Tobins' Tastes: Cheesy Chicken & Rice Casserole

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Cheesy Chicken & Rice Casserole

I have never liked casseroles. Maybe it's because I am from South Florida where we consider it "cool" out if the temperature drops below 80 at midnight. Maybe it's because I have a weird thing with texture when it comes to food. Or maybe it's just because I am the world's pickiest eater. Yeah, it's probably the last one...

Even though I never liked them, I always wanted to like casseroles. They seem so quick, so easy, so comforting. I have tried a few different versions of a traditional casserole before and none of them ever wowed me until this one.

I found the inspiration for this dish on Pinterest via Picky Palate and adapted it with what we had on hand. I was worried that it might turn out bland but I was so wrong. It was hearty, filling and pretty easy to make.

The best part about this casserole? It doesn't have any canned cream of anything soup, no mayonnaise and no cream cheese. I find that many casseroles have so many processed ingredients that they are really salty or taste too chemically. I love that this dish was made completely from scratch and you could definitely tell by the taste.

I think that next time I will add frozen peas and Justin thought it would be good with broccoli too if you had some on hand. It would also be the perfect freezer cooking dish and I will probably split it up into two smaller pans next time and freeze one for later. Not that I minded having leftovers this time : )

Cheesy Chicken & Rice Casserole
  •  3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion finely diced
  • 3 stalks of celery finely diced
  • 3 large carrots peeled and diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • 2 cups of shredded cooked chicken
  • 3 cups of cooked rice (any variety you like)
  • Salt, pepper and garlic salt to taste
For the sauce:
  • 4 tablespoons of butter
  • 1/4 cup of flour
  • 2 cups of low sodium chicken broth
  • 3 cups total of shredded cheese (I used cheddar)
  • salt and pepper to taste
1.) Heat oil in a large pan and saute the celery, carrots, onion and garlic until soft, took about 10 minutes.

2.) Stir in chicken, rice, salts and pepper and mix well. Pour into a lightly greased 9x13 pan.

3.) While veggies are sauteing, melt butter in a small pan. Slowly whisk in flour followed by chicken broth. Let mixture simmer and continue to whisk until it thickens. Don't let it boil all the way. Whisk in 2 cups of cheese and salt/pepper until the cheese is fully melted.


4.) Pour sauce over the rice mixture. I mixed it up a bit so the sauce was fully incorporated into the rice, chicken and veggies. Top with the remaining shredded cheese.

5.) Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until cheese is golden brown on top.

6.) Let cool for 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy!


Make sure you stop by this week's Mealtime Monday and link up any amazing recipes you have been working on lately.

***Depending on the day this post may be linked up to any of these fabulous linky parties.***

Do you host a weekly party? If so, make sure to visit my party page and add yours so we all can join in the fun!


  1. That looks really good–thanks for sharing!

  2. Looks delicious! I think I'm gonna have to make it this weekend! :)

    Found ya at the Made U Look Linky #43

  3. Looks yummy. I hate adding canned soups and other ingredients with too much salt, too. Thanks for the recipe.

  4. It looks like the perfect dish for serving on a chilly day!

  5. I love that this is made from real ingredients, no cream of whatever!

    Thanks for linking up with Frugal Food Thursday at Frugal Follies!

  6. Sounds & looks luscious! A hearty dish for sure. MMMM-More please.

  7. oh looks so good and filling perfect recipe for fall come see us at

  8. Wow! Looks like I found a dinner recipe for today. Thanks!!

  9. Hi Kay Lee,
    I love this Casserole, it looks so moist and delicious, can't wait to try it. Hope you are having a great weekend and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  10. I'm back - three out of four isn't bad. My husband liked it, I liked it, my son's friend liked it but my son didn't like it. PHOOEY! We want our babies to like our stuff right? I probably won't make it again but that doesn't mean I didn't like it. IT WAS DELICIOUS!!!

  11. This looks very cheesy and delicious!! I would love for you to come link up to my Get Social Sunday party and promote your awesome blog!

  12. I'm totally with you on not loving casseroles, but still wanting to love them. There are just a few that I actually like. This looks really good, so I'm going to have to give it a try. I really like the idea of adding broccoli.

  13. I'm glad this cheesy chicken casserole is made from scratch. I don't use "canned" soups to make anything. Oh the cheesy goodness going on. I love casseroles and really don't' make often enough. Thanks for sharing your inspiration with Sunday’s Best – you helped make the party a success!

  14. Kaylee,
    This looks delicious! I actually do love casseroles or crock pot meals so this is right up my alley. Thanks so much for linking up to Creative Thursday. Can’t wait to see what you share this week! Have a wonderful week.

  15. That looks like a perfect dinner for during the week for my kids. I am going to try it. I would love for you to link this up to my Fall into Fall party that opens tonight at 8pm EST. Hope to see you there.

  16. Wow- I think I'm going to try this one tonight. I wanted to invite you to Wonderful Food Wednesday at At Home Take 2... love it if you could link up 2-3 recipes. Hope to see you there.

    Jessica @ At Home Take 2... Check out our Wonderful Food Wednesday

  17. That looks great! I love that it doesn't have any soup in it. THey are really hard to find gluten free, and i need that. Love it!

  18. Now that looks GOOD!!!!

    Thanks so much for sharing this at The DIY Dreamer.. From Dream To Reality!

  19. This looks delicious! I love having casseroles for busy days...thanks so much for sharing at Mix it up Monday :)

  20. Looks yummy! I like that you don't have to put any processed stuff in it. Thank you for sharing this at my Make it Pretty Monday party at The Dedicated House. Hope to see your prettiness again on Monday. Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse

  21. It sounds great...and I love that is doesn't have any processed soups in it. Although I have no problem eating that stuff:-)

  22. Yum!...I saw your #27 @ StoneGable...this is outrageous good,I want some now!...I wonder if I could saute a bag of frozen mixed veggies in the oil until tender then mix,I think I'll try it.It is sometimes hard to keep fresh veggie around this time of year...when I try it,I'll let you know if it is a flop or a hit.Thanks for sharing.


  23. I've made this 3 times now and I just had to let you know, this is the best ever recipe I have used from Pintrist. My daughter loves it so much she always begs me to make it. I do spin it a little to change it up a bit like sometimes I add broccoli to it or use different cheeses. There is one thing I add every time without fail and that is to add an ounce or so of Velveeta cheese. Puts it over the top every single time. I dont use as much carrot or celery either but other than that, we love love love this dish. Thanks so much for sharing.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...