14 Uses For Store-Bought Rotisserie Chicken

How often have you wandered through the grocery store and smelled the enticing aroma of rotisserie chickens wafting your way? Rotisserie chickens smell amazing, but that's only the beginning of what they offer. They are a busy home chef's best friend.

Rotisserie chickens are cooked in a rotisserie oven, which rotates the chicken until it is fully cooked. Because the chicken is constantly spinning, it cooks evenly throughout. They are often inexpensively priced, costing even less than an uncooked chicken of the same size. 

Cooking with rotisserie chicken is quick, cheap, and convenient. To turn it into beautiful and tasty shredded chicken ready for your next meal, use your hands to remove the meat from your chicken and place it in a bowl. Use a hand mixer to shred. If you don't have a hand mixer, you can shred it using two forks.

We've compiled this list of 14 ways to use store-bought rotisserie chicken, drawing from our experience and scouring the internet for further ideas. Read on to discover how to enjoy this popular grocery store staple and elevate dishes from chilis to salads. 

Chicken nachos

Everyone loves nachos. You can upgrade your nachos from "plain old nacho" to "chicken nacho" by adding some shredded rotisserie chicken.

There's something about crispy tortilla chips smothered in cheese that makes one's heart smile. Chicken nachos are simple to make and easy to customize to your preferences. The added chicken gives your nachos a protein boost, making them appropriate for a snack or a meal.

Add some shredded rotisserie chicken, diced tomatoes, and the veggie of your choice to your favorite chip and cheese combo. You'll meet all your food groups in one dish and, as a bonus, have the undying gratitude of your tastebuds.

If you like your food a little spicy, why not make your own buffalo chicken nachos? It's easy to make at home and will feed the whole family. Since you'll only use about two cups of shredded chicken for this dish, you'll have some left over to use later in the week.

Chicken salad

Chicken salad is easy to make, popular, and versatile. While it is commonly made with diced or canned chicken, you can freshen it up and add new flavor profiles by using shredded rotisserie chicken.

Today, chicken salad is a Southern staple, appearing everywhere, from potlucks to bridal showers to church gatherings. But, it originated in 1863 in Wakefield, Rhode Island. Often served on a croissant or a leaf of lettuce, this tasty dish is easy to prepare ahead of time, making it a go-to recipe for any party host.

Common chicken salad ingredients include chicken, mayonnaise, celery, grapes, apples, or nuts (the original chicken salad consisted of mayo, grapes, tarragon, and chicken). You don't have to stick to the basics, though. You can use many ingredients to give your chicken salad an unexpected twist. It's worth trying a curried chicken salad if you're trying to feed a crowd but want something outside the box.

Chicken tacos

Taco night just got easier (that's right, we're here for you). For chicken tacos, use shredded rotisserie chicken meat. This way, you can skip the part where you cook the chicken. Rotisserie chickens are especially great for tacos because they are well-seasoned and ready to eat. Because removing the meat from a rotisserie chicken is simple, you can whip up this family-favorite meal in a few minutes. 

The great thing about tacos is that everyone can pick and choose their ingredients. Make a taco bar by prepping your favorite taco ingredients. Some recommendations are high-quality tortillas, shredded cheese (make it special by offering two or more cheese options), grilled veggies, sour cream, guacamole, and lettuce. Add your shredded chicken to the taco bar and let everyone build their dream tacos. If you need more inspiration, try making some simple homemade chicken tacos (it includes pico de gallo and a spicy aioli).

Chicken noodle soup

Nothing says comfort food like chicken noodle soup. You can make your own at home in half the time using a rotisserie chicken. The great thing about this soup is you can use the meat and the carcass, so nothing goes to waste.

After you've removed the meat, utilize the carcass for some homemade chicken bone broth. This will add depth of flavor, and some added nutrition to your soup. The nutrients in bone broth can help reduce inflammation, give you a little extra collagen, and even help you sleep better. Once you've made the broth, add the pulled chicken, veggies, and your favorite noodles for the perfect soup.

If you don't have time to make broth from scratch, that's okay. There are plenty of healthy store-bought chicken bone broth options. If you want to keep it simple, try a classic chicken noodle soup with rotisserie chicken and store-bought broth.

