Homemade Chicken and Rice with Apricot Acorn Squash

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on December 17, 2009

I pulled out some stuff from the freezer. Celery. Shredded Chicken. Chicken stock.

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Then went looking for a new way to use it all up.  I found this recipe on Katie’s Kitchen Stewardship.  And I went from there.

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Then chopped some fresh carrots and onions.

(When I probably should have been taking a nap…as 2 boys were napping and the other was at school.)

But I’ve missed cooking.  So I cooked.

(But I don’t think I’m quite ready to cook and blog about it every night. Not just yet.)

I’ll be ready soon.

Oh. And the Apricot Acorn SquashThat’s a keeper of a side dish!!!

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Ingredients
2 1/2 cups homemade chicken stock (free)
1 1/2 cup brown rice ($.60)
1 cup chopped celery ($.20)
1 small onion, chopped ($.30)
2 carrot sticks, peeled and diced ($.20)
2 cups of cooked and shredded chicken ($1.50)
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 large acorn squash, halved and seeded ($1.12) About 2 lbs…been on sale for $.49/lb!
1 Tbsp butter or margarine, softened (I used dairy-free) ($.10)
3 Tbsp Smuckers Apricot Preserves ($.50) (Not gonna lie…I got these free from when I was at Smuckers…but I’ll include the estimated cost into the recipe) :)

Directions
1. Cut acorn squash in half lengthwise and remove seeds.  Place upside down in glass baking dish with 1/2 inch of water and cover with foil.  Bake at 350 for 35-45 minutes.
2. In large saucepan, combine chicken stock plus 2 cups of water and bring to a boil.  Add brown rice and return to boil.  Cover and reduce heat to medium.  Cook for about 20 minutes.
3. Add chopped celery, onion and carrots and stir into the rice.  Cook for another 20-30 minutes, or until rice is tender. If need be, add 1/2 – 1 cup of water to prevent from drying out. Once rice has cooked, add in the shredded chicken. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

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4. In a small bowl, combine softened butter or margarine with the apricot preserves.  After squash has cooked for 35-45 minutes, remove from oven, flip over the squash (using a hot pad!) and spoon the butter/preserve mixture into the squash.  Using a fork, poke a few holes into the squash flesh, so that when the butter/preserve mixture melts, it can get deep down into the squash! Return to oven and continue baking, uncovered, for 20-30 more minutes, or until squash flesh is tender all the way through.

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5. Serve Chicken and Rice with Apricot Acorn Squash.

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Cost $4.52

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Wendy December 17, 2009 at 7:36 pm

I never would have thought to put apricot with acorn squash. Yum!

Reply

Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom December 17, 2009 at 7:38 pm

@Wendy,

It was DELISH! I’ve got one more acorn squash in the fridge…and I’m gonna try an orange marmelade next!

Reply

Ellen December 17, 2009 at 8:40 pm

I’ve been looking for some new ways to play with squash. That sounds good, as does the chicken and rice combo. Some of my best meals have come about like this, thinking “what can I do with this, that, and the other thing.

Reply

Kara December 17, 2009 at 10:00 pm

Erin,
I felt like I had been contacted by an old friend when I saw your post today was from you! I more than understand and am very glad you have taken time off after your 3rd was born, but (selfishly) I have MISSED your daily posts on your cooking, what great deals you got at the store, etc. So, this is not to make you feel guilty in ANY WAY, but to let you know how much I enjoy your blog (pictures, stories, writing, etc.).

Reply

Biz December 18, 2009 at 3:48 pm

I am with you, even after a long day at work, I can’t wait to get home to my kitchen and start cooking!

I love acorn squash in soup, but not as a side dish for some reason – maybe its the texture??

Reply

Valerie Brice December 22, 2009 at 9:40 pm

The Acorn squash looks delicious. My hubby likes it with bacon but I think he’ll like it this way too.

Reply

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