Cheesy Chicken & Bacon Casserole

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I’m usually not into casseroles, but this one is just too good.  It’s perfect for a homey dinner and then reheats beautifully for breakfast or brunch the next day, you know, if there are any leftovers…which is rare at our house, actually.

There are potatoes in this concoction and that will strike it off the list for most Paleo eaters but eating a little potato now and then doesn’t seem to bother me.  I don’t carb crash afterward so I don’t feel like it’s derailing my overall way of eating and anyway, potatoes are tubers.  I’m pretty sure people have been eating them forever.  Although I wouldn’t eat something like this every day, it’s real comfort food and is nice every once in a while.  Kids love this stuff, too!  If you wanted to add a few onions or bell peppers for the grownups I’m sure it would be quite tasty.

Again I turn to my trusty slow cooker.  I highly recommend using one of those slow cooker liners for this casserole because I, for one, hate scrubbing that big ol’ crock out and they make cleanup a non-issue.

casseroleingredients

Here’s the recipe:

1 bag Simply Potatoes hash browns (HEB frequently has these for free when I buy bacon so I end up with a lot of them)
1 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded smoked sharp cheddar cheese (I like Tillamook for this because it’s not too pricey but adds a ton of flavor)
6 strips bacon, cooked and broken into about 1” pieces
3 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into about 2” chunks
3 T butter
1 cup raw milk or half and half
Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper

Start by lining your slow cooker and coating the bottom and sides with a little olive oil.  Put in half the hash browns, a little salt and pepper and then layer half the cheeses, half the chicken chunks and half the bacon pieces.  Repeat with a second layer – hash browns, salt and pepper, cheeses, chicken, bacon.  Add a little more salt and a good sprinkling of pepper to the top and dot with butter, then pour milk over it all.

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Cover and cook on HIGH for about 4 hours or for about 6 hours on LOW.  Serve with a nice salad and a little fruit to round things out.  Don’t expect leftovers. 🙂

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