Welcome to my kitchen! Today, I am excited to share one of my favorite recipes with you: Chicken Spectacular. This dish has been a family favorite for generations and is always the star of the show at our dinner parties.
When it comes to preparing meals for guests, I always go for recipes that are easy to make, yet impressive on the plate. Chicken Spectacular is the perfect example of this. With just a handful of ingredients and some simple steps, you can create a delicious and visually stunning casserole that is sure to impress your guests.
This recipe is one that I inherited from my mother, who in turn inherited it from her mother, so you know it’s been tested and perfected over time. I have made some minor tweaks over the years, but the heart of the recipe remains the same.
The best part about Chicken Spectacular? It’s incredibly versatile. You can easily adjust the ingredients to suit your taste preferences or dietary restrictions. Whether you’re hosting a large dinner party or just cooking for the family, this recipe is sure to be a hit.
So, let’s grab our aprons and get cooking! I promise that once you try this recipe, it will become a staple in your own kitchen.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
If you’re a fan of creamy and savory casserole dishes, then trust me when I say that the Chicken Spectacular recipe is the one for you! This dish has a perfect balance of flavors and textures that will make your taste buds dance with joy.
Firstly, the combination of wild rice and long-grain white rice provides the dish with a delightful texture contrast. The wild rice is slightly chewy while the white rice is fluffy and tender, creating a perfect base for the dish. However, what makes this recipe truly spectacular is its use of chicken breast meat that has been cooked to perfection before being added to the casserole.
The chicken adds a boost of protein, giving this meal an edge above other vegetarian casseroles you may have tried before. Complementing this protein-packed ingredient are water chestnuts, French style green beans, onion, and pimientos that add flavor-rich ingredients to the recipe while keeping things interesting.
To enhance the flavors even more, this casserole also includes condensed cream celery soup and mayonnaise. These ingredients help produce a hearty and tantalizingly creamy sauce that envelops all of the components in the casserole in sublime comfort-food goodness.
Overall, Chicken Spectacular is a tried-and-true family classic that offers everything you’d ever want from a casserole dish – protein-packed heftiness, varying textures from different grains and vegetables, flavorful punch via use of various ingredients like canned onions and celery soup – all come together in a satisfyingly comforting concoction. Once you give it a try yourself (head up to RecipeHow.com or PaulaDean.com to find out how), we’re sure it’ll earn a spot as your regular family dinner rotation!
Chicken Spectacular Recipe
- 3 cups of cooked chicken breast
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3 cups cooked French style green beans
- 1 jar sliced pimientos
- 1 can (10.75 ounce) condensed cream celery soup
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 2 packages (6 ounces each) Uncle Ben’s long grain wild rice, cooked
- 1 can (10.75 ounce) condensed cream of chicken soup
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup uncooked wild rice
- 3 cups cooked cubed chicken breast meat
- 2 packages (6 ounces each) wild white and long grain wild rice (Uncle Ben’s Original Long Grain & Wild Rice), cooked as per on the package directions
- 2 cans (14.5 ounces each) French style green beans, drained (alternatively fresh steamed green beans)
- 1 can (8 ounces) water chestnuts, drained and sliced
- Condensed cream of celery soup (one can)
- 1 cup mayonnaise
Note: Be sure to prepare all ingredients as directed for perfect results.
The Recipe How-To
Now, let’s dive into the fun part – cooking the Chicken Spectacular recipe step by step.
Step 1: Prep Work
Before even thinking about cooking, make sure to preheat your oven to 350°F. Next, take out a large bowl and gather all of your ingredients including cooked chicken, green beans, water chestnuts, white rice, wild rice, cream celery soup, mayonnaise, onion, and pimientos. It’s important to have all of the ingredients laid out in front of you for easy assembly.
Step 2: Mix Everything Together
In a large bowl, mix together the condensed cream of celery soup and mayonnaise until completely smooth. Add in the chopped onion, sliced pimientos (drained), drained water chestnuts, French-style green beans (drained), cooked white rice, cooked wild rice, and cooked cubed chicken.
Step 3: Combine Mixtures
Once everything is stirred together well in the first mixing bowl, combine it with the second large mixing bowl that contains only wild rice cooked according to package directions using broth instead of water. Stir well.
Step 4: Bake in Casserole Dish
Spray a 9×13 inch dish with cooking spray and transfer the mixture into it. Smooth the top but do not press down too hard.
Step 5: The Waiting Game
Bake in a preheated oven at 350°F for up to an hour or until heated through and bubbly!
This fantastic texture combination of crispy water chestnuts alongside soft rice and chewy chicken just can’t be beaten. Whether you want a perfect weeknight dinner or something more special for entertaining guests, this chicken spectacular casserole is sure to delight your taste buds!
Substitutions and Variations
Are you interested in making some substitutions or variations to the Chicken Spectacular recipe? Here are some suggestions to try:
– For the wild rice, you can use brown rice or a combination of brown and white rice depending on your preference. Just cook according to package instructions before adding it to the casserole.
– If you don’t have cream of celery soup on hand, you can substitute it with cream of mushroom or cream of chicken soup.
– You can add some extra vegetables to the casserole like mushrooms, carrots, or bell peppers for added texture and nutrients.
– If you’re looking for a vegetarian option, replace the chicken with tofu or chickpeas and use vegetable broth instead of water for more flavor.
