Green Chile Chicken Casserole

Have you ever been torn between two similar recipes and couldn’t decide which one to make? That was my dilemma when craving comfort food not long ago. I wanted chicken…but was it going to be Chicken Casserole or Cream Cheese Enchiladas? I decided to take a little of both recipes and create this Green Chile Chicken Casserole –

casserole

It was warm & comforting and everything I love about a casserole! I’ve posted this recipe over at Eat at Home, where I am a contributing writer. I’d love for you to head over there and check it out!

Chicken & Biscuits Casserole {Quick and Easy Meal}

This Chicken & Biscuits Casserole is another quick and easy meal to get on the table, that is approved by 2 out of 3 (of my) children. It’s pretty much the ultimate comfort food, with creamy sauce, biscuits, cheese…oh yeah, and some chicken too. Some people even get crazy and throw a vegetable in there. Which totally would not fly in my house. 

This can be thrown together really quickly if you have pre-cooked or leftover chicken (or turkey), use refrigerated biscuits, and condensed cream of chicken soup. However, you could certainly use homemade biscuits, make your own cream of chicken, etc. I went with the super quick and easy version since as I mentioned in my last post…kids have practice in the evenings and dinner has to be FAST.
I used the large Pillsbury Grands biscuits, but next time I will use the smaller biscuits, just to make serving easier; or cut them in half before baking. I quartered and baked the remaining biscuits in the can because my crowd loves a biscuit, but you could buy the smaller container of biscuits. You can always do this with the leftovers too.

Chicken and Biscuits Casserole

1 can condensed Cream of Chicken Soup (I used the reduced fat version)
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt (or sour cream)
2 cups chicken, cooked and cut into bite size pieces
3 tablespoons milk
3 tablespoons melted butter
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1 can of biscuits (I used Pillsbury Grands Reduced Fat)
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees and spray an 8×8 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. 
  • In a large bowl, mix the cream of chicken and yogurt (or sour cream) together.
  • Add chicken, milk and melted butter to the cream base. Stir until combined. 
  • Pour into prepared baking dish and top with cheese. 
  • Flatten your biscuits (only 4 of the Grands biscuits would fit) and place on top of the cheese.
  • Bake for approximately 30 minutes or until biscuits are nice and browned on top, and sauce is bubbly. 
  • Allow to cool for 5 minutes or so before serving (the sauce will thicken some as it sits)
Recipe adapted from: The Three Little Birdies

 

 

Homemade Potato Soup

I know there has been a lot of soup going on around here, but this chick has been cold. This one is pure comfort food too…full of creamy potatoes, loaded with bacon…yep, it’s a stick to your ribs winter soup. And thankfully those ribs are covered with layers of sweaters, jackets and scarves right now because I ate a lot of this soup. Seriously, I can’t worry about swimsuit season until I can feel my fingers again.

This is a thick, creamy soup…but you can decide if you want yours super smooth, super chunky, or anywhere in between. I am a slightly chunky girl. And that can be taken quite literally at the moment. #wearingmyfatpants. If my kids don’t get back into a regular school schedule (my kids haven’t been to school more than a half day since Feb.13th! And today…a delay), and we don’t all get and stay well (we’ve had strep, multiple colds, ear infections, bronchitis, back issues…all going on since December!), I am going to lose my mind. LOSE IT I tell you! {maybe already gone?!}

Dress up your soup with cheese, green onions, red pepper flakes, sour cream…whatever you like. It’s ALL good.

Homemade Potato Soup

6 slices bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 small onion, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
8 cups chicken broth

6 whole small to medium sized Russet potatoes
3 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
salt, to taste *start with 1/2 tsp and add if needed
ground black pepper, to taste


*Toppings: Shredded cheese, green onion, red pepper, sour cream, etc. (optional)

  • Cook bacon in large stock pot. Remove bacon pieces. Discard all but 1 tablespoon bacon grease. (or dump all the grease and add a little olive oil)
  • Add onions, carrots, and celery to pot and saute until onions begin to soften and become translucent, about 2-3 minutes.
  • Add broth to pot, bring to boil. Boil for approx 5 minutes. 
  • *This step is optional* Use an immersion blender to puree vegetables (or place in blender). Once blended, add potatoes, bacon (See Notes), salt and pepper to pot with pureed vegetables and stock. Bring back to a boil, and cook for 10 minutes.
  • Whisk together flour and milk, add to soup, boil for additional 5 minutes.
  • Reduce heat to simmer, remove 1/2-2/3 of soup mixture (depending on desired texture of soup) and blend until smooth. Pour back into pot. Add additional salt and/or pepper if needed. Stir in cream and serve with desired toppings.
Notes: I pureed my carrots/onions/celery, but left some of my potatoes in chunks. This requires extra steps (I love my immersion blender) but my kids do not eat chunks of veggies in soup. It just depends on how you like things. If you want a completely smooth soup, you can puree everything together at the end. Also, if you want a lot of smoky, bacon flavor in your soup, add the bacon in when you add the potatoes; if you want less bacon flavor in the soup, leave it out until ready to serve and use it as a crispy garnish. I like it either way.
 

Recipe adapted from Pioneer Woman

You really can’t beat comfort food like this on really cold snowy days. However, I’m ready for Spring!! Maybe that will make me want to eat salads? Lordy, let’s hope so.

