Hey, there! This is episode 2 of my “Leftovers Remix” segment on Blessings In Surprise! (If you missed episode 1, check it out here for a scrumptious beef and cheddar pasta!)
Today we are creating a delicious chicken taco casserole using leftovers from the salad bar we put out for my daughter’s birthday party.
I am having a ton of fun with these remixes and we have so much less food waste because of it! This week,I was able to make TWO delicious meals out of our leftovers (the chicken taco casserole pictured above, and also a delicious chicken salad!)
Since I have food allergies, while my family does not, I made two versions of this same dish. They both start out the same, with some cooked rice and butter (or substitute) in the bottom of a GREASED casserole dish.
And the seasonings are the same for both, as well. I used garlic powder, onion powder, chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, and salt.
Just sprinkle a light dusting of each seasoning over the rice, as pictured below.
Then add the chicken. I absolutely LOOOOVE the flavor of this one!!! It is seasoned perfectly and is super moist and juicy! We had some of this chicken left over from the salad bar, so I just broke it into bite-size chunks and dropped it in.
Next, add a layer of corn, followed by a layer of taco sauce.
I like the Ortega mild taco sauce for this, but you can use whichever sauce you prefer.
Next, add some chili beans (I like Bush’s black bean chili beans) and the colby jack cheese cubes that were left over from the salad bar. Then I just sprinkled a very light dusting of smoked paprika over the top just to give the cheese a little something extra and because I love the intense smokey flavor of it!
On my version, I skipped the cheese and added some leftover cherry tomatoes from the salad bar.
All that’s left is to heat it up in the oven until the cheese is melted and bubbly on top (or for my version, until the tomatoes have burst open) and the center is warmed through. I prepped these early in the day, so at dinner time, I took them straight from the refrigerator and set them in the oven while the oven was preheating. I set it on 385 degrees and let it go for about 45 minutes or so (including the preheating time.)
With this recipe, I was able to use up some corn, chicken, cherry tomatoes and cheese cubes that otherwise would have been thrown to our dogs (although the doggies would have been happy to receive them!) This leftovers remix not only saved us money, but also saved time, since there is often very little prep involved with cooking from leftovers.
Be sure to check back for the chicken salad recipe that I made from the chicken, green peppers, cucumbers, and dried cranberries that were also left over from the salad bar! Happy eating!
If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.