Some nights… you just need an easy dinner. One you can throw together and go play with the kids while it bakes… no muss, no fuss. Monday night was one of those nights… so helllooooo casserole!!
This is a chicken and noodle casserole with a twist… well, several twists, because well, it’s me… and I have an inability to actually follow a recipe 😛 You could use leftover chicken for this meal, but since I didn’t have any, we just picked up a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store and shredded it. Let’s run through the ingredients here… savory chicken, buttery al dente egg noodles, soft diced onion, creamy french onion dip, cream of chicken soup, crunchy pepper and rosemary bacon and those fried onions we all know and love. Sounds great huh? Trust me, it tastes even better 😀
Start by boiling some water for your egg noodles and preheating your oven… fun stuff, I know lol. For my bacon, I baked some earlier in the day to speed up the cooking process, so I just crumbled my cooked bacon, reserving a few tablespoons of bacon crumbles. You could easily fry or bake your bacon right before starting on the casserole… it’s up to you 🙂 Then saute your diced onions.
My apologies for the pics… my camera battery was charging, so I was using my cell phone camera. Seriously, is there anything that smells better than sauteing onions? Well, there is, but let’s just say it’s one of my favorite smells lol. Once the onions have a good color on them, remove them from the heat to cool a little.
Mix together your cream of chicken soup, french onion dip, cheese and crumbled bacon. Add your cooked chicken and stir to combine. It looks a little gross… that’s okay 🙂 The original recipe called for the fried onions to be on top, and I chose to do that too, but I also wanted them running all throughout the casserole. So I added a good 3/4 cup to the mixture, then added my sauteed onions.
By this time, your egg noodles should be done… you don’t want to cook them all the way here. They’re going to continue to cook when you bake the pasta, so if you cook the pasta all the way, then bake it… you’ll have mushy noodles. No one likes that. My package said to cook for 7-9 minutes, and I boiled them for 5 minutes. Drain your pasta and add it to the rest of the ingredients in the bowl, stir it well, you want every noodle coated in the deliciousness of the sauce 🙂
Spray your 13×9 pan with cooking spray and pour the casserole into the dish. Sprinkle with more cheese… because… why not? I drizzled mine with some olive oil before baking, to give it a nice golden cheesy crust on top.
Bake uncovered for 25 minutes, top with more fried onions and bake another 3-4 minutes. Sprinkle with reserved crumbled bacon and some minced parsley, if desired. I like to add that little bit of freshness to a hearty baked dish like this one 🙂
Now I know you’re looking at that picture and thinking, “okay, where is the parsley?” I added mine to my individual served portion as my picky almost 5 year old will refuse anything that has “little green things” on it lol.
So there you have it folks… hearty, warm, bubbly and comforting… it’s like a big, fluffy, warm sweater… that you eat! Hmmm okay that didn’t exactly make it sound too appetizing did it? My not so great comparisons aside… you should try this one. It’s great for those cold nights and if you have kids, they’ll love it (even with those sauteed onions in there… my daughter didn’t even notice them!).
Recipe adapted from Plain Chicken
French Onion Chicken Noodle Casserole
- 4 cups cooked chicken chopped or shredded
- 2 cans of cream of chicken soup
- 16 oz container of french onion dip
- 1 medium yellow onion diced
- 8 strips of bacon cooked and crumbled
- 2 cups cheddar cheese
- 12 oz bag of egg noodles
- 1 3/4 cup fried onions
Cook bacon, drain on paper towels, and crumble. Set aside.
Boil water for egg noodles.
Dice onion, saute in a little olive oil over medium high heat until onions are soft and charred at the edges.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and grease a 13x9 pan.
Mix together the chicken, french onion dip, both cans of cream of chicken soup, 1 cup of the cheddar cheese, most of the crumbled bacon, the sauteed onions and 3/4 cup of the fried onions. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Drain egg noodles a few minutes shy of al dente and add to the mix. Stir well to combine.
Pour mixture into prepared pan, top with remaining cup of cheese and drizzle with olive oil.
Bake for 25 minutes, uncovered.
Top with remaining 1 cup of fried onions, bake for 3-4 minutes.
If desired, top with minced parsley and remaining crumbled bacon.