Canned chicken is the unsung hero of your kitchen. Whether you’re coming home late after a hectic day, are a bit behind on your grocery shopping, or just want to whip up something quick, it’s canned chicken to the rescue!
Plus, canned chicken is a great, budget-friendly addition to your pantry.
Since canned chicken is pre-cooked, it cuts down on your cooking time considerably. Some people turn their noses up at canned chicken, but the truth is, once it’s combined with other ingredients, it’s near impossible to tell whether the chicken is fresh or canned.
When it comes to what kind of canned chicken you should cook with, there are plenty of brands to choose from.
Some brands are higher quality than others, but the most popular brands are Hormel, Keystone, Kirkland, and Swanson, and we would recommend cooking with these high-quality canned chicken brands over the rest.
Many people also wonder if the canned chicken is just as healthy as fresh chicken, and the answer is yes! Canned chicken has the same nutritional value as fresh chicken, and low-sodium canned chicken is especially healthy.
Canned chicken can be incorporated into so many classic chicken recipes, as our selections below prove. From chicken noodle soup to tacos, to chicken salad, canned chicken is a great alternative to fresh chicken. So if the canned chicken isn’t in your pantry already, head out to the store and give these recipes a try!
A comforting classic, this chicken noodle soup recipe using canned chicken can be whipped up in 30 minutes. It’s so tasty and easy to make that we know you’ll be returning to it whenever you’re in need of a quick, soothing meal!
While this soup can easily be made from whatever you have in your pantry, it’s customizable enough that you can switch up the ingredients if you want to. For example, you can swap out the canned chicken for cooked chicken or even leftover roasted chicken.
Affectionately referred to as Mexican Pizzas, tostadas basically consist of a tortilla that has been baked or fried and then topped with toppings of your choice.
A tostada is truly what you make of it, and there really is no limit to what – or how much – you put on it! No surprise, then, that canned chicken tostadas are a thing. They’re a super quick lunch option, super easy to prepare in just 15 minutes.
This warm chicken salad couldn’t be easier to make and is a great option to make ahead of time and take to work for lunch. You can bulk it up with crackers, or serve it with tortillas.
It’s also a much lighter alternative to a traditional chicken salad that’s heavy on mayonnaise. Coriander, fresh garlic, ginger, smoked paprika, and turmeric liven up this delicious salad in place of the mayo.
Is there anything more comforting than a chicken dumpling soup? It’s a total Southern classic and can be whipped up in just 30 minutes. This recipe is brimming with chicken chunks, veggies of your choice, and of course, chunks of delicious biscuits!
For a delicious mid-week meal, why not try this angel hair pasta recipe with canned chicken, fresh tomatoes, green olives, and a beautiful sauce? It’s light, healthy (brimming with protein and veggies), and can be ready in 15 minutes.
This fun canned chicken recipe is perfect for those following a keto diet and is topped with canned chicken, Alfredo sauce, and mozzarella. As well as being super low in carbs, it’s also free of gluten, grains, and sugar.
You only need five ingredients to whip up these Parmesan chicken patties, and while they’re low in carbs, they’re packed with nutrients and flavor. You can whip these up in 15 minutes, just mix canned chicken with baby spinach and Parmesan cheese and toss it in a pan!
Raid your pantry for this one! This 8-can chicken chili can be ready in just 20 minutes and is hearty, nutritious, and comforting. Everything a good chili should be!
Easy meals are what mid-week dinner is all about, and this instant pot pesto pasta is for just such an occasion.
All you have to do is throw pantry staples such as canned chicken, chicken broth, dried pasta, jarred sun-dried tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, pesto, and a couple of spices into pressure, and voilà!
This pasta is super easy, super delicious, and sure to delight everybody at your table.
Another keto chicken pizza recipe, this pizza couldn’t be easier to make and is ideal if you’re watching your carb intake. It isn’t entirely carb-free admittedly thanks to the egg and cheese, but this chicken crust is practically zero carbs when compared to fathead crust that is made from almond flour, cream cheese, egg, and shredded cheese.
