Laura Rennie

three dinners — one rotisserie chicken

Laura R.Comment
I don’t go to Costco as often as some of my friends (*cough* Sarah Downs *cough*) but when I do I always buy a rotisserie chicken. It’s a no-brainer. You get three pounds of delicious meat for only $5, and those three pounds go a long way. I often will use it to make a huge batch of chicken salad, but last weekend I picked up a bird and decided I’d try to see how many different meals I could make with it. (Just remember to use your cooked chicken within four days of purchasing it. You can maybe go a day or two longer if the chicken isn’t gummy or funky-smelling, but be cautious!)

Here’s how I’m using one rotisserie chicken to get three meals, plus leftovers:

On Monday night I made Ree Drummond’s buffalo chicken salad using diced white meat tossed with a few tablespoons of Frank’s Wing Sauce, which we happened to have on hand. I used bagged butter lettuce and added some chopped cucumber for crunch. I also used her tip of mashing blue cheese crumbles into ranch dressing. This was the quickest, easiest dinner ever and we both LOVED the flavor. It filled me up, but Andy said he was still a little hungry after he finished his. Next time I might serve it with a baked potato or a big hunk of bread. Go big or go home, right? I’ll be considering this recipe the next time I make dinner for friends.

(Warning: if you have any leftovers you may find yourself standing in front of the fridge late at night eating cold buffalo chicken coated in blue cheese straight from the tupperware container. You also may die from flavor explosion.)


I made homemade broth for the first time this weekend by putting the rotisserie chicken carcass in my crock-pot with water, carrots, a quartered onion, garlic, salt, pepper and celery seed. (I didn’t follow a recipe.) I got two quarts worth of yummy, rich broth and divided it up into four pint-sized Talenti gelato jars. p.s. you guys. that gelato is worth EVERY PENNY. 

Last night I used a mix of dark and white meat and some of my chicken broth to make chicken noodle soup. If you have kids, leave the hot sauce out of the main pot and just add it to your individual bowl. Or don’t use it at all...but that would be lame.

Laura’s kickin’ creamy chicken noodle soup
serves 4
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup (it’s easy to make if you don’t care to buy it)
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup celery, chopped
  • 1/4 cup carrots, chopped
  • 1 and 1/4 cups corn
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 and 1/2 cups egg noodles
  • 1 cup cooked chicken
  • a bit of half and half or milk 
  • several glugs of hot sauce (Cholula all the way!)

1. Place the first eight ingredients (stop after seasoning) in a pot and simmer for an hour.
2. Add egg noodles and cook for 7 minutes.
3. Stir in chicken, half and half and hot sauce.
OR place the first eight ingredients in a crockpot for 3-5 hours on high or 6-8 on low. Add remaining ingredients at the end of cook time and put the lid back on. The noodles should take around 10 minutes on high heat, probably 20 on low.

Today I have two servings of soup leftover, plus a half cup of dark meat and almost two cups of white meat. I can’t believe I still have that much chicken! I’m torn between making Chipotle-style chicken burrito bowls, tzatziki chicken salad or chicken/bacon/cheese quesadillas with honey mustard. Decisions, decisions!

What are your favorite ways to use rotisserie chicken?