The closer we get to Fall and Winter, the more I crave old-fashioned “comfort foods”! I know, I know, I keep blathering on about comfort foods! Sorry I can’t help it! They’re the BEST! Like casseroles for instance. I love casseroles. Not all casseroles! I wanna be clear about that. There are some questionable duds out there! I’m sure you’ve seen them at a potluck or two! (They’re like the kid who doesn’t get picked for dodge ball!)
Aside from the rare “dud”, there are a lot of really great, warm, tummy pleasing, budget friendly casseroles. Nothing spreads a dollar, fills a tummy, or say’s “home cooking” like a casserole! I realize there are “non-casserole” loving humans but, I’m pretty sure they have to live on a different planet! (It’s a rule or something right? lol)
Anywho…back to my love of casseroles! Chicken Tortilla Casserole has been one of my favorites for as long as I can remember! This was my Aunt Lani’s mothers recipe. My Aunt Janie, opposite side of the family, also loved any excuse she could come up with to make this casserole. If she didn’t have all the ingredients she would improvise. She even used crunched up corn chips one time in place of the tortilla’s. As you can tell, this isn’t just one of my favorites, it is a favorite of many cooks whose “Nests” reside on my family tree!
To make this casserole start out by cutting white corn tortillas into 1 inch squares. You can use yellow…I’m just not a huge yellow corn tortilla fan. (Sorry yellow tortillas! It’s nothing personal. Well….maybe it is?) I lay mine in one stack, with a large sharp cutting knife, I cut strips in one direction and then in another. Creating one inch squares.
Before we go any farther, let me share a helpful hint…this casserole assembles very quickly if you have all the ingredients prepared beforehand. You will need one dozen cut up tortilla’s (check), 1 pound grated cheese, a 9 x 13 casserole dish, shredded chicken (Tip: Remember, if you’re a regular of my blog you know that I always tell you that you can boil and debone one huge Costco Chicken and divide it between two meals (my personal choice), you can use a Rotisserie Chicken and shred that, or it’s my understanding that Costco is now selling precooked shredded chicken? Whatever is easiest for you!)
In a separate bowl combine 2 cans cream of chicken soup, 1 small onion chopped finely (Tip: You can use dried chopped onions and not walk around smelling like a Carl’s Jr. Hamburger all week but…maybe you like that? Hmmm? ) 1 pint or 1 cup sour cream, 1 can chopped mild green chili peppers, 1 cup milk. Mix it all together. Now you are ready to begin assembling the casserole.
Start with a layer of your cut up tortilla’s. Spread them over the bottom of your baking dish.
Next add a nice healthy layer of shredded chicken. (Why am I always blogging when I’m hangry!?)
Pour half of your wonderful creamy liquid mixture over the chicken. Hang in there! It’s starting to look like dinner!
Time to add a nice thick layer of mild cheddar cheese! Sigh! (I love cheese! I think we’ve established that fact!)
Repeat the process with a layer of tortillas, chicken, sauce and top with a layer of cheese.
Cover loosely with foil and bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees. I remove the foil for the last 5-10 minutes of cook time. When the sauce is bubbling around the edges and you have established gooey cheesiness (Did you hear that? Julia Child just rolled over in her grave!), it’s time to remove it from the oven and allow it to sit for about 10 minutes, to cool.
This casserole can be made up a day ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator over night. It’s even better when it’s allowed to sit and soak up all the rich flavors of that sauce. Look at all those beautiful layers combining to make one luscious creamy mouth-watering casserole!
I love to serve mine with a side of Mexican Rice or Corn, and Green Salad. It’s a great week night meal that the entire family will enjoy! So grab your plate and let’s scoop ya up a big hot helping of Chicken Tortilla Casserole tonight!
The printable recipe is below to help make it easier on you. Remember you can make this up ahead of time. You could even make it on Saturday and store it in the refrigerator for one of those busy weeknight’s coming up. With school back in session life is just bound to get a little bit more crazy! Having dinner checked off the “to do” list is so nice and relieves so much stress off Mom. Enjoy! Thanks for stopping by!