This enchilada rice casserole is comforting and easy dinner. Flavorful rice is baked with all of your favorite enchilada fillings like chicken, cheese, black beans, and enchilada sauce. It’s a great make-ahead dinner for busy nights or anytime you want a hearty dinner.
When we’re craving comfort food, I really like to make a casserole. I’ve made Chicken Rice Casserole before, but this time I made this enchilada rice casserole. It’s a lot like regular enchiladas but instead of rolling filling up in tortillas, it’s all baked together with rice in a baking dish.
It’s basically a chicken and rice casserole but with an enchilada twist. The rice is flavored with enchilada sauce and mixed with other common enchilada toppings like black beans, tomatoes, and shredded chicken. It’s topped with cheese and baked for a few minutes until the cheese is melted.
I love how flavorful the rice is with all the toppings and cheese. I made a big batch so we’d have leftovers, but I nearly devoured the whole enchilada casserole myself.
- Long grain rice (I used basmati)
- Shredded cooked chicken breast
- Enchilada sauce
- Black beans
- Cheddar cheese
- Monterey jack cheese
- Parsley or cilantro, for garnish
Prepare the rice: cook the rice following package directions.
Assemble the casserole: coat the chicken in half of the enchilada sauce. Add the rest of the enchilada sauce to the cooked rice along with the black beans, tomato, and chicken and stir to combine.
Bake the casserole: Transfer the rice and other ingredients to a baking dish. Sprinkle both kinds of cheese over the top in an even layer. Bake the casserole for 15 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbling. Garnish with the herbs and serve.
Tips for Making Enchilada Casserole
Do I have to pre-cook the rice?
Yes, the rice needs to be precooked. The enchilada casserole doesn’t have a long bake time (it’s just long enough to melt the cheese and warm up the casserole) and most kinds of rice will not fully cook in that time.
Do I have to use pre-cooked chicken?
Yes, I recommend using pre-cooked chicken for this recipe. Like the rice, the chicken may not have enough time to cook in the casserole. You can cook your chicken in a pan or bake it first, use leftover cooked chicken or you can also use a store-bought rotisserie chicken for this recipe.
Can I use different kinds of beans?
I love black beans, but you can substitute your favorite kinds of beans. Pinto beans or cannellini beans would be great in this casserole, too!
What other kinds of cheese can I use?
Since this is an enchilada-inspired casserole, I love the combination of cheddar and Monterey jack cheese. You could also use pepper jack cheese, too.
Can I make this enchilada casserole ahead?
You can make this casserole ahead of time. Prepare and assemble it, cover it and keep it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to bake it. It should keep well for a couple of days this way. Since it will be cold, you will need to add cook time to ensure it heats through all of the way.
More Toppings for Enchilada Casserole
There are lots of ways to serve your enchilada casserole – pretty much anything you like on regular enchiladas will work well! Here are some ideas…
- Sour cream
- Slice avocados
- Black olives
- Sliced green onions
I’m going to make another batch of this enchilada soon since this one disappeared so fast!
Enchilada Rice Casserole
- 2 cups dry long grain rice I used basmati
- 1 cup shredded cooked chicken breast
- 1 can black beans drained and rinsed thoroughly
- 2 cans red enchilada sauce I used Old El Paso
- 1 large tomato chopped into small cubes
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
- 2 tbsp finely chopped parsley or cilantro optional
- Cook rice according to instructions. While rice is cooking, coat chicken in 1/2 can of enchilada sauce, set aside. Add rest of enchilada sauces (1 1/2 cans) into pot of cooked rice and stir until mixed. Add in tomato, black beans, and chicken with enchilada sauce and mix.
- Preheat oven to 375°F. Scoop rice mixture into a a large casserole dish. Mix cheeses together and then spread on top of rice, evenly across surface. Bake for about 15 minutes until cheese is bubbly. Sprinkle with parsley/cilantro before serving.
The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.