Classic Chicken Tetrazzini

Chicken Tetrazzini
Chicken Tetrazzini. Kurtwilson/Photolibrary/Getty Images
  • Total: 110 mins
  • Prep: 20 mins
  • Cook: 90 mins
  • Yield: 12 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
899 Calories
56g Fat
28g Carbs
69g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 12 servings
Amount per serving
Calories 899
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 56g 72%
Saturated Fat 24g 122%
Cholesterol 304mg 101%
Sodium 1536mg 67%
Total Carbohydrate 28g 10%
Dietary Fiber 3g 10%
Protein 69g
Calcium 441mg 34%
*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.)

A great dish to make for a crowd, this chicken tetrazzini can be made in advance and refrigerated until 1 hour before serving time. It's a great potluck dish, or make it for a big family get together.

Feel free to add a buttered bread crumb topping for more texture.

This dish can also be made with turkey or a combination of chicken or turkey with ham. The recipe makes enough for 12 people.


  • For the Chicken:
  • 2 pounds chicken breasts
  • 3 pounds chicken legs quarters with thighs
  • 3 cups water
  • 3 celery tops
  • a few sprigs parsley
  • 2 medium carrots, washed and sliced
  • 1 medium onion, quartered
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • For the Sauce: 
  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 4 cups milk
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 cup whipping cream or heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup dry sherry
  • For the Pasta: 
  • 1 pound thin spaghetti
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 12 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 16 ounces shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

Steps to Make It

Note: while there are multiple steps to this recipe, this chicken dish is broken down into workable categories to help you better plan for preparation and baking.

Make the Chicken

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Place the chicken in a large Dutch oven or kettle with 3 cups water, the celery tops, parsley, carrots, quartered onion, 2 teaspoons salt, 1/8 teaspoon pepper, and the bay leaf. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer for 1 hour, until tender.

  3. With a slotted spoon remove chicken to a bowl and set aside to cool.

  4. Strain the broth and return to the kettle. Bring to a boil and boil gently, uncovered, for about 30 minutes, or until the broth is reduced to about 2 cups.

  5. Remove chicken from bones and dice, discarding skin and bones. There should be about 6 cups of diced chicken. Set aside.

Make the Sauce

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. For the sauce, melt 3/4 cup of butter in a large saucepan.

  3. Remove from heat. Stir in flour, 2 1/2 teaspoons salt, and nutmeg. Stir until smooth and well blended.

  4. Return to medium heat. Gradually add milk and the 2 cups of reduced broth, stirring constantly, until the mixture begins to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and continue to cook, stirring constantly, for about 2 minutes, or until slightly thickened.

  5. Beat the egg yolks in a small bowl with the heavy cream.

  6. Whisk in about 1 cup of the hot mixture from the saucepan.

  7. Then return the egg mixture to the saucepan. Cook, stirring constantly, over low heat until sauce is hot. Do not boil.

  8. Remove from heat and stir in sherry.

Make the Pasta

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Cook spaghetti in boiling salted water in a large pot following package directions; drain thoroughly.

  3. While spaghetti is cooking, heat the tablespoon of butter in a skillet over medium heat, and saute the mushrooms for 5 to 7 minutes, or until browned. Set aside.

  4. Return the spaghetti to the pot. Add 2 cups of the sauce to the spaghetti toss to coat well.

  5. Remove another 2 cups of sauce to a small bowl; place in the refrigerator.

  6. To the remaining sauce, add the chicken and mushrooms.

  7. Divide spaghetti into two 8-inch square baking dishes, making a well in the center. Spoon half of the chicken and mushroom mixture into the center of each. Sprinkle 2 cups of shredded cheese over spaghetti in each dish.

  8. Cover with foil and refrigerate.

  9. About 1 hour before serving, preheat oven to 350 F.

  10. Bake foil-covered casseroles for 30 to 45 minutes, or until hot and bubbly.

  11. Just before serving, heat the reserved sauce.

  12. Spoon over the spaghetti in baking dishes and enjoy!

Similar Recipes

Recipe Tags: