I want recipes for Chicken Casseroles, please.
February 29, 2012 2:14 PM   Subscribe

Your favorite Chicken Casseroles with real vegetables and no hash browns? What is in them? How much? Double points for links to recipes that you love. Please limit my need to think or experiement.

I just don't have the brain power to play it by ear these days, and I don't have the financial resources to throw out a pan of wrecked food.

Recently I have discovered a super easy way to make delicious shredded chicken in the crock pot, and I feel confident that it can be used for anything. (Toss chicken breasts into crock pot. Add a little bit of salt, some pepper, and about 1/2 cup of water. Cook on low for 10 hours. Shred with forks.) I'm willing to use chunk chicken if you insist it makes a better finished product in your recipe! The shredded stuff just offsets one step of the cooking process.

I've been searching "chicken casserole" and have come up with an overwhelming pile of...stuff. Lots of it involves hash browns. Very little of it involves veggies. I'm ok with a can of cream of something soup here and there in my life. I need meals that I can eat for long periods of time, solid rib sticking foods. These days I'm often not hungry, but I know I need to eat. Casseroles can make that easier for me.

My pantry doesn't contain much in the way of asian ingredients, so maybe don't suggets Asian inspired noodle dishes? All veggies are welcome in my home and my belly. No dietary restrictions to date.

I've been making tacos and quesadillas with the chicken, but those are getting boring. So, any suggestions for things un-casserole-y and things un-tacoey would be good too.
posted by bilabial to Food & Drink (20 answers total) 34 users marked this as a favorite
I found a yam-red bean-peanut butter stew in a crock pot cookbook once, and I think that chicken would be a great addition. I'm traveling so I can't look it up, but without the chicken, it goes something damn close to:

- 1-2 large yams, peeled, diced ~1/2-3/4" cubes (# of yams depends on how big your crock pot is)
- 1/2 white or yellow onion, diced
- 1 can red beans
- 1 can diced (unseasoned!) tomatoes.
- 1 can diced green chiles (these are small cans, smaller than tuna)

(later: 2 tbsp chunky natural peanut butter. I also like adding Sriracha because SRIRACHA ON/IN EVERYTHING!)

Add, in that order to the crock pot, cook until yams are cooked (~5 hours on low? I'd start it in the morning, and it would be done when I came home from work. Take the lid off, let some liquid cook off (but not all!) for ~30 min. Spoon out ~1/2 cup of liquid. Add peanut butter, stirring to dissolve in the liquid. Once loosened up, add to the crock pot, stirring. Turn off heat & serve. Obs. all canned things can be fresh.
posted by smirkette at 2:25 PM on February 29, 2012

Pot pies and their ilk? You can make them with or without a bottom crust, and the top can be biscuits or potatoes (more shepards-pie-like) or premade crust. Then you can use whatever veggies you want in there, and whatever flavors. Curry pot pie? Sure!

Quick Pot Pie: Crust in a casserole pan, prebake slightly in oven. (If using bottom crust.) In a bowl, mix a can of cream of X soup, your chicken, and whatever frozen/fresh chopped veggies and/or herbs you like. Then pour it into the casserole pan with or without the bottom crust. Put a top crust on. Cook until crust is done and innards are warm, since your chicken is already done.

(If you want to use no canned cream of X, obviously you can, but it takes longer. This is my go-to meal when I have leftover chicken and a bunch of 12 hour days in a row.)
posted by cobaltnine at 2:27 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

BBQ chicken sandwiches.

and I would use the chicken and make chicken pot pie.
posted by royalsong at 2:28 PM on February 29, 2012

in really any typical chicken casserole you can add in broccoli and carrots. noodles are a good substitute for potatoes in a casserole, like cook the (whole wheat if you wish) pasta 1/2-2/3 of the way, mix with a can of cream of whatever, mix in chopped broccoli and carrots and maybe an onion and garlic, some shredded chicken, add a breadcrumb mix on top if you'd like. that'd be delicious i think.

rice, shredded chicken, fresh green beans and broccoli steamed, some seasonings, maybe some shreds of some sort of hard cheese like parmesan.

