Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole

This hearty chicken and wild rice casserole is made with tender chicken thighs, mushrooms, and a blend of herbs.

Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole | lifemadesimplebakes.com

Our family loved everything about this hearty casserole. Unlike a lot of wild rice dishes, the rice was perfectly cooked and incredibly tender (something my kids were VERY happy about)! The mushrooms and veggies added to the heartiness and the chicken was juicy and super tender. We added some chunky, buttery breadcrumbs on top for added crunch.

Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole | lifemadesimplebakes.com

This dish takes a little bit of time to prep, but making the dish is actually really easy. The oven does most of the work, the rest is all done in a large skillet on the stovetop. If you’re making this post-Thanksgiving, you can easily swap out the chicken for cooked turkey. It’s a great way to use up those leftovers!

Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole | lifemadesimplebakes.com

What I love most about this (aside from all of the veggies) is how flavorful it is! Properly seasoning a dish makes a huge difference!

Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole | lifemadesimplebakes.com

This chicken and wild rice casserole is something we’ll make over & over again- I hope you will too!

Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This hearty chicken and wild rice casserole is made with tender chicken thighs, mushrooms, and a blend of herbs.
Author:
Yield: 6-8 servings
Ingredients
  • 1 c. + 2 tbsp. wild rice blend
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 carrots, diced
  • 3 stalks celery, diced
  • 3 c. low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tsp. kosher sea salt
  • 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • ½ tsp. paprika
  • ½ tsp. ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp. thyme
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1½ lbs. boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 8 oz. cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tbsp. white wine or chicken stock
  • ⅔ c. sour cream (light or regular)
  • ½ c. whole milk or half & half
  • 3 c. cubed bread (french bread or white bread)*
  • 5 tbsp. melted butter

  • Optional garnish:
  • 1 tbsp. freshly chopped parsley
Directions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Add the wild rice, onion, garlic, carrots, celery, chicken broth, salt, Italian seasoning, paprika, black pepper and thyme to a 9x13-inch casserole dish. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and place into the oven to bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes.
  2. At the 1 hour mark, in a large skillet set over medium-high heat, add the olive oil. Sprinkle a dash of salt on the bottom of the pan. Season the chicken pieces all over additional ground black pepper and paprika. Working in 2-3 batches, brown the chicken pieces on two sides, about 2-3 minutes per batch. Remove chicken pieces and set aside. Add a little more salt to the pan (and more olive oil if needed) after each batch.
  3. Add the mushrooms and sauté them, allowing them to brown, about 3-4 minutes. Add the white wine or chicken broth to deglaze the pan, scraping off the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Remove the casserole from the oven (turn the oven up to 425 degrees) and stir in the mushrooms, sour cream and milk. Place the chicken over top and gently press it into the rice.
  4. Toss the cubed bread into the melted butter, then sprinkle over the top. Return the casserole to the oven and bake uncovered for another 20 minutes, keeping an eye on the bread crumbs (if they are getting too brown, just place the foil over top.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow to stand for 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with freshly chopped parsley, if desired.
Notes
*I used a whole wheat french bread from Target's bakery, it was perfect!


Recipe source: Life Made Simple