Time for some lightened up comfort food with Creamy Chicken and Biscuits!
Often, comfort foods get linked to the chillier seasons of the year. The weather in the northeast has been rather unpredictable this winter season. We get almost record amounts of snow and then a few days later, it’s warm and rainy (and flood-y) as all the snow melts and gets washed away.
Then, boom!…arctic temps that freeze all of that melting snow and water from days of rain into treacherous ice that makes you wish (?) you had another foot of snow in it’s place. And, then, temps jump something like forty degrees warmer than the week before. Talk about weather whiplash.
Or, not. How ’bout we talk about this comfy little dish instead? Shall we start with the biscuits? (You know there’s only one right answer to that question:)
They are my favorite Fluffy Buttermilk Biscuits. Perfectly wonderful on their own, or you can use them to make Buttermilk Biscuit Cinnamon Rolls or Sticky Maple Bacon Biscuits or Cheddar Buttermilk Biscuits or even Pumpkin Buttermilk Biscuits!
Clearly, this is a biscuit recipe you need to know about. The post has videos that will take you through the whole process, and really, it’s not a long process at all.
Measure your dry ingredients, cut in your butter and shortening, add the buttermilk, mix, then do about ten folds (it’s like a light kneading.)
Cut them up, flip ’em over, brush with some buttermilk and these golden babies are what come out of the oven…
Yes! Beautiful golden Fluffy Buttermilk Biscuits! Normally, I’d be all set to slather a little salted butter and drizzle on some honey, grab a cup a tea and call it comfort time central, but we’re going down the dinner route today.
I’ve tried many from scratch chicken and biscuit recipes that require more fat, more calories, more time and more effort, but I like having a comforting meal without feeling like I need to plan some serious time to make it and without feeling weighed down after eating it.
I’m not saying that this is a super skinny dish, just one that’s been lightened up a bit. And, it’s a perfect week night meal as long as I have frozen veggies and shredded cooked chicken on hand.
We start with melting some butter and stirring in some flour. I’m using a higher flour to fat ratio than would be typical, so instead of ending up with a saucy roux base, you’ll end up with a crumbly mixture of butter coated flour bits.
To this, you will add onions and seasoning, then slowly whisk in chicken broth and skim milk. I realize it might be kind of crazy to add your onions at this point, but it works. I like to give them a little time to saute in the pan.
Or, you could saute them with the melted butter first, then add your flour. Either way will work. Cook until you have a bubbly, creamy sauce. Taste it…adjust seasoning, if necessary and then, you’re pretty much done! Just throw in some frozen peas and carrots. (They don’t have to be thawed.)
then some cooked shredded chicken…
Stir it up and bring it back to a boil. Oh, and don’t start taking photos of the frozen veggies while they sit atop the hot sauce or you risk having the peas cook unevenly. This is why I have two different colored peas, olive green and bright green (sigh.) Oh wait, you didn’t notice? Okay, then. Let’s just forget that I mentioned it:)
I used to bake this in the oven and let a thin biscuit bake on top of it. But everyone was always clamoring over the biscuits, taking more of the topping than their piece warranted and leaving less for the person who came next.
So, I started making the biscuits separately and completely skipped the baking of the whole dish. It’s much easier and everyone can take whatever their perfect ratio is for filling to biscuit without destroying the whole pan.
Now, we can just take a big ole ladleful and pour the creamy mixture right over a nice hot fluffy biscuit.
Then, it’s your choice whether you attack this with a fork or a spoon. We’re divided in our house on that point. Depends on who’s setting the table.
So, weather whiplash? I guess it’s a lot like life. You never really know what’s going to happen next. So, why not slow down, give yourself a break and take some comfort in a bowl of Creamy Chicken and Biscuits?
Crazy weather and life’s challenges will be ready and waiting for you tomorrow morning.
Don’t worry. I’ve got you covered there, too. Did I mention that you’ll probably have some left over biscuits? That’s right…just crank up the toaster oven and grab the butter and honey…
We’re gonna start the day off right :) #comfortfoodforever
Creamy Chicken and Biscuits
- One batch Fluffy Buttermilk Biscuits
- 2 Tablespoons salted butter
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt use 3/4 teaspoon for table salt or adjust to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/8 teaspoon ground sage
- 1/3 cup diced onion
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 3/4 cup skim milk
- 2 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 16 ounces frozen peas and carrots no need to thaw
- 2 cups shredded cooked chicken
Bake the biscuits according to the recipe.
While the biscuits bake, make the creamy chicken.
Melt butter in a large sauce pan over medium heat. Sprinkle the flour over the melted butter and mix until the flour is well incorporated and you have a crumbly mixture. Stir for a couple of minutes so that the flour mixture can cook.
Add seasonings (salt through sage) and onion. Saute the onion, stirring frequently, just until it becomes translucent.
Gradually add the milk and broth, whisking constantly to help avoid lumps. If you do end up a a few lumps, don't worry. They'll generally work themselves out when you add the rest of the ingredients.
Cook the mixture over medium heat until thickened and bubbly, whisking frequently.
Add the frozen vegetables and stir until combined. Add the chicken and stir until combined.
Cook until the mixture is fully heated through and the vegetables are tender.
Ladle over hot biscuits and serve!
*The original recipe uses canned biscuits, cut in half, then baked on top of the mixture in a casserole dish. You can use canned biscuits as a short cut for time, but the homemade biscuits really make this dish especially delicious.
*The biscuit recipe makes 9 large biscuits.If you serve one biscuit per person, (and no one grabs an extra biscuit) you will have 4-5 biscuits leftover. I store them at room temperature, wrapped in foil, overnight.They heat up nicely in the toaster oven or conventional oven the next morning.
*You could also skip the biscuits (gasp!) and serve this over rice, pasta or toast :)
*I use shredded chicken pieces because I like the texture better than cubes and the extra texture provides lots of nook and crannies for the creamy sauce to settle into. I don't completely shred it, I just pull it into nice hearty pieces.
*If your sauce gets too thick, add more chicken broth or milk, depending upon what flavor you want to increase. I usually use more broth. This is also a good tip if you have leftovers. Just add some liquid and reheat.
*If you want the sauce to be richer, use whole milk.
*I used low sodium chicken broth, if you use regular, you will need to reduce the added salt.
*If you want to make this dish vegetarian, substitute your favorite cooked vegetables for the 2 cups of chicken.
Adapted from "Chicken Biscuit Stew," Cooking Light, 1996
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