Party chicken is a comfort food classic that was a staple at dinner parties. The chicken is wrapped in bacon and nestled in a bed of chipped beef before being baked in a creamy sauce. Serve it over rice or pasta for a filling meal.
Party chicken was a hit at many Midwesterner’s dinner parties in the 1970s. It can be assembled in advance and has a nice long bake time so you can enjoy your guests while dinner cooks.
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Have you ever had party chicken? It was not something I grew up with.
In fact, when my mother-in-law mentioned it, I could hardly believe it was a thing. Chicken, bacon, dried beef, and cream of mushroom soup.
Who ever heard of such a thing? She pulled out the recipe card from her mother-in-law and told me about how it was a staple for family meals.
Of course, I knew I needed to give it a try. Pretty much anything cooked in a can of cream of mushroom soup is going to be good, even if that shouldn’t be the case.
Assembling the Casserole
Luckily, the casserole is really simple to assemble. Just chop the chipped beef into bite-sized pieces and distribute them on the bottom of a 9×13-inch pan or casserole dish.
Wrap the chicken breasts in bacon. Grandma’s recipe called for 8 strips of bacon and 8 chicken breasts.
I assume the chicken breasts were quite a bit smaller when she was making this recipe. So, I used 5 larger chicken breasts and 10 strips of bacon.
Arrange the chicken over the chipped beef. Then stir together the cream of mushroom soup and sour cream.
Spread the sour cream mixture over the chicken and bake in a low oven. You can follow grandma’s directions of using a 270F oven for 3 hours.
Or you can speed up the process a bit and bake in a 300F oven for 2 hours. You even get away with baking them at 350F for 1 and a half hours, but there is something to be said for the low and slow cooking method.
Serving Party Chicken
Finish your chicken with a little fresh cracked black pepper. Don’t add any salt until you have tasted it.
The soup, bacon, and chipped beef all have quite a bit of salt in them. So adding extra is likely unnecessary.
Serve the chicken over a bed of rice, some buttered noodles, or even some mashed potatoes. That way, you have something to help sop up the delicious sauce.
Then, just add a veggie or salad. We did some pan roasted brussels sprouts with some of the extra bacon and thought that was a wonderful combination.
Grandma’s Party Chicken
- 5 ounces dried beef
- 5 boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 10 strips bacon
- 14 ounce cream of mushroom soup
- 1 cup sour cream
- Preheat oven to 270℉
- Chopped dried beef and spread in a layer over the bottom of the pan.5 ounces dried beef
- Wrap each chicken breast in two strips of bacon and arrange over the chipped beef.5 boneless skinless chicken breasts, 10 strips bacon
- Stir together the sour cream and cream of mushroom soup. Spread over the chicken breasts.14 ounce cream of mushroom soup, 1 cup sour cream
- Bake uncovered for about 3 hours, or until the chicken is 165℉ in the center.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.