Chicken Enchilada Casserole (“Stacked” Chicken Enchiladas)

This chicken enchilada casserole recipe -- a.k.a. "stacked chicken enchiladas" -- is simple to make, gluten-free and also easy to adapt to be vegan. Oh, and it's also CRAZY good.

Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole | gimmesomeoven.com #mexican #glutenfree

My favorite foodie week of the year has finally arrived.

Yes, I’m well aware that most people I know get more excited about their annual Thanksgiving turkey-a-thon.  Or the arrival of summer grilling season out in the back deck.  But in my book, the best time of the year is when the rest of the world gets excited about eating what I basically crave on a daily basis — Mexican food!!!

Si, amigos.  

Anything that goes with chips and salsa is my happy place.

So I’m taking full advantage the week leading up to Cinco de Mayo (which serendipitously happens to be my Dos de Mayo birthday week) to have a little Mexican food fiesta on the blog, beginning with one of my favorite recipes — Chicken Enchilada Casserole.  Also known as Stacked Chicken Enchiladas.

This is basically a riff on my recipe for The Best Chicken Enchiladas Ever, made of course with my favorite homemade Red Enchilada Sauce.  But this version is slightly faster to make and also gluten-free!  It’s also easy to adapt to be vegan and dairy-free.  And easy to load up with your favorite toppings galore.  I made it for some friends this weekend and they basically agreed that every single one of you has to try it.  ;)

Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole | gimmesomeoven.com #mexican #glutenfree

When I began converting my favorite enchiladas to be gluten-free a few years ago, one of the first problems I ran into was those darn corn tortillas.  Yes, yes, I know all of the tricks to warming them correctly so that they don’t tear.  But they can still be a pain to work with when it comes to enchiladas.  So one time I decided to try just stacking them with the other ingredients like a casserole…and the rest was enchilada history.

This truly is such an easy way to prepare enchiladas!  And it’s also easy to serve to a crowd, especially when people get all indecisive about whether they want a “half” or a “whole”.  Just have them cut out the slice of their choice.

Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole | gimmesomeoven.com #mexican #glutenfree

If you happen to be vegan or dairy-free, these taste great with just adding extra beans and/or roasted veggies in place of the chicken and cheese.  Actually, my friend who taught me this recipe years ago was dairy-free and swore by adding lentils to her enchiladas instead of cheese.  Whatever works for you!

But whether you eat everything, or are on a gluten-free or vegan diet, you must try my homemade red enchilada sauce with these.  It is without a doubt what “makes” this recipe.  And it is super easy to make!!  All you basically need are a few spices, some vegetable or chicken broth, a bit of flour (you can sub in GF all-purpose flour), and it’s ready to go with just about 5 minutes of prep.  Pretty pretty please, don’t skip this step.  ;)

Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole | gimmesomeoven.com #mexican #glutenfree

So to make the enchiladas, you’re basically going to literally stack the ingredients however you’d like.  I usually do a layer of enchilada sauce, then tortillas…

Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole | gimmesomeoven.com #mexican #glutenfree

…then black beans and corn (or whatever other ingredients you’d like)…

Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole | gimmesomeoven.com #mexican #glutenfree

…then green (or sauteed diced yellow) onions and shredded cooked chicken…

Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole | gimmesomeoven.com #mexican #glutenfree

…then your cheese.  And then repeat two more times, so that you have three layers.

I then finish the enchiladas with a layer of tortillas topped with enchilada sauce.  Cover with aluminum foil and bake for about 20 minutes.  Then uncover and sprinkle with a little more cheese, and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until the cheese is nice and melted.

 

Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole | gimmesomeoven.com #mexican #glutenfree

Then pile on your favorite toppings, like avocado, fresh cilantro and more green onions.  Sour cream might also be lovely.

Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole | gimmesomeoven.com #mexican #glutenfree

Then serve it up!  It’s definitely not quite the same “look” as traditional enchiladas.  But holy smokes, are they good.  And they make this Mexi food lover very, very happy.  :)

Enjoy!!

Chicken Enchilada Casserole (a.k.a. "Stacked" Chicken Enchiladas)

This chicken enchilada casserole recipe (a.k.a. "stacked enchiladas") are simple to make, gluten-free, and MUY delicioso.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups red enchilada sauce (I highly recommend my homemade red enchilada sauce recipe, which can be made gluten-free*)
  • 16 corn tortillas, halved
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 6 scallions (green onions), thinly sliced
  • 4 cups (about 1.5 pounds) shredded cooked chicken
  • 3 cups shredded Monterrey Jack or Mexican blend cheese
  • 1 avocado, peeled, pitted and diced
  • 1/2 cup loosely-packed chopped fresh cilantro

Directions:

Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare a 9x13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.

