Even though Abby Slutsky owns a bakery business, she likes to find a balance between nutritional foods, interesting side dishes, and sweets.
A tasty rotisserie chicken is an affordable, easy dinner that can provide a no-hassle meal. While some markets sell small, fryer rotisserie chickens, other stores and price plus clubs offer family-size rotisserie chickens at bargain prices. (If I am at Costco, sometimes I am tempted to pick up more than one chicken because they are so reasonably priced.)
However, they can turn dry if they are reheated too many times—and they only last three or four days in the refrigerator—so I have become adept at making other meals out of rotisserie chicken. This article will share some of my favorite creations.
1. Rotisserie Chicken Fried Rice
This is the perfect side dish or entree to make with leftover rice and rotisserie chicken. I like to use leftover jasmine rice, but you can use any leftover rice that you have. The nice thing about this recipe is that it uses leftovers from more than one food and takes about 15 minutes to make.
- Nonstick spray
- 1½ tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 scrambled eggs
- 1½ cups cold, leftover rice
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce (low-sodium, if desired)
- ½ cup frozen, cubed vegetables
- 2 tablespoons chopped scallions
- ¾ cup chicken, cut into small cubes
- Spray a small pan with nonstick spray, turn on medium flame, and scramble the eggs until they are cooked through. Reserve the eggs for later use.
- Heat the butter and oils in a large frying pan over a medium flame.
- Fry the rice and stir it occasionally. If some of the rice gets a little crunchy that is fine and will add texture to your rice dish.
- When the rice starts to look slightly toasted, but is still soft, add the vegetables, scallion, egg, and chicken. Add the soy sauce and stir the mixture another 5 minutes over the flame.
2. Rotisserie Chicken Fajita Quesadillas
Chicken quesadillas are quick, easy, and portable for a fast meal. When I interned in a commercial kitchen (which happened to be a restaurant specializing in Southern cuisine), some of the kitchen staff made the most delicious quesadillas for lunch. I used to tease them that they put the Mexican restaurant that was adjacent to the restaurant to shame.
If you are making several quesadillas, you may want to wrap them in foil, and put them in a 300-degree oven, so they stay warm until all the quesadillas are done.
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- 3 large flour tortillas (I use whole wheat)
- Nonstick spray
- 1 tablespoon oil
- ¼ cup diced peppers (I usually use green, but any color is fine. Red ones will give the dish vibrant color. You can also use a mix of colors.)
- ¼ cup of thinly sliced onion (I prefer the onion fajita-style, but you may chop it if you like.)
- ½ teaspoon jarred, chopped jalapeño peppers
- 1 minced garlic clove
- 2 teaspoons taco seasoning
- 1 teaspoon freshly chopped cilantro
- 1½ cups chopped chicken breast (leftover is fine)
- ½ cup shredded cheddar or Mexican blend cheese (Sometimes I use fat-free cheese, but real cheese is better. You can use additional cheese, if desired.)
- Heat the oil over a medium flame in a large frying pan.
- Add the onion and pepper, and cook until the onion is translucent or slightly brown, if desired.
- Add the chicken and spices. Continue cooking, and stir occasionally until the entire mixture is hot (it will start to smell yummy).
- Remove the mixture from the pan.
- Spray the tortillas with nonstick spray. Place in the pan over low heat until it is slightly brown.
- Remove it from the stove for a moment and cut it in half.
- Sprinkle cheese on one toasted half, place some of the chicken filling on top, layer with more cheese, and place the other tortilla toasted side toward the quesadilla filling on top.
- Cook for about 3 minutes on each side or until it is slightly brown. Repeat the process for each tortilla.
- Cut the tortillas into triangular halves, and serve it with accompaniments of your choice. Try some salsa or sour cream, if desired.
3. Salad Bar Shredded Rotisserie Chicken
This is another easy way to use up rotisserie chicken is to shred leftover chicken. Frequently, I will put it in a bowl, and create bowls of freshly chopped vegetables to serve with it. My family loves a make-your-own salad bowl and enjoys selecting all their own toppings. Sometimes I also put out small ramekins of nuts and bacon, so my family can add some extra crunch to their creation. This is a simple, easy meal, especially when the weather gets warm.
4. Rotisserie Chicken Pot Pie
My list of rotisserie chicken recipes would not be complete without one for homemade chicken pot pie. Truthfully, this is a little more work than the other recipes. However, you can make it ahead of time, or even a day before, and have an easy meal to pop in the oven. I like to make it on Sunday and my family is wowed with a delicious dinner on Monday that requires nothing more than baking it in the oven on the day I serve it.
- 1 sheet puff pastry dough, defrosted but cold
- ¾ cup carrots, cut in small rounds
- 2 peeled potatoes cubed
- ½ small onion diced finely
- ¾ cup of frozen mixed vegetables
- 2 cups of cubed chicken
- ¾ cup cream
- 1 cup chicken broth
- ¼ cup white wine
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ teaspoon pepper
- 4 tablespoons arrowroot starch
- Make sure the chicken is well coated with the cream and covered well, so it does not dry out.
- Feel free to adjust the seasonings to your taste.
- Place the foil under the pot pies when you cook them to prevent the sauce from bubbling over and creating a mess in your oven.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place a layer of tin foil in a disposable pan and put the cubed chicken in it. Pour the cream on top of the chicken and make sure it is well coated. Fold the foil over the chicken and cream and bake for about 10 minutes.
- In the meantime, boil some water and put the potatoes in it for 10 minutes. Remove them.
- Dump the water out and boil more. Add carrots to the new water, and let them cook for 3 minutes. Remove them and place them with the potatoes.
- Melt the butter, and add the onions. Stir over low flame until the onions become translucent.
- Add the arrowroot starch and stir the mixture until it becomes paste-like. Then add the soup and wine. Stir the liquids until they become a little thicker. Add the spices.
- Remove the chicken from the oven, and add it to the arrowroot mixture with the cream. Add the vegetables to the mixture, and stir it for another 3 minutes. Divide the mixture into pot-pie size ramekins or a medium-sized casserole dish (if you prefer one large pot pie).
- Flour a piece of parchment and put the pastry dough on top. Roll it out so it is thin but still thick enough to pick up.
- Cut a piece of dough large enough to fit over each pot pie and crimp or fold the dough to fit the edges.
- Brush the dough lightly with an egg wash. Bake the pot pies in a preheated 400-degree oven for 20-25 minutes or until they are golden brown.
Whether you are in the mood for a quick Mexican meal, a Chinese dish, a simple salad, or a comforting pot pie, leftover rotisserie chicken can be the star of the meal you make. Your creativity will have leftovers out of the refrigerator before they turn bad, and your family may even request these meals occasionally.
© 2021 Abby Slutsky