Chicken & Rice Casserole: Got 3 hours to burn?

I have never put forth so much effort for a casserole. I’ve always viewed casseroles as sort of quicker slow cooker meals. Throw it all in a pan, put it in the oven for an hour, boom. Dinner. Not this casserole. You have to make it before you make it.

I started cooking at 7pm and we didn’t eat until after 9pm. It was good—the textures were good, the flavor was good—but not worth the insane amount of work it required. You have to cook each individual ingredient before you put it in the casserole dish, and then you cook it 20 minutes more, and then you broil it.

If you are a stay-at-home wife and have no kids and no responsibilities and are really bored around dinner time, then this is the recipe for you. You’ll be occupied for hours. But if, like me, you come home from work at 5pm and still have shit to get done around the house, avoid this like the plague. Or find a better way to make it. Perhaps if you’re the type of person who prepares meals a month in advance and you have each ingredient already cooked, shredded and in your freezer, this might make sense. Then all you’d have to do is pull the bags out of the freezer, maybe thaw them, and throw them in a pan. I, however, am not that person. I have a very small freezer and it is filled with various types of ground meat, various types of non-ground meat, ice and a box of 2-year old popsicles that we’ll never eat but will probably also never throw away.

I’m not going to repost the recipe here because I’ll probably never make it again, or at least not this variation of it. I did change some ingredients, though, so I’ll list that. The original recipe came from MyRecipes.com and here are the things about it I changed:

Yield: The original recipe says 4 servings, but I added another chicken breast and without doubling the rest of the recipe I got at least 8 servings.

Ingredients:

  • Cooking spray
    * I used olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
    * I used 1 whole onion
  • 1 (8-ounce) bone-in chicken breast half, skinned
    * I used 2 because that’s how many were in a package. I wasn’t about to thaw 2 and put 1 back in the freezer. I did not double the rest of the recipe.
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
    * I used 1/2 tsp dried rosemary, crushed
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated fresh pecorino Romano cheese, divided
    * I used grated Parmesan

This is not a complete list of their ingredients, just the things I changed. If you want a 3-hour cooking project, by all means visit MyRecipes.com to get the full recipe. I will not be joining you in that endeavor.

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