One Bird, Three Feasts: Unlocking the Culinary Potential of a Rotisserie Chicken

May 15, 2024

by brittany schimke

Taking control of your grocery list and budget doesn't have to be a daunting task. With just one simple addition to your shopping routine - a rotisserie chicken - you can unlock a world of culinary possibilities while saving time and money.

The beauty of the rotisserie chicken lies in its versatility. Whether you're in the mood for a hearty salad, a comforting casserole, or a light and refreshing sandwich, this humble bird has you covered. And the best part? No cooking skills required.

Before rolling up your sleeves, let's ensure you maximize every bit of your rotisserie chicken. Allow it to cool, break it down, and save any unused parts, including the skin, for later use. 

Now, onto the main event: Loaded Chicken Enchiladas! Imagine succulent chicken, beans, and corn nestled in warm tortillas, smothered in decadent enchilada sauce and melted cheese, a delight for any palate. Then, indulge in the irresistible blend of sweet and savory Chicken Salad, featuring juicy grapes, crunchy walnuts, and crisp celery bound together with creamy mayo and tangy Greek yogurt. And don't forget the unsung hero of the chicken: transform the carcass into a nourishing Chicken Bone Broth, simmered low and slow to extract every bit of flavor and nutrients, ready to elevate your next culinary creation. Whether it's a busy weeknight or a leisurely family dinner, these recipes promise to simplify mealtime while tantalizing your taste buds with flavor-packed goodness.

Loaded Chicken Enchiladas

photo by Brittany Shimke

  • 2 Cups finely shredded Rotisserie Chicken
  • ½ Cup finely chopped yellow onion
  • ½ Cup finely chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 corn on the cob or 8.75oz can of sweet corn, drained
  • 1 28 oz can of enchilada sauce (red or green)
  • 3 Cups shredded Mexican Style cheese blend
  • 1 package taco seasoning
  • 6 burrito tortillas
  • Optional toppings: sour cream, avocados, cilantro
  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Grease a 9x9 inch baking dish and set aside.
  2. In a large skillet over medium heat, add olive oil. Once heated, sauté the chopped onions and bell peppers until they become soft and translucent, approximately 5-7 minutes.
  3. Add the drained black beans and corn to the skillet with the onions and bell peppers. Stir in the taco seasoning, and cook for an additional 5 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld together. Remove from heat.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, combine the shredded rotisserie chicken, 1 cup of the shredded cheese, sauteed onions and bell peppers, corn, beans, and ¾ cup of the enchilada sauce. Mix well until all ingredients are evenly distributed.
  5. Place a generous portion of the chicken mixture onto each burrito tortilla, roll them up tightly, and arrange them seam-side down in the prepared baking dish.
  6. Pour the remaining enchilada sauce evenly over the rolled tortillas, making sure they are all coated. Sprinkle the remaining shredded cheese over the top.
  7. Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  8. Once done, remove the foil and bake for an additional 5 minutes, allowing the cheese to slightly brown.
  9. Remove from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes before serving. Optionally, garnish with sour cream, sliced avocados, and fresh cilantro.
  10. Serve hot and enjoy your delicious Loaded Chicken Enchiladas!

Sweet and Savory Chicken Salad 

  • 2 Cups shredded Rotisserie chicken
  • ⅓ Cup sliced grapes
  • ¼ Cup chopped walnuts
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped red onion
  • 2 chopped celery stalks
  • ½ Cup mayo
  • ½ Cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a small bowl of ice water, soak the chopped red onions while preparing other ingredients. This helps mellow out their harsh flavor. Dry the onions before adding them to the salad.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the shredded chicken, sliced grapes, chopped walnuts, soaked and dried red onions, chopped celery stalks, mayo, Greek yogurt, Dijon mustard, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Mix until all ingredients are well combined.
  3. Serve the chicken salad cold on top of toast, in a tortilla, or with your favorite crackers.

Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator. This salad will last for up to 3 days.

Pro tip: Customize your chicken salad by adding diced apples, dried cranberries, or a squeeze of lemon juice for extra flavor variation.

Now it's time to put the chicken carcass, skin, and fat to work. It can be used to make the most delicious and nutritious bone broth! 

Chicken Bone Broth 

  • 1 Chicken carcass, preferably broken to expose marrow
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 4 large carrots, roughly chopped
  • 1 bulb garlic, cloves smashed
  • 5 celery stalks, roughly chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon dried rosemary
  • Water (quantity depends on the size of carcass and vegetables)
  1. Begin by roughly chopping the vegetables and smashing the garlic cloves. 
  2. If possible, break the chicken carcass bones to expose the marrow, enhancing flavor and nutrition.
  3. In a large crockpot, combine the chopped vegetables, smashed garlic, chicken carcass, bay leaves, Italian seasoning, turmeric, salt, pepper, dried rosemary, and enough water to cover everything.
  4. Cook on the low setting for 24 hours, allowing all the flavors to meld together and extract the nutrients from the bones and vegetables.
  5. After the 24 hours, carefully drain the liquid through a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth, capturing the golden broth. Discard the solids.
  6. Store the broth in airtight containers in the refrigerator for immediate use or freeze it for future recipes.

An additional tip for minimizing food waste: To further reduce waste, collect vegetable scraps in a gallon-sized Ziploc bag and store them in the freezer. Once you have a full bag of frozen vegetable scraps, you can use them instead of fresh vegetables to make your broth. This not only maximizes the use of ingredients but also adds depth of flavor to your broth. The resulting broth can be used in any recipe calling for chicken broth, providing extra nutrients and flavor.

The next time you're perusing the aisles of your local grocery store, remember to grab a rotisserie chicken. You can create three delicious meals with just one bird that will nourish your body and soul. It's a simple yet powerful way to take control of your grocery list and make the most of every dollar spent. Happy cooking! 

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