Chicken Stuffing Casserole

Thanksgiving flavors any time of the year? Yes, please! Impress your family with this creamy, crunchy, and delicious chicken stuffing casserole!

Scoop of chicken stuffing casserole.

Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

This chicken stuffing casserole has two layers: A creamy filling made with chicken and a trio of onions, carrots, and peas tossed in an easy homemade béchamel sauce. It’s topped with a Thanksgiving-inspired stuffing of toasted bread, celery, onions, and fresh rosemary, sage, and thyme. The casserole is baked until the filling is bubbly, and the stuffing is crispy and browned.

This is the perfect recipe to meal plan. Make it on a slow weekend to serve during your busy week ahead. It’s also a great recipe for a crowd—it easily feeds 6 to 8—with a simple green salad on the side dressed with this bright dressing

The Best Bread for Stuffing

I like the tang of sourdough, but a baguette, a ciabatta, or any Italian-style loaf would work. I’d avoid rye or pumpernickel as their flavors are too assertive for this dish. 

Pre-cut or boxed stuffing mixes have small cubes of bread—I prefer to buy a whole loaf and cut the cubes a little larger (about 1 inch). 

Chicken stuffing casserole.

Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

What is Béchamel Sauce?

Béchamel, considered a French mother sauce, is a white sauce made with just three basic ingredients. Cook equal parts butter and flour (called a roux), then whisk in warm milk until the sauce is thicken and creamy.

The trick to get a smooth béchamel is to keep stirring the mixture as it cooks. The ideal consistency is like a pourable pancake batter. If it thickens too much, just add a little more milk while stirring. If it’s too thin, continue cooking it over the heat until it thickens. 

Smart Shortcuts and Tips

Chicken: I use boneless skinless chicken thighs because they have more flavor and are less likely to dry out. Chicken breasts are perfectly acceptable. This easy method will walk you through how to cook either. 

You can also use leftover chicken from another meal. Just make sure that the seasonings on it are tasty with the flavors of sage, rosemary, and thyme. Of course, shredding up a store-bought rotisserie chicken is another great shortcut.

Vegetables: Save a little prep time with store-bought pre-diced onions, celery, and carrots. Also, frozen vegetables are always available and handy. Feel free to use it here. Thaw, drain any excess liquid, and stir it into the béchamel (no need to cook them first). 

Herbs: Fresh herbs punch up the flavor and are worth seeking out. Look for fresh herb packets labeled as poultry blend in the produce section. They contain smaller amounts of sage, rosemary, and thyme so you don’t need to buy three separate bunches. Dried herbs are okay to use—reduce the amounts by half since their flavors are more potent.

Bread: Some stores sell pre-cubed bread, which can save you some prep time. Look for unseasoned ones so that you can control the salt and flavors. 

Yummy Swaps

This casserole lends itself to ingredients you may already have on hand. Here are some swaps that would be delicious: 

  • Instead of chicken, try turkey, Italian sausage, or cubed cooked ham.
  • Got leftover stuffing? Use it here! 
  • Add shredded cheese like cheddar or Monterey jack to the béchamel for more richness.
  • Stir grated parmesan into the stuffing before topping the casserole.
  • The recipe calls for carrots, onions, and peas—they are a classic trio often found in casseroles. There are many other vegetables that would work here. Broccoli is great! Use any type of onion you may have like leeks, red onion, or shallots. Green beans, bell peppers, or parsnips would also be nice in the filling. Leafy greens such as spinach or kale could also work. There is celery in the stuffing; add some in the filling.
  • One caveat: I love garlic in most anything, but I found it to be too pungent in this dish.
Chicken stuffing casserole in black bowl.

Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

Plan Ahead 

This casserole can be fully assembled ahead of time, tightly covered with foil, and refrigerated for up to 24 hours until ready to bake. It can even be frozen for up to 3 months for future meals—fully thaw it in the fridge overnight before baking. 

