Chicken with Asparagus & Mushrooms

Chicken w Asparagus + MushroomsChicken Asparagus Casserole is a reminder that spring is here, yet it offers the familiarity of a comfort food meal. It’s a sprightly everyday dish made with chicken breasts and fresh asparagus smothered in a light, creamy sauce. It’s simple to assemble for a week night dinner and it’s equally delicious if the asparagus is swapped-out for fresh green beans. In fact, I’m not sure which vegetable I like the most for this casserole. Try it once and it’ll quickly become a weeknight staple. This recipe is Hubby approved.

Chicken Asparagus Casserole

1 pound asparagus (or fresh green beans) or 1 pound fresh green beans
4 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
1 tablespoon cooking oil
Salt & pepper to taste
1 small can mushrooms, drained and rinsed
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 to 1 cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
Garnish with additional parsley, chopped red bell pepper or pimento, if desired

Preheat oven to 375°F. Wash asparagus and remove the tough cut ends. Leave asparagus in spears; place in the bottom of a buttered 11″ x 13″ baking dish.

Cut the chicken breasts into halves or thirds depending on their size. Brown the chicken on all sides in cooking oil; salt and pepper to taste. Remove the chicken from the frying pan and place on top of asparagus in the baking dish.

Lightly brown the mushrooms in the drippings left from frying the chicken. Set browned mushrooms aside. Combine the cream of chicken soup, chicken broth, lemon juice and parsley in a medium-size bowl. Pour mixture over asparagus and chicken; top with mushrooms.

Cover and bake for 35 minutes, if made with asparagus, or 45 minutes, if using green beans. Remove the cover and top with grated cheese; bake uncovered for 5 more minutes or just long enough to melt the cheese. Garnish with additional parsley, chopped red bell pepper (as pictured) or pimento, if desired. If you’re so inclined, hot steamed rice or mashed potatoes make a great accompaniment to this casserole. Yield: 4 to 6 servings

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