We are loving the south-of-the-border flavor in this Chicken Enchilada Casserole, which seems to combine the best of both worlds: cheesy comfort food with the ease and low-maintenance of a casserole. Oh, and bonus points because it’s gluten-free! This Chicken Enchilada Casserole is an easy weeknight, dinner-in-a-dish that we are sure your family will love.
Our Chicken Enchilada Casserole has it all:
- polenta crust
- shredded rotisserie chicken
- green chilis
- a killer enchilada sauce 😊
We top this dish with a spicy Pepper Jack. When it comes to enchiladas, the more cheese the better, in my opinion.
This one-dish meal is easy to put together, it is spicy and cheesy and a blend of bold flavors- everything we love about chicken enchiladas!
The main difference with this casserole is what makes it gluten-free, the polenta layer. If you haven’t used polenta before, it’s actually a very simple ingredient to work with. No tortillas here! If you happen to be a big fan of a more traditional chicken enchiladas recipe, you’ll also enjoy our Chipotle Chicken Enchiladas.
To make the polenta layer of the Chicken Enchilada Casserole, bring the water and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan set over high heat. Once the water is boiling, slowly stir in the polenta. Reduce the heat and simmer the mixture, stirring it frequently. The polenta mixture will become very thick but this will take about 20 minutes. Remove from the stovetop and stir in the butter (we love the flavor of real butter, especially with this polenta base).
Preheat the oven to 350°F and coat a 9x13x2 casserole dish with oil spray. Evenly spread the cooked polenta on the bottom of the dish to create the polenta base. Next, distribute the green chilis on top of the polenta. Now you are ready to prep the enchilada mixture!
To make the cheesy enchilada filling, first heat a large skillet over medium-high and heat the olive oil in the pan. Sauté the chopped onion until it’s soft and translucent, add in the thawed corn and cook for a couple of minutes. Add in the cumin, chili powder and garlic powder.
Assemble your layered, Chicken Enchilada Casserole by spooning the cooked veggies into the casserole dish, on top of the polenta. Sprinkle about half of the shredded cheese over the veggies and then add a layer of the shredded, rotisserie chicken. Spoon the enchilada sauce over the chicken and top the entire casserole with the rest of the shredded cheese. We love the spiciness of Pepper Jack but you can substitute with Mozzarella, Cheddar, Monterey Jack or a combination of cheese.
Bake the casserole for 30 minutes, until the cheese is golden and bubbly. During this time, you can prepare any toppings to serve this with, such as cilantro, sour cream or lime wedges. After the casserole is done baking, remove it from the oven and let it sit for 10 minutes before serving.
How do you reheat Chicken Enchilada Casserole?
- While a microwave is always a good option in a jiffy, the best way to reheat this casserole is to pop it back into the oven. You can reheat the whole dish at 350°F for about 20 minutes (alter time based on how much casserole is left) or until the cheese is melted and the inside of the casserole is hot. This casserole also freezes well but make sure to thaw it completely before reheating! Casserole leftovers will keep refrigerated for 3-4 days.
What goes with enchiladas?
- Almost everything! 😉 This Chicken Enchilada Casserole is great with cilantro and lime as garnish. You can also top it with salsa or sour cream. As for sides, how about a Mexican Street Corn Salad (Esquites)? Or to keep things easy-peasy, try this Instant Pot Spanish Rice.
I hope this easy, gluten-free, Chicken Enchilada Casserole is a hit with the whole family! And if leftovers mean a couple of nights of no cooking, even better. 🙂
SOME OTHER RECIPES WE ARE SURE YOU WILL LOVE:
- This Chili Relleno Dip makes for the perfect party appetizer and will even work for the gluten-free and vegetarian guests! Pure cheesy goodness in a bowl.
- These melt-in-your-mouth Mexican Tea Cookies are perfectly buttery with a sweet and nutty pecan flavor.
- Are you a fan of two desserts in one? This Chocoflan Cake has a rich, creamy flan on top of a fudgy, chocolate butter cake.
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For the Polenta Layer:
- 2-1/2 cups water
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup medium-grind cornmeal
For the Enchilada Filling:
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 cans (7oz. each) diced green chilies, drained
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 pkg. (10 oz.) frozen corn kernels, thawed
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 rotisserie chicken, meat removed and shredded
- 2 cups gluten-free enchilada sauce
- 16 oz. Pepper Jack cheese, shredded
- 1-2 fresh limes, cut into wedges
- Chopped cilantro and cilantro sprigs for garnish
- For the Polenta Layer:
- Add the water and salt to a medium saucepan set over high heat and bring to a boil. Slowly stir the polenta into the water. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring frequently until the mixture is thick, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and coat a 9x13x2 casserole dish with oil spray.
- Spread the cooked polenta on the bottom of the dish and distribute the green chilis evenly over the polenta.
- For the Enchilada Filling:
- In a large skillet set over medium-high heat, add the olive oil and when it is hot add the chopped onion. Sauté until soft and translucent then stir in the thawed corn. Cook for 1-2 minutes until hot. Stir in the cumin, chili powder and garlic powder.
- Spoon the onion/corn mixture into the casserole dish, then 1/2 of the shredded cheese.
- Add the shredded chicken over the cheese and spoon the enchilada sauce over it and distribute the remaining cheese over the top.
- Transfer to the oven and bake for 30 minutes until the cheese is golden and bubbly around the edges.
- Remove from the oven and allow to sit for 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with cilantro and lime wedges
- The cheese can be substituted with Mozzarella, Cheddar, Monterey Jack or a combination of cheese.
- Leftovers will keep refrigerated for 3-4 days
- This casserole freezes well. Thaw before reheating.
Serving Size1 Square
Amount Per ServingCalories 479 Total Fat 29g Saturated Fat 15g Trans Fat 0g Unsaturated Fat 12g Cholesterol 107mg Sodium 1176mg Carbohydrates 25g Net Carbohydrates 0g Fiber 3g Sugar 6g Sugar Alcohols 0g Protein 32g