Wednesday, April 20, 2011

An Easy ‘Make the Day Before’ Recipe and a Fun Tradition for New Moms

Today was my day to visit a friend and her cuddly little girl (6 weeks old!) to deliver her “Meals on Wheels”. When the first of my girlfriends had a baby, we started a tradition of making a schedule to deliver meals to the overwhelmed new parents. This served two purposes: the new parents got some dinners made for them to take one worry off their plate, and the cooks got to visit and snuggle with an itty bitty baby :) My girlfriend I visited tonight had her baby early (don’t worry, both mama and baby are happy and healthy) so she’s especially little, so cute!

Usually one person organizes by sending an email asking each friend to choose a day (we go every other) and a recipe (to avoid duplicates). Including leftovers this usually get the new moms (and dads) at least a couple weeks of worry-free dinners. And did I mention the cooks get a chance to hold the cuddly little ones?

Tonight I made my mom’s recipe for Chicken Divan for the new parents. Its a good recipe to make the night before and then just pop in the oven when you want to eat it. In case my girlfriend was busy with the baby, I wrote instructions for the new dad:


I doubled the recipe and made some for my husband and me. I wasn’t going to be home, so I had to leave instructions for him too:

DSCN1357 (He really likes croutons.)

Here’s the original recipe. I’ll include my alterations at the end.


Chicken Divan
(6-8 servings)

8 chicken breasts
2 packages frozen broccoli spears
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
2 Tablespoons curry powers
1 cup cheddar cheese, grated
season bread crumbs

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  • Boil chicken 30-40 mines until thoroughly cooked. Let cool and remove bones (if any)
  • Prepare broccoli according to the package directions
  • Cover bottom of a 9x13 pan with broccoli. Layer chicken breasts over the broccoli
  • Make a mixture of soup, mayo, lemon juice and curry powder. Use 1/4 – 1/2 cup water to thin the sauce. Spoon over chicken.
  • Top with grated cheese and bread crumbs. Bake for 20-30 minutes (until cheese begins to brown)

My Alterations

  • I just used 6 chicken breasts.
  • I’m also trying to eat a little healthier so I substituted in plain yogurt for the mayo (if you do this, use less water to thin the sauce).
  • Instead of bread crumbs I used croutons; I got this idea from my mom and boy are croutons good with melted cheese on top!


The recipe book I use is one my elementary school published. Check out those awesome ‘80s graphics!


Its my first (and only so far) byline in a book ;) {maiden name}

Do you have any “make the day before” recipes to recommend?

This post is linked up at The Stories of A to Z and Handy Man, Crafty Woman.

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  1. Looks super yummy. I have made a similar version of this and my boys just gobble it up. Can you believe a 6 year old would love broccoli so much. Thanks for sharing the crouton tip.

  2. so sweet. we do something very similar with meals for new moms - and use a website called which makes it a little easier to keep track of who is bringing what and on what day!

  3. What a great idea for new parents and their friends! :)

  4. Looks delicious. I love how you wrote out simple instructions. What a nice idea!

    Mrs. White
    The Legacy of Home


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