Angel Chicken Rice


Everyday Culinary Delights 👩‍🍳


The humble casserole has evolved significantly from its origins, transforming from a simple meat and vegetable dish cooked slowly in an old pot, to a beloved staple in kitchens worldwide. Among the myriad of casserole recipes, the Cheesy Angel Chicken and Rice Casserole stands out as a quintessential comfort food, perfect for cozy family dinners or as a heartwarming meal to share with friends.

Originating from the traditional chicken and rice combinations found in many cultures, this casserole takes a decadent turn by incorporating rich, creamy elements and a generous amount of cheese. The cheesy delight is not just about tantalizing your taste buds; it’s about bringing simplicity and joy to your dinner table. The recipe’s ease and flexibility have made it a favorite among home cooks, allowing for various ingredients and adaptations, which you can explore through various online sources like this comprehensive guide on History of Casseroles.

Whether you’re a novice looking to prepare a quick dinner or an experienced cook aiming to impress, the Cheesy Angel Chicken and Rice Casserole promises satisfaction. Its creamy texture and robust flavor profile, characterized by the melting Colby Jack cheese and tender chicken, make it irresistible. For more detailed insights into the cheese used, check out this informative article on Colby Jack cheese details.

In the upcoming sections, we’ll dive deeper into the ingredients that make this dish a crowd-pleaser, followed by step-by-step instructions to ensure you can recreate the magic in your kitchen. With a total prep and cook time of just 35 minutes, this casserole is not only delicious but also time-efficient, proving that great flavor doesn’t require complex preparations.

Ingredients Overview

Every delicious dish begins with the right ingredients, and the Cheesy Angel Chicken and Rice Casserole is no exception. Here’s a detailed list of what you’ll need to create this comforting dish:

  • Cooked Chicken: 3 cups, either diced or shredded. You can use leftover chicken or prepare some specifically for this recipe. Rotisserie chicken works well for added flavor and ease.
  • Cooked Rice: 3 cups. Opt for long-grain rice for the best texture in the casserole. Learn more about choosing the right rice with this guide on rice dish ideas.
  • Butter: ½ cup, cubed and room temperature. This helps create a rich, creamy texture in the dish.
  • Cream Cheese: 8 ounces, cubed and room temperature. It adds a velvety texture to the casserole.
  • Cream of Chicken Soup: 10.5 ounces. This ingredient acts as the base of the casserole’s sauce, enveloping the chicken and rice in creamy goodness.
  • Garlic: 3 cloves, minced, adding a subtle bite that complements the creamy elements.
  • Italian Dressing Mix: 0.7 ounces. This seasoning brings a burst of flavor, enhancing the overall taste of the casserole.
  • Chicken Stock: 1 cup, which helps to moisten and flavor the rice and chicken as it bakes.
  • Colby Jack Cheese: 2 cups, shredded. This cheese is known for its mild flavor and excellent melting qualities. For further cheese details, explore Colby Jack cheese details.
  • Salt and Pepper: To taste, for seasoning.
  • Fresh Parsley: For garnish, adding a fresh, herby touch to the finished dish.

For a deeper dive into the origins and uses of some of these key ingredients, you might find the article on Cream Cheese origins particularly enlightening. Each ingredient in this casserole not only adds its unique flavor but also contributes to the texture and heartiness of the dish, ensuring every bite is as satisfying as the last.

Step-by-Step Cooking Instructions

Creating a Cheesy Angel Chicken and Rice Casserole involves straightforward steps that lead to a deliciously creamy and comforting meal. Follow these detailed instructions to ensure your casserole is perfect every time:

