Crowd-Friendly Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole
Creator advises and I agree:
Chicken cordon bleu is a crowd favorite because of its delicious combination of ingredients: chicken breast, ham, and Swiss cheese. While this classic French dish is traditionally prepared by stuffing a chicken breast with ham and cheese then breading and frying it, the recipe is surprisingly easy to adapt into a casserole. It only takes 20 minutes to prepare and is always a hit — even with the pickiest eaters!
Recommendation: Use cream of chicken soup instead of evaporated milk.
Do not use honey ham, it is just too sweet. Use slices of domestic or imported ham. Tear the ham up also, instead of trying to slice through a ham slice when serving, it is easier if the ham is torn into at least quarters.
- For the sauce:
- 1 1/2 pound of cooked chicken meat, shredded (you can use leftovers or use rotisserie chicken, discard the bones)
- 1 package of lean ham, sliced (do not use honey ham)
- Swiss cheese slices (enough to cover the casserole)
- 1 lemon
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 can of evaporated milk (12 ounces) (or one can of cream of chicken soup) Or you could swap the chicken bouillon cube for 1/2 cup (120 Ml) of chicken broth if you want the sauce to be juicier.
- You can thin the soup out with half a cup of milk or half and half.
- butter or oil (to taste)
- 1 chicken bouillon cube* (I prefer the chicken stock that comes in a paste) (a nice teaspoon dollop would do)
- 2 tablespoons of Dijon Mustard (this is optional, it is good, but changes the whole recipe)
- 1 teaspoon of ground nutmeg (Only if you like nutmeg, overpowering to me)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- For the topping:
- 2 cups of breadcrumbs
- 1 ounce of butter (30 gr)
- 1 teaspoon of onion powder
- 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons of dried basil
- 1 teaspoon of white grounded pepper
1. Preheat your oven to 350 F (170 C) and grease a casserole pan with a little bit of butter or your preferred oil.
2. To make the sauce, melt some butter or heat the oil in a medium saucepan over low heat. Add the evaporated milk, the chicken bouillon cube, the mustard, nutmeg and season to taste. Let it cook to desired thickness whisking it often over low heat.
3. While the sauce cooks, assemble your casserole. Spread the shredded chicken evenly and season it with salt, lemon juice and the garlic powder. Make a second layer with the ham slices and finalize with a layer of the cheese. Use just enough to cover the chicken entirely. Pour the sauce evenly to cover your casserole.
4. To prepare the topping, melt the butter in a pan, add the bread crumbs, the onion and garlic powder, the white pepper, and the dried basil. Add the topping over your casserole and pop it in the oven until it's bubbly and golden brown, around 30 minutes. Allow 10 minutes to cool down before serving it.
TIP #1 (optional): You can wait until the sauce is done and spread a thin layer of it on the casserole before adding the chicken. Once the chicken is assembled, sprinkle it with a little bit of sauce before adding the ham.
TIP #2 (optional): Try to add a little bit of shredded parmesan cheese to the topping.
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