Our Favorite Casserole Recipes 

Chicken Stuffing Casserole

Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 85 mins
Total Time 100 mins
Servings 6 to 8 servings
Yield 1 9x13-inch casserole


For the stuffing topping

  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided

  • 7 ounces day-old sourdough loaf, cut in 3/4- to 1-inch cubes (about 4 cups)

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided

  • 3 stalks celery, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 1 1/2 cups)

  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped (about 1 1/4 cups)

  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, minced

  • 2 teaspoons fresh sage leaves, minced

  • 1 1/4 teaspoons fresh thyme, minced

  • 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth

For the creamy chicken filling

  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided

  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped (about 1 1/4 cups)

  • 1 large carrot, trimmed and chopped (about 1 cup)

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided

  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed

  • 1/3 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped

  • 2 pounds (about 4 cups) shredded cooked chicken

  • 2 cups whole milk

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour


  1. Preheat the oven: 

    Arrange an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat it to 350°F. Grease a 9x13-inch baking dish with 1 tablespoon butter. 

  2. Toast the bread: 

    In a large skillet over medium heat, melt 3 tablespoons butter. Add the cubed bread and toss to coat evenly in the butter. Sprinkle in 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, and toss to combine. Toast the bread until lightly browned all over, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Keep an eye on them, lowering the heat if they brown too quickly or start to burn. Turn off the heat and transfer the bread into a large bowl. Set it aside to cool. 

    Toast bread in skillet.

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

  3. Cook the stuffing vegetables: 

    Return the same skillet to the stove over medium heat, and melt the remaining 1 tablespoon butter. Add the celery, onions, and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables soften, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the rosemary, sage, and thyme, and stir until fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute. 

    Turn off the heat and scrape the vegetables into the bowl with the bread. Stir in the chicken broth and set the bowl aside. This is your stuffing. 

    Sauté vegetables in skillet.

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

    Toss bread and vegetables together.

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

  4. Make the filling: 

    Return the same skillet to the stove over medium heat, and melt 1 tablespoon butter. Add the onions, carrots, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables soften, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the peas, parsley, and chicken. Turn off the heat and set the skillet with the filling aside while you make the béchamel. 

    Cook chicken and vegetable filling.

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

  5. Make the béchamel: 

    Pour the milk a microwave-safe bowl and heat in 15 second intervals until warmed through but not boiling. It will be used in the béchamel.  

    In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt 4 tablespoons butter. When it’s gently bubbling, whisk in the flour until no lumps remain. Continue whisking until the roux (the mixture of butter and flour) is slightly darker in color and smells toasty, 4 to 5 minutes. 

    Pour in a little bit of the warmed milk and whisk to combine. Slowly stream in more milk, whisking the roux continuously to prevent clumping. You can switch to a rubber spatula or wooden spoon at this point to get into the bottom edges of the saucepan. Add the remaining milk and continue stirring until the béchamel thickens into a pancake batter-like consistency, about 5 minutes. 

    Turn off the heat and stir in the remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Scrape the béchamel into the skillet with the chicken and stir to combine. This is your creamy chicken filling. 

    Make the roux.

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

    Add milk to roux to make bechamél.

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

    Add bechamél into chicken filling.

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

  6. Assemble the casserole: 

    Pour the creamy chicken filling into the prepared baking dish and spread it into an even layer. Evenly spread the stuffing on top. Tightly cover the dish with foil and bake until the filling is heated through and bubbly, 20 to 30 minutes. Carefully remove the foil and continue baking until the stuffing is crispy and lightly browned, 15 to 20 minutes. Let it sit for a few minutes before serving.

    Once baked, the leftovers will keep for up to 4 days in the fridge.

    Add filling to casserole.

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

    Top casserole with stuffing.

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

    Cover casserole with foil.

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

    Baked chicken stuffing casserole.

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
455 Calories
26g Fat
32g Carbs
24g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 8
Amount per serving
Calories 455
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 26g 34%
Saturated Fat 13g 64%
Cholesterol 108mg 36%
Sodium 510mg 22%
Total Carbohydrate 32g 11%
Dietary Fiber 4g 13%
Total Sugars 9g
Protein 24g
Vitamin C 11mg 54%
Calcium 136mg 10%
Iron 3mg 17%
Potassium 522mg 11%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.