Cracker Barrel Chicken Casserole has creamy filling and cornbread topping.
Casseroles are the quintessential American family meal. But let’s admit it; there are plenty of awful casseroles out there. Luckily, this chicken and corn bread casserole isn’t one of them. But that’s no surprise the recipe comes from the beloved Cracker Barrel restaurant chain. Sadly, Cracker Barrel decided to remove the dish from its menu a while back, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still make it at home. This quick and satisfying casserole is perfect for warming you up in the winter or taking to a potluck. Be sure to make a little extra because everyone who tries it will want another helping.
Cooking your Chicken to Keep it Moist
Everyone wants tender and flavorful chicken, but this Cracker Barrel Chicken Casserole recipe calls for using pre-cooked chicken and then reheating it multiple times. That can turn even perfectly cooked chicken into a hard and string mess. Luckily, you can use a few tricks to keep the meat succulent throughout the cooking process.
- Use the best part of the chicken. Sure, you can use chicken breasts, but they are so lean. Fatter and more flavorful chicken parts, like a boneless thigh, not only are less likely to overcook, but they add a richer flavor to the dish.
Use the proper initial cooking method. Poaching is the perfect way to cook your chicken.
- Start by removing all skin and trimming any excessive fat. Leaving on a little fat is fine.
- Place the chicken in a medium-sized pot. Some overlap is okay, but try to use a large enough pot that there aren’t layers of chicken.
- Cover the chicken with water., or if you prefer, chicken broth. If you go the chicken broth route, you can reuse it later in the recipe.
- Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Then reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook until the chicken is cooked through; about 10 to 12 minutes.
- Remove the chicken and allow it to cool before slicing. Strain the chicken broth through a cheesecloth or clean kitchen towel if using later.
Reheating the Cornbread Chicken Casserole
One of the best things about a casserole is that it is easy to make ahead of time and then heat right before serving. If you want to serve this casserole later in the day, don’t put the cornbread crumble on top until right before baking. Doing this will help prevent the cornbread from becoming soggy.
On the other hand, if you have any leftovers, store in the original casserole dish in the fridge. When you want to reheat the chicken cornbread casserole, take it out and let it come up to room temperature. Then cover the casserole dish with aluminum foil and pop it in a 350-degree oven for about 25 minutes. Remove the aluminum foil for the last 10 minutes of cooking time to crisp up the cornbread topping.
Tips for Making a Chicken and Corn Bread Casserole
- Add more vegetables. Feel free to throw in some more veggies like peas, corn, or cooked green beans or carrots for a heartier dish.
- Use your favorite cornbread recipe. Substitute any savory cornbread recipe for the cornbread topping. Jalapeño, cheese, or sausage cornbread recipes are lovely here.
Here’s a list of what you need:
- Yellow cornmeal
- All-purpose flour
- Baking powder
- Baking Soda
- Vegetable oil
- Chicken breast
- Yellow onion
- Fresh ground pepper
- Cream of chicken soup
- Chicken broth
How to Make Cracker Barrel Chicken Casserole
- If using raw chicken breast, bake it until it is done.
- Mix together cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt, oil, buttermilk, and egg until smooth.
- Pour into greased baking pan or skillet and bake at 375 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes until done.
- Remove cornbread from the oven and let it cool completely.
- Crumble cooled cornbread and place crumbs in a mixing bowl.
- Add melted butter to the crumbs and mix well.
- Cut cooked chicken breast into bite-sized pieces.
- Melt butter in a saucepan on medium-low heat.
- Add onions and celery. Sauté until transparent, stirring occasionally.
- Add chicken broth, cream of chicken soup, salt, and pepper. Stir until well blended and soup is completely dissolved.
- Add chicken, stir, and cook until the mixture reaches a low simmer.
- Simmer for 5 minutes then remove it from the heat.
- Place chicken mixture in a buttered casserole dish or individual casserole dishes.
- Spoon cornbread crumbs on top of the chicken mixture.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.
Love Cracker Barrel? Try these copycat recipes!
- Broccoli Cheddar Chicken Casserole
- Egg Casserole with Ham
- Glazed Baby Carrots
- Meatloaf Recipe with Crackers
- Sunday Chicken
Popular Casserole Recipes
- Beef Cornbread Casserole
- Broccoli Cheese Rice Casserole
- Cheesy Hashbrown Potato Casserole
- Chile Relleno Casserole
- Crabmeat Casserole
- Hamburger Tater Tot Casserole Recipe
- King Ranch Casserole Recipe
- Taco Spaghetti Casserole
- 1 cup yellow cornmeal
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 3/4 cup buttermilk
- 1 egg
- 2 1/2 cups cooked chicken breast cut into bite sized pieces
- 1/4 cup chopped yellow onion
- 1/2 cup sliced celery
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 1 can cream of chicken soup
- 1 3/4 cup chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons butter
Mix all cornbread topping ingredients together in a mixing bowl until smooth.
Pour into greased 8 x 8-inch baking pan.
Bake at 375 degrees for 20 – 25 minutes until done. Remove from oven and let cool completely.
Crumble cooled cornbread and place 3 cups of cornbread crumbs in a mixing bowl.
Add 1/2 cup melted butter to crumbs and mix well, set aside.
Melt butter in a saucepan on medium-low heat.
Add onions and celery and saute until transparent, stirring occasionally.
Add chicken broth, cream of chicken soup, salt, and pepper. Stir until well blended and soup is dissolved completely.
Add chicken; stir and blend until the mixture reaches a low simmer.
Cook for 5 minutes then remove from the heat.
Place chicken mixture in 2 1/2 quart buttered the casserole dish or individual casserole dishes (about four).
Spoon cornbread crumb topping on top of chicken mixture. Do not stir crumbs into the chicken filling.
Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes. The crumbs will turn golden brown.