35 Easy Leftover Chicken Recipes You’ll Make Again and Again
When our time is short but the hunger is too real, we turn to the quick-fix meal. We don’t care if it’s baked in a casserole dish or thrown into the crockpot, as long as it makes our life just a little bit less stressful. And nothing makes a meal more quick-fix than leftover chicken, be it rotisserie, smoked, or grilled. Just imagine: Tomorrow’s lunch could be creamy chicken soup, classic chicken salad, or even a melty chicken panini. You can make dinner something delicious and hearty, like our skillet chicken pot pie, old-school chicken bog, or slow-cooker King Ranch Chicken. You’ll be mighty impressed by the miracles that can be worked with just a few cups of leftover shredded chicken. (If only we could be as efficient as that Costco rotisserie.) Check out these 35 easy leftover chicken recipes, and prepare to be blown away by each of these weeknight warriors.
Recipe: Chicken-and-Biscuit Cobbler
Savory cobblers are vastly underrated. Not only are these warm, bubbly casseroles topped with fresh biscuits, they're incredibly hearty and filling for a family dinner. This Chicken-and-Biscuit Cobbler recipe will fill hungry bellies with just a few scoops of creamy, juicy chicken. It's one of our reader favorites for the fresh herbs and the bacon-buttermilk biscuit topping; the end result is a pretty and flavorful dinner recipe that you can pair with a fresh green salad. The recipe calls for eight cups of shredded cooked chicken; simply use a large rotisserie chicken and shred before adding it to the sauce mixture to save some time. You may also be able to pick up pre-shredded chicken from your local BBQ joint. Although the end result looks time-consuming, the filling for the casserole comes together in one Dutch oven, so you'll have minimal cleanup after dinner.
Start this recipe by making the creamy, vegetable-rich base for your Southern cobbler. This starts with a mouth-watering combination of sliced carrots, chopped onion, fresh mushrooms, fragrant garlic, a healthy dose of dry white wine, butter, flour, and chicken stock. Once your sauce has thickened on the stove, stir in your cream, white wine vinegar, and fresh herbs – sliced chives, chopped parsley, chopped rosemary, and thyme leaves. Then, add the eight cups of shredded cooked chicken to the mixture, combining the thick filling well. And, of course, no cobbler is complete without a freshly prepared biscuit topping. This recipe is incredibly simple; combine self-rising flour, a little sugar, chilled buttermilk, melted butter, and chopped cooked bacon until you have a soft dough. Drop it in spoonfuls on top of the filling in a casserole dish, and pop your Chicken-and-Biscuit Cobbler into the oven for about half an hour. Family members and guests will both swoon over this tasty casserole recipe, and you'll have a new go-to recipe for company.
Creamy Chicken-and-Rice Soup with Collard Greens
This soup is the whole package: easy, tasty, and healthy. (That pinch of heavy cream is totally justified.)
Skillet Enchiladas Suizas
Recipe: Skillet Enchiladas Suizas
These are our easiest enchiladas ever—it calls for no filling and no rolling. Using leftover chicken is just the cherry on top.
Chicken Caprese Pasta
Recipe: Chicken Caprese Pasta
This recipe only takes—wait for it—20 minutes. Blistered tomatoes, pesto sauce, and torn chunks of mozzerella instantly dress up your simple chicken pasta.
Recipe: Chicken Bog
This old-fashioned recipe is a family favorite. You won't get much better than a delicious pot full of chicken and rice.
King Ranch Chicken Mac and Cheese
Two of the South’s favorite casseroles, king ranch chicken and macaroni-and-cheese, just came together in the ultimate skillet dinner. You're welcome.
White Lightning Chicken Chili
Recipe: White Lightning Chicken Chili
It's all there in the name: This classic chili only takes 30 minutes to prepare.
Recipe: Whole-Grain Panzanella
Two kinds with whole-grain croutons, fresh veggies, and shredded chicken come together for this quick and hearty take on panzanella.
Quick Chicken and Barley Stew
Recipe: Quick Chicken and Barley Stew
Packed with good-for-you vegetables and whole grains, this chicken stew is a no-brainer.
Chicken and Fontina Panini
Recipe: Chicken and Fontina Panini
Crusty on the outside, gooey on the inside, this sandwich doesn't mess around.
Creamy Chicken Alfredo Casserole
Recipe: Creamy Chicken Alfredo Casserole
Take the easiest-ever route—you won't regret it. Rotisserie chicken, store-bought sauces, and pre-shredded cheese make this chicken casserole too perfect for busy weeknights.
