Ruth Stretches Meal With Canned Chicken

We met Ruth at an Adult Forum hosted by Trinity Lutheran Church in Minne Lusa Miller Park neighborhood between morning services. After sharing updates on No More Empty Pots with parishioners at Trinity, Ruth stayed after to ask questions and share a story. She mentioned that she had multiple cans of chicken and needed to figure out how to use them in a meal. 

Although Ruth credited learning from her neighbor who is a retired horticulturist, she mentioned that she appreciated the creativity that she didn’t realize she had learned by watching her mother make ends meet to feed seven children. Reflecting on a memory of making canned chicken stir-fry, Ruth said she could relate to using what she has available to feed herself and others. She appreciates learning different ways to stretch a meal because sometimes she needs her cash to pay a bill. Ruth finds it difficult to make food for one person because she is so accustomed to feeding five or six. She takes extra food to work for her lunch and shares leftovers with friends. 

Ruth’s story reminds us that each of us has something to share and are eager to give to others. That each moment is available for us to connect to the humanity of our neighbors. Interactions like these show the true value of connecting our neighbors not just with one another, but also through food. People like Ruth are supported by intergenerational nutrition education and distribution programs. With your continued support, Ruth learns new skills that she can use for herself and share with others so that no one goes hungry.

Easy Chicken Noodle Casserole 


  • 1 (12 oz) package egg noodles, cooked and drained
  • 2 (10 oz) cans chunk chicken breast, drained 
  • 2 (10 oz) cans cream of chicken soup
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 cup milk (or water)
  • 1/2 onion, finely diced
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen peas and carrots
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 stick salted butter (1/2 cup), melted


  • Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
  • Spray 9 x 13 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl, combine chicken, cream of chicken soup, mayonnaise, milk (or water), diced onion, shredded cheese and frozen peas and carrots.
  • Stir until combined.
  • Gently stir in cooked egg noodles.
  • Pour in baking dish.
  • Sprinkle top with Panko bread crumbs.
  • Pour melted butter evenly over top of bread crumbs.
  • Bake uncovered for about 30-35 minutes until bubbly and top is golden brown.

Recipe adapted from:

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