Wild Rice and Kale Chicken Casserole – Hearty and delicious casserole made with chicken, wild rice, kale and a good dose of cheese.
I’m feeding you kale. Again. You’re welcome??
Um… yes, of course YOU’re welcome! Healthy wild rice and kale is what you and I craaaave… Always!
I went to the store 3 times in one day to make this for you. You know why? Becaaaaause I forgot my list.
Rule #1 of the Food Club: NEVER go to the grocery store without a list. ONE, you will forget what you needed. TWO, you will buy things you never did before, like soda pop. No one in this household even drinks it!.
Rule #2 of the Food Club: See Rule #1.
Even an app for grocery lists couldn’t save me basically because I can’t save myself from all the food distractions. My current obsession; kale. I remembered to get kale, but forgot the rice. I went back to get the rice, thought I had chicken at home, but NOPE! I had to go back. Duh. Don’t listen to me. I’m just hungry.
One more confession? I was so tired of running around, I bought a rotisserie chicken for din din.
So this recipe, technically, is good for you. Even with all the cheese, we’re still good. What may irk you a bit is all the time that it takes to cook wild rice. Ugh.
But once you’re done with that, it’s smooth sailing. Unless you don’t have leftover cooked chicken… then it’s going to take a bit more than a smooth sail…
You know what’s best about this dish? All the switcharoos and subs that you can do! No wild rice? Use white rice, instead. No chicken? You can do without it! No kale? Spinach is good, too! But, keep the kale. It’s really, really great in this.
And now I’m gonna run to the store with a LIST that includes a jar of Nutella. Oh, me so lucky!
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup uncooked wild rice
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small yellow onion
- 4 garlic cloves , minced
- 8- ounces (about 2-1/2 to 3 chicken breasts) cooked chicken breasts, cut into cubes (leftover chicken is great in this recipe)
- 4 cups chopped kale leaves , packed
- salt and fresh ground pepper , to taste
- 1 cup spaghetti/pasta sauce
- 1/2 cup crumbled bleu cheese
- 3/4 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese
- 1/2 cup cheddar cheese
- 1/2 cup fresh cherry tomatoes , quartered, for garnish (optional)
- 2 green onions , green parts only, for garnish (optional)
Bring water to a boil and stir in 1 cup wild rice.
Reduce heat and simmer covered for 40 to 45 minutes or just until kernels puff open.
Uncover and fluff with a fork; let simmer an additional five minutes. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 375.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet.
Add onions and cook for 2 minutes, or until just tender.
Add garlic and continue to cook for 1 minute, stirring occasionally, or until garlic is fragrant.
Add cubed cooked chicken and continue to cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until chicken is heated through.
Stir in chopped kale and season with salt and pepper; stirring frequently, cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until wilted.
Remove from heat.
Grease a casserole dish with cooking spray; set aside.
In a mixing bowl, combine cooked wild rice, chicken mixture, pasta sauce and bleu cheese; mix until well combined.
Transfer mixture to prepared baking dish.
Top with cheddar cheese.
Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
Remove from oven and let stand 5 minutes.
Garnish with fresh tomatoes and green onions.