If you are looking for comfort food, this is it man.
Tender, shredded chicken and fluffy white rice are mixed in a creamy sauce and then baked with cheddar cheese and crispy potato chips on top.
Now, I know some of you are thinking I have lost my ever lovin’ mind by putting crispy potato chips on top of a casserole. Might I urge you to work with me for a minute here folks? Let’s think outside to box, ok? The salty crispiness of potato chips adds an awesome texture and taste to this recipe. It pairs really well with the creamy, filling. And let’s face it. I bet you have a bag of potato chips in your pantry right now calling your name. “Use me up!” it is saying to you right this very minute.
Let me also throw in the very wonderful fact that all of my kids love this casserole. “Make this every day, please.” is what one very happy child said after he ate every morsel on his plate. Love that kind of comment, I truly do.
Now, let’s make it baby. You, me and your potato chips of wonder.
Cheesy Chicken and Rice Casserole with Potato Chip Topping
Time: 30 minutes prep + 20-25 minutes baking
Yield: 6-7 servings
Recipe adapted from Allrecipes
***Note: To save time use pre-cooked, shredded chicken. A rotisserie chicken would work great as well.***
2 chicken breasts (about 1 pound) or 2 C cooked, shredded chicken
1 t chicken bullion granules
salt and pepper
1 1/2 C white rice, cooked
2 T onion, finely chopped
1/2 C celery, chopped
2/3 C mayonnaise (I like Best Foods Light)
1 T lemon juice
1 (10.5 ounce) can cream of chicken soup
1/4 C water
3/4 C sharp cheddar cheese, grated
2 C crushed potato chips
1. Grab a couple of chicken breasts. Toss them into a large, deep skillet and pour hot water over the top. Add 1 teaspoon chicken bullion granules and a touch of salt and pepper. Bring the water to a boil over medium high heat, cover the pan and let the chicken cook.
2. When the chicken is cooked through and no longer pink in the center (should only take about 15 minutes), remove it from the pan and shred it with two forks. Put it back in the pan and let it simmer for about 5 more minutes.
3. Remove the chicken from the pan and place it in a large mixing bowl. (Save the water, we will use some of it in a couple more steps). Add 1 1/2 cups cooked rice to the bowl as well. If you are using leftover rice that’s been in the fridge, warm it up in the microwave before you add it. This will help it to mix in better and will shorten the baking time needed.
4. Add 2 tablespoons finely chopped onion…
1/2 cup chopped celery…
and 2/3 cup mayonnaise.
5. Add 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 (10.5 ounce) can cream of chicken soup and 1/4 C water. I used the water I cooked the chicken in. If you are using precooked chicken, no problem…just add regular water.
6. Mix everything together to combine. Spray a 9×13 pan with cooking spray and spread the mixture into it.
7. Sprinkle 3/4 C sharp cheddar cheese over the top of the mixture.
8. Grab some potato chips. I seem to always have these little bags hanging around. My kids always choose flavored chips over these classic ones. Crunch them up into small pieces. You need 2 cups total.