Crack Chicken Casserole – creamy chicken casserole loaded with cheddar, bacon and ranch. Use a rotisserie chicken for easy prep! Chicken, cheddar, bacon, ranch seasoning, sour cream, cream of chicken soup. The whole family LOVED this easy chicken casserole. It is already on the menu again this week!
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The BEST Chicken Casserole EVER
You are going to want to add this Crack Chicken Casserole to your menu ASAP! A creamy chicken casserole that is loaded with cheddar, bacon and ranch. YUM! I made this for lunch last week and we both absolutely LOVED it! I’m wishing I had the leftovers right now. It was seriously delicious.
Use Rotisserie Chicken in Casseroles
To cut down on the prep time of this casserole, I used a rotisserie chicken for the cooked chicken. Rotisserie chicken is my go-to for cooked chicken in recipes. We always buy a couple of rotisserie chickens on our Costco trips and keep the meat in the freezer. It makes casseroles like this a breeze to make! I had this ready to bake before the oven had fully preheated.
Can I Freeze this Chicken Casserole?
Absolutely! I love to have easy casseroles in the freezer for a quick meal later and this casserole and it works great. I usually thaw the casserole in the refrigerator overnight and bake as directed below. If you are short on time, cover the casserole with foil and bake for about 20 minutes to thaw in the oven and then uncover and bake as directed. Just make sure the casserole is bubbly before removing it from the oven to serve.
What to Serve with Crack Chicken Casserole
As I said, we LOVED this Crack Chicken Casserole. We served it with some Roasted Green Beans and Mushrooms and a batch of 7Up Biscuits. OMG! Best meal ever!!! Thankfully we had enough for leftovers. It was all just as good reheated. Add this casserole to your menu. I promise it will be a hit!
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Crack Chicken Casserole
- 4 cups cooked chopped chicken
- 1 (1-oz) package Ranch Salad Dressing & Seasoning Mix
- 1½ cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 cup chopped cooked bacon
- 1½ cups sour cream
- 1 (10.5-oz) can cream of chicken soup
- 1½ cups crushed Ritz crackers
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, melted
- Preheat oven to 350ºF. Lightly spray a 9×9-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
- Combine chicken, Ranch seasoning, cheddar cheese, bacon, sour cream and cream of chicken soup. Spread into prepared pan.
- Combine crushed crackers and butter, sprinkle over chicken mixture.
- Bake uncovered 30 to 40 minutes.
- If you are sensitive to Ranch seasoning mix, feel free to reduce the amount to your personal preference.
- Here is our recipe for Homemade Ranch Dressing Mix: https://www.plainchicken.com/homemade-ranch-dressing-mix/
- Using homemade ranch seasoning will significantly reduce the salt in this recipe.
- Can substitute turkey bacon for regular bacon.
- Here is our recipe for Homemade Cream of Chicken Soup: https://www.plainchicken.com/homemade-cream-of-chicken-soup/
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If I want to freeze it- should I put ritz crackers on before freezing or wait and put them on after thawing before baking?
Either way is fine.
Hi! This looks wonderful, going to try it tonight, thank you for sharing it!
Would it be possible to add a pasta to this and bake it with all other ingredients? If so, would I need to add any sort of fluid (chicken broth, water, milk) to it? Many thanks!
Here is the noodle version: https://www.plainchicken.com/cracked-out-chicken-noodle-casserole/
How would you cook the chicken ( I have raw chicken breast ) if you didn’t use a ROTISSERIE CHICKEN?
Boil, bake, grill, pan sear, slow cooker, instant pot
Can I omit bacon
You can make this however you want.
I made this tonight. So delicious!! My husband is limited on what he eats due to recovering from throat cancer. He lost his taste for most foods and has trouble eating meats. This tasted so good to him and the chicken was nice and tender for him. Thank you thank you!
Any ideas for a cream (chicken/mushroom) soup substitute? I don’t have any of that in the house. Thanks!
Made today, delish! I did add frozen peas to the dish. Will definitely make again.
