Keto chicken casserole

Keto chicken casserole

Keto and casseroles go hand in hand, especially when it comes to this irresistible chicken recipe that will make your entire family swoon. The cream sauce is hearty, cheesy, and loaded with yummy pesto. Your oven will feel honored to bake this tasty goodness for you over and over again.

Keto chicken casserole

Keto and casseroles go hand in hand, especially when it comes to this irresistible chicken recipe that will make your entire family swoon. The cream sauce is hearty, cheesy, and loaded with yummy pesto. Your oven will feel honored to bake this tasty goodness for you over and over again.
USMetric
6 servingservings

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup 175 ml heavy whipping cream or sour cream
  • ½ cup 125 ml cream cheese
  • 3 tbsp 3 tbsp (50 g) green pesto
  • ½ ½ lemon, the juicelemons, the juice
  • salt and pepper
  • 1½ oz. 40 g butter
  • 2 lbs 900 g skinless boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 9 oz. 250 g leek, finely choppedleeks, finely chopped
  • 4 oz. 110 g (175 ml) cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 lb 450 g cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 2 cups 475 ml (225 g) shredded cheese

Instructions

Instructions are for 6 servings. Please modify as needed.

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Mix cream and cream cheese with pesto and lemon juice. Salt and pepper to taste.
  3. In a large pan over medium high heat, melt the butter. Add the chicken, season with salt and pepper, and fry until they turn a nice golden brown.
  4. Place the chicken in a greased 9 x 13 inch (23 x 33 cm) baking dish, and pour in the cream mixture.
  5. Top chicken with leek, tomatoes and cauliflower.
  6. Sprinkle cheese on top and bake in the middle of the oven for at least 30 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked. If the casserole is at risk of burning before it's done, cover it with a piece of aluminium foil, lower the heat and let cook for a little longer.

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Tip!

Sauce too runny? If you'd like an even thicker sauce, add some extra shredded cheese. This will give the dish even more flavor and consistency.

Green it up! A rich dish like this only gets better if you serve it with a side of fresh leafy greens. Dress with a generous drizzle of olive oil, some balsamic vinegar, and a sprinkle of sea salt.

Would like some extra heat? Spice things up with some red pepper flakes!

Cleaning and slicing leeks

Start with rinsing the leek and patting dry with a paper or kitchen towel. Use a sharp knife to cut off the darker green end. Thinly slice the leek into rings and you're ready to go!

Meal prep

This dish can be prepared by frying the chicken ahead of time. You can assemble the entire casserole and keep in the fridge for a day before baking it. Just make sure you let it come to room temperature before placing in the oven. It's also good to give it a stir since the pesto can sink to the bottom.

If you have chicken or turkey leftovers they are perfect for this dish. Just skip step 3 in the instructions and you are good to go!

If you're short on time you can also use a rotisserie chicken. Take the meat off the bones and divide into bite-sized pieces before adding it to the baking dish.

Storing and reheating

If you intend to eat the casserole within 2-3 days you can store it in the fridge. Otherwise it's better to place the casserole in the freezer where it will last up to 3 months. Make sure your dish is suitable for freezing.

Let thaw in the refrigerator the day before you plan on serving it. Don’t place a cold baking dish straight from the fridge into a hot oven as this can cause your dish to crack. Reheat the casserole in the oven at 300°F (150°C) until thoroughly warm. When thawing and reheating this casserole the result may be a bit more liquid but the flavor will still be good.

