CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Chicken Wild Rice Hotdish

Anyone who’s grown up in Minnesota or North Dakota doesn’t need to be told about the role of hotdish in Midwest culture.

Not only are they easy to make, hotdishes also are the perfect fare for events such as family reunions, funerals, church suppers and potlucks.

A good example of how popular and diverse they are is the annual hotdish-making competition hosted by Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., for members of Minnesota’s congressional delegation at the beginning of the legislative session.

With names such as “Taconite Tater Tot Hotdish,” “Chicken Mushroom Wild Rice Hotdish,” “Mom’s Mahnomen Madness Hotdish,” “Minnesota Wild Strata Hotdish,” “Hermann the German Hotdish” and  “Turkey Trot Tater Tot Hotdish,” you can see there is no limit to what can be in hotdishes.

We probably had hotdish at least once a week when I was a kid. And just like the aforementioned ones, no two were the same.

These days, we probably a have a hamburger macaroni hotdish every week or two. But once in a while, when we have some leftover chicken, that’s what stars in the hot dish.

Here is a hotdish that contains leftover chicken, wild rice and condensed soup along with some chopped-up onions, celery, green pepper and water chestnuts.

It’s probably not the one your mother made when you were growing up, but it certainly wouldn’t be out of place in Sen. Franken’s competition, which by the way was won in April 2015 by Rep. Betty McCollum’s straightforwardly named “Turkey, Sweet Potato and Wild Rice Hotdish.”

Chicken Wild Rice Hotdish
1 cup wild rice, rinsed
4 cups cooks chicken, cut up
1 cup celery, chopped
1 small onion, diced
1 green or red bell pepper, diced
1 8-ounce can water chestnuts, sliced
1 10½-ounce can cream of mushroom soup
1 10½-ounce can cream of chicken soup
¾ cup mayonnaise
2 to 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
Salt and pepper taste
Potato chips
Mix all ingredients together and top with crushed potato chips. Refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

4 thoughts on “CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Chicken Wild Rice Hotdish”

  • Helen Murphy February 24, 2016 at 1:32 pm

    Is the wild rice already cooked? It does not look like there is enough liquid to cook it along with other ingredients. Sounds good.

    1. Jeff Tiedeman February 24, 2016 at 1:38 pm

      It’s uncooked, Helen.

  • barbaralavalleur February 24, 2016 at 1:37 pm


  • Ananda Arvig November 28, 2020 at 7:08 pm

    There is no reason to refrigerate it ahead of time. Unless you aren’t eating until later. FYI.


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