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Chicken and Rice Casserole

Chicken and Rice Casserole

Cool weather makes me hungry for comfort food. Comfort food for me is the food of my childhood, which for me either means fried, sauce-laden or full of carbohydrates. Sometimes it is a combination of these. The combination of cool weather and the month of March make me hungry for some comfort food that my mother has been making since probably 1976. The reason March makes me think of this recipe is that my mother still makes this Chicken and Rice Casserole for my youngest brother’s birthday every year.

Mother told me the other day that she has all of the ingredients except the chicken purchased for the traditional birthday chicken and rice casserole. While this is not the way my mother or I cook or eat regularly she still makes it exactly as the original recipe is written with cans of soup, white rice, and a whole stick of butter.+.

I have made healthier versions of chicken and rice casserole for myself and my family dozens of times. However, the cold front that came in yesterday made me hungry for the unhealthy version. It might have had something to do with having had a few days of 60 – 70 degree temperature only to have a cold and snowy morning yesterday. My subconscious must have wanted processed soups and carbs to replace the spring-like weather!

The family must have been very happy that I needed comfort food, because they loved the full fat unhealthy version of chicken and rice casserole. I did not even need to serve the steamed broccoli on the side, because although it made a lovely accompaniment, the family was content without it.

I believe the real secret of this casserole is the low and slow cooking time. It allows the chicken to be cooked perfectly, but also lets the soupy goodness soak into the rice and marry the flavors together. The use of a whole chicken also contributes to the goodness since everyone can have their favorite piece and the juices of the cut up chicken flavor the rice as well.

If you are a fan of poultry and are in need of a dish of homemade comfort food this is the perfect dish. Give it a try and tell me what you think! What is your favorite comfort food or cold weather dish?

Chicken and Rice Casserole

  • 1 – 2 whole chickens (cup up)
  • 1 ½ cups white rice (uncooked)
  • ½ cup butter (1 stick)
  • 1 can cream of celery soup
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 soup can of water
  • Salt to taste
  • Paprika
  1. Grease a large casserole dish. The dish needs to be large enough to hold all of the cut up chicken pieces in one layer.
  2. In a saucepan on the stove or a glass bowl in the microwave melt the butter.
  3. Add soups and water to the butter and mix well.
  4. Place uncooked rice in bottom of greased casserole dish.
  5. Pour half of soup mixture over rice and stir to mix.
  6. Place cut up chicken pieces over rice mixture. Sprinkle chicken with salt and paprika.
  7. Pour remaining soup mixture over chicken.
  8. Bake for 3 hours at 275 degrees. Do not cover.
  9. Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes before serving.

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2018 in Dinner Recipes

 

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Chicken Pot Pie – healthified

Chicken Pot Pie – healthified

Winter weather has come to Kansas! It is cold outside, folks. As I sat at my kitchen table Monday I watched the skies turn grey and the leaves start to drop off the trees like rain from the skies. A cold front was coming through. The temperature dropped about twenty degrees in a matter of three hours, in the middle of the day! As I sat shivering I decided that I needed to make some ‘comfort food’ for dinner so I immediately set out to find a healthier Chicken Pot Pie Recipe. I polled The Hubs and Daughters Three and Four to see if the preferred a pie crust style pot pie or a biscuit style pot pie. They did not care.

I came across a recipe at http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/chicken_potpie.html that was similar to what I was looking for. I made a few changes and came up with the recipe below. It was a colossal success. Everyone liked it; really liked it. It was piping hot, even after sitting for 10 minutes. It was hearty and creamy. What more could anyone ask for? Cheese. It was suggested by an unnamed inhabitant of my house that cheese would have been a good addition. Other than that there were no suggestions to make the chicken pot pie recipe better.

I took leftovers for lunch Tuesday and the rest was eaten by The Hubs and girls for lunch. They must have liked it or they would NOT have eaten leftovers! Especially after I announced that each serving was only 350 calories and 8 grams of fat! Now that’s success.

I discovered late yesterday that my brother who is the super cooker made a chicken pot pie with biscuit topping Monday evening, too. He DID add cheese to his biscuit crust. I think one serving of his probably had the caloric content of my entire dish so I think I’ll stick with mine!

If you are in the mood for something to warm you up and give you a big hug of deliciousness give this chicken pot pie recipe a try. It definitely did the trick for my group!

Chicken Pot Pie

Filling

  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • ½ cup onion (minced)
  • 1 cup carrots (diced)
  • ½ cup potatoes (diced)
  • 2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups cooked chicken (diced)
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 2 servings homemade cream soup mix

Topping

  • 3/4 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cold butter (cut into small pieces)
  • 1 cup nonfat buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  1. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large oven proof skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onions and carrots; cook, stirring, until golden brown and tender, about 7 minutes. 

  2. While onions and carrots are heating, parboil potatoes in hot water on the stove, or in the microwave. Drain the potatoes and add to the pan. Cook for 3-5 minutes to mingle flavors. 

  3. Add 2 cups vegetable broth and bring to a boil; reduce heat to a simmer. 

  4. Mix dry cream soup substitute with the remaining 1 broth; add to the pan and cook, stirring, until thickened. Remove from heat. Fold in chicken and peas. Set aside.

  5. Preheat oven to 400°F.

  6. In a large mixing bowl whisk flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and thyme. Cut butter into the dry ingredients using your fingertips, 2 knives, or a pastry blender until coarse like corn meal. Make a well in the middle and add buttermilk and oil. Stir until just combined.

  7. Drop the dough onto the filling in 6 even portions. Pat the tops gently with floured hands. Bake until the crust is golden and the filling is bubbling, 30 to 35 minutes. 

  8. Remove from oven to a cooling rack. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

 
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Posted by on November 13, 2013 in Dinner Recipes

 

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