Lightening Up a Comfort Food Dish – Chicken Mornay

When I was in high school, my mother worked as a manager at a local hotel.  She would frequently let me come and have dinner in the restaurant while she was on duty.  They had a dish on the menu I used to get all the time, and haven’t made in years.  Of course, their version was full of fat, and not something I  would want to do today unless some changes were made.

Chicken Broccoli Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

When I scored these individual gratin dishes (aren’t they wonderful with the vegetable motif?), I started thinking about how I could use them. Maybe I could re-invent that mornay. I had just what I needed in the frig.

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

I stirred olive oil and flour together in a pot, replacing the butter likely in the original.

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

Heating it to boiling, stirring constantly to make a roux.

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

Add 2% milk, stirring constantly until thickened, replacing the whole milk and cream used in the original recipe. Add shredded cheese to complete the cheese sauce.  Add salt and pepper.  You could use a low-fat version to further reduce the fat.

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

I sprayed the dish with no-stick spray, and placed a piece of sourdough toast in the bottom.

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

On top, I placed sliced cooked chicken.

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

Then chopped broccoli from last night’s dinner.

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

Top with the cheese sauce…

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

then shredded cheese. I used Monterrey Jack and Cheddar.

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

Bake 30 minutes at 350 degrees, until bubbly and cheese is melted and golden, slightly browned.

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

Place the hot gratin dish on a plate for serving, and eat it right out of the baking dish. It stays nicely hot all through the meal.

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

The toast on the bottom stays nicely crispy, the perfect counter to the creamy sauce. Great for leftover chicken or turkey, with broccoli or even asparagus.  Yum!

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

Chicken Mornay

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon all purpose flour
1 cup 2% milk
1/2 cup shredded cheese, Monterrey Jack and Cheddar
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper, or to taste
Cooking spray
2 slices bread, toasted
1 cup cooked chicken
1 cup chopped broccoli
1 cup shredded Cheddar Jack cheese blend

Make the sauce by heating olive oil in a pan, add the flour stirring constantly. Cook one minute, making sure to stir well until it bubbles and all the lumps are gone. Add milk slowly, stirring constantly until sauce thickens. Remove from heat. Spray two individual gratin dishes with cooking spray. Place a piece of toast in the bottom of each one. Divide the chicken evenly between the two dishes, and repeat with the broccoli. Pour 1/2 the sauce on each gratin, then top each one with half the cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Serve immediately in the gratin dishes. Serves 2. Enjoy!

Chicken Broccoli Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

Do you have a recipe for individual baking dishes like these?

Lighter Mornay ~ From My Carolina Home

17 thoughts on “Lightening Up a Comfort Food Dish – Chicken Mornay

  1. kattails

    Ummm… looks delicious….Even though it’s early in the day I’m tempted to see what I have in the frig to re-create your dish. Blessings…..Kathy in WV

  2. Phyllis Smith

    Good morning again from Fayetteville, I have got try your latest chicken dish you put on today, it sounds delicious. I made a white wine chicken and mushroom dish yesterday and put it over some yellow rice and it was so good, it is a keeper for sure. I date all recipes I make and write a word as to whether it is good or not, actually I toss the recipe if it isn’t any good. I’ll make a casserole and divide it up and freeze it into smaller corning dishes to have for later since I’ m alone now and I can economize that way.Have a great day!Phyllis 

  3. Brenda Ackerman

    Good Morning Carole! Your serving dishes are beautiful and seem to work splendidly with this mouthwatering delicious recipe you have shared with us! I know that it is one that will be tried here at our home. We tend to each chicken quite often and broccoli and asparagus are one of the few green vegetables that hubby likes. So thank you so much for sharing it and your pictures and directions are wonderful.

  4. Sharon Schipper

    Yumm! now work out a recipe for Chicken a la King! can’t figure out the piquant flavor… so I go buy the canned stuff… is it the green peppers and pimento? I will try Mornay soon, love it on the toast as well… and anything with melted toasty cheese, yumm again! getting close to lunch time, and I’m hungry 🙂

    sharon in Colorado

  5. Great idea for chicken the second tim around. I have been aggressively lightening recipes in recent years, subbing fat content of the dairy liquid is almost always an easy change with no negative impact on the final dish. Sometimes, continuing to use full fat cheese but switching to one that is more aggressively flavored lets me get the taste punch without losing the melting quality with a much smaller amount. @susansquiltstudio

  6. I am in love with your individual gratin dishes, they are adorable. And this chicken dish sounds wonderful, you can never go wrong with broccoli and cheese sauce, yum! Thanks for sharing at What’d You Do This Weekend?!

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