Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole | Mel’s Kitchen Cafe


This easy chicken enchilada casserole is going to become your new favorite weeknight dinner. So simple, so fast, so delicious!

piece removed from pan of chicken enchilada casserole

If we’re talking simple weeknight dinners, it doesn’t get much better than this easy chicken enchilada casserole. 

It comes together fast. It’s crazy delicious. And the ingredients are basic and pantry friendly (is that a thing? let’s make it a thing). 

I mean, you really can’t go wrong with a saucy, cheesy casserole. This one is a keeper. 

close up of chicken enchilada casserole on white plate

Layer it up

I was inspired by this recipe after a blog reader, Kelsie A., sent me the idea. The premise is so simple.

And it’s brilliantly easy because you don’t have to precook or over-prepare any of the ingredients before assembling (let’s pray today’s the day you have a rotisserie chicken lurking around). 

The layers are straightforward:

  • sauce (I use a combo of green enchilada sauce and salsa verde)
  • tortillas (I cut corn tortillas in half and puzzle them in until they make a *somewhat* neat layer)
  • cheese (Monterey Jack + cheddar!)
  • chicken (tossed with a few spices to amp up the flavor)

assembling chicken enchilada casserole in white pan

Adaptable Beyond Belief

I’m sure there’s more than one of you/us wondering: what adaptations can be made to this easy chicken enchilada casserole?

Well…the answer is…as many as you dare to make! I haven’t strayed too far from the recipe as written because it’s crazy delicious, but I can’t wait to see what you guys do to this recipe (be nice!). 

I have a feeling the green sauce can be easily exchanged for red sauce. The corn tortillas can probably be swapped for flour tortillas.

The chicken for ground beef? Add in some pepper jack cheese and white beans? Yes! Go for it. 

chicken enchilada casserole in white pan with serving spoon

This casserole isn’t going to win any gourmet food awards. And to be honest, it has a fairly strong messy-plate vibe.

But it also reinforces the old adage that looks aren’t everything. What it lacks in presentation, it makes up for in flavor and tastiness. 

And you honestly cannot beat how quickly it comes together. I think it would make a stellar take-in meal and although I haven’t tried freezing it or making it ahead of time, I think it’s going to get high marks in those areas, too. 

Man, I love a delicious, easy weeknight dinner. This casserole makes me very, very happy (and the leftovers are SO yummy – even cold straight from the fridge; I hope we can still be friends). 

bite of chicken enchilada casserole on fork on white plate

Cornbread Muffins
Easy Skillet Broccoli
Mexican Chopped Salad

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Yield:
8 servings

Prep Time:
20 minutes

Cook Time:
55 minutes

Additional Time:
15 minutes

Total Time:
1 hour 30 minutes

piece removed from pan of chicken enchilada casserole

Ingredients

  • 20 ounces green enchilada sauce
  • 12 ounces salsa verde
  • 3-4 cups cooked shredded or chopped chicken
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 12-14 white or yellow corn tortillas, cut in half
  • 2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Fresh chopped cilantro

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9X13-inch pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Whisk together the enchilada sauce and salsa verde.
  3. Toss the chicken with the garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper.
  4. Spread 1/3 of the sauce in the bottom of the prepared pan. Layer eight tortilla halves across the sauce (see pictures in the post for a visual). Sprinkle 1/3 of the cheese over the tortillas followed by 1/2 of the chicken. Drizzle with 1/3 of the sauce.
  5. Layer another eight tortilla halves, 1/3 of the cheese, last 1/2 of the chicken, another 8-9 tortilla halves, remaining 1/3 cheese and remaining sauce.
  6. Cover with greased foil and bake for 35-40 minutes. Uncover and bake another 10-15 minutes until bubbly and cooked through. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro. Let rest for 10-15 minutes (it will set up and be less runny as it rests) before serving.

Notes

Sauce: you can use all enchilada sauce if you want (omit the salsa verde and increase the amount of green enchilada sauce by 10-12 ounces).

Make Ahead: the casserole can be assembled and refrigerated for up to 8 hours (the tortillas will soften more than if baked right away).

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As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Recipe Source: inspired by a recipe a reader, Kelsie A., sent me (thanks, Kelsie!)

 

 

Posted on March 16, 2021 by Mel



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