The carbs certainly pile up with that kind of crust! To make this pizza, all you need is three ingredients, and you’ll be digging in, in about 15 minutes!
11. Chicken Flautas
Flautas are a Mexican dish that is basically rolled-up tortillas with a filling inside. If you love Mexican food, then this super simple fish is for you! Prep time takes just a few minutes, and then all you have to do is bake the flautas until they’re nice and crispy.
As well as canned chicken, this recipe calls for cream cheese, dried seasonings, salsa, and shredded cheese. These flautas are sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
You only need five ingredients to make this delicious, simple ziti chicken casserole. What’s more, this recipe is also customizable, as you can easily replace the ziti with whatever type of pasta you have in your pantry.
If you love Asian flavors, you’ll love this chicken-fried recipe using canned chicken. It’s super tasty as well as super healthy and is a good use of all those ingredients you keep in your pantry in case you need to whip up a quick meal.
Nacho dip is a party staple, and this crockpot nacho chicken dip is sure to impress at the next potluck, cookout, or Game Day and nobody will even know it was made using canned chicken! This recipe requires just four simple ingredients you can find in your pantry, all thrown into your slow cooker.
Another famous dip that any Game Day would be lost without, this Buffalo chicken dip using canned chicken just made this dip even easier to make.
Not everybody likes fruit with their chicken salad, but it’s undeniable that combining grapes with a chicken salad makes for a classic meal. Canned chicken just makes this easier, and this recipe is great to have to hand for a light, refreshing lunch that’s ready in no time.
You can make this chicken salad with grapes a bit healthier by combining light mayo with non-fat Greek yogurt, and drizzling honey over the salad instead of sugar for a hint of sweetness. This recipe is packed with flavor and is super simple to whip up.
This chicken noodle casserole only requires one pan and is made with egg noodles and canned chicken.
It couldn’t be easier to make, and the canned chicken is slathered with a creamy cheese sauce and topped with buttered bread crumbs. It’s hearty, mouth-watering comfort food at its best and is sure to go down a treat with your family.
Plus, canned chicken can be swapped out for diced, boiled chicken, or even store-bought rotisserie chicken or leftover roast chicken if you like. You could even swap out the cream of chicken soup for cream of celery or cream of mushroom soup. It’s your casserole, after all! Why not mix it up?
Canned chicken Tinga tacos make for a Taco Tuesday you’re never going to forget! These tacos are fun and easy to make, and are ready to eat in just 15 minutes.
This recipe is all about using whatever you have in your pantry and throwing it all together to make for one tasty taco that is both delicious and healthy. Plus, you can use this chicken Tinga recipe for normal tacos, rice bowls, quesadillas, and even scrambled eggs.
We’re staying on the subject of tacos for a second, as this canned chicken taco soup is such a tasty twist on tacos!
You can whip it up in 20 minutes using your pantry staples. Chunky salsa is an excellent addition to the soup, as it gives the soup a real Tex-Mex twist we’re sure you’ll appreciate.
You can use fresh chicken for this recipe, but canned chicken makes it even quicker to cook and is super healthy. To make this soup even more delicious, why not add some condensed tomato soup too?
These crispy chicken fritters (or croquettes to be fancy) are easy to make and only require 5 ingredients. They’re crispy on the outside, while remaining tender on the inside, and can be made into smaller portions for a quick snack. These also make for perfect homemade chicken nuggets for your kids… or yourself. We’re not judging!
Those who are sniffy about canned chicken obviously don’t know just how versatile this pantry staple is, and just how delicious it can be.
All it takes is a little creativity, and we hope these recipes have given you a bit of inspiration next time you’re in need of a quick meal or when your cupboards are a bit sparse. The canned chicken will always be there for you in your time of need!