Sorry for the break in blog posts- it’s been a crazy month! Christmas with two kids instead of one is no joke! Then to add on that my little one got sick just after the holidays made things pretty rough. There’s just nothing worse than a sick baby who can’t yet TELL you what is wrong! After being sick to her stomach for 4 days and refusing to eat anything (she just wanted to nurse around the clock), she finally started to feel better. That is when I remembered this little concoction I came up with years ago when I first got married. Chicken Noodle Soup Casserole.
You see, growing up, whenever we got sick, my mom made homemade chicken noodle soup. My mom may not be a super chef (she despises cooking) but she makes the best chicken noodle soup in the world! Well, not long after we got married, my husband got sick. Wanting to be a good wife, I made him Chicken Noodle soup just like my mom’s. I was so proud… And he ate it like a trooper. It wasn’t until a few months later that he told me that he doesn’t really like soup. He doesn’t mind it as a snack but he just feels like soups/stews aren’t “meals”. Guess they just don’t settle his big appetite!
A few months later, he got another cold but I knew not to make him soup. I started playing around and finally came up with what I personally consider to be even better than the soup! It’s all the warm, yummy goodness of soup with the heartiness of a good meal. This is comfort food at its best and I hope you enjoy it as much as we all do!
-Boneless, skinless chicken breasts (3 or 4- I like to use one package of thin cut fillets like pictured above because it’s typically way cheaper)
-1 package egg noodles (12 oz)
-1 onion, chopped (size simply depends on how much you like the taste of onion. We typically use a large onion, but a small/medium one when making this recipe for others.)
-1 teaspoon chopped garlic
-Chopped celery (approx. 3/4 cup)
– Chopped carrots (approx. 3/4 cup)
-1/2 stick of butter (1/4 cup)
-1 can cream of mushroom soup
-1 can cream of chicken soup
-Sour Cream (approx. 1/2 – 3/4 cup)
-1 tbsp Italian seasoning
-salt and pepper, to taste
-1 sleeve of Ritz crackers, crushed
Note: all measurements for this are approximate. If you have slightly more or less, it’s no biggie. Also, I’ve never tried but a lot of the ingredients in this recipe could be swapped out with healthier alternatives (veggie pasta or quinoa, homemade “cream of” soups, Greek yogurt instead of sour cream, etc)
How to Make it:
1. Boil your chicken until fully cooked. Put the chicken in a pot and add cold water, THEN bring to a boil. Should take 30-40 minutes total.
This is a great time to get out your other ingredients, chop veggies, etc.
2. Boil your noodles 8-9 minutes Until tender but firm, you don’t want them to fall apart when baked. Drain and set aside.
While noodles are boiling, shred up your chicken into bite size chunks.
3. Sautee onions, carrots and celery in the butter approximately 8-10 min over medium high heat, until onions are tender and translucent. Stir in the garlic and continue stirring (it will burn if you don’t) a minute or so to infuse the flavors. Add in both soups and then the sour cream and stir until well mixed. Add salt and pepper, if desired.
I use the same pot for this entire recipe to save on cleanup but if you are in a time crunch, steps 1, 2, and 3 could be done in separate pots at the same time.
4. Add the shredded chicken and Italian seasoning and stir well. Add pasta and mix until well coated.
5. Transfer to a greased 9×13 pan.
Since we have a small family with only two eating a full sized portion, I always opt to split this recipe into two 8×8 pans. I cook one then freeze the other for next time. (see below for details on freezing)
6. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Remove from oven. Sprinkle with crushed crackers and bake an additional 10 minutes. Let set for 5 minutes.
Serve and enjoy the yummy goodness!
***I’m a big fan of freezer meals as they’re great when you’re short on time. If you want to freeze this casserole, simply line a baking dish (9×13 for full casserole or 8×8 for 1/2) with foil, making sure to leave enough to wrap around the top. Then line with plastic wrap on top of the foil.
Let mix cool slightly in pan then add to dish just like if you were going to bake it.
Wrap all the way around with wrap then with foil and put the whole pan in the freezer for at least 1-2 hours to maintain its shape. Remove the pan and take the foil-wrapped casserole out and put it on a zip lock bag with cooking instructions written on it. Put back in the freezer for up to 4 months.
I hope this can bring you or your family a smile when they aren’t feeling well. What’s your favorite comfort food? I would LOVE to hear from you!
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