Pour about 3/4 cup enchilada sauce in the baking dish, and spread until the bottom of the dish is coated. Top with a layer of about 8 tortilla halves so that the entire dish is covered. Sprinkle evenly with about 1 cup black beans, 1/2 cup corn and a fourth of the green onions. Then sprinkle with a heaping cup of the chicken, and about 3/4 cup shredded cheese. Repeat with a second layer of tortillas, then sauce, then beans, corn, green onions, chicken, and cheese. Then a final layer of tortillas, sauce, beans, corn, green onions, chicken and cheese. Then conclude with a final layer of tortillas and sauce (reserving about 3/4 cup of cheese to add partway through baking). Cover the pan with aluminum foil, then bake for 20 minutes.

Remove pan and remove aluminum foil. Sprinkle the top of the enchiladas evenly with the remaining 3/4 cup of cheese, then return to the oven (uncovered) and bake for 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Remove pan, and sprinkle with avocado, cilantro, and remaining green onions. Serve warm.

*If you are not using my enchilada sauce and would like this recipe to be gluten-free, be sure to check the label of store-bought sauces to find one that is GF.

*To make this recipe gluten-free, be sure to check the labels of all ingredients to double-check that they are made gluten-free.

If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #gimmesomeoven. I'd love to see what you cook!

Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole | gimmesomeoven.com #mexican #glutenfree

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Comments

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  1. Dian Stewart — January 20, 2016 @ 7:59 pm (#)

    This is a very VERY good recipe. I made the enchilada sauce as well. I did double the sauce recipe as I thought it needed it. It was delicious! 

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — January 20th, 2016 @ 8:26 pm

      Thanks Dian, we’re so glad you enjoyed it! :)

  2. Jenn — January 20, 2016 @ 8:21 pm (#)

     We just made this tonight and enjoyed it, however next time I will sauté the veggies together to soften them a little and make more of the enchilada sauce. I added some red onion, tomato, and olives on the top.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — January 21st, 2016 @ 8:10 am

      We’re glad to hear you enjoyed this Jenn! :)

  3. vonny — February 5, 2016 @ 6:25 pm (#)

    Hi Ali,
    Thanks for your fantastic recipes, were off in May on another RVroad trip from L.A. to Rocky Mountains then back down into the USA again for 6wks and i will be using some of your recipes while on the road.  Were a couple of crazy Aussies that love our road trips across your great  country, meeting and hearing about the lives of the laid back friendly people in the out of way places, plus tasting the unique foods from every state we visit.    

    Cheers,
    Vonny.

  4. Peggy — February 7, 2016 @ 8:47 pm (#)

    I just wanted to say thank you for this great recipe! I have tweaked it after making it a few times: less tortilla layers, more chicken, and then I added a layer of brussel sprouts and a layer of zucchini. I love the sauce! I drizzle it on the chicken before covering it with zucchini and cheese, as well as layering it on the bottom and the top. Thanks again!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — February 8th, 2016 @ 11:05 am

      You’re so very welcome Peggy! We’re happy to hear you enjoyed these, and we think the brussels sprouts and zucchini sound like wonderful additions! :)

  5. Traci — February 11, 2016 @ 10:41 am (#)

    Do you have any Nutritional facts on this?   Looks amazing 

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — February 11th, 2016 @ 1:24 pm

      Thanks Traci! Unfortunately though, we aren’t sure of the nutrition facts/amount of calories in this recipe. We currently are not publishing nutrition facts on the site, as the nutrition calculators available are not 100% accurate, and we never want to publish anything that might be misleading. However, a lot of our readers love the My Fitness Pal nutrition calculator, so feel free to try that for an estimate. We hope that helps!

  6. Jean Mackin — March 6, 2016 @ 4:51 pm (#)

    Just made this for dinner (it’s cooking right now!).  The only thing I wish I knew was the size of the tortillas you used.  I had cut mine in half and it turns out mine were large enough to only used 2 whole (4 halves) per layer.  I also used ground turkey instead of cooking and shredding up chicken to save me some time.  

