This Chicken Noodle Soup Casserole Is Beige Comfort Food At Its Best

This Chicken Noodle Soup Casserole Is Beige Comfort Food At Its Best

Hello, and welcome back to Will It Casserole, the column where I take your delicious concepts and re-imagine them as tasty casserole creations. Today we’re taking comforting chicken noodle soup, and transforming it into a creamier, more scoop-able version of itself, complete with a saltine topping.

[referenced url=”” thumb=”” title=”This Cheese Plate Casserole Is A Gooey, Hot Masterpiece” excerpt=”Hello, and welcome back to Will It Casserole?, the column where I take delicious concepts and re-imagine them as tasty casserole creations. Today we’re taking one of my favourite courses ” the cheese course ” and turning into one hot dish.”]

Chicken noodle soup is one of those dishes with a lot of room for variation, and that quality carries over to this casserole. As with the soup, the main things you can manipulate here are the chicken, broth, and vegetables. You could make this casserole with a pre-cooked rotisserie chicken and store-bought broth, or you could create a lot more (delicious) work for yourself, and poach a whole chicken, which will give you plenty of succulent meat and an extremely tasty, bespoke broth.

The broth is where this casserole gets most of its flavour, so it makes sense to do it yourself. I went with a fairly classic carrot/celery/onion situation ” with some extra flavorful friends ” but ginger, lemongrass, and even hot peppers would make welcome additions. Let your stomach be your guide; If you like it in your chicken soup, you’ll like it in this casserole.

I will, of course, tell you exactly what I put in mine, but as long as you have shredded chicken, some good broth, a couple cups of vegetables, and some noodles, you’ll end up with a very warm and welcoming dish of beige comfort food.

[referenced url=”” thumb=”” title=”Maximise A Chicken’s Meal Potential By Poaching It First” excerpt=”If you read about cooking online, you’ve no doubt seen several listicles that tout the many uses of a single, humble chicken. At this point, you know what a chicken can do for you, so another overly-prescriptive, chicken-based meal plan seems unnecessary. My agenda here is very simple. the next time you buy a whole chicken, I want you to poach it.”]

To make the chicken and broth, you will need (If you have pre-cooked chicken and broth, skip this step):

  • 1 whole chicken, giblets removed

  • 2 celery stalks, chopped into roughly 8cm pieces

  • 2 carrots, chopped into roughly 8cm pieces

  • 2 small white onions, peeled and quartered

  • 1 parsnip, chopped into roughly 8cm pieces

  • 1 parmesan rind, if you have it

  • 6 cloves of garlic, smashed

  • 1 5cm piece of turmeric

  • 3 sprigs of fresh thyme

  • 3 sprigs of fresh parsley

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 1 teaspoon of salt

  • About 15 grinds of fresh pepper, or 3 peppercorns

First, read A.A. Newton’s guide on how to poach a chicken. If you are saddened by the idea of missing out on crispy chicken skin, simply remove the skin from the chicken breast, and make it into a giant skin crisp by cooking it between two parchment-lined sheet pans at 180C for 35 minutes. (Let it drain on a paper towel to full crisp up.) The chicken will look weird, but poached chicken is not about presentation.

Let the chicken come to room temperature, then place it in a bowl in the sink and scrub it down with a healthy handful of salt. Rinse it, place it down in a large pot, and fill the pot with water, making sure to fill the cavity of the chicken first so it stays submerged. Chuck in your veggies and seasonings, and bring to a boil. Once that water is a-roilin’ and a-spittin’, reduce the heat to bring it all down to a simmer, and let it carry on like that for 35 minutes.

Cut the heat ” if you’re using an electric stove, take the pot off the burner ” cover the pot, and let the chicken steep in its own tasty juices for two to four hours. Now’s a good time to eat the crispy chicken skin as a snack.

Once the steeping time has elapsed, and the chicken is cool enough to handle, remove it from the pot, rip the meat from the chicken skeleton, and strain the broth/stock/whatever you want to call it. Now that you have juicy chicken to spare and an embarrassment of flavorful, meaty liquid, you are ready to assemble the casserole.

To do so, you will need:

  • 8 ounces of wide egg noodles

  • 2 heaping cups of chicken meat

  • 6 tablespoons of butter or chicken fat

  • 3 carrots, diced

  • 2 stalks of celery, diced (I did not use celery because I physically reject it, but you should if you like it.)

  • 1 onion, diced

  • 6 cloves of garlic, minced

  • 2 teaspoons tomato paste

  • 6 tablespoons of flour

  • 2 cups broth

  • 1 cup milk

  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • At least half a sleeve of saltines

  • 2 tablespoons of butter

Cook the noodles per the package instructions, drain them, and set them aside. Melt the chicken fat in a pan over medium-high heat, add the vegetables (but not the garlic), season them with salt and pepper, and cook them until they are soft and ever-so-slightly browned. Add the garlic and cook until it is golden and fragrant. Add the tomato paste, mix it in to the vegetables, and cook until it darkens in colour. Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and stir until everyone is coated with the white powder. Cook it for a minute, to get rid of that raw flour flavour, decrease the heat, then slowly add the broth, stirring constantly to make a gravy. Do the same with the milk. Add the Worcestershire sauce, season as needed with salt and pepper, and stir in the chicken.

Add everything”including those noodles ” to a casserole dish and mix it up good. Crush those saltines, and toss them with two tablespoons of melted (salted) butter. Sprinkle that on top. Place the whole mess in a 180-degree oven, and cook until the sauce is bubbling on the edges and the saltine topping is golden and crispy. Serve with love, and consume while wearing your comfiest sweatpants.

This article has been updated since its original publication.

The Cheapest NBN 50 Plans

Here are the cheapest plans available for Australia’s most popular NBN speed tier.

At Lifehacker, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. We have affiliate and advertising partnerships, which means we may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. BTW – prices are accurate and items in stock at the time of posting.