What To Do With Leftover Roast Chicken
Picture this: you’ve just cooked a beautiful roast chicken. It was delicious, and you and your lucky partners in crime have eaten your fill. You look down at what’s left, and whether this amounts to a fair bit of meat or just scraps, you wonder to yourself - what can I do with this? No matter how little you think there is leftover, we guarantee there’s a great use for your leftover roast chicken (unless you have also eaten the bones in which case… that’s another discussion).
Eating for one a.k.a. lots of leftovers!
If you’re cooking for one, maybe you’re thinking you can’t be a part of the whole-roast-chicken-club. Well friends, put down the chicken marylands (for now… and then pick them back up and make some Dukkah Chicken), because there is nothing more handy and versatile than a great big portion of leftover roast chook.
You can make basically any (or all!) of the dishes on this list - dinner and lunch sorted!
After you have finished eating, remove the rest of the meat from the carcass and pop it in a sealed container in the fridge, then set the carcass aside either in the freezer or the fridge depending on how soon you’re going to use it (nothing has to go to waste!).
What to cook?
One of our favourite ‘lots of chicken’ dishes to make with leftover roast chook is enchiladas. Just throw your cooked chicken in a pan with your favourite Mexican flavours (we like cumin, chilli powder, garlic, onion, red capsicum and a bit of chipotle). Roll this up in a flour tortilla, lay out on a tray, top with some tomato passata (or you can get fancy and opt for a more authentic enchilada sauce) and loads of cheese. Bake and enjoy with some sour cream and wedges of lime.
Better half a.k.a. about half a chook left
We asked a few of our coupled-up team members how much chicken they and their partner usually eat from a whole roast and we definitely got some “all of it”s. If this is *not* you, you’re probably usually left with a bit less than half a chicken left over. This is a great amount of chicken for tomorrow’s dinner!
What to cook?
Asian inspired chicken noodle slaw salad - this is a great lunch too! Just toss your favourite slaw veggies (we use purple and white cabbage, carrot and thinly sliced cucumber) with some (cooked) flat rice noodles, fresh mint and a dressing of Cannings Sweet Chilli Sauce and fresh lime (around 2 tbsp sweet chilli to 1 tbsp lime juice), plus your shredded leftover chicken. Beat and fry/scramble up an egg to top it off. Lifechanger.
Three’s company a.k.a. about a quarter of a chicken left
This isn’t a lot of chicken left over so you’ve got a bit of a choice here as to whether you want to use it all up in one go or make it go a bit further (and whether you want to share).
A quarter of a chicken just happens to be the perfect amount for a killer sandwich for lunch tomorrow!
What to cook?
Chicken sandwiches are, by definition, delicious. This chicken sandwich is extra delicious. Mix a bit less than 1 tbsp whole egg mayo with 1 tsp of horseradish cream and a bit of wholegrain mustard. Mix through your chicken until it's evenly coated with creamy goodness, then add a good crack of black pepper. Grab a couple of slices of bread (butter the outsides), add in your chicken, plus some swiss cheese and a couple of slices of pickle. Pop that bad boy in a sandwich toaster until the cheese is melty, then add in a bit of fresh baby spinach (healthy!) and chow down.
Alternatively if you’re in a sharing mood, we love adding our leftover shredded chicken to laksa (or your favourite soup of any kind). It goes a bit further, and more importantly it just feels right! Laksa + roast chicken = life.
Full house a.k.a “none” left
So, you’re feeling full, the kids are licking the gravy off their plates, and you think you’ve well and truly eaten the whole chook. Think again!
What to cook?
Chicken broth! Grab those nibbled-on chicken wings, devoured drumsticks, and all the chicken bones you can find and throw them into a pot or slow cooker. This is even better if you have a couple of chickens’ worth of bones, so feel free to pop your leftovers in the freezer until you have 2 or 3 (more bones = more flavour!). Add some onions, garlic, apple cider vinegar (not too much, only about 1-2 tbsp depending on how much broth you’re making!), a spoon of peppercorns, a few fresh herbs (we like thyme for this) plus a bit of salt (don’t go overboard - you can add more later) and cook anywhere from 4 hours to 2 days depending on your preference. For more info on making your own bone broth, check out this recipe (link).