Recipe Finder

The Washington Post

Lemon Chicken and Rice Casserole

Lemon Chicken and Rice Casserole 6.000

Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post; dinnerware from Crate and Barrel

Make It, Freeze It, Take It Sep 29, 2010

This is comfort food you’ll be glad to have around. For ease of use, cut the cooled casserole into individual portions before freezing.

The sauce recipe beats using canned condensed cream of chicken soup.

Serve with sauteed spinach or a spinach salad.

Make Ahead: The sauce can be made and refrigerated up to 5 days in advance. The casserole can be frozen for up to 6 weeks (see directions). To reheat the casserole, unwrap it and drop it back into its original casserole dish. Cover with plastic wrap and defrost in the refrigerator for 12 to 18 hours. To reheat, discard the plastic wrap. Sprinkle the surface with the bread crumbs. Cover with foil and bake in a 350-degree oven for 30 minutes, then uncover and bake for 15 minutes to brown the topping. Insert a knife into the center before serving to make sure the casserole is heated through.


Servings: 6
Ingredients
  • For the sauce
  • 1 cup regular or low-fat milk
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons rice flour
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • For the casserole
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1/2 large onion, finely chopped (3/4 cup)
  • 1 medium clove garlic, minced
  • 4 cups cooked white or brown rice
  • 3/4 cup regular or low-fat sour cream (do not use nonfat)
  • Freshly squeezed juice from 2 to 3 lemons (1/2 cup)
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 cups cooked (skinless) chicken, torn into 1-inch pieces
  • 10 ounces frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and squeezed dry
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup seasoned italian-style bread crumbs

Directions

For the sauce: Combine the milk and broth in a large, heat-safe measuring cup. Microwave on MEDIUM just long enough to warm through (without boiling).

Melt the butter in a medium, heavy saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the rice flour and cook for 2 minutes, whisking constantly. Slowly pour in the warm milk-broth mixture, whisking, until all of the liquid is incorporated. Stir in the cheese; cook for 4 to 5 minutes, whisking to form a smooth sauce that has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon. Season with salt and pepper to taste. The yield is 2 cups.

For the casserole: Combine the butter and oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Once the butter has melted, add the onion and garlic; cook for about 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion is soft. Add the rice and stir to coat evenly.

Combine the 2 cups of sauce, the sour cream, lemon juice and broth in a large bowl; mix well, then add the rice mixture, chicken and spinach, stirring to incorporate. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Use nonstick cooking oil spray to grease the inside of an 8-by-8-inch baking dish.

Spread the chicken-rice mixture evenly in the baking dish. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. If you plan to serve the casserole right away, uncover and sprinkle the bread crumbs evenly over the top. Bake for 5 to 8 minutes or until the the crumbs have lightly browned.

If you plan to freeze the casserole, bypass the bread crumb step. Remove the casserole from the oven after the 30 minutes and allow it to cool. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate to chill through. (At this point, if desired, cut it into individual portions and wrap each one first in plastic wrap, then in foil.) Freeze for 6 to 8 hours, then unmold and wrap first in plastic wrap, then in foil. Return to the freezer and store for up to 6 weeks.


Add it
Rate it

Recipe Source

Adapted from "Cook & Freeze: 150 Delicious Dishes to Serve Now and Later," by Dana Jacobi (Rodale, 2010).

Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.

E-mail questions to the Food Section.

E-mail questions to the Food Section at food@washpost.com.

Avg. Rating (0)

Rate this recipe

Nutritional Facts

Calories per serving (using low-fat milk, low-fat sour cream and white rice): 500


% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 17g 26%

Saturated Fat: 8g 40%

Cholesterol: 95mg 32%

Sodium: 490mg 20%

Total Carbohydrates: 53g 18%

Dietary Fiber: 3g 12%

Sugar: 4g

Protein: 34g


Calories per serving (using low-fat milk, low-fat sour cream and brown rice): 490


% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 18g 28%

Saturated Fat: 9g 45%

Cholesterol: 95mg 32%

Sodium: 490mg 20%

Total Carbohydrates: 48g 16%

Dietary Fiber: 5g 20%

Sugar: 4g

Protein: 34g


*Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat: Less than 65g

Saturated Fat: Less than 20g

Cholesterol: Less than 300mg

Sodium: Less than 2,400mg

Total Carbohydrates: 300g

Dietary Fiber: 25g

Most Read lifestyle
SECTION: !!!
INITIAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=bg52e9xhqr, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, includesorts=true, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, childrenitemsperpage=3, includeheader=true, includeverifiedcommenters=true, defaulttab=all, includerecommend=true, includereport=true, maxitemstop=2, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!!

FINAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=bg52e9xhqr, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, includesorts=true, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, childrenitemsperpage=3, includeheader=true, includeverifiedcommenters=true, defaulttab=all, includerecommend=true, includereport=true, maxitemstop=2, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!