I had a request to post some of the recipes for healthy meals in hurry that I received when I attended a seminar that our local extension office sponsored. The idea behind this workshop was that we can put healthy meals on the table even when we have a lot to do in our schedule. These meals can be prepared and cooked right away or frozen for later use.
Here is Recipe No. 1 and it is for Broccoli Chicken Rice Casserole.
3/4 cup instant brown rice
1/3 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon margarine
1/3 cup dry soup mix (see recipe that follows)
1 1/4 cups water
1 - 16 oz. pkg. frozen broccoli florets or chopped broccoli
2 cups chopped cooked chicken *
1 cup reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese
Prepare the rice according to package directions. In a Dutch oven or deep pan, cook onion in margarine over medium to low heat until golden. Add dry cream soup mix to pan, stirring to mix well. Stir in water. Heat to boiling. Cook and stir until thick.
Add frozen broccoli, cooked chicken and cooked rice. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture is nearly heated through. Add cheese and heat until melted. Internal temperature should register 165 degrees.
* 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts makes about 2 2/3 cups chopped cooked chicken.
You can freeze this recipe after you assemble it. To serve, thaw and reheat in the oven or on the stove.
This casserole was served to us for lunch and it was in a casserole dish and they had sprinkled the cheese on top and heated it in the oven (350 degrees preheated oven) until the center of the casserole reached the desired temperature. This was served with canned apricots, tossed salad and brownies.
To make the brownies they took a dark chocolate brownie mix and added 1 can of pumpkin to the dry mix and mixed well. Then bake per the package directions. Yes, just 2 ingredients. When they were cool they sprinkled the top of the brownies with a light sprinkling of powdered sugar.
I have to tell you that this casserole was delicious and filling. I am sure that you could easily substitute leftover turkey for the chicken. The brownies were very good and it was nice to have a chocolate fix.
Here is the recipe for the dry soup mix. I have always wanted to try this recipe ever since I saw it in one of my Tightwad Gazette books, but I always worried that it wouldn't taste as good and would be a waste of money. Well, I can attest that it was delicious in the casserole. I plan to use it instead of the canned version as it is definitely healthier and I know what the ingredients are that go into the soup mix. Nothing hard to pronounce in the ingredient list.
Dry Soup Mix
2 cups nonfat dry milk powder
3/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup sodium free dry chicken bouillon
2 tablespoon dried minced onion flakes
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
Combine all ingredients and mix well. Place in a storage container and seal tightly. Store in a cool dry place for up to six months. Stir or shake well before each use. To use as a substitute for 1 can of condensed soup, mix 1/3 cup dry mix with 1 1/4 cups of water. Cook and stir on stove top until thickened. This makes the soup in the condensed soup form as it would come out of the can.