Last updated on November 16th, 2023
Cracker Barrel’s chicken and rice meal can undeniably serve any occasion despite its simplicity. Additionally, Cracker Barrel has upheld its traditions over the years which is why many people who frequent the store associate this classic comfort meal with nostalgia.
It can be challenging to constantly visit the diner to satisfy your cravings for this rich, hearty meal as you move ahead in life. However, you will find that getting the recipe right on your own is also quite challenging.
We are here with a simple recipe for the classic dish that you can easily follow to cook your own version of the comfort food wherever you are and whenever you want!
Cracker Barrel Chicken and Rice Recipe
One of the best attributes of the dish is that it gives you a lot of room to experiment and make variations in the recipe without altering its taste. Also, you can make the recipe using a crackpot. As a result, you will find the dish tastes very close to the original. Even if you don’t have a crackpot, you can still make the same creamy, rich chicken and rice by following this recipe:
- Chicken Strips – 1 ½ pound
- Chicken Gravy – 1 cup
- Cream of Mushroom Soup – 1 can
- Cream of Chicken – 1 can
- Diced onion – 1 cup
- Water – 4 cups
- Salt – To taste
- Pepper – 1 tbsp/ to taste
- Basmati Rice (long grain) – 2 cups
- Sliced mushrooms (optional) – 1 cup
Lucky for people who have a busy household, this dish does not require a lot of prep time. In fact, you can complete preparations in no longer than three minutes!
Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, dice your onions, mushrooms, and chicken to speed up the assembling process. However, you should be mindful of the cooking time of this meal.
Cracker Barrel chicken and rice take around four hours to cook in a crackpot. Meanwhile, it requires a 90-minute baking time. Therefore, you should start preparing the dish a few hours before you want to put it on the table.
Directions to Cook Cracker Barrel Chicken and Rice
You can recreate your favorite comfort meal by following these simple directions.
Firstly, you can get the rice out of your way. Start by thoroughly washing the Basmati rice with water. Rinse the rice a few times until the water becomes clear. Then, pour four cups of water into a saucepan and put it on a stove to let the water boil.
Once the water has boiled, add the washed Basmati rice to it. Turn the flame to medium-high and cover the saucepan to let the rice cook for 30 minutes. At the 30-minute mark, turn off the stove as your rice is done!
Next, you need to prepare the other part of the dish, i.e., chicken. For this, you need a big bowl in which you will add one cup of chicken gravy, one cup of diced onions, a can of cream of mushroom soup, and a can of cream of chicken.
Optional: Add one cup of sliced mushrooms to enhance the taste. Also, you can add some garlic salt for taste.
Next, add a tablespoon of pepper (you can adjust the quantity according to your preference) and a pinch of salt. Then, mix all the ingredients using a whisk. Make sure that all the ingredients are well-mixed and it does not have any lumps. Also, add some water to the mixture to make the gravy thin and pourable.
The next step is to add 1½ pounds of chicken to this mixture. Thoroughly coat the chicken tenderloins with the creamy mix. Next, take a baking dish and evenly coat it with a non-stick spray, or grease it using olive oil or vegetable oil. Add the chicken marinated in the cream mixture.
Put the baking dish into the preheated oven and let it bake for 90 minutes until the chicken becomes golden and bubbly.
Helpful Tidbit: Use an instant-read meat thermometer to ensure the chicken is cooked. Keep the chicken in the oven until its inner temperature reaches 165ºF.
Once you remove the chicken from the oven, you can serve it with a bed of rice. Also, complete the meal with your favorite sidelines and the beverage of your choice.
It is not uncommon for people to realize they are short of an ingredient. If you are facing a similar predicament, you shouldn’t panic. Here are a few substitute ingredients that you can use instead:
If you don’t have chicken tenderloins, you can simply replace them with chicken thighs without having to change any part of the recipe. Similarly, you can also use shredded rotisserie chicken to make this dish. However, you will have to reduce your cooking time.
To make the chicken juicier, you can chop the tenderloins into 1″ pieces. This way, there is a greater surface area for the gravy to seep in. Also, if you wish to add a tweak in the flavor, use Creole Seasoning as it adds a punch of Cajun/Creole influence.
One of the best sidelines that goes perfectly with the Cracker Barrel chicken and rice recipe is Ritz Crackers. Moreover, you can also switch the white rice and use brown rice instead. Lastly, you can add chopped green onions on top for garnishing.
Growing up, it gets harder to keep up with Saturday traditions. However, in spite of everything that life throws our way, it is natural to crave a comfort meal that reminds you of home and the carefree days of your childhood. The Cracker Barrel chicken and rice dish is the definition of nostalgia for many people.
By following this easy recipe, you can carry a taste of home wherever you go and cook this rich, creamy meal whenever you crave it. Feel free to serve this dish to your guests and wow them with the simplicity of its flavors.
Cracker Barrel Chicken and Rice
- 1 ½ pounds Chicken Strips
- 1 cup Chicken Gravy
- 1 can Cream of Mushroom Soup
- 1 can Cream of Chicken
- 1 cup Diced Onion
- 4 cups Water
- Salt, to taste
- 1 tbsp Pepper, or to taste
- 2 cups Basmati Rice (long grain)
- 1 cup Sliced Mushrooms (optional)
- Olive oil or Vegetable oil (for greasing)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Dice onions, mushrooms, and chicken.
- Wash Basmati rice thoroughly until water runs clear.
- Chicken Thighs or Shredded Rotisserie Chicken for tenderloins.
- Chop tenderloins into 1" pieces for juicier chicken.
- Use Creole Seasoning for a Cajun/Creole twist.
- Serve with Ritz Crackers or switch white rice for brown rice.
- Garnish with chopped green onions.
- Boil 4 cups of water in a saucepan.
- Add washed Basmati rice, cover, and cook over medium-high heat for 30 minutes.
- Turn off the stove; rice is done.
- In a bowl, mix 1 cup chicken gravy, diced onions, cream of mushroom soup, and cream of chicken.
- Optional: Add sliced mushrooms and garlic salt for taste.
- Add pepper, salt, and water to make the gravy thin.
- Coat 1½ pounds of chicken with the creamy mix.
- Grease a baking dish, add the chicken, and bake for 90 minutes at 350°F.
Tip: Use an instant-read meat thermometer; chicken should reach 165ºF.
- Serve chicken on a bed of rice.
- Add your favorite sides and beverage.