Crunchy Salsa Chicken Bake
If you are following me on Instagram or Facebook then you already know about this recipe. It has been a busy week, not unlike all of my weeks lately! But when I made this casserole yesterday, I had to do something I haven’t had to do in a long time. I started thinking about what I needed to do for dinner at 6 am.
It was just “THAT” kind of day. As a matter of fact, Monday night, when I was telling David about the fullness of the day to come, he suggested Taco Bueno as our meal savior for my dinner dilemma. I really do not like PLANNING fast food as a meal. So I kept thinking.
First thing Tuesday morning, I began to do a mental roll call of all the items in my fridge, freezer and pantry. As I have said before on Food for a Year, there are certain things I ALWAYS ((try to)) keep in my food stock pile. 4 of those items were used for this recipe:
- Herdez jarred salsa
- light cream cheese
- block cheddar cheese
- frozen sticky rice
The other two ingredients are a major bonus if I have them on hand — rotisserie chicken and corn chips.
After I thought of my meal idea, I realized I would not be home in time to make or even eat dinner. But, I would be at mom’s ((and dad’s)) around lunch and back at her house again 30 minutes past our normal dinnertime. As I loaded up the four kiddos for their school day ((they attend school on Tuesdays and Thursdays)) & myself for my Bible study day, I also loaded up all of the ingredients I would need to make dinner & stuck them in an insulated bag … in hopes I could find a window whip up a meal.
As planned, I arrived at mom’s ((with Gracie)) right at lunch. While she ate, I made dinner. Mom watched me and I think she was impressed: “looks so good…I bet the kiddos will like it…so easy…” were among the comments she made in the 5 minutes it took for me to put it all together.
Once assembled, I covered it and stuck it in mom’s fridge. I knew I wouldn’t be back from an upcoming early evening meeting in time to bake it – so I quickly gave her the baking instructions and we were off to a few afternoon errands, school pick up lines and piano lessons.
After my evening meeting, Gracie and I headed back to mom’s where the boys had been awaiting our return and working on their Math & Latin assignments. To my delight, dinner was done baking and we were just a quick table setting chore away from a sit down dinner with the my herd AND mom and dad!!
Just a little planning, a well stocked pantry and a bit of problem solving for busy day & evening was all that stood between me and a family style ((healthier)) home-cooked meal. I felt as though I had accomplished greatness – all because of a little ((but delicious)) casserole.
The next time home-cooked seems far-fetched, consider this recipe as your saving grace. A well stocked pantry and some rotisserie chicken are all you need to accomplish greatness in a pinch.
- I box frozen rice ((I use a Japanese style sticky frozen rice I have seen at Walmart))
- 3 cups rotisserie chicken ((shredded))
- 4 oz light cream cheese cubed and dropped over the chicken
- 1 jar of your fav salsa ((I love Herdez medium))
- 1 1/2 c shredded sharp cheddar ((shredded by hand))
- 2-3 handfuls of lightly crushed corn chips
- Layer the ingredients in the order listed into a deep casserole & bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Cover lighty with foil if you notice the chips are starting to burn.