  1. Preheat your oven: Set your oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) to ensure it’s hot and ready for baking.
  2. Prepare the creamy mixture: In a microwave-safe bowl, soften the cream cheese and butter by heating them for 20-30 seconds. Once softened, whisk them until smooth.
  3. Combine the main ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, add the cooked chicken, cooked rice, the cream cheese and butter mixture, cream of chicken soup, minced garlic, Italian dressing mix, and half of the shredded Colby Jack cheese. Mix these ingredients thoroughly to ensure the flavors meld together.
  4. Season: Add salt and pepper to the mixture. Adjust the seasoning to your taste, ensuring that it complements the creamy and cheesy elements of the dish.
  5. Transfer to a baking dish: Spread the chicken and rice mixture evenly into a greased 9×13-inch baking dish. Using a dish that conducts heat well is crucial for even cooking. Discover more about selecting the right dish with this guide on Types of Baking Dishes.
  6. Add more cheese: Top the mixture with the remaining shredded cheese, covering it generously. This will create a beautifully melted and golden top layer as it bakes.
  7. Bake: Cover the dish with aluminum foil and place it in the preheated oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes. The foil helps to keep the moisture in and prevents the top from burning.
  8. Uncover and finish baking: Remove the foil and continue to bake for an additional 5 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and slightly golden.
  9. Cool and garnish: After removing the casserole from the oven, let it cool for about 5 minutes. This resting time allows the casserole to set, making it easier to serve. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley to add a pop of color and a fresh flavor contrast.

This recipe ensures that each component, from the creamy base to the cheesy top, comes together in harmony, creating a dish that is as delightful to look at as it is to eat. For additional tips on achieving the perfect casserole texture and flavor, consider reading about the creamy rice recipes that can inspire your next kitchen adventure. This step-by-step guide is designed to make your cooking process as enjoyable as the meal itself, ensuring your Cheesy Angel Chicken and Rice Casserole is a hit at any gathering.

Recipe Variations

The beauty of the Cheesy Angel Chicken and Rice Casserole lies in its versatility. Here are several creative variations to personalize this dish and keep it exciting every time you make it:

  • Different Cheeses: While Colby Jack is excellent for its mild flavor and melting properties, experimenting with other cheeses can introduce new textures and flavors. Try using mozzarella for a stretchier texture, or a smoked gouda for a deeper flavor. Learn more about various cheeses and their characteristics through this detailed description on Colby Jack cheese details.
  • Add Vegetables: Incorporating vegetables can add color and nutritional value to your casserole. Consider adding diced bell peppers, spinach, or mushrooms in the layering stage. This not only enhances the dish’s visual appeal but also increases its health benefits. For vegetable preparation tips, explore comfort food recipes that often include nutritious ingredients.
  • Alternative Proteins: For a different take, substitute the chicken with cooked turkey or ham. This variation is particularly useful for utilizing leftover meats from other meals, making your casserole an efficient and delicious way to reduce food waste.
  • Gluten-Free Option: To cater to those with gluten sensitivities, replace the cream of chicken soup with a gluten-free alternative, or use a homemade version using gluten-free flour for thickening. Adjusting this ingredient ensures that everyone can enjoy this comforting dish without dietary concerns.
  • Spicy Kick: For those who appreciate a bit of heat, add chopped jalapeños or a sprinkle of red pepper flakes into the mix. This adds a vibrant kick that contrasts beautifully with the creamy, cheesy elements of the casserole.
  • Crunchy Topping: Before baking, top the casserole with a layer of crushed crackers, cornflakes, or even French fried onions for an added crunch that provides a delightful textural contrast upon serving.

These variations allow you to adapt the Cheesy Angel Chicken and Rice Casserole to suit different tastes and occasions, ensuring it remains a favorite in your culinary repertoire. For more inspiration on adapting classic dishes, check out recipe adaptations, where you can find countless ideas to enhance your meals.

Serving Suggestions

A well-rounded meal pairs the main dish with complementary sides that enhance the overall dining experience. For the Cheesy Angel Chicken and Rice Casserole, here are some excellent serving suggestions to consider:

  • Southern Green Beans: Smothered in bacon and full of smoky, tangy flavor, Southern Green Beans are the perfect side dish for the creamy and rich flavors of the casserole. This traditional side adds both color and a fresh taste contrast. Find more about this dish and other Southern recipes on Southern Green Beans.
  • Air Fryer Garlic Bread: Crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, garlic bread made in an air fryer is not only quick to prepare but also great for sopping up any creamy sauce left on your plate. The garlic flavor complements the Italian dressing mix used in the casserole beautifully.
  • Simple Salad: To lighten the meal, serve a crisp green salad dressed with a vinaigrette. The freshness of the salad will balance the richness of the casserole, providing a refreshing element to your meal.

