Lunches That Use Leftover Chicken

 

Half-eaten rotisserie chicken and bland grilled breasts are revived for these flavorful, inspired lunches that might just taste better than the dinners they were left over from.

 

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Easy Chicken-Mushroom Quesadillas

Ellie Krieger's light quesadillas take only 20 minutes to prepare. Filled with chicken, mushrooms, spinach, three cheeses and a mixture of spices, this Mexican main packs plenty of oomph.

Get the Recipe: Easy Chicken-Mushroom Quesadillas

Kale Buttermilk Caesar Salad with Chicken

This hearty salad is extra-satisfying, thanks to a creamy, garlicky dressing and crisp whole-wheat croutons. Kale is a nutrient powerhouse that won't wilt even when dressed, which makes this salad a good pick to pack ahead for lunch.

Get the Recipe: Kale Buttermilk Caesar Salad with Chicken

Easy Chicken Burrito with Mojo

For a lighter (yet equally delicious) burrito, replace beef with shredded chicken. Topped with spicy, citrusy mojo sauce, this meal is a SoCal twist on classic Mexican fare.

Get the Recipe: Easy Chicken Burritos with Mojo

Greek Chicken Salad Sandwiches

Nadia G's easy office lunch fills a baguette with briny Kalamata olives and capers, salty feta cheese, sweet onions and chunks of chicken for a complex sandwich that will leave you satisfied.

Get the Recipe: Greek Chicken Salad Sandwiches

Roast Chicken Enchilada Suizas Stacked Casserole

A great way to clean out the fridge? Pack everything into a hearty casserole. Rachael Ray uses Mexican crema for the sauce base and adds poblanos, tomatillos and jalapenos for rich, spicy flavor. Stack the chicken enchiladas in your casserole dish (rather than rolling them) for easy serving.

Get the Recipe: Roast Chicken Enchilada Suizas Stacked Casserole

Scoopable Chinese Chicken Salad

You won't find fried noodles in this Chinese chicken salad; instead, it gains crunch from broccoli slaw and water chestnuts, and it is ready in a flash, thanks to low-cal bottled dressing.

Get the Recipe: Scoopable Chinese Chicken Salad

Caribbean Wrap

Spicy and sweet, this tropical wrap is packed with lean, tasty and nutritious fillings like black beans, chicken breast, mango and macadamia nuts. Pack the wraps and salsa separately, then roll them up when you're ready to eat, so they don't get soggy.

Get the Recipe: Caribbean Wrap

Pasta with Chicken, Risotto Style

Use leftover chicken-thigh meat and substitute pasta for rice to create a dish that's as creamy as risotto, but takes a quarter of the time to prepare. 

Get the Recipe: Pasta with Chicken, Risotto-Style

Simple Chilaquiles with Fried Eggs

Lay a sunny-side-up egg over a crispy bed of tomatillo salsa- and hot sauce-topped tortilla chips and rotisserie chicken for an easy, spicy, protein-packed lunch.

Get the Recipe: Simple Chilaquiles with Fried Eggs

Tarragon Chicken Salad Tea Sandwiches

Use either grilled or roasted chicken in this salty-sweet chicken salad that's studded with juicy red grapes and crunchy pecans. Spread it on a slice of your favorite bread for a quick and packable lunch.

Get the Recipe: Tarragon Chicken Salad Tea Sandwiches

Asian Chicken Salad

For this no-cook lunch, lay leftover chicken over a bed of cabbage, pepper, carrots and lettuce, then drizzle with a tangy homemade Asian-inspired dressing.

Get the Recipe: Asian Chicken Salad

Rolled Chicken Sandwich with Arugula and Parsley Aioli

Fresh parsley gives this wrap a crisp and refreshing flavor, making it hard to detect the aioli's secret salty ingredient: anchovies. 

Get the Recipe: Rolled Chicken Sandwich with Arugula and Parsley Aioli

Next Up


With restaurants on both coasts victory on Top Chef and a cookbook on the way the Voltaggio brothers are two of the hottest young chefs in the country. Catch them on the Cooking Channel as they share their tips tricks and recipes for a Thanksgiving feast full of flavor and style.