shredded chicken is a nice addition to pasta salads.
posted by nadawi at 2:34 PM on February 29, 2012 [2 favorites]

I like Giada's Italian Baked Chicken and Pastina casserole recipe. It's nothing fancy, but does the job. It uses chunked chicken, but your shredded chicken should work just fine (maybe adjust the cooking time so it doesn't dry out?). You can add more veggies to it as well (broccoli works very well in it).
posted by dayintoday at 2:53 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Turkey Apple Casserole, also good with chicken. Pineapple juice is the one weird ingredient. The recipe calls for cubed poultry but shredded would also work fine, I think. Technically it has fruit rather than veggies. :) (I don't use much brown sugar when I make it, I like it less-sweet.)

Another really, really easy chicken recipe is to get a 16 oz. jar of Newman's Own Pineapple Salsa (or other salsa) and 4-6 boneless skinless chicken breast halves. Arrange breasts in 9x13" glass casserole dish, dump salsa on top, cook for 20-30 minutes at 350, and serve. You actually do this with any salsa you like; you can also cook it for 6-8 hours on low in the crockpot (add some additional liquid, maybe). You can also do it with a whole chicken, at 20 minutes per pound and putting foil over it to keep it moist. All of these ways are very very good. If you want to make it a little fancier, I take either pineapple rings (when using pineapple salsa) or onion sliced into rings (other salsa) and arrange those on the bottom of the casserole dish (like soda 6-pack rings) and set the chicken (breasts or whole bird, either works) on top of the rings; it makes a nice stage so that some of the fat runs off (and flavors the onions or pineapple!) and cooks the chicken a little more evenly. You can melt a little cheese on top the last 10 minutes or so, too. World's easiest, most flexible recipe, and it really is very delicious and fairly healthy for such easiness.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 3:00 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

You can also use that chicken to make a heavy chicken soup. My supermarket has a frozen vegetable soup mix for like $1.19 for, I don't know, 16 oz? (You could also use a stir-fry mix.) I start with 4 cups of broth (homemade or from a can), dump in the chicken and the frozen veggies, simmer a while, and then add either rice or pasta and cook as per instructions. (I usually add jarred minced garlic, rosemary, parsley, etc.) It makes a lot of soup.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 3:05 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

cottage pie, of course.

Make a roux with butter, flour, and chicken stock; season with salt, pepper, a bay leaf, and plenty of thyme. Simmer cut-up carrots, turnips, celery, and whatever other sturdy vegetables you want in it until barely shy of tender. Stir in peas and chicken and take off the heat. Spread in a baking dish, top with real mashed potatoes, cheese optional. Bake at 350 until the potatoes are starting to brown.
posted by peachfuzz at 3:18 PM on February 29, 2012 [2 favorites]

Coq au Riesling.
posted by iviken at 3:42 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Brown chicken parts in olive oil with McCormack's Grill Mate chicken seasoning and chopped onions and garlic. You may add other chopped veggies if you wish, mushrooms, peppers, celery etc.

Put in a roasting pan, pour in a can of diced tomatoes with basil, garlic and oregano. Sprinkle on parmesan and romano cheese, cover with foil and bake at 375 for 45 minutes. Serve with pasta.

You can use either chicken with skin, or skinless chicken breasts.
posted by mermayd at 3:51 PM on February 29, 2012

Let me suggest some terms to search for: "Chicken Yassa"; "Chicken Cacciatore"; "Chicken with Tomatillos and Poblanos"; "Chicken Groundnut Stew"; "Chicken Tagine".
posted by Sidhedevil at 3:58 PM on February 29, 2012

I usually have good luck with Eating Well's recipes, and they often include more vegetables (especially in one-dish meals) than recipes from other sites. I just did a quick search for "shredded chicken" and got quite a few results that might be useful.
posted by stellaluna at 4:12 PM on February 29, 2012