Each of these sides can be prepared quickly while your casserole bakes, ensuring everything is ready at the same time. Together, they create a comforting and satisfying meal that is perfect for any day of the week. For more side dish ideas that go well with creamy casseroles, explore the plethora of options on comfort food recipes, where you can find inspiration for countless meal combinations.

Nutritional Information

Understanding the nutritional content of the Cheesy Angel Chicken and Rice Casserole can help you make informed decisions about integrating it into a balanced diet. Here’s a breakdown of the key nutritional aspects of this dish:

  • Calories: Each serving contains approximately 548 kcal, making it a hearty option for those needing a more calorie-dense meal.
  • Proteins: With 26 grams of protein per serving, this casserole is excellent for muscle repair and growth, thanks to the generous amount of chicken.
  • Fats: The dish contains 38 grams of fat per serving, with a significant portion coming from saturated fats due to the butter, cream cheese, and Colby Jack cheese. Moderation is key if you’re watching your fat intake.
  • Carbohydrates: There are 24 grams of carbs per serving, primarily from the rice and minor contributions from other ingredients.
  • Sodium: This casserole can be high in sodium, particularly because of the cream of chicken soup and cheese. Using low-sodium alternatives can help manage this.

For those interested in a more detailed exploration of nutritional information related to chicken, the article on Chicken Nutritional Facts provides extensive insights.

Balancing this casserole with sides rich in fibers and vitamins, such as a fresh salad or steamed vegetables, can create a more nutritionally complete meal. For further tips on creating balanced meals, consider researching dietary guides that focus on balanced eating practices.

Storage and Reheating Tips

Proper storage and reheating are crucial for maintaining the quality and safety of the Cheesy Angel Chicken and Rice Casserole. Here are some effective tips to ensure your leftovers stay delicious and safe to consume:

  • Cooling Down: Allow the casserole to come to room temperature before storing. This prevents condensation from forming inside the container, which could make the casserole soggy.
  • Refrigeration: Store the casserole in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days. Make sure the container is sealed well to keep out air and other contaminants.
  • Freezing: For longer storage, freeze the casserole in a suitable airtight container or heavy-duty freezer bags. It can be kept frozen for up to three months. Always label the container with the freezing date for future reference.
  • Reheating: To reheat, thaw the casserole in the refrigerator if frozen and then bake in the oven at 350 degrees F until heated through. You can also microwave individual portions, adding a splash of chicken broth or water to keep the rice moist. Cover the dish with a microwave-safe lid or vented plastic wrap to evenly distribute heat.

Following these storage and reheating tips will help ensure that your Cheesy Angel Chicken and Rice Casserole remains as flavorful and satisfying as when it was first baked. For more detailed information on how to store and handle different types of food safely, refer to kitchen storage tips that provide guidelines on food preservation and safety.


What kind of rice is best in this creamy rice casserole recipe? For the best texture, use cooked long-grain rice. White rice, brown rice, wild rice, or aromatic rice will all work great. Avoid using instant rice or minute rice, as they tend to get soggy and mushy in the oven.

Can I use uncooked rice in a casserole? Generally, it’s not recommended to use uncooked rice in this casserole. There’s not enough liquid or cooking time in this recipe to fully cook raw rice. Always start with precooked rice to ensure it’s tender and fluffy.

Can I use other types of cheese in the creamy chicken rice casserole? Absolutely! While Colby Jack is suggested for its great melting properties and mild flavor, feel free to experiment with other melty cheeses like mozzarella, gouda, or a sharp cheddar. Freshly shredding the cheese from a block can enhance the flavor and texture.

How do I add veggies to the casserole? You can add 1 ½-2 cups of frozen veggies like mixed vegetables, peas, or broccoli florets directly to the casserole before baking. They’ll cook perfectly from frozen, adding color, texture, and nutritional value to your dish.

