Chipotle Chicken Enchilada Casserole is cheesy, saucy, and easy to make with just the right amount of chipotle and spices. It's the perfect casserole for spicy food lovers!
Chipotle Chicken Enchilada Casserole
I made Chicken Tinga the other day and talk about delicious. Chicken Tinga is basically shredded chipotle chicken, and it's incredibly versatile. You can serve it on corn or flour tortillas as tacos, on larger tortillas with fixins as a chipotle burrito, on buns as your favorite torta, or even over crispy corn tortillas for enchilada stacks. Or more!
So many ways to serve your chipotle chicken tinga! Particularly, this way. We're talking Chipotle Chicken Enchilada Casserole, and it's a spice lovers dream come true. As far as this chicken enchilada casserole goes, it's nice and cheesy with 2 cups of shredded Monterrey Jack cheese melted over the top.
It's also saucy with a combination of tomato sauce and chipotles in adobo sauce, making it absolutely mouthwatering.
It's a nice dinner option for my spicy food loving friends, though it isn't overly spicy or hot, just perfectly balanced with flavor.
Why Make Chicken Enchilada Casserole at Home?
- It's loaded with flavor. This chicken casserole is a nice dinner option for my spicy food loving friends, though it isn't overly spicy or hot, just perfectly balanced with bold flavors.
- It's saucy! Sauce lovers, rejoice. This casserole stays moist and flavorful from a simple mixture of tomatoes and chipotles in adobo sauce.
- Perfect for parties. While we usually enjoy this casserole recipe as an easy weeknight dinner, it also doubles as the perfect party food!
Ingredients for Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole
- Olive oil
- Boneless chicken thighs
- Tomato sauce
- Chipotles in adobo sauce
- Chili powder
- Mexican oregano
- Salt and pepper
- Street corn tortillas
- Shredded Monterrey Jack cheese
- Optional garnishes: fresh chopped cilantro chopped green onion, queso fresco, spicy chili flakes, hot sauce
Let's talk about how we make chipotle chicken enchilada casserole, shall we?
How to Make Spicy Chicken Enchilada Casserole - the Recipe Method
Cook the Peppers, Onion and Garlic. First, cook down some onions and jalapeno peppers in a large pan with a bit of oil, about 5 minutes, until they are softened. Add the garlic and cook another minute or so, until you can smell the gorgeous garlic bloom.
Chicken Thighs. Season your chicken thighs with salt and pepper, then add them to the pan. Give them a nice sear on each side, a couple minutes each.
Get Your Sauce Ready. Process the tomato cause and chipotles in adobo sauce in a food processor.
Pour the mixture into the pan, covering the chicken.
Seasonings. Stir in the seasonings.
Simmer the Pot. Bring to a quick boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and easily pulls apart.
Shred the Chicken. Remove the chicken and shred it with a couple of forks. Return the chicken to the pan and simmer in the sauce another 5 minutes.
Get Ready for Baking. Next, preheat your oven to 350°F.
Layer It Up. Spoon some of the sauce from the chipotle chicken into a 10-inch baking dish or pan.
Lay half of the tortillas into to the dish, then spread half of the chipotle chicken over them.
Top with half of the shredded cheese.
Repeat with the remaining tortillas, chipotle chicken and cheese. Make it nice and cheesy, my friends!
Bake the Casserole. Bake the layered enchilada dish for 20 minutes, until the cheese is nice and melty.
Ready to Enjoy. Remove, garnish and serve!
It looks so AWESOME, doesn't it? Because it is! I love this dish. Crazy tasty.
Recipe Notes and Variations
- Variations and Other Ingredients. You can very easily add in other ingredients and keep the spirit of the Mexican chicken enchilada casserole. Some other ingredients would be black beans, pinto beans, refried beans, roasted corn, even chorizo. Feel free to include extra jalapeño peppers, or spicier peppers, like the serrano or a habanero pepper or two.
- Toppings. Top it off with avocado slices, or like me with chopped or diced tomatoes, sliced jalapeno peppers, crumbly white cheese and chopped green onion.
- Garnish. Don't forget the spicy chili flakes! Or your favorite hot sauce! You can't go wrong with a bit of extra spice.
Storage & Leftovers
Have any leftovers? You're in luck - this spicy chicken casserole holds up very well in the fridge! Wait until it fully cools to room temperature, then transfer it to an airtight container and pop it in the fridge. Properly stored, it'll stay fresh for about 3 days.
That's it, my friends! I hope you enjoy my Chipotle Chicken Enchilada Casserole recipe! It's a new favorite!
Be sure to check out my Chicken Tinga Recipe.
Grab yourself a slice!
Got any questions? Ask away! I’m happy to help. If you enjoy this recipe, I hope you’ll leave a comment with some STARS.Also, please share it on social media. Don’t forget to tag us at #ChiliPepperMadness. I’ll be sure to share! Thanks! — Mike H.
Chipotle Chicken Enchilada Casserole Recipe
FOR THE CHIPOTLE CHICKEN
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 1 jalapeno pepper chopped
- 1.5 pounds boneless chicken thighs chicken breast is good, too
- 2 cloves garlic chopped
- 16 ounce can tomato sauce
- 1 7 ounce can chipotles in adobo sauce
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- Salt and pepper to taste
FOR THE CASSEROLE
- 10 street corn tortillas or use 6 corn tortillas
- 2 cups shredded Monterrey Jack cheese
- FOR GARNISH: Fresh chopped cilantro chopped green onion, queso fresco, spicy chili flakes, hot sauce
FOR THE CHIPOTLE CHICKEN (CHICKEN TINGA)
- Heat the oil in a large pan to medium heat and add the onions and jalapeno peppers. Cook them down about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the garlic and cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute, until the garlic becomes fragrant.
- Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper, then add them to the pan. Give them a nice sear on each side, a couple minute each.
- Process the tomato cause and chipotles in adobo sauce in a food processor, then pour the mixture into the pan, covering the chicken.
- Stir in the seasonings.
- Bring to a quick boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and easily pulls apart.
- Remove the chicken and shred it with a couple of forks.
- Return the chicken to the pan and simmer in the sauce another 5 minutes.
FOR THE ENCHILADA CASSEROLE
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Spoon some of the sauce from the chipotle chicken into a 10-inch baking dish or pan.
- Lay half of the tortillas into to the dish, then spread half of the chipotle chicken over them.
- Top with half of the shredded cheese.
- Repeat with the remaining tortillas, chipotle chicken and cheese.
- Bake for 20 minutes.
- Remove, garnish and serve!