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California-Style Cheesy Enchilada Casserole

Recipe for a casserole made with chicken, beans, corn and tortillas

You can find this recipe at El Restaurante. 

Recipe and photo courtesy of California Milk Advisory Board (

Makes 1 casserole

The casserole:

12 corn tortillas

1 ½ to 2 c. prepared enchilada sauce

4 c. shredded Real California Mexican cheese blend or 1 cup each of shredded Real California Oaxaca, Real California Cheddar, Real California Jalapeño Jack and crumbled Real California Cotija cheeses*

1 c. roasted skinless chicken, cut into bite-size pieces tossed with about 2 teaspoons enchilada seasoning

1 c. canned pinto beans, drained well, seasoned with 1/2 teaspoon each of ground cumin and garlic powder

1/3 c. each of canned kernel corn, sliced black olives, and mild green chilies, well drained

2 tablespoons of cilantro, minced mixed with 2 green onions, sliced

The cooking sauce:

2 eggs

½ t. salt

½ c. Real California half & half, milk or evaporated milk

½ c. Real California sour cream

Preheat oven to 350°F. Place all cooking sauce ingredients in a bowl and whisk together. Set aside for use. Spray casserole dish with vegetable oil. Assemble first layer by spreading about 6 tablespoons of enchilada sauce on bottom of casserole. Top with 4 tortillas, overlapping them.

    Cover tortillas with 6 more tablespoons of enchilada sauce.

    Assemble second layer by mixing chicken with 3 cups of the shredded California cheese, reserving the one-cup of cheese for later use. Layer half this mixture over the tortillas. Set aside the other half of cheese-chicken mixture for another layer.

   For the third layer, spread the seasoned beans over the cheese-chicken layer.

   For the fourth layer, overlap 4 tortillas and cover with 6-8 more tablespoons of enchilada sauce. Cover with corn, olives and chilies. Top with remaining cheese-chicken mixture.

   For final layer, cover filling with 4 overlapping tortillas, then spread 6 tablespoons of enchilada sauce over them. Pour cooking sauce over casserole. Top these with remaining cup of shredded cheeses. Let rest for at least 30 minutes.

    Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until bubbling. Remove and rest for 10 minutes before cutting. If baking after setting in the refrigerator, allow an extra 10-15 minutes cooking time. Sprinkle with cilantro and green onions and serve with lime wedges and sour cream.

*If you can't find Cotija, just increase by 1 cup the amount of other cheeses used.


El Restaurante

El Restaurante magazine was founded in 1997, and is read by over 25,000 owners and managers of Mexican and Latin restaurants in the United States. The magazine is published five times per year by Maiden Name Press, LLC in Chicago, Illinois.

El Restaurante also publishes a monthly e-newsletter, eMex, and maintains the popular website

El Restaurante is edited by Kathleen Furore, a veteran journalist. She has been the editor since the magazine was founded. Kathleen can be reached at 708-267-0023 or

For advertising information, please contact publisher Ed Avis at or 708-218-7755.


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