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250 comments

  1. Kerri
    Yum yum yum. Thanks.
  2. Donna LaHaise
    I put the cream/cream cheese/lemon pesto mixture in the frying pan after the chicken was out to scrape up the brown bits--soooo flavourful! this recipe is a keeper!
  3. Kat
    For any British people out there who got confused about what on earth heavy whipping cream is, it probably isn't extra thick double cream. I think it is maybe just double cream, but if you have mistakenly bought extra thick, adding about 100ml of water to the creamy mixture for about every 100ml thick cream (usually a third of the pot) you put in it, should do the trick. Did not negatively affect taste in the 3 serving version and enabled me to actually coat my chicken in the mixture (just y'know, use your discretion on acceptable thickness.)
    Great recipe, had slightly smaller portion with some fried cabbage and spinach on the side.
  4. Joanne
    My children said this is the best meal I have ever cooked! Winner winner chicken dinner
  5. Donya
    I know I am in the minority here, but I did not care for this. It is too rich for my tastes. I much prefer the Keto Chicken Alfredo and it has much the same ingredients. The addition of bacon and mushrooms might have helped.
  6. Lyn
    We thought we were going 'nutso' when we discovered the recipe my Husband had downloaded Dec 2018 was different to the one I had googled May 2019, the cream cheese has been added. We will try the new version and let you know! We love the sour cream and weigh out the cherry tomatoes etc portions. We love how you have alternative metric or USA measurements. This is a family plraser for those not on Keto. Thanks!
  7. Christine
    This recipe was very good. Easy to make, easy to eat!
  8. Kiki
    Try a red pesto with sundried tomato instead of basil.
  9. Betty
    This was DELICIOUS!!! My husband, who is a chef, went back for seconds!! He has a newly diagnosed severe wheat allergy, so changing our entire way of life when it comes to food has been 'fun'... I recently started a low carb regime for myself, and with him not eating wheat, it has been great! This was SO GOOD! I can't wait to have the leftovers for lunch this afternoon!
  10. Wendy
    This was a real winner. Hubby loved it and it smelt devine while in the oven. Was some juice in the bottom out the oven dish when serving but that disappeared too. Delicious
  11. Jeff
    My teenager and her friend went CRAZY when they tasted it..LOVED IT...My picky sister in law couldnt stop eating it either..begged me for the recipe and made me promise this would be her LAST meal on her death bed...This is how GOOD this recipe is!
    1000000% Amazing!
  12. Sue
    Very tasty meal. We recommend using souls vide method for cooking the chicken, double the tomatoes, spring onions work fine in place of leeks, and as a side dish, make cauliflower fried rice to sop up the extra sauce.
  13. Susan
    Simply delicious. I will make again and again.
  14. Sherry
    not one of my favorites, to rich for me. I am more of a spicy gal.
  15. Kylie
    I presume you Cook the cauliflower before adding into the baking dish?
    Reply: #216
  16. Kristin Parker Team Diet Doctor

    I presume you Cook the cauliflower before adding into the baking dish?

    That is not necessary, it will soften as the dish bakes.

    Reply: #222
  17. Shane Van Der Aa
    I recommend cooking the cauliflower and leaks we tried uncooked and the leakes were still hard
  18. Stephanie
    Next time I too will precook the cauliflower and leeks. Nice flavour but the vegetables were almost raw.
  19. Joyce
    I made this as directed, but used an iron skillet to cook the chicken and added ingredients to that instead of a casserole dish. It turned out great and one less pan to wash! I will definitely make this again!
  20. Shirley
    Seriously good. You won't be sorry.
  21. Tina
    Made this last night and it was so amazing and flavorful. I was hesitant because it really didn't look appetizing and i wasn't sure if there was going to be any flavor at all but boy was i wrong! It was ON POINT!!! I did add garlic and diced onions to my chicken and rendered the onions down. I know you have to be careful with onions as far as carbs go but they are healthy in my opinion and you can't go wrong with them, including garlic! I used Slap Yo Mama seasoning on my chicken because it gives it the salt as well as a nice kick! ( i use this on EVERYTHING) My husband was even surprised at how good it was! My 3 year old daughter, who is a picky eater, actually liked it too! I just chopped up my cauliflower very small. I noticed the bigger ones were still a little hard, so definitely cut the cauliflower into very small florets! I added about 6-8 oz of tomatoes instead of 4. Overall, I would highly recommend this dish!!
  22. Rebecca Cooper
    Very tasty dish. However, my cauliflower did not soften. Next time I’ll cook it a little beforehand. I’ll bet mushrooms would be good in this too!
  23. Liz
    Didn’t change a thing. Cut the leeks small and the cauliflower into really small florets and they both softened but still had a little bite. Served with mixed crunchy salad leaves. Highly recommended.
  24. Susan
    Can anyone tell me how much 75ml cream cheese weighs, please? It's a solid and I prefer to weigh solids rather than put them into a jug and mash them into the bottom of the jug to get an accurate measure, because then I have to scrape it out again!
    Reply: #226
  25. Susan
    How can I find my own comments on this website?
    Reply: #227
  26. Kristin Parker Team Diet Doctor

    Can anyone tell me how much 75ml cream cheese weighs, please? It's a solid and I prefer to weigh solids rather than put them into a jug and mash them into the bottom of the jug to get an accurate measure, because then I have to scrape it out again!

