Chicken Noodle Casserole

Classic Creamy Chicken Noodle Casserole. Ditch the can and make your cream of mushroom from scratch. It's easy!

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Photography Credit: Megan Keno

It’s hard to find a dish more reminiscent of childhood for me than a good, creamy chicken noodle casserole.

With winter weather still in full effect for much of the country, it’s time to bring this classic back into our kitchens again.

I gave this recipe an update by making it with a from-scratch cream of mushroom base that doesn’t come from a can. This is simple to make in just a few minutes. All you do is whisk flour into some cooked shallots and mushrooms, and then whisk in some milk and broth to make a creamy sauce.

I used brown cremini mushrooms, but you can mix and match with whatever you have available to you. Chantarelles or Portobellos are also wonderful.

Chicken Noodle Casserole Recipe

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  • Prep time: 20 minutes
  • Cook time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 3 cups uncooked egg noodles
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 3/4 cup minced cremini mushrooms
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup chicken or vegetable broth, plus more if needed
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 4 cups, loosely packed, cooked shredded chicken breast (from 2 whole chicken breasts or 1 pound raw chicken)
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs

Method

1 Preheat oven to 400F.

2 Cook the noodles: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Salt generously and add the egg noodles. Cook until al dente, or according to package directions. Strain and set aside.

3 Cook the shallots and mushrooms: In a 10-inch skillet over medium heat, melt 3 tablespoons of the butter (save the remaining 2 tablespoons for later). Add the shallots and sauté until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the minced mushrooms, and cook until they start to soften and shrink, 4 to 5 minutes.

Chicken Noodle Casserole

4 Make the sauce: Sprinkle the flour over the mushrooms and shallots, and stir to coat completely. Cook until the flour turns into a thick paste, in about 2 minutes.

Slowly whisk in the broth, followed by the milk. Continue whisking until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Bring to a simmer and allow it to thicken, 5 to 7 minutes. The finished sauce should be creamy and loose; if it seems to thick, stir in up to a half cup additional broth.

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5 Assemble the casserole: In a 3-quart casserole dish, combine the mushroom sauce, shredded chicken, cooked egg noodles, and cheeses and stir until mixed. Spread out into an even layer.

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6 Top the casserole with buttered breadcrumbs: In a small dish, microwave the last 2 tablespoons of butter for 20 to 30 seconds, until melted. Stir in the Panko crumbs to coat with butter. Sprinkle the buttered breadcrumbs over the top of the casserole.

7 Bake the casserole for 25 to 30 minutes. Cover loosely with a sheet of aluminum foil if the panko topping is browning too quickly. When done, the edges of the casserole should be bubbling.

8 Cool briefly, then serve. Leftovers will keep refrigerated for about a week. Reheat in the microwave or a low oven.

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Megan Keno

Megan Keno, is the writer, recipe developer, and photographer behind the nationally recognized food blog Country Cleaver. Her work has been featured in Country Living Magazine, Better Homes and Gardens, America’s Test Kitchen, The Kitchn, and on The Pioneer Woman’s Tasty Kitchen Blog.

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Showing 4 of 13 Comments

  • Cindy

    Could the problem with the proportions be in the ingredient list–what is 3 cups of uncooked noodles? A weight for the noodles would be more accurate. Thanks!

  • Kim

    The proportions for me were off and ended up with a sticky mess, not enough liquid. I am thinking there may be a misprint in the recipe, where it is printed the chicken broth at 1/2c but the picture shows the cook adding a whole cup. Didn’t notice the proportions were off until everything was combined. Ended up adding more broth to everything in the dish and eating it as is because I ran out of time. I couldn’t recoup the texture but it was still tasty!

  • samantha

    Do I have to cook the raw chicken first and then mix?

  • Heather

    If I wanted to skip the homemade sauce — how much canned cream of mushroom soup (not condensed) would I need?

  • Melissa

    What vegetables (if any) would you recommend adding for a little more nutrition?

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