There is nothing wrong with being a casserole person, I am just not one. The most “casserole” like dish I probably made in 5 years of living by myself was a lasagna that I made once, for Ryan, and I don’t think I even ate any. The idea of leftover casserole makes bile rise to the back of my throat. So when I saw a version of this dish on Two Peas and Their Pod, I was surprised at how quickly I went about making it. I know it seems like there are a ton of ingredients, but it’s such an easy dish for a weeknight dinner. Mix it all, throw it in a baking dish, and off you go. I modified the Two Peas version of this recipe by adding chicken (any meat is fine) and cutting back a bit on the cheese. If it’s baked on the top I don’t need extra in the middle- that’s the secret to keeping the extra off my middle. 😉
Chicken & Quinoa Enchilada Bake
Makes: 4 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 25 minutes Total Time: 45 minutes
2 raw chicken breasts, cut into small pieces
1 white onion, small dice
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp paprika
1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels (thawed)
1 red bell pepper, small dice
1 jalapeno, seeds and stem removed, minced
1 poblano pepper, seeds and stem removed, small dice
1 can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1 large can diced tomatoes, juice included
2 cups cooked quinoa (1 cup raw cooked in 2 cups water)
1 can enchilada sauce
scant 1 cup shredded Mexican cheese blend
salt and pepper to taste
avocado, for garnish
sour cream, for garnish
- Heat a large saute pan over medium heat. Drizzle with vegetable oil.
- Lightly season the chicken with salt and pepper.
- Add the chicken to the pan and saute for 2-3 minutes, or until the outside starts to brown. Add the onion and next 4 ingredients (paprika) and saute for another 2 minutes. Add the corn and next 4 ingredients (pinto beans) and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook another 5 minutes so that the flavors begin to blend.
- Add the tomatoes with their juice, enchilada sauce, quinoa, and half the cheese to the pot. Season to taste with salt and pepper before transferring to a large baking dish.
- Add the remaining cheese to the top of the mixture, cover with foil, and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and bake another 5 minutes so that the cheese is really bubbly. Remove from the oven and let it stand (you can lightly cover with foil) for a few minutes before diving in. Serve with avocado, sour cream, scallions, tortilla chips, or any other of your favorite Mexican food condiments.