One taste of this chicken casserole will tell you why it's so popular. And it doesn't hurt that you only need 6 ingredients. The buttery Ritz cracker top and bottom crust offer surprising flavor and texture, and the rich and creamy sauce is unbelievably easy. You may omit the bottom layer of crackers if you'd like to lighten it a bit.
Ritz crackers, a tasty alternative to saltines, were introduced by Nabisco in 1934. Today, there are many varieties, including whole wheat, bacon, garlic butter, and low sodium.
The chicken casserole takes no more than 10 minutes to put together, and it bakes to perfection in about 30 to 40 minutes. To make it more colorful, feel free to add other ingredients, such as pimientos or steamed vegetables. Or serve it with fresh sliced tomatoes or a tossed salad.
Feel free to make the casserole with two 9-ounce bags of (e.g., Perdue, Tyson) fully cooked roasted or grilled chicken breast strips. The shortcut makes the recipe prep even faster and easier. A plump rotisserie chicken from your local deli is another great option.
- 7 ounces Ritz crackers (about 2 sleeves /60 crackers)
- 4 ounces melted butter (1 stick, divided)
- 1 (10 3/4-ounce) can condensed cream of chicken soup (or cream of mushroom)
- 1 (8-ounce) container sour cream (about 1 cup, regular or reduced fat)
- 1/2 cup chicken broth (low sodium or unsalted)
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless chicken breast halves (4 medium, cooked and diced)*
- Preheat the oven to 325 F.
- Lightly grease a 2-quart casserole dish.
- Crumble one sleeve of Ritz crackers in the bottom of the prepared casserole dish. Drizzle half of the melted butter over the crackers.
- In a bowl, combine the soup, sour cream, chicken broth, and diced cooked chicken. Spoon the mixture over the Ritz cracker layer.
- Crush the remaining sleeve of crackers and toss them in a bowl with the remaining melted butter. Sprinkle the buttered cracker crumbs over the chicken casserole mixture.
- Bake the Ritz chicken casserole in the preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until hot and bubbly.
*About 4 cups or more of cooked diced chicken breasts.
- Add a 2-ounce jar of diced pimientos—drained—for added color and flavor.
- Serve vegetables on the side or add some to your casserole. Feel free to add 1 to 1 1/2 cups of lightly steamed frozen peas, green beans, or mixed vegetables to the chicken and sauce mixture. Steamed asparagus and lightly steamed broccoli are good options as well.
- Add a few tablespoons of chopped fresh parsley to the filling for color.
- Sauté 6 to 8 ounces of sliced mushrooms in 2 tablespoons of butter until tender and browned; fold the mushrooms into the chicken mixture.
- Substitute diced cooked turkey for the chicken.
- Replace some of the chicken with diced ham, or add some diced cooked bacon to the chicken mixture.
|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
|Total Fat||58 g|
|Saturated Fat||28 g|
|Unsaturated Fat||17 g|
|Dietary Fiber||1 g|