  7. Angela kiser — March 6, 2016 @ 8:59 pm (#)

    Just made this tonight and my fiancée loved it! I sautéed yellow onion with two jalapeños and some garlic instead of green onions. Made the enchilada sauce with almond meal flour and was great except it never thickened up as much as your photos but still tasted great! Will definitely be making this again! Cheers!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — March 7th, 2016 @ 3:31 pm

      Thanks for sharing Angela! We’re glad to hear you and your fiancé enjoyed it! :)

  8. Alli — March 8, 2016 @ 7:33 pm (#)

    Can this be frozen?  If so, how do you recommend – before or after baking?  How long and at what temp?  Thank you! :)

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — March 9th, 2016 @ 8:55 am

      Hi Alli! If you want to freeze them, you can. If so, we suggest assembling them without the sauce and cheese, then covering them tightly with foil, and putting them in the freezer. When you’re ready to bake them, remove the foil, top with the sauce and cheese, re-cover with the foil, and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes. Then remove the foil and bake for about 15-20 minutes until bubbling and golden brown (with the cheese melted completely). Alternatively you could assemble them in the morning and cover them in the fridge, and then bake them that evening (take them out so they can come to room temperature before baking, or you will just need to bake them longer. We wouldn’t make them more in advance than that though, as we do think they would get soggy. We hope all of this is helpful, and that you enjoy!

  9. Beth Bell — March 11, 2016 @ 7:54 am (#)

    Looks delicious! Can’t wait to make this. My family loves Mexican food

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — March 11th, 2016 @ 8:22 pm

      Thanks Beth! We hope you and your family enjoy these! :)

  10. Christine — March 11, 2016 @ 4:07 pm (#)

    This looks awesome – any thoughts/experience on how well it would freeze?

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — March 11th, 2016 @ 9:34 pm

      Thanks Christine! Yes, you can freeze this. We suggest baking these, letting them cool completely, and then freezing. When you’re ready to reheat, simply cover with foil, and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes. Then remove the foil and bake for about 15-20 minutes until bubbling and golden brown. We hope you enjoy!

  11. Heather — March 15, 2016 @ 1:03 pm (#)

    Might be a Crazy Question, I am not a fan of Black Beans..Could I use Wild Rice/Rice instead ??

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — March 15th, 2016 @ 3:50 pm

      Hi Heather! Sure, we think that would work, or you could use another type of beans that you like. We hope you enjoy!

  12. Rhonda — April 3, 2016 @ 11:43 am (#)

    These are the best and the sauce is even better making them again tonight both the white and the red cause we can’t decide between the 2 yum!!!!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — April 3rd, 2016 @ 8:34 pm

      Thank you Rhonda – we’re so glad you enjoy the sauce and the casserole! :D

  13. Jackie — April 7, 2016 @ 8:17 pm (#)

    oh.my.goodness. This is such a wonderfully fresh tasting casserole and quite healthy too!! Made it g-free and exactly as written, including your sauce. Topped with a dollop of sour cream and an extra drizzle of  the enchilada sauce – so delicious!! Definitely will be making this one again! Thank you so much for sharing!!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — April 9th, 2016 @ 8:37 am

      Thank you for sharing Jackie — we’re so glad to hear you enjoyed it! :D

  14. Voula mavropoulos — April 10, 2016 @ 3:34 pm (#)

    I love looking…I’m a good cook…But my Greek recipes (I’m Greek)  takes quite some time ..so I m going to try your recipes They realy interested me…and I think I’m going to like them and so my family ..Thank you.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — April 11th, 2016 @ 11:59 am

      Thanks Voula — we hope you enjoy! :)

  15. Kristin — April 15, 2016 @ 11:37 am (#)

    This is an amazing recipe.  And the enchilada sauce is so easy to make, and it makes me feel good that Im not using a canned, salt laden sauce.  I even used pre cooked roasted chicken and was amazing.  A total keeper.  Thank you so much for sharing.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — April 17th, 2016 @ 9:28 am

      Thank you Kristin — we’re so glad you enjoyed the sauce and the enchiladas!

  16. Betty Smith — April 18, 2016 @ 6:22 pm (#)

    Well, just finished this casserole for dinner. So disappointed.  So bland and for the amount of money and ingredients definitely not worth it.  Now, to be fair, I used store bought enchilada sauce.  But, there is no way I would try this again with the homemade sauce.  It presented so well on the plate with the fresh Cilantra and even dolloped sour cream on top. Still so very
    bland.  Sorry, for the negative comment but I will not be making this again.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — April 19th, 2016 @ 9:09 am

      Hi Betty! We’re so sorry to hear you didn’t care for this. While the homemade sauce makes a huge difference (we think), it still shouldn’t have been bland with store bought sauce. We hope you can find another recipe that you like better!

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