    This would be 75g cream cheese.
    http://www.cookitsimply.com/measurements/cups/cream-cheese-0070-080l....

  27. Kristin Parker Team Diet Doctor

    How can I find my own comments on this website?

    You can find your comments by re-visiting the page where you asked your question. We monitor the website for comments and to answer questions.

    Reply: #228
  28. Susan
    People have to keep offline notes to help them remember where they commented? That's weird and very user-unfriendly in this day and age! Most websites that allow people to comment on anything allow people to see all their comments listed just by clicking on their username or something simple like that. It would also be helpful to get notifications if someone replies.
  29. Simon Stebbing
    Not keto friendly - as we all had double servings it was so tasty.

    Have made it twice now, excellent both times. Second time did half sour cream, half HWC and some cheese to thicken, but felt the time when I used sour cream only was best (in addition to the cream cheese).

    Interesting to read some comments above are similar to what we discussed last night. One guest suggested sundried tomatoes would go well - I agree, but feel the cherry tomatoes really excelled here. Feel 50% more cherry tomatoes could be used if you're not too strict on carbs. The bacon addition suggested above I feel would wreck the dish.

    Someone above mentioned precooking the cauliflower. It will come out fine without precooking, but make sure you don't over cook the chicken during browning (i.e. use higher heat). That'll give the cauliflower enough time to go al-dente with out overcooking the chicken. And definitely don't sub for breasts. Smaller florets help here too of course, but too small and you lose the nice bite they have.

    Precooking the leek, again not needed. Not saying it was the case here, but using too much of the leaves will lead to this - they're tough and should be discarded - just chop the cylinder portion.

  30. Tori
    This is an absolute favourite. Sooooo good! Wouldn't change a thing from the original recipe. We used a stunning smoked cheddar and my goodness, it's going to take restraint not to eat the whole dish. Lucky it's filling!
  31. DJ
    Do you precook the chicken before assembling the dish?
    Reply: #232
  32. Kerry Merritt Team Diet Doctor

    Do you precook the chicken before assembling the dish?

    Yes, in step 3, you will cook the chicken before adding it to the dish.

  33. lesley.dev
    Anyone tried this in a crock pot??
  34. albrahimisoni
    hello,
    why is thursday morning empty? do we have to choose by ourself what to eat?
    Reply: #235
  35. Kristin Parker Team Diet Doctor

    hello,
    why is thursday morning empty? do we have to choose by ourself what to eat?

    Could you please clarify which meal plan you are following?

    Reply: #236
  36. albrahimisoni
    wheight loss for good, week 1
    Reply: #237
  37. Crystal Pullen Team Diet Doctor

    wheight loss for good, week 1

    Thursday of Week 1 of the Weight Loss for Good Course introduces Intermittent Fasting. If you feel comfortable skipping breakfast, do. If you are very hungry and aren't ready to try IF, you can repeat any other breakfast from the week. Try to follow the suggestions in the course for how to manage IF.

  38. rmbrossia2
    This was fantastic! My husband is very picky when it comes to veggies, especially those in this recipe. However, I threw them in my ninja food processor to make tiny pieces and then sautéed them in the pan used for the chicken. Also used a spicy red pesto instead of the green (already had another dish this week with the green) and this was a huge hit! We will definitely add this to our rotation. Thanks for making this transition so much easier!
    Reply: #239
  39. Crystal Pullen Team Diet Doctor

    This was fantastic! My husband is very picky when it comes to veggies, especially those in this recipe. However, I threw them in my ninja food processor to make tiny pieces and then sautéed them in the pan used for the chicken. Also used a spicy red pesto instead of the green (already had another dish this week with the green) and this was a huge hit! We will definitely add this to our rotation. Thanks for making this transition so much easier!

    Awesome!! Thanks for taking the time to share your feedback. Great idea with the veggies!

  40. Meghan K.
    My calculations of this had it at 10 net carbs per serving. Can you let me know how you got yours at 7?