Chicken sandwiches

Use pulled rotisserie chicken and your favorite sandwich ingredients to feed the whole family chicken sandwiches. They are easy to make but also a smart option if you're meal-prepping for yourself. Prep your chicken and ingredients in advance, store them in airtight containers in the fridge, and use them for easy lunches throughout the week.

You can expect about 3 cups of meat from a 32-ounce chicken, which is plenty to feed a family of four. That breaks down into about 2 cups of white meat and 1 cup of dark meat. 1 cup of shredded chicken weighs about 5 ounces, so you'll have almost a pound of meat from one rotisserie chicken.

Customize your sandwich to your liking. Some foods that go well with chicken (and sandwiches) are barbecue sauce, pickles, bacon, tomatoes, cheese, and avocados. You can also keep it simple with a roast chicken sandwich recipe. Pro-tip for any chicken sandwich recipe: It tastes better on a toasted bun. 

Chicken quesadillas

Sure, tacos are quick and easy, but quesadillas are even easier. Steak, pork, grilled chicken, beans, and veggies are all common protein additions to this ubiquitous Mexican dish. But add some shredded rotisserie chicken to your favorite cheesy tortilla and make a chicken quesadilla with a flavor profile to drool over. Throw in some grilled veggies for extra nutrients and flavor, spoon on a dollop of sour cream, and voila! Dinner, lunch (or breakfast?) is served.

You might think of quesadillas as simplified kids' food, but there is no end to how creative you can get with a tortilla, some cheese, and a little chicken. And, if you're in a rush, you may even reach for the toaster for a quick quesadilla-making hack. If you want to try something off the beaten path — that also happens to be kid-friendly — try making a chicken and apple quesadilla. It's made with cheddar cheese, pulled chicken, and tart apples. 

Chicken pasta

Add some shredded chicken to your favorite pasta dish and increase your protein intake while enjoying your favorite carb. One 3.5-ounce serving of chicken provides over 30 grams of protein – adding a significant protein boost to any pasta meal.

The best part about using pulled rotisserie chicken is that it easily goes with pretty much any pasta dish. Add the chicken to the pasta when you add the sauce, or place it on top of your pasta dish. This chicken also works great for mac and cheese and can be a tasty and clever way to add protein to the diet of picky kids.

Try making a creamy parmesan sun-dried tomato chicken pasta, which is a great example of how to add rotisserie chicken without sacrificing the dish's combination of flavors. You might find that the roasted element of your rotisserie chicken makes the whole meal taste better.

Chicken fried rice

Fried rice comes together quickly and easily and makes great leftovers. With a store-bought rotisserie chicken, you can have chicken fried rice in no time. You'll love the flavor of rotisserie chicken added to your fried rice, and prepping this meal is much faster with a pre-cooked chicken than making it yourself.

It can be easy to get into a set routine where you find yourself making the same recipes over and over again. But, chicken fried rice is one recipe you can change up every time you make it, so you can enjoy your routine but not succumb to the boredom of eating the same thing every night. Get creative and try new ingredients to up-level your chicken fried rice recipe (bacon or pineapple with your fried rice, anyone?).

Pull out the waffle maker if you don't want to change the ingredients but wouldn't mind a fresh take on fried rice. That's right. Fried rice waffles are totally a thing.

Chicken pot pie

Despite TikTok trying to revamp the chicken pot pie with Red Lobster biscuits, this American staple dates back to 1839 (long before the Tok). You can make it from scratch, but if you don't have time to make your pie crusts, you can cheat a little and make your pot pie using rotisserie chicken, canned soup, and pre-made pie crusts. Try making a simple chicken pot pie, and swap out any veggies you don't like for the ones you prefer.

Chicken pot pie is often made with carrots, peas, celery, onions, potatoes, and chicken. It's cooked in a pie crust, surrounded with a rich sauce, and served like you would serve any piece of pie. It's filling, hearty, and delicious.

While chicken pot pie tends to stay pretty traditional, there's no reason to keep it boring if you're adventurous. You can add many fun ingredients to bring a little extra pizazz to your next chicken pot pie.

