Boil, Toil, and Troubled Poultry
September 3, 2011 7:52 AM   Subscribe

[BoiledChickenFilter?]My 8-year-old son and I decided to make chicken noodle soup from scratch. What to do with leftover cooked chicken?

We bought three large boneless, skinless chicken breasts and boiled them with some salt, pepper, and a little butter. We've now pulled enough chicken to make our soup, but we have the equivalent of about two breasts left over (in chunks, not pulled). We're happy with the amount of soup we're going to have. Need ideas of what to do with this leftover boiled chicken.

Caveat: We are generally not fans of chicken salad.

Thanks MeFi!
posted by kuanes to Food & Drink (26 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
pan fried chicken hash with eggs?
posted by memi at 7:53 AM on September 3, 2011

Quiche! Cube the chicken, and then add some veggies, cheese and some egg/milk/cream mixture. You can either make the pastry and then have whatever size quiche you have a pan for, or buy the pie shells and just use those.
posted by that girl at 8:00 AM on September 3, 2011

Can't we all agree to actually read the question before we answer it?

Anyway. Chicken can be a great add-on to most pasta dishes. Here's a recipe for an absolutely delicious-sounding Avocado Pasta. Just refrigerate the chicken leftovers for now and use them for dinner!
posted by litnerd at 8:01 AM on September 3, 2011

My default leftover breast meat solution is a Thai curry. I like masaman, and that recipe is ok but I usually don't bother and just chuck stuff in to taste.
posted by restless_nomad at 8:07 AM on September 3, 2011 [1 favorite]

Chicken Fried Rice
posted by royalsong at 8:09 AM on September 3, 2011

I like this recipe which is sort of a bastardization of egg foo young. It calls for whatever cooked protein you have lying around, and would work perfectly with plain old bland boiled chicken.

Sidebar: if you ever make chicken soup from scratch again, get the bone IN. There is so much flavor and nutrition in the bone!
posted by telegraph at 8:11 AM on September 3, 2011 [3 favorites]

Oh, chicken pot pie is also a good thing to do with leftover chicken.
posted by that girl at 8:13 AM on September 3, 2011

Best answer: Chicken enchiladas
posted by ephemerista at 8:16 AM on September 3, 2011

Not quite chicken salad: pieces of shredded chicken mixed up into potato salad is quite good.

Also, you'd be surprised how delicious a simple bird, tomato, and mayo sandwich on nice bread is. (Best way to use turkey leftovers after thanksgiving, too.)
posted by phunniemee at 8:20 AM on September 3, 2011

Best answer: We use diced chicken in quesadillas: tortillas topped with cheddar cheese, diced chicken, grilled onions, refried beans(optional). Fold in half (or put another tortilla on top) and cook on a griddle like a grilled cheese sandwich. Top with sour cream, salsa, avocado.
posted by CathyG at 8:29 AM on September 3, 2011

Vietnamese coleslaw is great with that kind of chicken.
posted by Trivia Newton John at 8:50 AM on September 3, 2011

Boil some tri-color rotini pasta, rinse and chill, toss in your chicken. Add carrots, tomatoes, radishes, bell peppers as you like. Dress with the vinaigrette of your choice Mmmm, cold pasta salad.
posted by headspace at 8:59 AM on September 3, 2011

Response by poster: Thanks for the ideas! I'm going to save the chicken and go to the store for some chicken stock (since we didn't keep the boiled water) to make ephemerista's chicken enchiladas suggestion.'

Quesadillas was also an excellent suggestion.

Unfortunately, Mrs. kuanes is not a fan of Mexican food. But the rest of us will be living it up!
posted by kuanes at 9:05 AM on September 3, 2011

Chicken pizza!
posted by macadamiaranch at 9:32 AM on September 3, 2011

Buy a bottle of good BBQ sauce (or make your own) and heat it over low heat* Dump in previously cooked chicken and after the chicken is heated through, use 2 forks to shred the chicken.

*you can also do the BBQ & chicken in a crock pot for 4 or 5 hours but the chicken is cooked so you only need to heat it through.

As a bonus, the shredded chicken BBQ freezes nicely.
posted by jaimystery at 9:36 AM on September 3, 2011

Not that you asked, but next time--you'll get more flavor from dark meat pieces with bones and skin.
posted by Ideefixe at 9:37 AM on September 3, 2011 [1 favorite]

Yeah, basically boiled white meat chicken gets crazy dry, so you just want to make sure you're mixing it in with something creamy or gooey. Chicken salad is the go-to solution because the mayo fits the bill, but cheese or sour cream or some sort of carbonara-type pasta sauce or whatever will work just as well.