I may be linking up at any of the following – (Monday) The Tumbleweed ContessaThe Dedicated HouseSkip to my LouI Should Be Mopping the FloorHuckleberry Love (Tuesday) Mandy’s Recipe BoxSowdering About in SeattleNaptime Creations, Memories By the MileVMG206Anyonita Nibbles (Wednesday) The Newlyweds PilgrimageFluster BusterGinger Snap CraftsNaptime is My TimeTessa the Domestic Diva (Thursday) Joyful HomemakingMiz Helen’s Country CottageLamberts Lately (Friday) Project InspireJust Us FourDiana RamblesThe Better Baker,Close to HomeWalking on SunshineVintage ChicDaily Dish

Filipino Chicken & Rice Soup {Arroz Caldo}

I saw this recipe on Pinterest and it looked so warm and comforting I had to make it. Especially since the South is experiencing the Polar Vortex, which in Southern speak is called a cold snap, and it’s COLD. Anything below 50 is cold to me, so all this “feels like -3 degrees” is downright painful (literally. I have Raynaud’s!)

This soup is as warm and comforting as it looks. My 13 year old and I devoured it. (My 11 year old will not eat rice and my 6 year old will not eat soup. *sigh*) I added a little chili paste to mine to give it a little heat, and I added the green onions, but my daughter ate hers plain.

Arroz Caldo {Filipino Chicken and Rice Soup}

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

3 pieces of thickly sliced ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 pounds chicken, cut into bite size pieces (I used boneless skinless breast)
1 tablespoon salt (original recipe called for fish sauce, I didn’t have any on hand) 
ground black pepper, to taste
8 cups chicken stock
1 cup Jasmine rice
Green onions (optional)
  • In a large stock pot, saute the onion and ginger in the olive oil over medium heat until the onion begins to soften and become translucent, about 5 minutes. 
  • Add garlic, stirring until fragrant, about 1 minute. 
  • Add chicken, salt and pepper. 
  • Once the chicken has cooked through, stir in the stock and Jasmine rice. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to simmer. 
  • Cover and cook for approximately 20 minutes, or until rice is done, stirring often. 
  • Once done, remove chunks of ginger and add salt if needed. Serve with green onions if desired. 
Recipe source: Kitchen Confidante

Olive Garden Copycat Zuppa Toscana – Lightened Up!

Oh yes! The perfect cold weather comfort food. I mean seriously, this is the food version of a warm, fuzzy blanket in front of a blazing fire when it is snowing outside, with a cup of hot cocoa in hand.  Which almost describes my weekend, seeing as how our downstairs heating unit went out this week…so we spent a lot of time huddled up in the living room in front of the fireplace, b/c for whatever reason, it takes a week for the part to come in.  These heat people need to get with the program, I mean helloooo?  What about over night delivery?!  Anyway.  That’s a gripe for another day.  This soup is so warm and comforting, it will make you forget about the frigid temps.
Not only is it delicious, it’s also pretty good for you, thanks to reducing the cream and a good amount of the superfood, kale!  Yes, under all that cream and sausage, there has been a leafy green hiding.  Even better, these changes were made without sacrificing the flavor we know and love from this very popular soup.
I’ve had a few friends waiting patiently for me to get this recipe posted since I put a pic on FB the other day, so here goes!

Olive Garden Copycat Zuppa Toscana – lightened up!

 adapted from Food.com 
1 lb Italian Chicken Sausage (see notes)
3 medium baking potatoes, with skins (1/8 to 1/4 inch slices-see notes)
1 large chopped onion
1/8-1/4 cup bacon bits (optional)
2 cloves minced garlic
2 1/2 (packed) cups kale, stalks removed and chopped
16 oz. chicken broth
1 quart water
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup fat free half and half
1/4 cup skim milk
 
NOTES: 
  • I used Spicy Chipotle Chicken Sausage b/c that is what I had on hand.  Hot Italian Chicken Sausage would be excellent however.
  • Slicing the potatoes in varying widths helps add texture to the soup. The very thinly sliced potatoes ‘dissolve’ into the broth, making it thicker and creamier.
  • I used a 1/2 cup heavy cream b/c I happened to have some leftover from another recipe, however, next time, I will only use half-and-half and milk. Cream is delicious, but not really necessary, and will reduce the fat even more by leaving it out.
Directions
Remove sausage from casings and cook in a large pot over medium high heat until done.
 Remove sausage, add onions, and cook on medium heat until translucent.
Add garlic to onions and cook until fragrant (about 30 seconds or so).
Add sausage back to pot, then add broth and water.
Bring to a boil, and add potatoes.
Cook on medium high until potatoes are done.
Add bacon bits to soup if using.  I used about an 1/8 cup of Hormel Peppered Bacon Bits.
Taste, and add salt and pepper if desired.  I didn’t add any.
Turn heat to low, and add kale, cream (if using), half-and-half, and skim milk.
Heat through, and serve!

VERDICT – This soup was creamy, delicious, filling with a slightly spicy kick.  In my opinion, it tasted very much like the original, but I have only had it at Olive Garden once, a few months ago.  However, this is definitely on my list to make again very soon.