Can I assemble the chicken casserole in advance? Yes, you can assemble the casserole ahead of time and keep it covered in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. When ready to cook, you might need to add about 10 minutes to the baking time to account for starting from a cold state.

Can I freeze the angel chicken and rice casserole? This casserole makes a great freezer meal. Freeze leftovers or an entire unbaked casserole well wrapped in both plastic wrap and aluminum foil. It can be stored frozen for up to three months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating or baking.

Is there a gluten-free version of this casserole? For a gluten-free alternative, substitute the cream of chicken soup with a gluten-free soup variant, or make a roux with gluten-free flour and use it as a base to create your own creamy sauce. Also, ensure that all other ingredients, like the Italian dressing mix, are certified gluten-free.

How can I make this casserole spicier? To add some heat to the casserole, include diced jalapeños, a dash of cayenne pepper, or red pepper flakes into the mix. This will introduce a spicy element that complements the creamy, cheesy texture of the dish.

What are some crunchy toppings I can add? For a delightful crunch, top the casserole with crushed crackers, cornflakes, pretzels, or even potato chips just before the final minutes of baking. This adds a satisfying textural contrast to the creamy base of the casserole.

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Angel Chicken Rice

  • Author: Naomi
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings


The Cheesy Angel Chicken and Rice Casserole is a hearty and comforting dish that combines the savory flavors of chicken and cheese with the satisfying texture of rice. Ideal for busy weeknights, special gatherings, or whenever you need a delicious meal that feels like a warm hug, this casserole is sure to please.


3 cups cooked chicken, diced or shredded
3 cups cooked rice
½ cup butter, room temperature and cubed
8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature and cubed
10.5 ounces cream of chicken soup
3 cloves garlic, minced
0.7 ounce Italian dressing mix (I used Good Seasons)
1 cup chicken stock
2 cups shredded Colby Jack cheese, divided use
Salt and pepper to taste
Fresh parsley for garnish


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, and generously spray a 9×13” casserole dish with cooking spray.
In a microwave-safe bowl, soften the cream cheese and butter in the microwave for 20-30 seconds. Whisk until smooth.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked chicken, rice, butter and cream cheese mixture, cream of chicken soup, garlic, Italian dressing mix, chicken stock, half of the shredded cheese, and salt and pepper. Mix well until evenly combined.
Transfer the chicken and rice mixture into the prepared casserole dish.
Top with the remaining shredded cheese.
Cover the dish with foil, and bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the casserole is bubbling.
Remove from oven, and allow the casserole to cool for 5 minutes. Remove foil.
Garnish with fresh parsley, and enjoy.


  • Ingredient Flexibility: This recipe is incredibly forgiving, allowing for various substitutions based on dietary needs or preferences. For example, any cooked protein can be substituted for chicken, and rice can be replaced with other grains like quinoa or even cauliflower rice for a low-carb option.
  • Make Ahead: The casserole can be assembled up to a day in advance and stored in the refrigerator until ready to bake. This makes it perfect for preparing ahead of time for a stress-free dinner.
  • Freezing Instructions: If you want to freeze the casserole, either baked or unbaked, wrap it tightly with plastic wrap and then with foil. It can be frozen for up to three months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before baking or reheating.
  • Serving Suggestions: Serve this casserole with a side of steamed vegetables or a light salad to round out the meal. For a crunchier texture, consider adding a topping of breadcrumbs or crushed crackers mixed with a little melted butter, sprinkling it over the top before the final minutes of baking.
  • Spice Variations: Easily customize the heat level by adding spices or spicy ingredients to the chicken and rice mixture before baking. Suggestions include paprika, chili flakes, or diced jalapeños for those who enjoy a kick.
  • Cheese Variations: Experiment with different types of cheese for different flavors and textures. Mixing in some sharp cheddar or pepper jack can add depth and a bit of spice to the dish.
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Chicken
  • Cuisine: American


  • Calories: 548 kcal

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