Recipe: Southwest King Ranch Casserole

recipe for tex-mex casserole

What’s for Dinner?

Southwest King Ranch Casserole

Easy Make-ahead Mexican

-Julie Ryan Evans

This is a recipe from the Whole Foods Market Cookbook that I have made more times than I can count. It’s easy; you can make it ahead of time; and everyone I’ve ever served it to loves it. Also, because it’s not spicy, it’s a good one to take a new mother … and usually a welcome diversion from the 10 lasagnas she’s already received. Ole!

Filling: king ranch casserole

3 Tablespoons canola oil
½ cups diced yellow onions
2 cloves garlic, minced (1 teaspoon)
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups shredded cooked boneless chicken*
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro (I omit this)


2 cups grated monterey jack cheese
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
2 cups bottled tomatillo sauce
8 corn tortillas
1 ½ cups sour cream
½ cup chopped green childes, drained

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a large sauté pan. Add onions and cook until translucent. Blend in spices. Add chicken and heat through. Remove from heat and add in cilantro.

On bottom of an 8×8 ½ inch pan spread 1 cup of tomatillo sauce. Top with 4 tortillas, overlapping as necessary. Spread half the sour cream over tortillas. Add ½ cup of remaining tomatillo sauce, 1 ½ cups of the chicken filling, 1 cup of cheese and one half of the green chilies. Top with 4 more tortillas and repeat.

Bake about 25 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

* If you’re in a hurry, you can use rotisserie chicken. While pulling chicken off of bones usually grosses me out, I will suck it up sometimes for the sake of convenience!

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