The phone rings at 5:00 and it’s your husband informing you that his sales team is coming home for dinner. They are in town for this last evening, and this is the only opening they have available.
Your mouth starts foaming, your hands sweat profusely, and the thought of getting the house in order, let alone feeding company, leaves you numb. But then, a glimmer of sunlight peeks through your dark clouds as you remember this Easy Chicken Divan recipe that you pinned. A slight calm takes control and a sigh of relief is expelled knowing that this meal will be whipped up in minutes, taste like you slaved all day and the presentation – restaurant style.
Yes, you can now focus on picking up the house and brainstorming retaliation.
This scenario is completely fiction. My husband would have total faith that a great meal could be pulled together in that amount of time, but the house? Hmm, that’s another matter all together.
With an amazing recipe like this, why wait for special guests? Who better to make it for than the best company of all – your sweet family.
I’m a sucker for a rich, creamy sauce and yes, homemade tops the list, but too often that’s not a reality.
No one will ever guess that you used canned soup if you don’t tell them. (Shh, our little secret. Pinky promise.)
Part of my 10 minute dinner manifesto demands that I keep certain products stockpiled at all times. Chicken, frozen veggies and canned soup are definitely part of that list, and when you have a well stocked pantry, creating these masterpieces on a limited schedule is so very manageable.
Won’t you join me?
Pamper your family tonight with this classic. Don’t forget to light the candles!
Recipe: Easy Chicken Divan
Summary: This Easy Chicken Divan takes the classic recipe, but cuts the prep time in half. Such rich, creamy goodness should always be this easy.
- 2 (10 ounce) packages frozen broccoli spears (or what you have on hand)
- 6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
- 2 (10 3/4 ounce) cans cream of chicken (or your choice. I’ve mixed mushroom, chicken and even cream of celery soup)
- 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar Cheese, sharp
- 1/2 cup mayo
- 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
- 1/2 cup fine, dry breadcrumbs*
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- salt, pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Cook broccoli in microwave according to package.
- When broccoli is finished, place broccoli in a greased 9×13 baking dish and top with chicken. Liberally salt and pepper chicken breast. I use a basic seasoning salt or garlic salt.
- While broccoli is cooking in microwave begin sauce.
- Combine soup and next 3 ingredients in saucepan.
- Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until the cheese melts.
- Pour sauce over chicken and broccoli.
- Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and drizzle butter over breadcrumbs.
- Bake, uncovered for 40 minutes or until chicken is done. (Check at 30 minutes and cut small slice in middle of one chicken breast to check.)
Preparation time: 10 minute(s)
Cooking time: 40 minute(s)
Number of servings (yield): 6
10 Minute Tips:
Part of working quickly in the kitchen is by learning to work with what you have. If you’re looking at what to make for dinner, don’t glance at a list of ingredients and cross a recipe of your list if you don’t have them all on hand.
Use what you have. Most of the time, you can improvise.
For instance, take this Easy Chicken Divan.
The only packages of broccoli that I had stocked in my freezer were a combination of spears, crowns and crowns mixed with cheese, so I used what I had on hand. I also mixed the kinds of soups that I used, and went with low fat to help the calorie count, but even if I was short one can of soup, I would probably add a bit of cream cheese or sour cream to the mixture as a substitute.
Since this meal was for my kids, I didn’t want to take the time to crush up my breadcrumbs, so I didn’t, plus I left off the extra butter, again calorie count. It still tasted amazing, but I’d surely do those steps for company.
If you don’t have breadcrumbs on hand, scour your pantry. Do you have crackers or potato chips? Those both make great substitutions in a pinch.