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Classic Upper Midwest recipe with this Chicken Chow Mein Hotdish recipe. An easy casserole dish that is filling, hearty, and creamy.

Chicken Chow Mein Hotdish will surely make your family happy and maybe give you a glimpse into what they thought Chinese food sort-of kind-of is, but suburban Minnesota style. It really is tasty, and you should give it a try you are into kitschy Midwest recipes.

Bowl of Chicken Chow Mein Hotdish on a grey placemat.
This Chicken Chow Mein Hotdish is midwest comfort food and an easy family dinner.

🍜 What makes this recipe special?

Pull up a chair, dear reader, because we’re diving into a dish that’s the love child of two culinary worlds! First, we’ve got the heartwarming embrace of a classic casserole, the sort your favorite aunt used to make on chilly evenings.

Add to that the exciting, flavorful dance of chow mein, and what do we get? It is an incredible fusion comfort dish where the East meets the Midwest!

The optional extra chow mein noodle sprinkle on top? That’s the crunchy cherry on this delightful hotdish sundae. Enjoy and share.

We are no strangers to hotdish. Here is the recipe for the first hotdish recipe, my favorite Minnesota Tater Tot Hotdish, or maybe give this Rueben Casserole a try. No matter what you make, make sure to treat yourself.

🍚 Ingredients

Chicken is a star here, but it takes some other ingredients to pull this together. 

  • Olive oil
  • Chicken breast
  • Onions
  • Celery
  • Chicken rice soup
  • Condensed cream of mushroom soup
  • Water
  • Dried Chow Mein Noodles

See the recipe card for quantities.

🍲 Instructions

First off, warm up your trusty oven to 350° Fahrenheit. While it heats, grab a pan, drizzle in that olive oil, and set it over a medium flame. In goes the chicken! 

Give it a little stir until it’s half-cooked, then add the onions and celery. Once the chicken is about half cooked, it’s casserole time!

Grab your 1 ½ Quart Casserole dish. In it, mix the chicken, soups, water, and those crispy chow mein noodles. Now, let it bake undercover for 30 minutes. Then, set it free – no lid – for another 30. As the final touch, feel free to sprinkle a few more of those chow mein noodles on top. Trust me, it’s a game-changer!

Now, the most important step: Serve, share, and relish in the symphony of flavors and the warmth of good company! 

🤷 Substitutions and variations

Let’s talk tweaks and twists. We understand that sometimes you must work with what you’ve got, and that’s perfectly fine.

If you’re out of chicken or simply have turkey leftovers, go ahead and swap them in. It brings a different flavor profile that many find delightful.

If you are short of chicken rice soup, a creamy chicken soup could work as a suitable stand-in. The dish will still have its comforting essence.

Not everyone’s a mushroom fan, and we get it. If that’s the case, consider using cream of celery soup. It keeps things rich and maintains a similar texture.

Lastly, veggies like bell peppers or snap peas can be a great addition for those who want to add a bit more to their dish. They enhance the taste and bring a vibrant splash of color.

Don’t want to use canned Cream of Mushroom soup? Give this homemade Cream of Mushroom Soup a try. 

The key is maintaining the spirit of sharing and connection, even as the ingredients shift. Adapt, enjoy, and share the warmth of this delightful dish.

📦 Storage

Sometimes the magic extends beyond dinner and you want to save your meal for later. If you find yourself with some extra Chicken Chow Mein Hotdish (lucky you!), here’s how to keep it fresh for round two.

Pop your dish into an airtight container. This little trick helps seal in all those delicious flavors. Once that’s done, slide it into the fridge. 

It’ll be good to go for another 3-4 days. But, if you’re thinking even longer term, consider the freezer. Ensure it’s wrapped tight or in a freezer-friendly container, and it can chill out for up to a month.

When the craving hits again – and trust me, it will – just reheat and dive back into the deliciousness. Sharing might be caring, but there’s no shame in securing a little stash for yourself, right? 😉

🎓 History tidbit

Here is a great history of hotdish article. This specific recipe, however, is inspired by a 1984 church cookbook. I love old church cookbooks. 

I already knew this is a pretty common casserole in some circles, but I did not have an exact recipe. The just of it is pretty simple… cream o’ stuff soups, chicken, rice, chow mein noodles. 

To zero in on the recipe I wanted to feature, I pulled out the ol’ 1984 Our Savior’s Lutheran Church cookbook (75th Anniversary Edition). This cookbook is from Colfax, ND, where my father-in-law was born and raised. 

He also lived there with his wife until they moved to Fargo in the 80s. In fact, the cookbook has a recipe from my mother-in-law printed in it! She is church famous!


Is this an Asian dish?

Lol, no. It is a Midwest dish that takes some elements of Asian food and resulted in a 1980s comfort casserole.

What is Chow Mein?

Chow Mein is a beloved Chinese dish that features stir-fried noodles. The name literally translates to “stir-fried noodles.” They can be served crispy or soft and often come mixed with a variety of vegetables and proteins.

Can I use other meats besides chicken in this dish?

Absolutely. While chicken is a classic choice, you can experiment with other meats like turkey, beef, or even tofu for a vegetarian twist.

Why use condensed cream of mushroom soup? Can I make it from scratch?

The condensed cream of mushroom soup adds a creamy richness to the dish and makes the cooking process quicker. However, if you have the time and prefer homemade, making it from scratch is a fantastic option. There are plenty of great recipes out there to guide you!

Is this dish spicy?

No. However, if you’re a fan of a little kick, you can always add some chili flakes or a dash of hot sauce to spice things up!

📝 Tips and tricks

  • You can make your own Cream of Mushroom soup if you don’t want to use a can.
  • Make sure your chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165° Fahrenheit. 
  • A 1 ½ Quart Casserole dish is recommended, but if you’re using a shallower or deeper dish, be sure to keep an eye on the baking time. It may vary depending on the dish’s depth.
Chicken chow mein in a casserole dish with an empty bowl to the side.
Give this easy Chicken Chow Mein hotdish a try today! It is easy and tasty.

🛠 Products used in this recipe

😋 Did you make this recipe?

That is awesome, and thank you so much for giving this Chicken Chow Mein Casserole recipe a try. If you could leave a rating in the comment area below, it would be greatly appreciated. This lets me know how I am doing and also helps others decide if they want to make this recipe. Most of all, thanks for visiting Ramshackle Pantry.

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chow mein hotdish in a bowl

Chicken Chow Mein Hotdish Recipe

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 4 reviews
  • Author: Ben
  • Prep Time: 30 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 Hour
  • Total Time: 90 Minutes
  • Yield: 4 Servings 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Chinese
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This Chicken Chow Mein Hotdish is an excellent comfort food that is easy to make and really tasty! Serve this one to your family for an easy and great dinner.


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound chicken breast, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup onions, chopped
  • ½ cup celery, chopped
  • 1 can chicken rice soup
  • 1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup
  • ½ can water
  • 2 cups Dried Chow Mein Noodles


  1. Preheat oven to 350° Fahrenheit
  2. Add olive oil to pan and heat to medium
  3. Add chicken breast
  4. Cook until chicken is about half done and add onions and celery
  5. Cook until chicken is done
  6. In 1 ½ Quart Casserole dish, add all ingredients
  7. Mix
  8. Cover and bake for 30 minutes.
  9. Remove cover and bake for an additional 30 minutes
  10. Remove from oven and optionally top with more chow mein noodles
  11. Serve

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  1. I haven’t seen a casserole (hotdish) like this before! So unique and it sounds delish!