Chicken Tortilla Casserole

Looking for a delicious dinner packed full of flavor? This chicken tortilla casserole checks all of the boxes. It’s easy to prep, easy to customize, and easy to devour!

A 9x13-inch dish with portioned chicken tortilla casserole.

This past year we pretty much avoided casseroles. Casseroles tend to be loaded with dairy, which was a big no-go for me and our little boy. But now that I’m out of the woods and he’s getting close, we’re re-discovering our love for all things cheese!

I wasn’t planning on making this casserole, in fact, it was something I whipped up with ingredients we had on hand. Which means its easy and requires minimal ingredients. Of course, if you want to add things like roasted corn, black beans or green chiles, you totally can! Dress it up, dress it down, no matter what you choose to do, it’s going to be delicious!

A close up of the layers inside of chicken tortilla casserole.

What kind of chicken should you use for this recipe?

I prefer using chicken thighs for most of my casseroles, and if I’m being honest, I prefer grabbing a rotisserie chicken and pulling that versus boiling or pressure cooking my own. That’s just the busy/tired mom in me talking.

You’ll want to set that aside while you prep the rest of the filling.

A bowl of pulled rotisserie chicken for the filling of chicken tortilla casserole.

To prepare the filling, you’ll saute the aromatics in oil, add chicken broth, seasonings, and then simmer the chicken. Pull it off the stovetop and let it rest for a few minutes while you get everything else ready. 

Layering the casserole is easy. To start, you’ll want to grease the bottom of the pan with oil to prevent sticking. I like to use avocado oil spray. Then pour in a 1/4 cup of enchilada sauce.

A skillet full of the chicken filling used in chicken tortilla casserole.

What brand of enchilada sauce is best?

I think that’s a personal preference, but I prefer Hatch. They make a variety of sauces and they’re all really good! You can use either red or green enchilada sauce for this recipe. 

Start by placing 6 tortillas over the enchilada sauce. They will overlap, that’s ok. Then spread 1/3 cup of the sour cream over top, followed by half of the chicken mixture, 1/4 cup of cheese, and a 1/4 cup of enchilada sauce. Repeat by layering six tortillas, spread 1/3 cup of the sour cream over top, followed by the remaining chicken mixture, 1/4 cup of cheese, and a 1/4 cup of enchilada sauce.

A can of my favorite enchilada sauce to use in chicken tortilla casserole.

Layer the remaining 6 tortillas on top, followed by the remaining enchilada sauce and remaining cheese.

NOTE: you can use whatever cheese you like. I tend to go with colby jack or monterrey jack, but pepper jack or plain cheddar would work too.

Sprinkle the sliced green onions over top and cover with foil. 

Why is covering the casserole with foil important?

It helps trap moisture inside which prevents it from drying out over time. I like to tent it for half or 3/4 of the baking time, then uncover it and continue baking so that the cheese/edges get a little brown but not burnt.

A plate with a serving of chicken tortilla casserole topped with homemade guacamole.

After letting the casserole rest, top it with cilantro, slice and serve. I made some no-soak Instant Pot pinto beans and restaurant style guacamole to serve on the side and it was a hit! Everyone gave this chicken tortilla casserole two big thumbs up.

LOOKING FOR MORE ENCHILADA RECIPES? TRY THESE:


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Chicken Tortilla Casserole

Chicken Tortilla Casserole

Yield: 6-8 servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Looking for a delicious dinner packed full of flavor? This chicken tortilla casserole checks all of the boxes. It's easy to prep, easy to customize, and easy to devour!

Ingredients

For the filling:

  • 1 tbsp. canola or avocado oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 c. low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. coriander
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 3 c. shredded chicken (rotisserie works great)

Remaining ingredients:

  • 2 c. red chile sauce
  • 18 corn tortillas
  • 2/3 c. sour cream
  • 2 c. grated cheese monterrey jack or colby jack
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp. freshly chopped cilantro (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly spray the bottom of a 9x13-inch dish with oil or cooking spray, set aside.
  2. In a large skillet set over medium-low heat, add the oil. Once hot, add the onion and saute until tender, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  3. Pour in chicken broth, add chili powder, oregano, cumin, coriander, salt, and pepper. Bring broth to a simmer and add the chicken. Simmer for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat and set aside.
  4. Pour 1/4 cup of enchilada sauce into the bottom of the baking dish, spread into an even layer. Layer the bottom of the dish with six tortillas. Spread 1/3 cup of the sour cream over top, followed by half of the chicken mixture, 1/4 cup of cheese, and a 1/4 cup of enchilada sauce. Repeat by layering six tortillas, spread 1/3 cup of the sour cream over top, followed by the remaining chicken mixture, 1/4 cup of cheese, and a 1/4 cup of enchilada sauce.
  5. Layer the remaining 6 tortillas on top, followed by the remaining enchilada sauce and remaining cheese. Sprinkle green onions over top and cover with foil.
  6. Place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes, then remove the foil and continue baking for an additional 10 minutes.
  7. Remove from the oven and allow to sit for 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with cilantro, if desired.

Notes

-Rinsed black beans, roasted corn, diced green chiles and fire roasted tomatoes all make great additions to the filling.

Did you make this recipe? Share it on Instagram and tag it #LMSbakes. I love to see your creations!