Southwest Chicken Tortillas
Recipe: Southwest Chicken Tortillas
Taco Tuesday just got a whole lot better with these easy Tex-Mex tortillas.
Clementine-and-Collard Greens Salad
This sunny salad makes an easy lunch option, using sweet clementines and leftover rotisserie.
Chicken Pot Pie with Bacon-and-Cheddar Biscuits
This chicken pot pie is topped with biscuits made with sharp Cheddar cheese, chopped bacon, and chives.
Heavenly Chicken Lasagna
Recipe: Heavenly Chicken Lasagna
We call it "heavenly" for a reason. This chicken lasagna is so cheesy and delicious, you’ll forget about all of the other lasagna recipes in your recipe box.
Chicken Caesar Salad Sandwiches
Recipe: Chicken Caesar Salad Sandwiches
Enter: your new favorite lunch recipe. This hoagie holds our heart.
Stovetop Chicken Pie
Recipe: Stovetop Chicken Pot Pie
This easier version of chicken pot pie is a weeknight savior. Simply bake buttermilk biscuits, and cover them generously with this creamy mixture of chopped chicken and whatever frozen veggies you prefer.
Chicken Noodle Bowl with Peanut-Ginger Sauce
Have this at-home version of Thai peanut sauce under your sleeve, and it'll spice up any boring weeknight.
King Ranch Chicken
Recipe: King Ranch Chicken
The slow-cooker version of traditional King Ranch Chicken casserole is the easiest decision you'll make all day.
Heirloom Tomato and Chicken Toss
Recipe: Heirloom Tomato and Chicken Toss
This fresh salad brings out the best in your summer tomatoes. Add some crusty bread for a satisfying meal.
Creamy Chicken and Collard Green Enchiladas
This enchilada bake is packed to the brim with flavorful ingredients. Fresh collards, shredded chicken, and chile sauce handle most of the work.
Tropical Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Recipe: Tropical Chicken Lettuce Wraps
This chicken salad gets a tropical twist from a touch of jalapeño, lime zest, and honey. Wrapped in tender butter lettuce and garnished with cashews for crunch, these lettuce wraps deserve to be a lunchtime staple.
Recipe: Pasta-Chicken-Broccoli Bake
Just a glance at this colorful, hearty pasta bake should tell you one thing: It's ready to be your new weeknight warrior. The casserole calls for cheese-filled tortellini, fresh broccoli, and chicken (which, yes, can be leftover shredded rotisserie chicken).
Couscous Pilaf with Roasted Carrots, Chicken, and Feta
This will be your most memorable one-bowl meal. Flavored with golden raisins, toasted almonds, and a simple lemon-brown butter sauce, this couscous pilaf is a delicious way to start any week.
Chicken and Herbed Cornmeal Dumplings
These tender cornmeal dumplings are really something special.
Creamy Ham-and-Chicken Medley
Recipe: Creamy Ham-and-Chicken Medley
A medley means your meal will be far from boring. Using leftovers, this recipe comes together into a creamy plate of goodness.
Recipe: Chicken Stir-Fry
This stir-fry only takes ten minutes. We repeat: Ten. Minutes. Need we say more?
Skillet Chicken Pot Pie with Leeks and Mushrooms
This fresh skillet recipe gives our old-fashioned chicken pot pie a run for its money. To use leftover shredded chicken, just skip ahead to Step 4.
Recipe: Chicken Chili
We like to think of this recipe as a fresher alternative to a traditional beef chili.
Grilled Pizza with Summer Veggies and Smoked Chicken
Thin, whole-wheat pizza dough won't leave you with any guilt, and neither will your grocery bill. Use leftover chicken and veggies to make this grilled pizza.
Chicken-Quinoa Salad with Green Goddess Dressing
We came for the perfect lunch salad, and we stayed for the amazing Green Goddess Dressing. This salad is deliciously dynamic with protein-rich quinoa, shredded chicken, tender butter lettuce, and a tangy herbed dressing.
Hot Chicken Salad
Recipe: Hot Chicken Salad
Come and get it—while it's hot! This special baked version of Southern chicken salad will knock your socks off.
Tarragon Chicken Salad
Recipe: Tarragon Chicken Salad
Even if you already have a go-to chicken salad recipe, this one is worth a try. We dressed up classic chicken salad with lemon and tarragon.
Kale and Sweet Potato Salad with Chicken
Say hello to the perfect use of your extra grilled or baked chicken breast. Roasted sweet potatoes and candied pecans make this salad tasty and satisfying.
Recipe: Chicken-and-Squash Casserole
There's always room for one more creamy casserole in the mix. Make it this one.