If you want to bring this to someone’s home. Do you cook first then freeze? Or freeze right after mixing everything, then cook at their home?
I freeze it unbaked
First time making one of your recipes and I love this one!!! Definitely a keeper and will be in the casserole rotation fairly often. I didnt have a rotisserie chicken so I cooked a couple chicken breasts (one was huge) and some thighs and cut it up. It couldn’t have been any easier, just throw it in the bowl and mix it up. I did add extra cheese to mine making the total 2 cups. Love my cheese! It was a little salty but I don’t want to lose the ranch taste so not sure what to do about that. I might cut the ranch back some next time. I used my oval dish and it was perfect for this. Can’t wait to try more of your recipes!!!
Girl I just want to say how amazing you are at answering your readers comments same day lol! I like to try new recipes often and I would NEVER expect a same day response but here you are kicking ass 😂.
I am making this right now, but adding cooked rice, cooking it “al dente.” For beginner cooks, my bag of jasmine rice says to cook 1 cup rice and 1.5 cups water for 15 mins or until all water is cooked off, but I’m only cooking for 12mins or until most water is cooked off, so I’m essentially letting the rice cook the rest of the way in the oven as I don’t want the rice to overcook when I bake the casserole. I use the same logic when adding cooked noodles to a casserole.
Can you make this for two people? Can I cut recipe in half?
I just made this and it’s so easy and was delicious!!! The only thing I would change is not adding the ranch packet because I feel like it was to salty but besides that it was great
What are the best veggies to add?
whatever you enjoy – broccoli is always good
I think mushrooms would be yummy!
Can I add a can of Rotel tomatoes?
Can shrimp for substituted for chicken?
I am making this for my boyfriend, we don’t live together yet and it is easiest to drive over a baked all-in-one dish for him. This sounds amazing. I am going to replace the crackers with a mix of pasta and fried french onion crispies.
Soooo good, thank you for sharing with us!
This was sooooo good! I even ate it cold the next day. I will be putting this on weekly rotation. It was salty, so I’ll use unsalted butter and a little less of the ranch packet next time. But bravo for this one!
If I double the recipe what size pan should I put it in? 9×13 or larger
9×13 should work fine
We absolutely loved this casserole! I did add cooked rice and frozen spinach to make a one and done meal! Thanks for the delicious add to our dinners!
Can I use bread crumbs Instead of Rits crackers?!
Made this 2 nights ago and it was wonderful. My husband and I had it for dinner, our son had it the next day and claimed the rest of the dish…which he just finished off. He asked if I could make more and said he thought it was so weird that it could be so good even cold! I added green peas to mine but that’s the only change. So good. I’ve printed the recipe for the 4Ever Favorite Collection.
I just made this and haven’t tasted it yet but it smells so good! I cut the recipe in half since I only had 2 cups of my chicken left over, also it’s just me so this is plenty!!
Anyone tried this in the instant pot?
Made this and brought it to work, everyone loved it!! I did however throw some raw broccoli into the casserole before adding the chicken mixture and then baking. It was delicious!
This is a great recipe to add broccoli. SO glad you enjoyed it!
Delicious!! If you like “Funeral Potatoes” IE: Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole, you will love this. Not the healthiest recipe, but oh so yummy. I didn’t have Ritz Crackers, so substituted crushed corn flakes. We bought a Rotisserie chicken for this recipe, which made it even easier to make.
Can you use corn flakes on top?
How many chicken breasts would you say equals 4 cups?
3 or 4 depending on the size. I used a whole rotisserie chicken.
This is seriously so good!!!!!! Can I freeze this after I’ve cooked it?
I don’t have ranch seasoning any suggestions?
Made it for the first time today. Easy to follow recipe. Delicious and will definitely make again. I’m starting to enjoy making more recipes posted on Pinterest! Great app for all recipes
Made this tonight for my picky eaters. They really enjoyed it….i liked the crunch the crackers gave it. However, very salty! Wow. I think next time i will use low sodium ritz & mayb half a pkg of the ranch, in hopes to cut down the salt. Other than that, very good. Just paired it with a salad, plenty enough!
