This is one of those recipes that every member of our family actually will eat without complaint. I started with a pretty basic Tuna Noodle Casserole recipe, but we don't eat any kind of fish at our house, so I substituted canned chicken (it would also be fabulous using one of those rotisserie chickens, or just chicken breasts or tenders) from Costco. There are many other things that I tweaked from there to get it just right, including halving the noodles while leaving the sauce the same, it just gives it a better casserole texture. I love how easy it is to substitute ingredients that you have on hand or that your family likes to this recipe. It's a quick, easy dinner idea.
Chicken Noodle Casserole
1 1/2 cups uncooked egg noodles
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup (the small one, I use the reduced fat)
1/2 cup sour cream (I always use light, get the Tilamook if you can, it's the best!)
1/3 cup milk (you can add up to 1/2 cup to make the desired consistency)
1/2 cup mayonnaise (I use Best Foods light)
1 can chicken (from Costco, or use rotisserie or breasts)
1 cup frozen peas and carrots (if your family doesn't like this, you can also use 1 can of corn or just plain peas)
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon lemon juice
3/4 cup panko bread crumbs (usually by the Chinese food)
1 tablespoon melted butter
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, spay an 8 x 8 casserole dish with baking spray.
Cook the noodles according to the directions on the package.
While the noodles are cooking start the soup, sour cream, milk and mayonnaise heating over low heat. I usually use a largish saucepan, because after the noodles are done I add the noodles to the sauce. Make sure to stir this mixture regularly. Add the chicken, peas and carrots, 1 cup of cheese, salt, pepper, and lemon juice to the soup mixture. Heat through. Add the cooked noodles and pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish.
Bake the casserole for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and put the remaining cheese evenly on top. Sprinkle with the prepared topping and bake for 10 to 15 more minutes.