his defense, I am normally not a huge fan of eating meat off the bone. But chicken wings tend to be a bit of an exception.

I love the spiciness of Buffalo sauce along with some crispy celery or some cool ranch dipping sauce. Wings are just pretty darn great all the way around.

I kept thinking about how I missed out, when I remembered I had a recipe featuring Buffalo sauce that I’ve been meaning to try. I hoped it would be just the trick to finally kick my craving.

The recipe I tried comes from the blog “Back For Seconds.” You can find the original post at https://backforseconds.com/buffalo-chicken-alfredo-bake/2/. I changed up the amounts of several ingredients and used breaded chicken instead of rotisserie in my version.

Buffalo Chicken Casserole

Ingredients

16 ounces pasta, cooked (I used penne)

1/3 cup buffalo sauce, plus more for drizzling

2 cups cooked chicken, diced (I used frozen chicken patties)

16 ounces alfredo sauce

12 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded

salt and pepper to taste

Directions

While you boil your pasta, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a three-quart baking dish by spraying it with cooking spray and set it aside.

When draining your pasta, reserve about one-third cup of the cooking liquid.

In a bowl, combine the buffalo sauce and chicken and stir to coat evenly.

In another bowl, combine the alfredo sauce, pasta and about one-fourth of the cheese. Pour the reserved pasta water into the empty alfredo jar, put on the lid, and shake it to loosen any leftover sauce in the jar. Pour it into the bowl, as well. Add salt and pepper, if desired. Stir to mix it well.

Spread half of the pasta mixture into the prepared baking dish. Evenly spread the chicken over that, and then finish off with the other half of the pasta mixture.

Top with the remaining cheese.

Cover the baking dish with a lid or foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the covering and bake for another 10 minutes or until the cheese is lightly browned.

Let the casserole sit for about five minutes, drizzle with a little Buffalo sauce, and serve.

I was really happy with how this turned out. It was a bit spicy with lots of good cheesy flavors mixed in. I also was happy with my decision to cut up chicken patties to use in this instead of deboning a rotisserie chicken. It took way less time, and I liked the added flavor of the breading in the casserole.

It’s not quite a complete substitute for Buffalo wings, but it definitely did a good job of featuring the main flavors.

Joey will probably still have to make it up to me by cooking some wings again sometime in the near future, but I think this will hold me over for now.

Spice Up Your Life is a weekly recipe column by Lindsey Young, who describes herself as an enthusiastic amateur cook and can be reached through her website at spiceupkitchen.net.

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