Cheesy Chicken Rotel Pasta

Here’s the full recipe for Cheesy Chicken Rotel Pasta:


  • 1 16 oz box of pasta (such as mini penne)
  • 32 oz Velveeta Cheese
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 6-8 skinless boneless chicken thighs
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 2 cans Rotel
  • 1 block of Cream Cheese (8 oz)
  • Olive oil, for tossing chicken
  • Seasonings for chicken (smoked paprika, onion powder, ground turmeric, garlic powder, parsley, black pepper)
  • Additional ingredients (optional): spinach


  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Toss the chicken thighs in olive oil along with the seasonings listed. Place them on a baking sheet and bake for around 30-35 minutes or until cooked through. Once done, let the chicken cool and then shred it.
  3. Cook the pasta according to the package instructions. Once cooked, drain the pasta and add a half stick of butter to it, stirring until the butter is melted and coating the pasta.
  4. In a large cooking pot, combine the Velveeta cheese, heavy cream, half stick of butter, parsley, cream cheese, and Rotel. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until everything is melted and well combined.
  5. Once the cheese mixture is smooth, add the shredded chicken and cooked pasta to the pot. Stir until everything is evenly coated and heated through.
  6. Optional: If desired, add spinach to the pot for added color and flavor. Cook until the spinach is wilted and incorporated into the pasta.
  7. Serve hot and enjoy your delicious Cheesy Chicken Rotel Pasta!

Most 20 Popular Questions and Their Answers Related to Cheesy Chicken Rotel Pasta:

1. Can I use a different type of pasta?

  • Yes, you can use any type of pasta you prefer or have on hand. Penne, rotini, or elbow macaroni would work well.

2. Can I use boneless, skinless chicken breasts instead of thighs?

  • Yes, boneless, skinless chicken breasts can be used instead of thighs. Adjust the cooking time as needed to ensure they are fully cooked.

3. Can I substitute the Velveeta cheese with another type of cheese?

  • While Velveeta provides a creamy texture, you can use other types of cheese such as cheddar or Monterey Jack. Just keep in mind that the texture and flavor may vary.

4. Can I use fresh tomatoes instead of Rotel?

  • Yes, you can use fresh diced tomatoes instead of canned Rotel. You may need to adjust the seasoning to compensate for the lack of flavor from the canned tomatoes.

5. Can I make this dish ahead of time?

  • Yes, you can prepare the pasta and chicken ahead of time and store them separately in the refrigerator. When ready to serve, reheat the cheese sauce and combine everything together.

6. How long will leftovers last in the refrigerator?

  • Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop until heated through.

7. Can I freeze this dish?

  • Yes, you can freeze this dish for up to 3 months. Transfer the cooled pasta to freezer-safe containers or resealable bags. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

8. Can I add additional vegetables to the dish?

  • Yes, feel free to customize the dish by adding vegetables such as bell peppers, onions, or mushrooms. Just be sure to cook them before adding them to the pasta.

9. How can I make this dish spicier?

  • You can add additional spices such as cayenne pepper or chili powder to the cheese sauce to increase the heat level.

10. Can I make this dish vegetarian? – Yes, you can omit the chicken and add extra vegetables or beans for protein. Consider using vegetable broth instead of chicken broth for added flavor.

11. Can I use store-bought rotisserie chicken instead of baking my own? – Yes, using store-bought rotisserie chicken can save time. Simply shred the chicken and add it to the pasta along with the cheese sauce.

12. Can I use half-and-half instead of heavy cream? – Yes, you can use half-and-half as a lighter alternative to heavy cream. However, the sauce may not be as rich and creamy.

13. Can I add bacon to the dish? – Yes, cooked and crumbled bacon can be a delicious addition to this pasta dish. Add it along with the shredded chicken and pasta.

14. Can I use reduced-fat cream cheese? – Yes, you can use reduced-fat cream cheese if you prefer. However, keep in mind that it may affect the texture and creaminess of the sauce slightly.

15. Can I make this dish gluten-free? – Yes, you can use gluten-free pasta and ensure that the other ingredients such as the cream of chicken soup and seasonings are also gluten-free.

16. Can I use fresh herbs instead of dried parsley? – Yes, you can use fresh parsley or other herbs such as thyme or rosemary for added flavor. Just adjust the quantity to taste.

17. Can I use a different type of soup instead of cream of chicken? – Yes, you can use cream of mushroom or cream of celery soup as alternatives. They will add different flavor profiles to the dish.

18. Can I use a different type of cheese instead of Velveeta? – Yes, you can use any meltable cheese such as cheddar, Monterey Jack, or a combination of cheeses. Experiment with different cheeses for unique flavor variations.

19. Can I make this dish on the stovetop instead of in a slow cooker? – Yes, you can prepare this dish on the stovetop by following the same steps. Cook the chicken and pasta separately, then combine everything in a large pot and heat through.

20. Can I add hot sauce for extra heat? – Yes, you can add hot sauce to the dish if you prefer a spicier flavor. Add it to the cheese sauce or drizzle it over the finished pasta before serving, according to your taste preferences.

To achieve the perfect Cheesy Chicken Rotel Pasta, here are some secrets to keep in mind:

  1. Quality Ingredients: Start with fresh, high-quality ingredients, including chicken, pasta, cheese, and vegetables. Fresh ingredients will enhance the overall flavor of the dish.
  2. Proper Seasoning: Season the chicken with a flavorful blend of spices before baking or cooking. This ensures that the chicken is well-seasoned and adds depth of flavor to the dish.
  3. Balanced Cheese Sauce: When making the cheese sauce, use a combination of Velveeta cheese, cream cheese, and heavy cream for a rich and creamy texture. Adjust the amount of cheese and cream to achieve the desired consistency.
  4. Creamy Texture: Ensure that the cheese sauce is smooth and creamy by melting the cheeses slowly over low heat. Stir constantly to prevent the cheese from burning or clumping.
  5. Cook Pasta Al Dente: Cook the pasta just until it is al dente, or firm to the bite. Overcooked pasta can become mushy and affect the texture of the dish.
  6. Combine Ingredients Carefully: When combining the cooked pasta, shredded chicken, and cheese sauce, mix gently to avoid breaking up the pasta or chicken too much. This helps maintain the integrity of the ingredients.
  7. Add Spinach for Color and Flavor: Consider adding spinach to the dish for added color, texture, and nutrition. Sauté the spinach until wilted before adding it to the pasta.
  8. Adjust Seasonings to Taste: Taste the dish before serving and adjust the seasonings as needed. Add more salt, pepper, or spices to suit your preferences.
  9. Garnish with Fresh Herbs: Sprinkle chopped fresh parsley or basil over the finished dish for a pop of color and fresh flavor.
  10. Serve Immediately: Serve the Cheesy Chicken Rotel Pasta immediately after cooking for the best taste and texture. Enjoy it while it’s hot and fresh from the stove.

By following these secrets, you’ll be able to create a delicious and satisfying Cheesy Chicken Rotel Pasta that your family will love.