Go Back
Southwestern Chicken Cavatappi

Southwestern Chicken Cavatappi

Course Chicken, Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword chicken-casseroles, easy-chicken-recipes, southwestern-chicken-cavatappi
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 8 servings
Calories 630kcal
Author Melissa Sperka


  • 12 oz dry cavatappi pasta
  • 5 tablespoon butter
  • cup all purpose flour
  • 3 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 ½ cup shredded pepper Jack cheese divided
  • 3 tablespoon taco or fiesta seasoning i.e. McCormick
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
  • 3 cup roughly chopped rotisserie chicken
  • 1 cup black beans drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup frozen corn with peppers thawed
  • ½ cup thick and chunky salsa plus additional for serving
  • 4 green onion sliced (Reserve 2 tablespoon for garnish)
  • '


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 13 x 9 inch baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
  • Cook the pasta in salted water per the package directions until al dente then drain well.
  • In a heavy bottomed saucepan, melt the butter then add the flour. Cook over medium-high stirring until the flour has dissolved.
  • Whisk in the garlic salt, pepper and 3 cups milk. Bring to a boil, then immediately lower the heat ti medium-low whisking constantly. Allow to gently bubble for 5 minutes then add 2 cups cheese.
  • Remove from the heat and stir until the cheese melts. Add the taco seasoning, ground cumin and oregano mixing well.
  • Add the cooked pasta, chopped chicken, black beans, corn,and green onion to a large mixing bowl. Pour the sauce on top and mix well.
  • Pour ½ into the baking dish. Dollop the salsa over the pasta, then sprinkle lightly with ¾ cup pepper Jack cheese. Top with the remaining pasta and finish the top with the last ¾ cup shredded cheese.
  • Bake for 30-40 minutes until bubbly around the edge and the cheese is golden.
  • Serve immediately garnished with green onion and with additional salsa on top, if desired. .


Cavatappi or corkscrew pasta is a twisted elbow pasta with ridges. Large elbow macaroni could be used, if desired.
It's important to use a thick and chunky salsa either mild, medium or hot your preference.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 630kcal | Carbohydrates: 53g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 18g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 104mg | Sodium: 883mg | Potassium: 553mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 1042IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 512mg | Iron: 3mg