Chicken: Everyone's Favorite!

Chicken: Everyone's Favorite!
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What would family cooks do without chicken? You rarely find a family member who doesn't like it, it's easy to fix, plus it's on sale often! Remember when buying chicken on sale to watch for fatty cuts such as chicken leg quarters. I do buy them, but you have to take into consideration the amount of fat you'll have to cut off when deciding if it's a good price. Getting to know your local grocery stores will help because you'll find out who carries the best cuts of meat for the value.
Chicken and Vegetable Bundles


4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts

1 large carrot

1 small zucchini

1 small red pepper

1 clove garlic, finely minced

1 large scallion or green onion, finely diced

1/4 cup white wine

1/4 cup chicken stock

1 tsp. fresh basil and oregano (or several leaves)

Salt and Pepper - to taste

Olive Oil

4 rectangles 12" long of heavy duty foil

Combine garlic, shallot, wine, stock and seasonings in a bowl, mix well. Add chicken and marinate at least 15 minutes. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place sheet of foil on a flat surface and brush lightly with oil. Drain marinade from chicken and place one breast in center of each sheet. Divide vegetables, placing on top of the chicken and drizzling with more oil if desired. Fold the foil by bringing the long sides to the middle, place flat against each other and fold them down crimping each layer tightly until folded down to the food. Then fold and crimp the sides the same way. if the sides do not stay closed, you can use a staple to secure them, just be careful when serving. Place the bundles on a baking sheet and bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Allow to cool a few minutes and then cut them open. You can either dish the contents out or serve them in the bundles.

Notes: You can substitute any meat, poultry or seafood. You can also change the marinade and the vegetables using the same amounts. Lastly, parchment paper may be used for a nicer presentation.

Spicy Chicken Fingers


4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves

1/2 cup buttermilk

1 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. hot red pepper sauce

1/2 tsp. minced garlic

6 cups vegetables oil

1/2 cup flour

2 large eggs

2 1/2 cups instant potato flakes

Cut your chicken into 3/4 inch strips, removing the tenderloin (a white strip). In a large bowl mix chicken strips, buttermilk, 1/2 tsp. salt, hot pepper sauce and garlic. Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes. Drain and discard marinade. In a large pan, heat oil to 375 degrees. Meanwhile, on a large plate, mix flour and salt. In a medium bowl beat eggs. Place potato flakes on plate. Coat chicken in flour, then eggs, the potato flakes. In hot oil, fry about 8 pieces at a time, about 2 minutes, until golden brown and cooked. Drain on paper towels. May be served with sweet and sour sauce or blue cheese dip (follows).

Blue Cheese Dip

1/3 cup each mayonnaise, sour cream and buttermilk

2 teaspoons vinegar

1/4 tsp. each pepper and minced garlic

4 ounces blue cheese, crumbled (1 cup)

In a small bowl, mix all but blue cheese with a whisk. Mix well until blended. Stir in blue cheese. Serve with chicken fingers, and raw vegetables.

Waldorf Chicken Salad


1 pound chicken breasts

3/4 cup mayonnaise, light or regular

2 tablespoons honey

1 tablespoon cider vinegar

1/2 cup celery, chopped

3 apples, chopped

1/2 cup walnuts, chopped

1/2 cup raisins

Grill or bake the chicken until done and chill. Finely chop the chicken and set aside. In a large bowl, stir together mayonnaise, honey and vinegar. Add chicken, celery, apples, walnuts and raisins, and toss well to coat. Makes 4 servings.

Stuffed Chicken Casserole


6 skinless boneless chicken breast halves

7 ounces diced chilies

4 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, cut into strips

1/2 cup bread crumbs

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

1 tablespoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon cumin

1/4 teaspoon pepper

6 tablespoons butter, melted

2 cups canned enchilada sauce (or make it from a packet)

Pound chicken to 1/4" thin. Place 2 tablespoons chilies and one strip cheese in center. Roll the chicken up as you would a tortilla for burritos. Combine bread crumbs, Parmesan, chili powder, salt, cumin and pepper. Dip each chicken roll in butter, then roll in crumbs. Place in baking dish, seam side down, and drizzle with remaining butter. Cover and chill overnight. The next day bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes. Meanwhile heat the sauce on the stove and serve over each piece of chicken. You can also top with extra cheese, tomatoes, green onions or sour cream.

Healthy and Hearty Chicken Soup


1 cup chopped onion

1 cup sliced celery

1 cup sliced carrots

3/4 cup uncooked rice

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1 bay leaf

10 cups chicken broth

1 1/2 cup leftover diced chicken

Combine onion and celery in a Dutch oven with a tiny bit of oil, season with salt and pepper and sauté until the onion is soft. Add the carrots, rice, parsley, pepper, thyme, bay leaf and chicken broth. Bring to a boil; stirring once or twice. Simmer uncovered 20 minutes. Add chicken and simmer uncovered 10 minutes longer. Remove bay leaf.

Chicken and Garlic Sauté


1 1/4-1/2 pounds of boneless chicken breasts or thighs

2 tsps. olive oil

5 fresh sage leaves, or 1/2 tsp. dried

2 cloves garlic, peeled

Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper. In a large nonstick skillet heat oil over medium heat. Add the chicken pieces and brown about 2 minutes on each side. Sprinkle the chopped or crumbled sage and the garlic cloves over the chicken. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer for about 12-15 minutes until the chicken is cooked and no longer pink. Remove the garlic cloves. Serve the chicken over rice if you wish, or with a nice salad and a baked potato.

Chicken Chalupas


6-8 flour tortillas

1 cup (1 can condensed) cream of chicken soup

1/2 cup sour cream

1/2 tsp. garlic powder

diced jalapeno chilies (tablespoon or more to taste)

1/2 cup milk

4 chicken breasts-cooked ahead of time, or leftover-see note

1/2 medium onion

12-16 ounces Monterey jack cheese

Garnishes: salsa, guacamole, green onions, olives

Spray the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray. Mix the soup, sour cream, garlic powder, and green chilies together. Add milk and stir. In the center of each tortilla place some chicken, onion, cheese, and sauce. Roll up and place in the baking dish. When finished rolling, spread the remaining sauce over the top of the rolls. Cover will foil and bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees. Remove foil and bake 20 more minutes. Serve with desired garnishes.

NOTES: You can use shredded or diced leftover chicken, or sauté your fresh chicken breasts in a pan, seasoned with salt, pepper and garlic powder until no longer pink. Don't overcook. You can use fresh jalapenos or canned-use 2 peppers or a small jar for a spicy dish-1/2 that for less.


About The Author

Brenda Hyde is a freelance writer living on ten acres in rural Michigan with her husband and three kids. She is a mom, grandma, gardener, cook and writer. She blogs on all of these topics at


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