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3. Get it home safely. To make sure chicken juices don't leak out of the container and onto other food in your shopping cart or grocery bag, bag your bird in a plastic bag (or two). If the chicken comes in a plastic carrier, make sure the lid is positioned properly on the base and that it is snapped completely shut.

Once you get your chicken home, if it's too hot to touch, keep the top off the container and give it about 10 minutes to cool down. Then take off your rings, wash your hands well, and shred the chicken from the bones (you can also chop it if you want bigger pieces for your recipe). Store the shredded chicken immediately in a covered container in the refrigerator until needed.

If you don't want to shred it just yet, let your chicken cool uncovered for 10-15 minutes, then cover it and place it in the refrigerator for shredding at a more convenient time.

4. If you aren't going to shred it right away, let the chicken cool, then put it immediately in the refrigerator to avoid keeping it at room temperature too long.

5. You can buy your rotisserie chicken on the weekend, then shred and freeze it for use later in the week. Just pop the container of frozen shredded chicken into your refrigerator in the morning when you leave for work. It should be mostly thawed by the time you get home.

6. You can use shredded rotisserie chicken in all sorts of recipes. It works as filling for soft tacos, enchiladas, or quesadillas. It can also be a featured ingredient in a pasta or rice dish, a casserole, or in a dinner salad, soup, or sandwich.

Cool and Easy Rotisserie Chicken Recipes

Here are recipes for some of my favorite ways to serve chicken in the summer. I've used just the breast to keep the calorie count as low as possible, but you could choose to use the dark meat as well.

Chicken Cobb Salad

WebMD Weight Loss Clinic members: Journal as 2 cups side salad green + 1 serving lean meat without added fat + 1 tsp oil

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