Oh, I forgot to mention that I put about a cup of frozen peas too, so good.
This is a great recipe to throw some veggies into. So glad you enjoyed it, Michelle!
This Chicken Casserole is so good! 😋 Next time I will not use a whole package of the Ranch Dressing, just a little to salty for me.
What can be used to replace the sour cream? My family doesn’t like it and always knows when there is sour cream in a dish.
Greek yogurt – or whatever you normally substitute might work.
IF YOU DON’T TELL THEM, THEY WILL NEVER KNOW!!!
I made this a few weeks ago and subbed Greek yogurt for the sour cream. I also added some California mix veggies (cauliflower, broccoli and carrots). It was DELICIOUS!!!! My 7 year old is a great eater but not big on seconds, came back for more. I am making it again tonight!
Mixed with some pasta it makes it so much better.
I made this today!!!! So good! Everyone loved it!!!! 2 hours of crockpot lovin then I shredded the chicken then added Kroger real bacon bits and shredded cheddar cheese then cooked another hour then added the crackers on top and served! Delicious! My one year old two year eleven year old mother and father in law and grandfather in law me and my hubby all gobbled it up with candied carrots! Yum! So so so good! Thank you :o)
Just made this for dinner tonight and it came out splendid. My kids gobbled it down and the hubby liked it too. I often have a hard time getting them to eat chicken, but they loved it and had seconds. It will definitely make it's way to my table again. I only changed two things. I put it in a 13×9 pan and cooked it for 25 minutes and I used Italian break crumbs instead of crackers. So good and a big winner in our house.
Can you leave off the crackers?
Have you ever tried it in a crock pot?
I haven’t, but it should be just fine. Enjoy!
so the rotisserie chicken is already cooked and you just take the skin off and shred it and throw it in the casserole dish, right?
Yes – you just want the cooked chicken meat.
Of I only have a cup of sour cream on hand may I use half a cup of mayo ? Also I’d like to add onion. Would you lightly sauté first. Thanks I’m so excited to try this tonight
You can try the mayo. I haven't made this with mayonnaise, so I can't say exactly how it will turn out. It is your preference on sautéing the onions first. If you like softer onions, I would definitely sauté them first.
I also love cooking with rotisserie chicken and who can beat those $5 Costco chickens? But, here's a question for you. When you freeze it, do you put it right into the casserole frozen and cook from there, or do you have to thaw it ahead of time? Thanks!
I thaw the pulled chicken before adding it to the casserole. I put it in the fridge the night before I make the casserole.
How many chicken tenders would it take to make the required amount of chicken needed ? I have a pound of tenders.
I am making this but I’m adding a mix of chopped colored bell peppers.. yim!
How many slices of bacon?
throw the whole pound in that recipe…what could possibly go wrong…Its BACON….
Can I use bottled ranch dressing instead of dry?
What a great idea! But unfortunately, without further recipe testing, I cannot answer with certainty. As always, please use your best judgment regarding substitutions and modifications.
Thanks for verifying! Seems like most of your recipes I make are for 13 x 9 x 2 pan, which I put into two 8 x 8 pans so I can put one in the freezer. I made your Monterey Chicken Spaghetti last week – so good!
Seems like a lot to put in a 9 X 9 pan?
not really – fit just fine in my 9×9 pan. You can certainly bake it whatever pan you wish. A larger pan will alter the cooking time, so make adjustments.
Omg! I wish i could leave an actual picture! I really dont know why I have waited so long to make this! Thank you for your recipe! We LOVE IT!
Can I use cream of mushroom soup instead ? I don’t have cream of chicken.., I do have chicken gravy?? Would that be a between substitute ?
You can use cream of mushroom soup
Stephanie, I try just about everything you post and find all to be delicious! Thank you for sharing!
In a pinch can I used the canned shredded chicken?
That’s what I use just because it’s super easy and I have family members that don’t have teeth and they are able to eat it since the canned chicken is super finely shredded and super soft.