Why spend all day making dinner when you can prepare an amazing, delicious, spicy chicken enchilada casserole with just 10 minutes of prep time? This perfectly crafted, insanely easy recipe will help you get a tasty dinner on the table quickly and using only one dish!
Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole
If you feel like dinner can be a hassle, something that hangs over your head all day or just one more decision you don’t want to make, then join the club! There are plenty of us out there who love to eat delicious food but just don’t have the time or energy to make gourmet meals. Until now…
It is not a joke when we say that this spicy chicken enchilada casserole recipe is easy to make. It really is! In fact, the ten minute prep time is even a little generous- you can probably put everything together even faster! Just because this meal is so quick to make doesn’t mean that it is lacking in flavor. It is actually one of the tastiest, most delicious recipes we have ever made thanks to the spices and sauces we utilize.
So keep reading and then get ready to go to the grocery store to grab the ingredients you need to make this dish. It is quickly going to become a family favorite and the perfect weeknight meal.
How To Make Chicken Enchilada Casserole
You are likely intrigued by the ease of this recipe and you definitely should be! How could any chicken enchilada recipe be so simple? Here’s how:
- A casserole dish is prepared using non-stick cooking spray or butter.
- The milk, egg, taco seasoning, chili powder, creamed corn, cornbread mix and canned chiles are all mixed together in a large bowl (you can also just mix them inside the casserole dish!)
- The dish is cooked, making a beautiful cornbread layer.
- Cooked chicken (rotisserie chicken works well), red enchilada sauce and a few cups shredded cheese are then mixed together and put on top of the cornbread and the dish is baked again.
- The dinner is now ready to eat and enjoy.
That is all it takes to make a perfect, spicy chicken enchilada casserole. A few minutes of hands-on action, about 30 minutes of cooking time and you will have an amazing dinner on the table.
Unique Chicken Enchiladas
You may have noticed that this recipe for chicken enchiladas does not involve any flour tortillas or corn tortillas, two ingredients you may automatically think of when you consider making chicken enchiladas. That is one point that makes this recipe unique!
Rather than wrap the chicken filling inside of corn tortillas or any other kind of tortilla, we use cornbread to compliment the chicken. The cornbread is much softer and more tender than a corn tortilla and it actually absorbs a lot of the sauce and juices from the chicken, ensuring you get a lot of flavor in every single bite.
The cornbread layer is also what makes this dish into a true casserole, rather than a standard chicken enchilada recipe. Adding the chopped green chilis gives the casserole a nice spicy kick as well! We know you will really love this version of chicken enchiladas- it is a nice spin on traditional Mexican food!
While we are talking about switching things up, there are a few alterations to our recipe that you may be interested in trying. Here are a few ideas that you may love!
- Rather than use shredded cheddar cheese, try Monterey jack cheese or a simple Mexican cheese blend for a stronger flavor
- Mix a can of drained, rinsed black beans in with the chicken and cheese. This will add extra flavor, some beneficial fiber and more protein to the recipe.
- Drizzle some sour cream over the top of the cooked enchiladas or place a cup of enchilada casserole on a plate along with fresh guacamole.
- If you really love corn tortillas or just think enchiladas need tortillas, scoop about 1/4 cup of the casserole mix into the center of a warm tortilla and roll it up then enjoy!
- Rather than use a rotisserie chicken or other kind of shredded chicken breasts, make the enchiladas with cooked ground beef.
There are tons of options for this chicken enchilada casserole and you can likely think of a few more variations based on your favorite Mexican food inspirations!
Here are a few questions about this recipe that we frequently get sent to our email address. Hopefully, this will answer some questions you may have as well!
Are enchiladas spicy?
This recipe for chicken enchilada casserole is a little bit spicy due to the addition of green chili peppers in the cornbread, the red enchilada sauce and also the taco seasoning. However, if you want to make a more mild version, just skip the chilis when you make the cornbread layer and choose a packet of taco seasoning that is labeled “mild”. You can also give a green enchilada sauce a try instead which is much less spicy.
What should I serve with enchiladas?
Enchiladas are filling and typically enough food on their own. After all, you have all that cornbread, chicken breasts, and several cups shredded cheese all mixed in! However, if you want to serve these chicken enchiladas alongside something else, consider a lighter salad, black bean soup or even just some homemade guacamole and chips.
How do you freeze enchiladas?
Our recipe for chicken enchiladas is actually quite freezer friendly. Cook the recipe in a container that has a microwave cover or that is simply labeled as “freezer and oven safe”. Most glass casserole dishes will fit this description.
After the enchilada casserole has cooked, let it cool completely. Cover the dish with the microwave cover (which will help the reheating process!) or wrap well with plastic wrap and freeze for up to three months. When you are ready to enjoy the casserole, place it in the microwave for about 10 minutes or back in the oven for about 20 minutes to thaw. It is already cooked so it should only take a few minutes to reheat- you don’t need to worry about cooking time too much, just make sure it is hot!
What is enchilada sauce made of?
Enchilada sauce is made from chili powder or fresh chilis that are cooked in a broth along with garlic, onions, tomato paste and other seasonings like salt and pepper. Enchilada sauce is fairly healthy, containing few calories, no saturated fat and lots of flavors. Red enchilada sauce is much spicier than green enchilada sauce as the green version does not contain chili powder. Our recipe uses red enchilada sauce to give the chicken enchiladas a nice spicy kick!Print
This one pan dinner is easy to put together but will be everyone’s favorite after just one bite!
- 1/3 cup milk
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoons taco seasoning, divided
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 (14¾ ounce) can cream-style corn
- 1 box corn bread mix (we used gluten free!)
- 1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chiles, drained
- 1 (10 ounce) can red enchilada sauce
- 2 cups cooked chicken breast (shredded)
- 8 oz. shredded cheese
- Preheat oven to 400° and prepare a 9×13 pan with non-stick spray
- Combine first 7 ingredients (using just 1/2 tablespoon of taco seasoning) in large bowl
- Stir just until moist then pour mixture into prepared pan
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until just barely set and golden brown
- When cornbread is done, poke liberally with a fork then pour enchilada sauce over top
- Toss chicken with remaining taco seasoning then layer over corn bread
- Sprinkle evenly with cheese then place the pan back in the oven for 15 minutes
- Remove from oven and let stand for at least 5 minutes before serving
- Finding a good cornbread mix will determine how great these enchiladas are. Look for one that is highly rated or one that is gluten free, depending on your dietary needs!
- This recipe tastes great when reheated the next day (it may even taste better since the cornbread has had time to soak up all the delicious juices from the cup of enchilada sauce and rotisserie chicken.
- Add a few more cups shredded cheese and shredded rotisserie chicken to the top of the cornbread in the casserole dish. This is an easy way to make the chicken enchiladas serve more people!
- To make sure that tortillas are part of the meal (as some people demand tortillas when they think of enchiladas!), serve the dish with a side of tortillas chips, guacamole and sour cream. You can even place the chips in a microwave safe dish, sprinkle with a cup or two of cheese and heat in the microwave for a minute. Top the chips with the guacamole, chopped tomatoes and sour cream and you have just made some super simple nachos to pair with the casserole main dish- pretty impressive!