– For a healthier version, swap the mayonnaise with Greek yogurt or sour cream and use reduced-fat versions of canned soup.
– If you’re feeling adventurous, try adding some spice to the dish. Add diced jalapeños to give it a kick or sprinkle some cayenne pepper over the top before baking.
These are just some ideas to get your creative juices flowing. Experimenting with different ingredients is part of what makes cooking fun and helps you discover new flavors. Give these substitutions and variations a try and make them your own!
Serving and Pairing
When it comes to serving and pairing this Chicken Spectacular recipe, the possibilities are endless. This dish is so versatile that it can be served as a main course or a side dish. It pairs well with a variety of sides such as garlic bread, roasted vegetables or a crisp garden salad.
For a cozy and traditional feel, serve the Chicken Spectacular over a bed of fluffy white rice. On the other hand, you could also kick things up a notch by serving it over wild rice for an earthy and rustic taste.
If you’re having people over for dinner, consider serving this recipe as part of a larger spread. Pair it with some zesty garlic bread on the side, or add some colorful French style green beans for an extra pop of color to your plate.
For those who like to experiment with their flavors, try adding some spicy chili flakes or a drizzle of hot sauce over the top of the Chicken Spectacular. These additions add depth and complexity to the dish without overwhelming its subtle flavors.
Overall, this spectacular casserole is perfect for large family gatherings or potluck dinners because it’s easy to portion and serve. You won’t regret incorporating this dish into your regular recipe rotation – it’s sure to become a crowd-pleaser!
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
As with most casseroles, this Chicken Spectacular recipe can be made ahead of time and reheated for later use. In fact, I recommend that you make this casserole at least one day in advance to allow the flavors to develop and meld together.
To make sure that the chicken casserole stays fresh and delicious, follow these tips. First, be sure to let the casserole cool completely before storing it in the fridge. You can either cover it with foil or transfer it to an airtight container. The casserole will keep well in the fridge for up to three days.
When it’s time to reheat the casserole, you have a couple of options. If you have individual servings, you can reheat them in the microwave on high for 1-2 minutes until hot. For larger servings or the entire dish, preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C). Place the casserole in the oven and cover it with foil. Heat for approximately 20-30 minutes or until thoroughly heated.
One thing to keep in mind is that reheating the casserole may dry it out slightly. To avoid this, add a bit of moisture by mixing together some extra cream of celery soup or mayonnaise, and drizzle it over the top of the casserole before reheating.
Overall, this Chicken Spectacular recipe is a fantastic choice for make-ahead meals and leftovers. With proper storage and reheating techniques, this spectacular casserole will remain fresh and tasty time after time.
Tips for Perfect Results
When making my Chicken Spectacular Recipe, there are a few tips that I recommend following to ensure perfect and delicious results every time.
First and foremost, make sure to use high-quality ingredients. Fresh vegetables such as French style green beans, water chestnuts, and pimientos will enhance the taste of the dish. Don’t hesitate to spend a bit more money on the best produce you can find.
Another tip is to cook the rice and chicken separately. Cook the rice in a separate pot with chicken broth instead of water for added flavor, and cook the chicken until it’s fully cooked through. The separate cooking helps maintain the texture of both ingredients and prevents them from getting mushy.
In addition, we want to prevent dryness in our casserole, so making sure not to overcook it is important. I suggest keeping an eye on the chicken spectacular recipe while it’s baking and checking it occasionally to ensure it’s being cooked perfectly.
A great way to add some crunch to this dish is by adding breadcrumbs on top of your casserole before baking. You may also choose to add some slivered almonds for an extra crunch, which will create variation in texture between the crispiness of the breadcrumbs with crunchy nutty goodness.
Finally, when reheating leftovers, remember to add some liquid before heating or microwave at reduced heat level with covered lid or film wrap on medium-high power level for 5 minutes per cup or until heated through. This will keep your casserole moist and flavorful.
By following these tips, you’ll be sure to make a scrumptious Chicken Spectacular Recipe that will impress anyone who tries it!
In conclusion, the Chicken Spectacular Recipe is nothing less than amazing. It is a dish that I have personally made and shared with my loved ones, and it never fails to impress. The dish is affordable and easy to prepare, yet it looks and tastes like it was prepared by a Chef. With its creamy texture and explosion of flavors, your taste buds will thank you for choosing this recipe as your go-to for your next get-together.
From the flexibility of interchangeable ingredients, to the convenience of make-ahead options and easy storage possibilities, the Chicken Spectacular Recipe truly has it all. Furthermore, the recipe is perfect for cozy dinners at home or grand gatherings of family and friends! So go ahead and give this spectacular recipe a try; you will not be disappointed!
Chicken Spectacular Recipe
- 3 cups cooked chicken
- 1 (6 ounce) package uncle ben combination wild and white rice, cooked
- 1 (10 ounce) can cream of celery soup
- 1 (3 ounce) jar sliced pimientos
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 cups French style green beans, drained
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 (8 ounce) can water chestnuts, diced
- salt and pepper
- Mix all ingredients.
- Pour into a 2 1/2 to 3 quart casserole.
- Bake 30 minutes at 350 degrees.
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Anna is a culinary expert who specializes in grilling delicious BBQ dishes. She also enjoys sharing her recipes and experiences with her foodie community on her blog. She’s the total package for any backyard barbecue!