At a wonderful lunch two weeks ago, the unexpected main course was shredded rotisserie chicken from the grocery store – and it was delicious! I love a good short-cut, and it looks like rotisserie chicken is a healthy fast-food choice. I have read that Costco sells more than 87 million highly rated rotisserie chickens a year (for $4.99) and I like the birds at Whole Foods and Boston Market. You will find them easily. Surprisingly, cooked rotisserie chickens at the grocery store are often less expensive per pound than uncooked birds.
- Spoiler alert – Rotisserie chickens are shipped to the stores with salt, spices and preservatives before they are cooked. These spices make the birds delicious and as addictive as potato chips – but you need to take the skin off and throw it away to have a truly healthy meal.
- The best time to buy one is when the store is busiest and the chickens are being sold most frequently, 5:00 to 6:30 PM. They will be freshest.
- Look for golden brown skin color, it will be the juiciest bird.
- Check the packaging and avoid the plastic bags in favor of the plastic ‘box’.
- 1 rotisserie chicken breast section or 3 cups chopped white chicken meat (choose a chicken with mild seasoning—both plain and lemon-pepper)
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 3 carrots, sliced
- 2 celery stalks, sliced
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 cups water
- 6 cups reduced–sodium chicken broth
- 1 (15-ounce) can Great Northern beans, rinsed and drained
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Remove wings from chicken and reserve. Remove skin from breast and discard. Shred the meat from the breast and break off breastbones.
- In a stockpot over medium heat, add oil. Sauté the carrots, celery, onion, chicken wings, and breastbones for 8 to 10 minutes, or until vegetables soften.
- Add water and chicken broth and bring to a boil, stirring to combine. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. Add beans and chicken meat and cook for 5 minutes. If too thick, add additional broth or water. Discard bones and wings before serving. Season with salt and pepper.
Note: For a burst of green, add a few handfuls of baby spinach or 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley right before serving. For classic chicken noodle soup, substitute ½ cup of egg noodles for the beans.
Top a frozen pizza crust, with shredded chicken, marinara sauce, mozzarella or other cheese and your favorite vegetables. See the ASE article on making your own pizza for advice on crust (especially store-bought dough and crust). Everything You Need for the Perfect Pizza
- 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 2 Yellow Onions, Chopped
- 2 Tablespoons Butter
- 2 cans (4 Oz. Size) Chopped Green Chiles
- 3 Tablespoons Flour
- 2 teaspoons Kosher Salt
- 2-1/2 teaspoons Chile Powder, such as Ancho
- 1-1/2 teaspoon Cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon Ground Red Pepper
- 6 cups Chicken Stock or Bone Broth
- 3 pounds (Or More) Russet Potatoes, Peeled and Cut into Bite-sized Chunks
- 4 cups Shredded Rotisserie Chicken
- 2 cans (15 Oz. Size) Black Beans, Rinsed and Drained
- 2 cups Frozen Corn Kernels
- 8 ounces, weight Sharp Cheddar Cheese, Grated
- Freshly Cracked Black Pepper
- Avocado, Sour Cream, Sliced Jalapenos, Fresh Pico De Gallo, And Limes, For Serving
- In a large Dutch oven or stockpot, heat olive oil until shimmering. Add chopped onion and cook until softened, about 8–10 minutes. Stir in butter and green chilies. Once butter has melted, add flour plus the salt and spices. Stir constantly until flour is absorbed and spices are fragrant, about 2 minutes.
- Add chicken broth and potatoes. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for 15 minutes, or until potatoes are tender and can be pierced easily with a fork.Use a slotted spoon to remove about 3 cups of the potatoes from the soup. It’s ok if you get some onions and chilies, too. Set aside. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup in the pot. Alternatively, blend soup in batches using a blender.
- Add reserved potatoes back to the soup, along with chicken, beans, and corn. Cook until heated through. Add cheese, stirring until melted. Season with freshly ground pepper and more salt, if needed.
- The soup is even better the day after it was made! Serve with all of the toppings and a squeeze of lime.
- ¼ cups Butter
- ½ Onion, Diced
- ¼ cups all-purpose Flour
- 2 cups Whole Milk
- 1 cup Heavy Cream
- 1 cup Chicken Broth
- 2 Chicken Breasts, Cooked and Cut into Bite-sized Pieces
- 4 ounces, weight Ham, cubed
- 4 teaspoons Stone Ground Mustard
- ¼ cups Chopped Parsley
- 6 ounces, weight Swiss Cheese, Shredded
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
- Croutons, For Serving (optional)
- Melt butter in a medium-sized soup pan. Add onion and cook over medium-low heat until tender, about 10 minutes. You can cover the pot to make the onion cook faster.
- Sprinkle in flour and whisk until smooth. Cook for 2 minutes.
- Pour in half each of the milk, cream, and chicken broth and whisk until smooth. Gradually add the rest. Bring to a boil, stirring often. Boil and stir 1 minute.
- Remove from heat and add chicken, ham, mustard, parsley, and Swiss cheese. Stir until cheese is completely melted. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.
- Serve immediately with croutons, toast, or biscuits.
2 Cups Shredded Rotisserie Chicken
1 large avocado, cored and chopped
¼ cup cilantro, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
Add ingredients in a bowl
Mash ingredients with a fork until well combined.
Healthy, DIY spices for home cooked rotisserie chicken
Meggan Hill at CulinaryHill.com offers a blend of seasonings to make your home-made rotisserie chicken just as addictive as the ones in the store. She says, “I love a rotisserie chicken as much as the next person, so I decided to create the perfect rotisserie chicken seasoning that skips all the preservatives and lets the chicken really shine.”
- 2teaspoons paprika
- 1 1/2teaspoons dried thyme
- 1teaspoon garlic powder
- 1teaspoon onion powder
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Whisk all dried ingredients and spices together in a small bowl. Use immediately or store in an airtight jar in the pantry for future use.
A little olive oil brushed on the chicken will help the seasoning stick to the chicken as it roasts.
Header Image from Delish.com