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This casserole is a variation of a recipe that my mom used to make when I was growing up. It was a chicken and broccoli casserole. While that one was yummy, I like this better. I love the addition of carrots and cauliflower. The colors are pretty, and I think it tastes better.

I’ve never been a real big fan of tuna noodle casserole, probably because my mom used to serve it a lot when we were young. When I became a mom I swore that I would never serve it to my kids.

Now that I’m a mom I understand why she served it so often. First off, I think it was the only casserole recipe that she had. Besides that, I think that it was a regular menu item because of how easy it was to make, didn’t take a lot of time, filled everyone’s bellies and was a pretty cheap recipe to prepare. I still don’t care for tuna casserole, but I do appreciate all of the benefits of a good casserole.

This California Chicken Casserole is my version of the casserole that my mom served. It’s easy, fast, filling and cheap just like hers, but I’ve swapped out a couple of the ingredients with some family favorites. Instead of using tuna I use chicken, instead of peas I use California medley and I replaced the potato chip topping with crushed Ritz crackers. Unlike the casserole that my mom served my family loves this casserole.

“I love to try new recipes, and this chicken and vegetable combo passed my family’s taste test,” reports Debbie Kokes of Tabor, South Dakota. “If there are leftovers, I package them for my husband to reheat in the microwave.”

Makes 4-6 servings
Can be frozen

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