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Chicken Wild Rice Casserole

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If you're in the mood for a hearty, filling, tasty comfort-food dinner, you're going to LOVE this Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole! This recipe is a great way to use up leftover chicken and rice, and it comes together with just a few minutes of hands-on work. You'll have an amazing dinner on the table in no time!

Chicken and wild rice casserole on a plate.

As we get into the Fall season, I start craving classic meat-and-potatoes dinners. Or in this case, chicken-and-rice dinners.

This creamy chicken and wild rice casserole requires a little planning ahead since it uses cooked chicken and cooked rice, and it's a great way to reinvent leftovers and turn them into something (dare I say it??) even better than the original meal!

This recipe also works GREAT with leftover holiday turkey instead of leftover chicken!

It might not be the prettiest dinner out there, but it is so so good! And super kid-friendly.

Creamy chicken and wild rice on a fork.

Ready to make this??

More comfort food recipes: Ethiopian Chicken Stew

Ingredients

  • 4-5 cups cooked long grain and wild rice (that's about 8 oz, or 1 to 1.25 cups of uncooked wild rice)
  • 2 tablespoons butter (or use olive oil)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup (or use cream of mushroom)
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ⅓ cup chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon dry basil or oregano (or a combination of both)
  • Salt & pepper to taste (I usually barely add salt, since the cream of chicken soup, chicken, and rice are already seasoned)
  • 2 cups cooked chicken breast, cubed or shredded - I LOVE using sous vide shredded chicken because it's so tender!
  • ⅓ cup parmesan cheese (freshly grated is best, but use what you have!)
  • 1 tablespoon dry parsley
Ingredients: cooked chicken, cooked wild rice, chopped onions, celery, butter, seasonings, sour cream, parmesan, chicken broth, and cream of chicken soup.

More comfort food recipes: Russian Stuffed Cabbage

Instructions

Step 1: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray or brush an 8x8 inch baking dish with olive oil.

Step 2: Melt the butter in a large skillet and sauté the diced onion and celery for about 5 minutes, or until they soften.

Sauteing chopped onion and celery in a pan with butter.

Step 3: Add the cream of chicken soup, sour cream, chicken broth, and dry basil and/or oregano. Stir well.

Adding seasonings, cream of chicken, and sour cream to the pan.

Step 4: Add the cooked rice and chicken and stir until well combined. Taste carefully (it might be hot!) and season with salt and pepper, if desired. Mix again.

Chicken and wild rice combined with the liquid ingredients in a pan.

More comfort food recipes: Slow Cooker Cassoulet

Step 5: Pour mixture into your prepared 8x8 baking dish. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and dry parsley.

Chicken and wild rice casserole in a baking pan before baking.

Step 6: Bake uncovered for about 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown and bubbly. Allow to rest 5 minutes. Serve warm and enjoy!

Cooked chicken and rice casserole that is golden brown on top.

More comfort food recipes: Zuppa Toscana

Optional add-ins

The recipe above is for a basic casserole, and I tried to keep the ingredients to a minimum. If you want to add a little more to it, here are some ideas:

  • Add 2-3 cloves minced garlic to the onion and celery mixture.
  • Use diced leeks instead of onion. Wash the leeks really thoroughly, they trap dirt in between all their layers!
  • Add 1-2 small finely diced carrots to the onion and celery mixture - you might need to saute a little longer until the carrots soften, since they take longer to cook than onions and celery.
  • Add some sliced mushrooms to the onions and celery when sautéing.
  • Add some corn (canned and drained, or thawed if frozen) and peas (thawed and frozen) to the rice and chicken mixture.
  • Use other herbs to switch up the flavors. Fresh or dried thyme, tarragon, and marjoram make great additions or substitutions for the dried basil.

More comfort food recipes: Sausage-stuffed Acorn Squash

Questions about this rice and chicken casserole?

I have answers for you...

Can I substitute white rice or brown rice instead of wild rice? 

You can, but I don't recommend it. Wild rice has a great "crunch" and texture to it that holds up well to being in a casserole without getting mushy, so a blend of wild rice with long-grain rice is best for this recipe.

