Do you have those recipes that you just crave? You know those recipes that take you back? This is one of those dishes for me! And the BEST part?? It’s LOW-CALORIE! Yep, it weighs in at about 250 calories per serving! Crazy right? Oh, and did I mention how insanely easy this recipe is?? Let’s get to it! (Oh, I should mention, this recipe is one passed down from my grandmother; pretty sure she got this off of a Campbell’s Soup can back in the day. There are still versions of it around, but I’ve added my own touches. But, as Bugs Bunny once said, “credits where credits is due!”)
HERE’S WHAT YOU’LL NEED:
1 box Chicken Flavored Stuffing
1 can Reduced Calorie/Fat Cream of Chicken Soup
1 can French Cut String Beans
1 stick butter (I use unsalted)
I should also mention since it only takes about a half of a rotisserie chicken, if I have no other uses for the chicken, I double the recipe and freeze! (As I did today 🙂 )
I call it assembly, because let’s face it, this isn’t “cooking!”
(Preheat oven to 350) Prepare stuffing based on package directions. Once you’ve gotten to the stage of adding the stuffing mix and lidded the pot, it can sit and wait for you!
Pull apart the chicken with your fingers to covered the bottom of a 2 quart casserole dish, sprayed lightly with cooking spray. I like to use exactly 1 side of the chicken, this means one breast, leg, thigh and wing. I take MOST of the skin off, I do sprinkle in a bit here and there for extra flavor. No sense in wasting that yummy herby flavor! 🙂 You don’t want big pieces here, but don’t make it too small or you’ll be in the kitchen forever! (If you are doubling, as I did, get a comfy spot and have at it! It does take a bit of time)
Now it gets REALLY easy! Ready for this? Open a can of french-cut green beans, drain, dump and spread to cover the chicken. (I use my fingers) I know, that was tough! Oh, you can also use peas, cooked broccoli or whatever, I just prefer the more mild flavor of the green beans. Plus the shape matches the shredded chicken. Yes, I’m OCD. TIP: I don’t drain to dry, a little extra moisture helps keep the chicken moist when baking.
Truly…this is the hardest step for me. Putting all that yummy stuffing on top of the green beans! It doesn’t happen. I ALWAYS keep a small bowl out for myself. I consider it an appetizer while the casserole is baking! 😀
THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT STEP: Open and dump the can of cream of chicken soup on top of the stuffing. IMPORTANT: make sure you flip your spoon and go around the edges to create a little space, then push some of the soup down and around. But not all the excess! Leave some little “puddles” on top because next your going to make “holes” all around the casserole. You’ll want to push the soup down so that as it bakes it works its way through all the layers. As I tried to show below. (Yes, a metal spoon might be easier, but I’ve been making this for longer than I can say, so it doesn’t matter to me.)
Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes or until brown and bubbly. THAT’S IT! I know your friends or family will love it! I also make this to take to work for Thanksgiving!
Now you’re ready to make the BEST freezer meal, ever! Yes, this freezes really well! TIP: make sure you smash it down really well to not leave any air in the layers. Another TIP: For the love – LABEL THIS! I made this mistake in the beginning; you might think you’ll remember what it is, but things can look quite different when frozen. This is one of those dishes! It is pretty nondescript. Final TIP: Make sure anything you freeze is at refrigerator temp BEFORE putting in the freezer! This will prevent large ice crystals from forming and piercing and drying your food as it thaws! (Coming soon: Microwave/Reheating tips!)