Thursday, June 25, 2009

RECIPE: Easy Chicken & Rice Casserole

This recipe has been a lifesaver! We had a pretty tough summer last year and money was extremely tight. After a failed attempt to obtain WIC from Fulton County, I decided to take matters into my own hands. My friend Donna is the best couponer I know. I affectionately refer to her as my "Coupon Queen". Everything I know I learned from her. (And she says I am a pretty good apprentice :) She taught me to check the weekly sale ads in the newspaper, buy a double paper Sunday morning to get double coupons, join a good deal group to get email alerts on specials. And, well, the rest is history...

So after scanning the weekly ads from the newspaper, I devised a thrifty meal that could feed our family and fill our bellies with good and relatively healthy food.

As you know, I buy chicken breasts from Kroger when they are on sale for $.99/lb. (And Kroger currently has them on sale this week until Saturday 6/27.) Usually they package 3 chicken breasts per pack and usually they are priced between $3.00-$4.00 a package. I'll bake up the whole pack or put it in the crock pot, which ever I feel like that day. After they're done, I shred one chicken breast from the bones and put it in a food storage container to use later in the week. Here's how I make...

Easy Chicken & Rice Casserole
  • 1 chicken breast, cooked & shredded $1.25
  • 1 package rice (I use whatever I was able to get on sale, Knorr Lipton Creamy Chicken Flavored Rice, Uncle Ben's Chicken & Wild Rice, etc...) $.25 c
  • 1 can condensed cream of chicken soup (if you don't have cream of chicken on hand, substitute with what you have in your pantry, cream of celery, cream of mushroom, etc...) $.75 c
  • 2 cans of water (from the soup can) FREE
  • 1 cup frozen broccoli (optional) $.25 c
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas (optional) $.25 c
Spray an 8x8 casserole baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Place shredded chicken evenly in the bottom. If you are using broccoli and/or peas, evenly distribute them over the chicken. In large bowl, combine rice package (including seasoning packet if it's separate), soup and water. Mix well and pour over chicken. Bake at 350 degrees F for 45 minutes. Remove from oven, stir mixture and put back in oven for another 15 minutes. Remove and enjoy! That's it! You can feed a family of 4 for $2.75 or $.68 c per person! Now that's a thrifty meal!

You can easily double this and bake in a 13x9 dish.

Last summer we probably ate this meal 3 times a week. But my family went to bed with a full belly and I came out a better couponer. That experience taught me alot.

And this is the first time we've had it this year :)


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