Family Dinner Ideas Made with Leftover Chicken
Many people don’t want last night’s leftovers even with the best intentions. It may be surprised how much food and money go to waste in the average home. But take that leftover food, plus a little creativity, and voila… a new meal!
Make Hearty Chicken Soup From Chicken Leftovers
Planning a roast chicken dinner? Choose a chicken large enough to feed the entire family, with extra to spare. Reserve the liquid from the roast, bones removed, to use as a broth for the soup. If there isn’t enough liquid from the roast, or it wasn’t saved, simply create a broth from water and chicken bouillon.
Choose to make the soup in a large pot, or slow cooker. Slow cookers always bring out the best flavors. Cut up the leftover chicken into spoon-sized pieces and add broth in a slow cooker or pot.
Add some sliced or diced veggies. Carrots, peppers, corn, celery, onion, etc. are all good choices. Add some pressed garlic or spices to taste, for extra flavor. Let the soup cook until the veggies are tender-crisp, then add some whole wheat bowtie pasta or instant brown rice and cook until tender. Serve with crackers, biscuits, or a garlic baguette.
Break up leftover chicken and place it in the bottom of a casserole dish. Add fresh or frozen broccoli, cauliflower, or veggies of choice. Pour a can of cream of mushroom soup over the veggies and chicken.
Prepare a package of instant dressing for chicken, according to package directions. Top the casserole with the dressing. Put the lid on the casserole dish and bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes, or until heated through.
Chicken & Rice Dish
In a rectangular baking dish, combine diced leftover chicken and vegetables of choice. Add instant long-grain brown rice and water, according to the measurements on the rice package.
Add powdered chicken bouillon, as per instructions, according to the amount of water used with the rice. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until all the water has been absorbed by the rice.
Chicken & Pasta
The combination of chicken and pasta is so versatile; there may be no end to the dishes one could create. Try chicken fettuccini alfredo, with broccoli, peppers, mushrooms, or a combination of the three.
Make spaghetti with tomato and meat sauce, substituting the usual ground beef for the leftover chicken. Choose whole-wheat pasta for maximum nutritional benefit.
Chicken for Lunch
Don’t want to wait to use the leftovers for dinner? Throw some chicken on a salad for lunch. Create a delicious club sandwich, or simply toss the chicken in some mayonnaise, add a bit of curry powder, and spread it between two pieces of bread.
Enjoy moist, flavorful roast chicken and veggies one night, and endless possibilities for the next day. Start putting leftovers to good use, and watch the savings add up!