Updated: Jul 2
Revolutionizing Healthy Cooking on a Tight Schedule
“Do you sell chicken breasts? I don’t use whole chickens; I have no idea what to do with them.” This is the mantra I hear all the time. In a day and age where we spend all our time working and busying ourselves with the kids activities many families have gotten away from meals made at home. Even those who do cook at home rarely have more than 15 minutes to spare on a healthy dinner. Today I’m going to show you how to cook 2 fast, affordable, home cooked meals in less time than it takes to wait through the fast food line. All you need are a few extras from the grocery store, an air fryer, and a baking pan.
Air fryer chicken is my favorite! - my son
We will first make a delicious, rotisserie style chicken in the air fryer and then we will turn the left overs into amazing chicken enchiladas. I was able to feed my family of 5 on one chicken and sides for 2 meals.
One Whole Chicken: Two Great Meals
First: Air Fryer Whole Chicken
Here's everything you need to make both main dishes and suggestions for side dishes.
1 whole chicken, 5lbs (of course we get ours at Rugged Cross Farm)
Olive oil cooking spray
2-3 Tbsp of your favorite seasoning blend (I make my own using 1 Tbsp Kosher Salt, 1 tsp black pepper, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1 tsp smoked paprika, 1 tsp basil, 1 tsp thyme)
Directions: Whole Air Fryer Chicken
Hands on time: 5 minutes, cook time 1 hour
Rub spice mixture over chicken skin covering entire surface.
Spray air fryer basket with cooking spray. Place chicken breast side down into basket and spray surface with olive oil spray. Cook at 360°F and set timer for 40 minutes.
Using tongs flip chicken over (breast up) and cook for an additional 20 minutes.
Check breast meat temperature (internal temperature should be 165°F). The meat should be juicy and the skin should be browned and extra crispy.
I serve this with green beans and mashed potatoes, which does add a small amount of time to the prep but rounds out the meal nicely.
Shredded left over chicken (about 2 cups-pull ALL meat off left over chicken)
1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of chicken soup (I use Great Value gluten-free)
1/2 C sour cream
1 Tbsp butter
1 small (or 1/2 large) onion, chopped
1 tsp chili powder
1 can (10 oz) Green Chile Enchilada Sauce
8 tortillas (corn if making gluten-free)
2 cups Monterey Jack Cheese
Directions: Chicken Enchiladas
Hands on time: 20 minutes, cook time 25 minutes
Preheat oven to 350ºF
In a small bowl mix together soup, sour cream, and half the enchilada sauce to make cream sauce.
Melt butter in small frying pan over medium-high heat. Add onion and chili powder, saute until onions are soft and tender.
Stir in chicken, remaining enchilada sauce, and 2 tbsp of sauce mixture. Cook and stir until heated through.
Spread about 1/2 C of soup mixture in the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish. Place about 1/4 C of chicken mixture onto each tortilla, sprinkle about 1/8 C of shredded cheese over top and roll tortilla. Place rolls, seam-side down, in the baking dish. Pour remaining sauce mixture over top and sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Bake in preheated over for 25 minutes, or until bubbly and light brown.
To round out this dinner I add a heated can of re-fried beans and corn but this dish could stand on it's own.