Ali Clarke makes Rotisserie Chicken Lunch, as seen on Meal Prepping with Ali Clarke on Food Network Kitchen.
Recipe courtesy of Ali Clarke

Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Baked Potato with Lime Sour Cream and Quick Pickled Celery

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr 50 min
  • Active: 40 min
  • Yield: 8 stuffed baked potatoes
For me, meal prep doesn’t just mean having a premade lasagna in the fridge or a finished soup in the freezer. Although that's great, I have also gotten into the habit of cooking sections of recipes in bulk and storing them separately, like I do in this recipe. This lets me pull together a meal very quickly for just myself or for my family, depending on who is around for lunch. The finished product always tastes fresh—never reheated—so no one even knows I got ahead, they're just happy lunch came together so quickly. And so am I, because we all have plenty of things going on, especially around lunch hour. In addition, I’m upgrading one of my favorite ingredients, the store-bought rotisserie chicken, which is also such a time saver. I hope you find the methods in this recipe helpful. You can easily pick and choose the parts of it that benefit you most. For instance, you can meal prep just the bacon and potatoes to set yourself up for breakfast or to make a quick mashed potato for dinner. The possibilities are endless.

Ingredients

Directions

  1. To meal prep the potatoes: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Put the potatoes on a baking sheet and roast until a paring knife inserted into the center goes in easily without any resistance, about 1 hour. If the potato holds onto the knife, or you lift the potato up while removing the knife, continue to roast in 10-minute increments until cooked through. Let cool, then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. The potatoes will keep well in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. 
  3. To meal prep the bacon: Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. 
  4. Lay the bacon slices on a baking sheet and bake until golden brown and crisp but still bendable when lifted, 16 to 18 minutes. When meal prepping bacon, it’s important to remove the bacon at this point so you can reheat it without overcooking it. Let cool slightly. Pour off the bacon fat and reserve for another use such as scrambling eggs, sautéing breadcrumbs or making fried rice. The bacon fat will hold in the refrigerator for up to a month. Cool the bacon completely, then store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. 
  5. To meal prep the lime sour cream: Whisk together the sour cream, chives, garlic, lime zest and juice of the 1 lime in a medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Hold the sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. 
  6. To meal prep the quick pickled celery: Toss together the celery, juice of the remaining lime (2 tablespoons) and salt and pepper to taste in a medium bowl. Let stand at least 10 minutes or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 4 days.  
  7. To meal prep the Buffalo chicken: Melt the butter in a medium sauté pan over medium heat. Add the hot sauce, whisk the mixture together and bring to a simmer. Add the chicken and stir to evenly coat and warm the chicken through, 3 to 4 more minutes. Remove from the heat and add salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 4 days.  
  8. To serve the stuffed baked potato: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. 
  9. Cut a slit down the center of as many potatoes as you're serving (keep the remaining refrigerated). Gently press the sides to open up the potatoes. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper and use a fork to break up the potatoes. Place each potato on a baking sheet and top each with 1 tablespoon of the Cheddar. Bake until the cheese is almost melted and the edges of the potato skins are beginning to crisp, about 15 minutes. Add 1/2 slice of bacon per potato to the baking sheet and continue to bake until the bacon is crisped and warmed through, the cheese is melted and the potatoes are heated through, another 5 minutes. When cool enough to handle, crumble the bacon. 
  10. Meanwhile, reheat 1/4 cup of the Buffalo chicken mixture per potato in the microwave or in a sauté pan over medium-low heat. 
  11. Top the melted cheese on each potato with some of the chicken mixture, a dollop of the lime sour cream, a sprinkle of crumbled bacon and some quick pickled celery. Serve immediately. 

Cook’s Note

All of the components of the stuffed baked potato—the quick pickled celery, lime sour cream, Buffalo chicken, cooked bacon and baked potatoes—can be held separately in the refrigerator. This allows you to reheat the portions you want throughout the week. Alternatively, to reheat the baked potato, you can top with the cheese and microwave on high until the cheese is melted and the potato is heated through, about 2 minutes.