Chicken chili

Use rotisserie chicken meat in your next chili batch to save time without sacrificing flavor. Chicken chili is the perfect recipe for a chilly day. It's a popular option for feeding a crowd, and people love chili (and sharing their recipes) so much that chili cook-offs are popular all over the United States.

Chili, however, is a very controversial recipe that can vary quite a bit from region to region. Beans or no beans? White or red? Beef or chicken? And in some states ... chocolate or no chocolate? While some people will always be traditionalists, getting a little weird with your chili is okay. And a collection of creative ingredients works surprisingly well in chili (and yes, chocolate is one of them).

One thing we can agree on is that chili is easy to customize to your tastes. You can easily add some shredded chicken to your favorite chili recipe for added protein and flavor. A white chicken chili recipe is a great place to start for some chicken chili inspiration.

Chicken pizza

If you've never had barbecue chicken pizza, you're missing out on some pizza facts you need to know. The good news is, it's a simple fix: the next time you're making pizzas at home, grab a rotisserie chicken when you pick up your pizza crusts and mozzarella from the grocery store. Chicken is a great healthy addition to any pizza.

Barbecue chicken might be one of the more well-known recipes, but it isn't the only way to enjoy chicken on a pizza. You can customize your pizza to include your favorite ingredients, like a chicken sandwich. The slow-roasted flavor of the rotisserie chicken adds savory goodness and pairs well with many different cheeses, vegetables, and even fruits (yep, fruit can work on a pizza, and I'm not even talking about pineapple).

There are lots of chicken pizza recipes you can easily make at home. Barbecue chicken flatbread is a familiar favorite, but why not push the boat out and try a chicken and vegetable stir-fry pizza? You'll thank us later. 

Buffalo chicken dip

Add some extra flair to your next party with a homemade Buffalo chicken dip using shredded meat from a rotisserie chicken. This dip has some kick and pairs well with crispy veggies, crackers, or toasted sourdough. It's the perfect party food, whether you're the host or a party guest who needs to bring a dish.

Buffalo wings and Buffalo sauce were developed in Buffalo, New York, in the 1960s. By the 1980s, the popularity of Buffalo sauce had started to spread across the country. You can even make buffalo sauce from scratch (primarily made with hot sauce, butter, and assorted seasonings), or you can save yourself the trouble and pick some up at the grocery store. Don't forget the bleu cheese — it's the perfect pairing with this Buffalo chicken dip.

Buffalo chicken dip is easy to make. This cheesy dip calls for shredded chicken, cream cheese, and hot sauce. It's sure to be a hit at your next event.

Chicken ramen

The next time you whip up some ramen, upgrade it by adding shredded rotisserie chicken to the mix. It doesn't matter whether you're using inexpensive store-bought ramen noodles or have decided to make them from scratch at home. Chicken will give your ramen a protein boost, keep you full longer, and add that savory flavor that makes ramen so unique. 

Instant ramen noodles are a quick, low-cost dinner option from any grocery store. Chicken ramen is easy to make using a store-bought rotisserie chicken and some instant ramen noodles. A simple chicken ramen recipe calls for around six ingredients and is ready in 15 minutes. But, don't stop with the chicken if you want to take it a step further. Get crazy by adding lots of fun ingredients. The only limit is your imagination (and your palette). You can even try adding eggs and mayo to your ramen, too. 

Chicken casserole

Casseroles aren't just for potlucks. Rotisserie chicken takes a weeknight casserole recipe from easy to super easy. Casseroles are fantastic comfort foods that make for excellent leftovers (plus they're even better the next day).

Casseroles are meals prepared in and served from the same dish. They are traditionally baked in the oven and can be made from various ingredients. Chicken is often a main ingredient in casseroles (chicken curry casserole, chicken and noodles casserole, chicken and broccoli casserole are some examples). Many chefs use leftover chicken or cook chicken specifically for the casserole, which means they've had to cook a chicken from scratch.

But you can remove that step completely by using a rotisserie chicken for your next casserole. Try making a barbecue chicken casserole using rotisserie chicken, brown sugar, corn, and vegetables. It's a hearty dish that will feed the whole family with leftovers to spare.