    I'm getting 2 for the heavy cream; 2 for the cream cheese; 1 for the pesto with basil; 1 for the tomatoes; 2 for the cauliflower; and 2 for the cheese (I'm not adding the leek because I don't like them but that would add one more net carb as well). Thanks.

  41. lauramb1994
    A very very very lovely dish. I didn't have fresh tomatoes but I did have a jar of sun-dried tomatoes so used those. I also didn't have leeks so I diced some onion and put it in while the chicken was browning in the butter. I do want to try fresh tomatoes next time. But this was a very filling dish and so delicious. I made about 4 servings, ate one serving, divided the remaining of the dish into three quart-size freezer bags to have as a quick meal over the next month or so. I used to do freezer meals ALL THE TIME when my kids were younger and they are such a time-saver. Love that I can now do that with some of these DD meals as well!! Thanks so much!
  42. susan.haviar
    This dish was very tasty! My whole family loved it! However, in the evening I ate peanuts because I started to feel a little hungry. I gained weight the next morning. My biggest problem is to cut out snacks.
  43. Jeanene
    This dish was super delicious. The sauce was amazing. The one issue we had was that is was very VERY soupy. I’m not sure what we did to make that happen. But, it was amazing nonetheless.
    Reply: #244
  44. Crystal Pullen Team Diet Doctor

    This dish was super delicious. The sauce was amazing. The one issue we had was that is was very VERY soupy. I’m not sure what we did to make that happen. But, it was amazing nonetheless.

    One of the tips suggests adding more cheese if the sauce is too runny. You may want to try that next time. I am glad you enjoyed this one!

  45. mariana.rodriguez11
    What type of shredded cheese is recommended to use?
    Reply: #246
  46. Kristin Parker Team Diet Doctor

    What type of shredded cheese is recommended to use?

    Cheddar cheese is one common option, but you can choose any shredded cheese that you like the taste of.

  47. Andrea
    Is it ok to freeze this dish?
    Reply: #248
  48. Kerry Merritt Team Diet Doctor

    Is it ok to freeze this dish?

    If you intend to eat the casserole within 2-3 days you can store it in the fridge. Otherwise it's better to place the casserole in the freezer where it will last up to 3 months.

  49. doc.franklin
    delicious... I replaced the cauliflower with broccoli
    Reply: #250
  50. Crystal Pullen Team Diet Doctor

    delicious... I replaced the cauliflower with broccoli

    Nice substitution!

  51. baltucha
    Made this this evening using sour cream instead of heavy whipping cream. It was very good, tho next time I won't use a 9x13 as my sauce was spread to thing and dried out. The leeks sliced thinly, cherry tomatoes and small cauliflower florets came out perfectly cooked. convinced myself not to go back for seconds in order to save some for lunch tomorrow! Has anyone tried this with bacon crumbles added? My husband suggested it for next time round.
    Reply: #252
  52. Kristin Parker Team Diet Doctor

    Made this this evening using sour cream instead of heavy whipping cream. It was very good, tho next time I won't use a 9x13 as my sauce was spread to thing and dried out. The leeks sliced thinly, cherry tomatoes and small cauliflower florets came out perfectly cooked. convinced myself not to go back for seconds in order to save some for lunch tomorrow! Has anyone tried this with bacon crumbles added? My husband suggested it for next time round.

    Bacon crumbles sound fantastic for this dish!

  53. Kath
    I threw this together last night as I had 15 mins to get it in the oven before I had to pick up my daughter from work. I thought the pesto looked odd but thought nothing of it until I was clearing up. So folks, replacing the pesto in chicken casserole with green Thai paste is a winner. It was demolished by the family, who were none the wiser.
    Reply: #254
  54. Kerry Merritt Team Diet Doctor

    I threw this together last night as I had 15 mins to get it in the oven before I had to pick up my daughter from work. I thought the pesto looked odd but thought nothing of it until I was clearing up. So folks, replacing the pesto in chicken casserole with green Thai paste is a winner. It was demolished by the family, who were none the wiser.

    Thanks for sharing! So glad it worked out for you!

  55. Suzette
    Sorry if this is an obvious question but how much is 1 serving?
    Reply: #256
  56. Kristin Parker Team Diet Doctor

    Sorry if this is an obvious question but how much is 1 serving?

    There really isn't a serving size by volume or weight as it can cook down differently in different kitchens. If you make 4 servings, then 1/4 of the final dish is a serving.

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