One Chicken, Two Meals

Who doesn’t love stretching their groceries a little bit further? Here are some easy recipes that will feed your family a couple times using one chicken.

Meal #1 – Simple Roasted Chicken

You should plan on having at least half of the chicken left over for the second meal, so if you have big eaters, go for two whole chickens. Before starting this recipe, make sure you’ve defrosted your chicken overnight in the refrigerator.

Simple Roasted Chicken

1 3 -4 lb whole chicken
3 tablespoons butter, melted
3 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon lemon pepper seasoning, or fresh ground black pepper

First, preheat your oven to 450˚F. Now, thoroughly dry the chicken with paper towels, then place it breast side UP on a rack set over a shallow roasting pan (or a jelly roll pan). Brush the chicken with melted butter and sprinkle or rub minced garlic all over the chicken. In a small bowl combine salt, basil, thyme, and lemon pepper; rub onto the chicken. Tie the legs together with kitchen twine, and tuck the wings under the body of the chicken. Roast the chicken, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Then reduce the oven to 350˚F and continue to cook until done; about an hour and 10 minutes, or until internal temperature of chicken reaches 165˚F. Remove chicken from oven and pour the meat juices over the bird with either a baster or a large spoon. Let it rest for about 15-20 minutes before cutting.

That’s it – you’re done with Meal #1! Serve with sides of your choice, the variations are endless.

To prep for Meal #2, save the excess meat from your chicken and keep those bones, I’m going to let you in on a little secret – how to make your own chicken broth! Also, make sure to keep the broth that was created from this recipe – strain it and refrigerate the broth for 8 hours (or overnight), then skim the fat from the surface.

Super Simple Chicken Broth Tutorial

Place your leftover chicken carcass(es) in a large soup pot, cover with water and simmer uncovered for 3-4 hours skimming foam as necessary. Feel free to add more seasoning during cooking to make your broth more flavorful. My suggestions would be bay leaf, onion, carrot, and celery.

boom easy as that

Meal #2 – Chicken and Barley Dinner
Now we’re going to use your leftover chicken and chicken broth – and hey – now you know how to make your own! The original recipe calls for whole pieces of chicken, but I make it with leftover chicken so it is easier to eat. It comes from my sister-in-law, Nancy Symes. Thanks Nancy!
Chicken and Barley Dinner
1-2 cups cooked, deboned and chopped chicken (depending on what you have leftover, you can always add more or less)
8 cups chicken broth
1 cup uncooked brown rice
1/2 cup medium pearled barley
1 medium onion, chopped
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1-2 teaspoons salt, to taste
1/4 teaspoon pepper
8 carrots, cut into 1 inch pieces
2 celery ribs, cut into 1 inch pieces
2 1/2 cups frozen or fresh cut green beans
In and 8 quart kettle or Dutch oven, combine the broth, rice, barley, onion, bay leaves, basil, salt, and pepper; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes. Stir in carrots, celery, green beans, and chopped, cooked chicken. Continue simmering for 30 minutes or until the grains are tender. Remove bay leaves before serving.
Yield 6-8 servings

What are your favorite side dishes to have with a chicken dinner? Let us know in the comments below.

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Cathy Johnmeyer

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