If you're on a Mexican-ish kick, try chilaquiles — the bastardized American version we get around here is basically pulled chicken reheated in salsa verde, poured over tortilla chips and topped with cheese or sour cream. It's a good cooking-with-eight-year-olds recipe: no chopping, no fancy techniques, looks more complicated than it is.
posted by nebulawindphone at 9:39 AM on September 3, 2011

BBQ chicken pizza (a la California Pizza Kitchen) -- spread your favorite BBQ sauce on a pizza crust, top with diced chicken, sliced red onion, light spread of shredded mozzarella and shredded cheddar, and some chopped cilantro (skippable for cilantro haters). Bake in a 450 oven for 12-15 minutes.

(add a little crumbled bacon for an added treat)
posted by briank at 9:44 AM on September 3, 2011 [1 favorite]

Do you like imsanely delicious and are not too worried about calories? This chicken or turkey lasagne is wonderful. I use real garlic and onion instead of powder - even more tasty, and the onion adds a bit to the texture, of course. This stuff freezes well too.
posted by Decani at 11:05 AM on September 3, 2011

The last time I made it, I left the chicken pieces in the soup.
posted by brujita at 12:19 PM on September 3, 2011 [1 favorite]

For next time: when making chicken broth, bones add deliciousness. If you start with a rotisserie chicken, pick off the meat and simmer the bones and skin for 2 - 3 hours, you get really nice stock. You can add a carrot, celery, onion, parsley, etc., but it's not necessary. I get a chicken at the grocery every couple of weeks. Even if I just use the broth to make cooked rice (much) tastier, it's worthwhile. Homemade broth + some white wine + some mushrooms + rice = very good risotto.
posted by theora55 at 1:46 PM on September 3, 2011 [1 favorite]

While you're at it, check out this book.
posted by rodgerd at 2:03 PM on September 3, 2011

Seconding theora55 - your soup was probably great, but usually with chicken soup, you cook bone-in chicken parts (or a whole chicken) for a while, then take the meat off and reserve it, then put the bones back in and cook the hell out of the thing for a while longer (if you only like white meat in your soup, you can reserve the cooked breast meat only, and put the dark - leg and thigh -- meat back in with the bones).

If you play your cards right, you can easily stretch a $7 chicken to a couple of meals.
posted by rossination at 4:25 PM on September 3, 2011

Chicken tacos or chicken enchiladas? How about a good, old-fashioned hot chicken sandwich with gravy?

Here's a good one: Add 1-2/3 cups of water to a box of stuffing mix and set it aside to soften up. Put your two chicken breasts on the bottom of an oven-proof pan or dish. Mix a can of mushroom soup with 1/3 cup of sour cream, add a half package of frozen mixed vegetables and pour the whole mess over the chicken, then add the stuffing on top and bake for 35 min at 375 degrees. It's far from health food, but my kids love it.
posted by aryma at 7:35 PM on September 3, 2011

Black bean "salad" (I put it in quotes, because basically, if it was served hot I suppose it might be considered a chili): Black beans, shredded or cubed chicken, corn, diced red bell pepper, and avocado. Season to your taste (I mix with olive oil, a little lemon, salt, pepper, garlic), and serve over mixed greens or lettuce. It's a great summer dish.
posted by taz at 10:25 PM on September 3, 2011

Taquitos They freeze well!

Also, you can make empanadas, using store-bought puff pastry, or pie dough; throw cheese, veggies, or whatever floats your boat, in with the chicken.

Casserole: combine your chicken with a bag of frozen, but thawed veg medley in a large bowl.
In another bowl, empty a can of cream of chicken soup, 1/2 cup of milk, 1/3 cup of Italian dressing, and 1 1/2 tsps dried thyme.
Mix, then add to chicken mixture.
Spread into 9 x 13 casserole. Cover with shredded cheddar cheese.
Cover with foil, and bake in a preheated 350 oven, 30 minutes.
While that's baking, cut a can of refrigerator biscuits into quarters. Cover with dish towel.
After 30 minutes, dot top of casserole with biscuit pieces.
Return to oven for another 15 minutes, or until the biscuits are done.

There was a time when I'd eat an entire one by myself!
posted by JABof72 at 11:20 AM on September 4, 2011

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