Pioneer Woman's "Chicken Spaghetti" is fantastic. Totally filling wonderful comfort food made from scratch with peppers and onions. It's definitely a casserole rather than a stereotypical "pasta" dish. I make it often and use gluten free noodles, sometimes I also put peas in it. She also has a creamy mushroom version that looks really good.
posted by cuddles.mcsnuggy at 4:38 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Make bechamel sauce (I don't do real Escoffier-style bechamel, I make a roux with butter and then stir in milk, whisk until smooth and thick, then add a pinch each of dry mustard and nutmeg and a couple drops of hot sauce). Stir in a packet of frozen spinach, thawed and drained -- squeeze the water out. Mix with chicken and cooked pasta, scrape into a casserole dish, top with Parmesan, and bake.
posted by KathrynT at 5:03 PM on February 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

this recipe for white chicken and artichoke lasagna came up in my pinterest feed the other day and looks great. i haven't had time to try it yet, but i don't see where it could really go wrong (unless you hate artichokes).
posted by koroshiya at 5:11 PM on February 29, 2012

For an easy comfort thing to do with your shredded chicken, try chicken, bacon and mushroom pie.

Fry onion until golden, throw in bacon and cook for a few minutes, throw in chopped celery and sliced mushrooms and let them cook tender on a medium heat (about 20 minutes, but get them close to how you want them in the finished product).

Stir in a tin of condensed cream of mushroom soup and your shredded chicken, adding water if it looks dry. Let that come back to simmer very gently while you roll out a lid of (bought) puff pastry.

Put everything in your pie dish, top with the lid. Slash the lid in a few places, brush with milk/egg if you care, sling it the whole thing in a medium oven until the top is risen and cooked.

You can leave out the bacon entirely, or just add some cooked ham to the final mixture. Garlic, thyme, oregano, Worcester sauce, white vermouth, balsamic vinegar, black pepper or cayenne are among the things I would consider adding. Try using thigh meat (bought skinned and boned) either to make your shredded chicken or chunked and browned off in a pan instead.

If you like tinned corn, you could add that instead of (hell, as well as) the mushrooms. Frozen peas too. Sliced carrots. Red/orange (sweet) peppers.

Serve with whatever really. Boiled/steamed/nuked vegetables? Crunchy salad?

You could use this basic chicken-mushroom gloop in a pasta bake too, or top with mash for a "cottage pie". Basically any of that rib-sticking stuff. If you let it cool before adding the chicken (or tuna, come to think of it), you could freeze it in portions and reheat it for whatever purpose you fancy. You can also always make a basic mix then fry off some veg and pour the defrosted gloop on top to reheat, giving you even more options.
posted by howfar at 5:11 PM on February 29, 2012

Coq au vin of any type. This recipe looks similar to what I've made in the past.
posted by lollusc at 8:43 PM on February 29, 2012

Lisa Fain (Homesick Texan)'s King Ranch Chicken Casserole, updated to include fresh ingredients instead of say, canned cream of mushroom soup, is good and rib-sticking. I can't seem to find the recipe online at the moment though (her whole book is quite good in an everyday-food-that's-still-very-fresh-and-tasty way, by the way...). Her Enchiladas Verdes are also good.

Speaking of stuff like that...the most delicious kinda-bordering-on-Tex-Mex-y dish I've ever made is David Rosengarten's Chilaquiles, which is pretty much "morning-after brunch casserole" made with leftover tortillas from the night before fried to a crisp, zippy salsa verde, and chicken. Delicious. You scorch the vegetables first. It's the tomatillos that make it, contrasted with the light creaminess of queso fresco and super-moist chicken. SO GOOD.
posted by ifjuly at 5:10 AM on March 1, 2012

Two variations of the King Ranch Chicken Casserole, including the one mentioned above.

Lisa Fain's

All Recipes

We like the King Ranch Chicken Casserole at our home. It is easy to make it Gluten-free too.
posted by onhazier at 7:14 AM on March 1, 2012

I really like Curried Chicken and Broccoli Casserole. It's delicious and low-carb (but note: very high fat). I don't use the bread crumbs and I use a lot more curry powder.
posted by kitcat at 12:09 PM on March 1, 2012

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