This easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole is packed full of all the enchilada flavors you love in a time saving casserole form. A delicious homemade enchilada sauce is simmered together with chicken, black beans, corn, and green chiles. This dish has just the right amount of spice to warm you from head to toe.
I have always loved all forms of Mexican food. Yes, it’s my downfall. Tacos, burritos, enchiladas, pozole, chimichangas, quesadillas, tamales—bring it all on! Did I already say tacos? I could eat Mexican food everyday. Thank goodness my grandma taught me about making this amazing cuisine when I was young. The flavors are so versatile, and in my opinion, so easy to incorporate in a million different variations.
This Chicken Enchilada Casserole is an easy weeknight dinner. Even though my guy is not always a Mexican food fan, but he loves this casserole. Depending on your family size, you should end up with some yummy leftovers for lunch during the week. I frequently double the recipe so that we can have multiple dinners in the freezer.
~This recipe was first published on March 20, 2017, but was republished on November 20, 2018 with updated photos, ingredients, and notes to make the recipe more user friendly.~
CHICKEN ENCHILADA FAQS:
What kind of tortillas do I use for Chicken Enchilada Casserole?
Corn tortillas are traditionally used, but flour tortillas can also be used. You want to use 6 - 7 inch tortillas as they are easier to fit the pan for layering.
What ingredients do you add to Chicken Enchilada Casserole?
You will need enchilada sauce, tortillas, shredded chicken, black beans, corn, green chiles, and shredded cheese. I will often add in grated zucchini as well just to increase our veggie intake.
Can you freeze Chicken Enchilada Casserole?
Yes! I actually do this frequently. Just bake the casserole as you normally would, then freeze into the portions you would like. To reheat, simply thaw in the fridge, then either bake in the oven or pop in the microwave for about 90 seconds.
Can I prep Chicken Enchilada Casserole ahead of time?
Absolutely! Just follow the directions up until the point you would put it in the oven. Simply cover the baking dish with foil, and refrigerate. When you are ready to bake the casserole the next day, simply remove it from the fridge while you preheat the oven to 350ºF. Follow the remaining baking instructions.
PREPARE CHICKEN ENCHILADA CASSEROLE:
Could you use a store-bought enchilada sauce? Yes. But, why would you when this sauce is so flavorful and easy to make? Begin by creating a roux in a large sauce pan over medium-high heat with the extra virgin olive oil, arrowroot powder, and chili powder. Stir constantly for about two minutes, until the roux is a light brown.
Stir in the tomato sauce, water, cumin, garlic, oregano, and salt. Reduce heat to medium, and continue to cook stirring occasionally, about ten to fifteen minutes. You want it to slightly thicken. Set aside three-quarters cup of the sauce.
To the remaining sauce in the pan, add shredded chicken, black beans, corn, and green chilis. Continue to cook over medium-low heat for about ten minutes. (Note: I always measure and freeze leftover chicken from the rotisserie chickens we buy specifically to use in recipes like this. If you have to cook your chicken, I would use 3 chicken breasts. And, obviously, your prep time will be a bit longer.)
While the filling is simmering, pour half of the reserved sauce into a lightly greased 9x13 baking dish. Spread around to create an even thin coat. Cover the bottom of the dish with a single layer of tortillas. You will need to cut or tear some. I used four and a half tortillas per layer.
Use half the enchilada filling to cover the tortillas. Top with about ⅓ of the cheese.
Repeat the layer of tortilla rounds, then the remaining filling, then another third of the cheese.
Repeat the layer of tortillas. Drizzle the remaining enchilada sauce over the top, then top with the remaining cheese.
Bake in a preheated 350ºF oven for about thirty minutes. Let rest for ten to fifteen minutes before serving.
I hope you enjoy this Chicken Enchilada Casserole as much as we did. Thanks for stopping by, and as always, if you try a recipe and love it, please rate it or leave a review.
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- This recipe was inspired by The Iron You's (Primal) Chicken Enchilada Casserole. Mike actually includes a recipe for cauliflower tortillas that sounds fantastic. Definitely check it out if you are looking for a lower carb option for the tortillas.
- Check out Nicole's article The Best Corn Tortillas | 8 Brands to Try. She's the creator of Gluten-free on a Shoestring.
- Yes, you can use corn starch in place of the arrowroot starch for the sauce.
- I love my Cuisinart enameled cast iron roasting pan for dishes like this. It is so easy to clean and distributes heat beautifully.
PIN THIS RECIPE FOR LATER:
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- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons arrowroot starch
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
- 1 ½ cups water
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- ¼ teaspoon pink Himalayan salt
- Enchilada sauce from above (Reserve ¾ cup.)
- 2 cups cooked chicken, shredded
- 1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup frozen corn kernels
- 1 4-ounce can diced green chilis
- 1 package corn tortillas (I used 13 ½.)
- 16 ounces shredded cheese
- Make the enchilada sauce. Create a rue in a large sauce pan over medium-high heat with the extra virgin olive oil, arrowroot powder, and chili powder. Stir constantly for about two minutes, until the rue is a light brown.
- Stir in tomato sauce, water, cumin, garlic, oregano, and salt. Reduce heat to medium, and continue to cook stirring occasionally, about 10-15 minutes. You want it to slightly thicken.
- Measure out ¾ cup of the sauce, and set aside.
- Add chicken, black beans, corn, and green chilis to the sauce pan with the enchilada sauce, and continue to cook over medium-low heat.
- While the filling is simmering, pour half of the reserved sauce into a lightly greased 9x13 baking dish. Spread around to create an even thin coat. Cover the bottom of the dish with a single layer of tortillas. You will need to cut or tear some. I used 4 ½ tortillas per layer.
- Use half the enchilada filling to cover the tortillas. Top with about ⅓ of the cheese.
- Repeat the layer of tortilla rounds, then the remaining filling, then another third of the cheese.
- Repeat the layer of tortillas. Drizzle the remaining enchilada sauce over the top, then top with the remaining cheese.
- Bake in a preheated 350º oven for about 30 minutes. Let rest for 10-15 minutes before serving.
Nutrition InformationYield 8 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 489Total Fat 31gSaturated Fat 13gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 15gCholesterol 88mgSodium 1022mgCarbohydrates 26gFiber 7gSugar 5gProtein 28g
Note: Nutritional information is an approximation. Different brands and/or quantities will change the nutrition profile.