I love the Rice Select blend because it contains brown rice and red rice along with the wild rice, and it has a great texture. It does take some time to cook though, so make sure to plan ahead!

You can try brown rice, because that is typically firmer (and it's healthier!) than white rice, but white rice might not turn out as good. But if you give it a try please leave a comment below and let me know how it turns out!

More comfort food recipes: Instant Pot White Chicken Chili

Can I use uncooked rice?

No, this casserole does not use enough liquid and does not cook for a long amount of time to cook rice if you're starting with uncooked rice. Please cook the rice first and then use that for the casserole. You can get quick-cooking rice here. You would need 3 pouches, which cook in just 5 minutes so you can get your rice ready while you sauté your onion + celery.

Can I use uncooked chicken?

You need to cook the chicken before mixing it with the rice and the rest of the ingredients, because the casserole does not spend enough time in the oven to fully cook raw chicken.

If you are starting with raw chicken, then dice it and fully cook it in the pan first. Remove it from heat, and then sauté your onion and celery in the same pan.

More comfort food recipes: Slow Cooker Cassoulet

If you make this chicken and rice casserole, please take a picture and tag me on Instagram or Facebook. You can find me at @babaganoshblog on both. I love seeing your creations!

What to serve on the side

This dish has both protein and carbs and is definitely on the hearty side, so I think a side salad or air-fried veggies on the side are a great option. Here are a few ideas:

If you enjoyed this recipe, let me know with a comment and a star rating below. And don't forget to share it on Facebook and save it on Pinterest for later!

Chicken and wild rice casserole on a plate.
Print Recipe
4.5 from 4 votes

Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole

If you're craving hearty, filling, delicious comfort-food, you're going to LOVE this easy chicken and wild rice casserole. It's a super kid-friendly dinner that the whole family loves, and a great way to use up leftover chicken and leftover rice!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total hands-on time:20 mins
Total Time55 mins
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4
Author: Kate
Cost: $10

Equipment

  • 8x8 inch baking dish
  • Large skillet

Ingredients

  • 4-5 cups cooked long grain and wild rice (that's about 8 oz, or 1 to 1.25 cups of uncooked rice)
  • 2 tablespoons butter (or use olive oil)
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 2 celery stalks chopped
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup (or use cream of mushroom)
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • cup chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon dry basil or oregano (or a combination of both)
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 cups cooked chicken breast cubed or shredded
  • cup parmesan cheese (freshly grated is best! But use what you have)
  • 1 tablespoon dry parsley

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray or brush an 8x8 inch baking dish with olive oil.
  • Melt the butter in a large skillet and sauté the diced onion and celery for about 5 minutes, or until they soften.
  • Add the cream of chicken soup, sour cream, chicken broth, and dry basil and/or oregano. Stir well.
  • Add the cooked rice and chicken and stir until well combined. Taste carefully (it might be hot!) and season with salt and pepper, if desired. Mix again.
  • Pour mixture into your prepared 8x8 baking dish. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and dry parsley.
  • Bake uncovered for about 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown and bubbly. Allow to rest 5 minutes. Serve warm and enjoy!

Notes

Tips:
→ A blend of wild rice with long-grain rice is best for this recipe. I love the Rice Select blend because it contains brown rice and red rice and has a great texture, but it does take some time to cook so make sure to plan ahead!
→ Make sure that your chicken and rice are fully cooked before adding them in step 4! You can get quick-cooking rice here. You would need 3 pouches, which cook in just 5 minutes so you can get your rice ready while you sauté your onion + celery.

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole
Amount Per Serving
Calories 550 Calories from Fat 198
% Daily Value*
Fat 22g34%
Saturated Fat 11g55%
Trans Fat 1g
Cholesterol 103mg34%
Sodium 1030mg43%
Potassium 354mg10%
Carbohydrates 53g18%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 32g64%
Vitamin A 624IU12%
Vitamin C 2mg2%
Calcium 174mg17%
Iron 2mg11%
* The nutritional information shown here is just an estimate and not meant to be used as dietary/nutritional advice. Please consult a nutritionist for exact nutritional information based on the exact ingredients you use.
 

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