Transform chicken, kale and corn into a delicious chicken casserole that comes together quickly if you prep a few key ingredients ahead of time!
I’m so excited to share a recipe from my friend Cassy of Fed & Fit today. Although I’ve followed Cassy’s blog for years, I finally met her in person at the Everything Food Conference this year. Cassy was in Salt Lake for the conference, but also there for her book tour.
I learned a little bit more about the book and her focus on batch-cooking and was SOLD. Ya’ll know I’m a huge advocate of meal planning and I love the batch-cooking method so this was right up my alley.
I was so excited to get her new cookbook, Cook Once, Eat All Week and dug in literally as soon as I got home from the conference. The idea behind the book is to take three simple ingredients and turn them into three easy-to-assemble meals. Genius, right?! I spent a little over 2 hours in the kitchen on the weekend, but then had key ingredients ready to make three different meals for the week.
I followed Week 9 in the book, which focuses on baked chicken, kale and corn. I picked this menu because I love fresh corn and it’s in season right now. With the chicken, kale and corn that I prepped on Sunday we were able to make three tasty meals: this Confetti Chicken Casserole, Mexican Chicken and Corn Street Tacos and a Green Goddess Salad.
Everything was delicious and super easy to put together since I’d done the prep work on Sunday. The recipes made 4-6 servings and since it’s just me and Isaac eating, the three meals made enough for 7 dinners, with just 2 hours of prep on the weekend and about 30 minutes of prep/cooking on the three nights we served the meals.
It felt super streamlined and I loved how easy it was. It was also really cool to see three simple ingredients transform into flavorful and unique meals that made us totally forget we were eating the same three ingredients all week.
Isaac and I enjoyed all the meals, but this Confetti Chicken Casserole was definitely our favorite, which is why I asked Cassy if I could share the recipe with you! Hopefully, this gives you a good taste of what Cook Once, Eat All Week is all about and inspires you to start batch-cooking as part of your meal prep routine.
The whole point of Cassy’s cookbook is to batch-cook simple ingredients and turn them into three easy meals to enjoy throughout the week, but since I’m just sharing the chicken casserole recipe, I’m only going to give you details of how to prep for that meal.
To bake the chicken, brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Bake for 40 minutes in a 375°F oven, until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F and the juices run clean when cut. When cool enough to handle, cut the chicken into 1/2 inch cubes. Let cool completely and store in the refrigerator until ready to prep the casserole.
I also like to bake my bacon in the oven so it doesn’t splatter all over my stovetop – bake on a rimmed baking sheet at 400ºF until crisp, 12 to 18 minutes. The total time will depend on the thickness of your bacon. Transfer the cooked bacon to a paper towel-lined plate and let cool. Be sure to use a rimmed baking sheet because grease will form and if your baking sheet isn’t rimmed it will drip all over your oven and could cause a fire.
For this step, just heat 1 teaspoon olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. When hot, add the onion, peppers, and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally for 5 to 6 minutes, until the vegetables are wilted and slightly browned. This can be done up to 3-4 days in advance. Store in the refrigerator until ready to prep the casserole.
If you choose to use fresh corn on the cob, you’ll need to cook it in advance. Just husk the corn, and bring a large pot of water to a boil. When the water reaches a boil, add the corn and boil for 5 minutes, then remove from the pot. Once cool, slice the corn kernels off the cob. I share an awesome tip for cutting corn from the cob in my corn salad recipe so be sure to check that out!
Wash and remove stems from the kale and shred it ahead of time. This step isn’t 100% necessary as you can certainly do this night you want to make the casserole, but it helps keep the casserole prep super easy.
The night you want to serve the casserole, it’s basically just a bunch of mixing! In a large bowl, stir the onion and red bell pepper mixture, corn, kale, chicken, mayo, salt, and pepper. Transfer this mixture to a baking dish and top with shredded cheese and bacon. Bake for 30 minutes or until the cheese is lightly browned and bubbly. Remove from the oven and let it sit for a few minutes. Top with green onion for garnish and enjoy!
Want to learn more about batch cooking or find more recipes like these? Grab your copy of Cook Once, Eat All Week.