Best way to reheat!
March 16, 2008 3:07 PM   Subscribe

Help! I'm cooking a rather large batch of baked chicken tonight, but there are only two of us and I'm wanting to save the leftovers for later. What's the best way to do so?

I'm cooking a fancy baked chicken dish and I want to overcook so we have more later in the week. However, I'm not sure how to best reheat the food so it is still palatable.

Microwaving is out - I've never had microwaved meat come out decent. And my microwave can't even manage bacon.

So what do I do? I can freeze or refrigerate it to save it, but what's the best way to reheat the chicken so it'll still taste good? Oven? How long and at what temperature?

This is the recipe I'm using, btw.
posted by Gideon to Food & Drink (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Just because you can't do microwave bacon, that's not an automatic exclusion of the microwave. Cook your food. Put the leftovers in Gladware. Reheat on high for 2-3 minutes, turning or stirring halfway through. This applies to all leftovers.
posted by pieoverdone at 3:17 PM on March 16, 2008

Response by poster: Well, I really would prefer not to use the microwave at all. The crust is going to be somewhat crunchy and I'd like to keep it from being damp and soggy.
posted by Gideon at 3:24 PM on March 16, 2008

a heavy dutch oven or similar pot with a lid in the oven at 325 will keep everything from drying out. How long depends on how big the pan is and how much chicken. Check at 30 minutes and every ten after that until done.
posted by kuujjuarapik at 3:25 PM on March 16, 2008

on preview, to keep things crispy keep the lid off!
posted by kuujjuarapik at 3:27 PM on March 16, 2008

FWIW, I make a baked chicken with a crispy crust that I think tastes even better as leftovers heated in the microwave. Don't be afraid to try it!

That said, throwing it in the oven at 350 until it's warm (I'd guess 5-10 min or so) should do it. The thing to look out for is drying out your leftovers, making it way worse than any microwave could.
posted by messylissa at 3:54 PM on March 16, 2008

You can reheat it in the oven, but the chicken breasts will want to. The microwave will keep the meat more moist, but it will make the crust softer. Although, in all honesty, the crust probably isn't going to make it anyway. The moisture you want in the chicken is the very thing that will doom the coating. I might try a 350-ish degree oven, part of the time to heat the chicken through without it utterly dehydrating and part of the time uncovered to dry out the coating. Maybe even a minute or two under the broiler for extra recrisping.
posted by mostlymartha at 3:55 PM on March 16, 2008

Only pour the sauce over the portions you will be eating tonight, then store the remaining chicken breasts and sauce separately in the fridge.

Reheat the breasts in an uncovered casserole dish for about 15 minutes and then check - you don't want to dry them out too much by reheating them. You might want to sprinkle a little water on them before reheating (it will evaporate).

You could also cut the leftover breast pieces up, sautee lightly in fry pan, and serve over rice cooked with golden raisins and a little spice (like curry powder or garam masala). Reheat the leftover sauce on low and pour over the top.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 4:02 PM on March 16, 2008

Possibly obvious, but worth mentioning- set aside your chicken for leftovers before you put the sauce on, and store the prepared components separately.
posted by mkultra at 4:05 PM on March 16, 2008

Best answer: Store wet stuff (sauces, veggies) separate from dry crunchy stuff (chicken with skin).

For tonight, store in the fridge wrapped in aluminum foil, not saran wrap or sealed Tupperware.

When ready to eat tomorrow, microwave the sauce. Place the chicken on aluminum foil and heat in toaster oven or on the broiling rack.

When I roast a whole cut-up chicken, I cut up the breasts before putting away leftovers and mix them with fat-free mayo, salt, pepper, celery, golden raisins and Trader Joe's almonds & cranberry mix. This is a good chicken salad for the next day.
posted by charlesv at 5:27 PM on March 16, 2008

Charlesv's idea of chicken salad is a good idea. Also just slice the chicken up for a sandwich.

I use leftover chicken for mini-pita-pizza's. I like Flatout but any whole-wheat pita works. Spread sauce (marinara, pesto, whatever you have on hand), then throw on some veggies and cut up chicken, and on top of that a little mozarella. I put mine in the toaster oven for 10 mins or so but a regular oven works too.
posted by radioamy at 6:00 PM on March 16, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks everyone! I put the chicken in foil and the sauce in tupperware. Looking forward to heating it back up (it was phenomenal!)
posted by Gideon at 6:47 PM on March 16, 2008

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