When you need to get a warm, filling dish on the table quickly, make this Layered Chicken Enchilada Casserole! Easier and faster than hand rolling a bunch of enchiladas, this easy chicken enchilada casserole is just as tasty and comforting and ready to eat in 35 minutes.
Every bite of this chicken enchilada casserole is saucy, cheesy, chewy, and flavorful. Loaded with creamy pinto beans, seasoned chicken, Colby Jack cheese, and fresh corn tortillas, this casserole is sure to have a little something for everyone.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Hearty & Filling: This easy chicken enchilada casserole is hearty and filling without being too rich. Trust me, this dinner recipe is simple, but surprisingly tasty and delicious.
- Delicious Layers: Layered like a lasagna but Mexican style. Delicious layers of corn tortillas, seasoned chicken, cheese, and pinto beans.
- Family Friendly: Everyone loves Mexican flavors and this dish is a winner and will quickly become a family favorite!
Next time you are craving Mexican food but want something different from tacos or the time commitment of burritos, whip up this easy chicken enchilada bake instead. It’s easy to make and super customizable!
You can top it with all your favorite sauces and cheeses or swap out the chicken for beef or sautéed veggies. You can even use flour tortillas instead of corn or green enchilada sauce instead of red. The possibilities are nearly endless!
See printable recipe card below for all ingredients, specific measurements, and complete instructions.
- Tortillas - I prefer the heartiness of corn (white or yellow), but you can use flour tortillas if you’d like.
- Chicken - Cooked and cut into strips or bite-sized pieces.
- Pinto Beans - Canned or your favorite homemade recipe.
- Shredded Cheese - Colby Jack adds creaminess and melts well.
- Enchilada Sauce - Your favorite brand of canned red enchilada sauce.
- Spices - An aromatic blend of chili powder, ground cumin, and garlic powder.
Not a huge fan of chicken? You can easily turn this dish into ground beef, steak, or veggie enchilada casserole. Just make sure that your meat or veggies are completely cooked and seasoned before you add them to this dish.
If you have some extra time on your hands, you can roll these same ingredients into actual enchiladas. Simply fill each tortilla with the chicken, beans, and cheese before rolling it shut, and nestling it in your baking dish. Top with the enchilada sauce and bake as normal.
Create a creamy chicken enchilada casserole by adding some cream cheese to the chicken mixture. Additionally, try topping your casserole with a mixture of sour cream and salsa Verde or green enchilada sauce.
How to Make Layered Chicken Enchilada Casserole
- Sprinkle the chicken with the chili powder, cumin, and garlic. Toss gently to coat and set aside.
- In the bottom of a greased baking dish, layer the corn tortillas, then the chicken, cheese, and finally the pinto beans.
- Repeat these layers until the baking dish is full. Top with the enchilada sauce.
- Bake the casserole for 25 minutes until bubbly.
- Slice, serve, and enjoy.
How To Store
Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Cover the baking dish in plastic wrap or transfer the leftovers to an airtight container before storing. Reheat in the microwave or oven, adding additional enchilada sauce if necessary.
- Make sure you use cooked chicken in your casserole. Baked, grilled, or rotisserie chicken work well in this recipe.
- If you have the time, I recommend shredding the cheese yourself. Pre-shredded cheese often includes an anti-caking agent that prevents the cheese from melting properly.
- Use a mild enchilada sauce if you don’t like spicy food.
- You can make it more spicy by adding jalapeños or diced green chiles to the casserole.
This is up to you! For a more traditional flavor, I recommend using corn tortillas. However, if you’d like your casserole to be chewier and denser, try using flour tortillas!
Both sauces are equally delicious on top of these chicken enchiladas. Red sauce has a richer, earthy flavor whereas green enchilada sauce is brighter, fresher, and sometimes spicier.
You can absolutely make this enchilada casserole ahead of time! Season and layer your ingredients as normal before covering and refrigerating for up to 24 hours. When you’re ready to serve this dish, bake it as normal and serve warm!
No. Because red sauce is the last layer of this enchilada casserole, you can bake it uncovered. No need to worry about anything getting too brown or burning!
What To Serve With Enchilada Casserole
This cheesy and savory chicken enchilada casserole is delicious on its own or when paired with your favorite taco toppings!
Try garnishing your serving of casserole with sour cream, pico de gallo, guacamole, hot sauce, shredded lettuce, green onions, sliced olives, fresh lime juice, or additional shredded cheese.
Additionally, I recommend serving this easy casserole alongside your favorite Mexican side dishes like rice, refried beans, street corn or homemade tortilla chips.
I hope you enjoy this baked chicken enchilada casserole! If you try this recipe, please come back and rate it and leave me a comment below. I love to hear from you!
Layered Chicken Enchilada Casserole Recipe
- 15-18 corn tortillas
- 2 cups chicken, cooked and diced
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 cups shredded Colby Jack cheese
- 15 ounce can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
- 10 ounce can red enchilada sauce
- Preheat your oven 375°F.
- In a small bowl, coat the cooked diced chicken in the spices and set aside.
- Line the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish with corn tortillas and top them with a layer of the seasoned cooked chicken, cheese, and pinto beans.
- Repeat the layering process until you have filled the dish and used the remaining ingredients.
- Pour the enchilada sauce over the top of the dish and bake for 25 minutes until the top of the dish is bubbling.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!