Fiesta Chicken Casserole

filed under: Food + Drink on April 9, 2019

Fiesta Chicken Casserole is the solution to your weeknight meal planning woes.  Delicious southwest seasoned chicken over a bed of noodles, corn, black beans, and smothered in tonz of cheese, you really can’t go wrong!  If you like this recipe, make sure to try some of my other favorite casseroles like Hamburger Casserole or Tuna Casserole!

 

5 from 2 votes
fiestachicken-blog3
Fiesta Chicken Casserole
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Total Time
35 mins
 

Fiesta Chicken Casserole is the solution to your weeknight meal planning woes.  Delicious southwest seasoned chicken over a bed of noodles, corn, and black beans, and smothered in melty cheese, you really can't go wrong!  

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Fiesta Chicken Casserole
Servings: 8
Author: Amanda Rettke
Ingredients
  • cups  ziti noodles, cooked al dente
  • cup  sour cream
  • cup  salsa
  • teaspoon  cumin
  • teaspoon  garlic powder
  • teaspoon  onion powder
  • can  (15 ounces) corn, drained
  • can  (15 ounces) black beans, drained & rinsed
  • cups  chicken, cooked and shredded
  • cups  Mexican blend cheese, shredded
  • green onions, diced (optional for garnish)
  • avocado, sliced (optional for garnish)
  • tomato, diced (optional for garnish)
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 350 °F.
  2. Prepare a 9x13 baking dish and spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl combine noodles, sour cream, salsa, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, corn, black beans, chicken, and 1 cup of the shredded cheese. Stir together to combine.

  4. Transfer into the greased baking dish and sprinkle the remaining cheese on top. Cover with tin foil and cook for 20 minutes.
  5. Take the tin foil off and let cook an additional 5 minutes.
  6. Garnish with green onions, tomato, and avocado slices if desired.

Recipe Video

 

 

Fiesta Chicken Casserole

Fiesta Chicken Casserole

I know it is cliche, but we love a good casserole.  I think it’s because I am from the casserole capital of the world (Minnesota) and practically bleed casserole.

The beauty of a casserole is in its simplicity.  You can typically prepare them in advance and pop them in the oven when you are ready to eat.  If you have been following along, you know that I love simplicity.  Anytime you can have a meal that tastes this good, you assume that the ingredients were more than just dumped in a pan.  Not the case, for this Fiesta Chicken Casserole recipe you literally throw everything together and walk away.    Just make sure to come back in 20 minutes to take it out of the oven. 😉

Ingredient line up for fiesta chicken casserole

Fiesta Chicken Casserole Recipe

For a recipe so simple it may seem like a lot of ingredients, but the good news is you basically just combine them and walk away.  For this Fiesta Chicken Casserole Recipe, you will need the following ingredients:

  • Cooked Ziti Noodles, or other Macaroni style noodle
  • Sour Cream
  • Salsa, spiced to your liking
  • Cumin
  • Garlic Powder
  • Onion Powder
  • Corn
  • Black Beans
  • Chicken, fully cooked and shredded (rotisserie is fine)
  • Mexican Cheese

I also listed a few garnishes in the recipe (green onions, tomatoes, and avocado), but you can add more if you want to change it up from time to time.  Some possibilities are:

  • Jalapenos
  • Black Olives
  • Green Pepper
  • Onion

fiesta chicken casserole

How to Make Fiesta Chicken Casserole

This is the easiest dish to make, seriously.  Combine everything in a bowl (except half of the cheese).  Stir it up really well until everything is well mixed.  Dump it in a greased 9 x 13 baking dish, and then top it with rest of the cheese.  Cover the whole dish with tin foil and pop it into your preheated oven.  Cook for 20 minutes this way, and then take the tin foil off and cook for 5 more.  Add any garnishes that you like and serve it up hot!

Crockpot Fiesta Chicken Casserole

Any time you can make something just as easily in a crockpot, you might as well do it.  This recipe whips together just a nice in a slow cooker as it does in your oven.  To make fiesta chicken in a crockpot, just adjust the times slightly.  Cook this on low for 1 hour.  If you go with raw chicken (and you certainly can) follow the same instructions but increase your time to 4 hours and add the noodles in the last 30 minutes (otherwise they will get soggy).

How to Cook Al Dente Noodles

Take a big pot and fill it with about 4 quarts of water. Add a generous amount of salt. As some chefs like to say, “salty like the sea”. This will help to season your pasta.

Once the water reaches a boil, add in your noodles and then stir it. Don’t walk away! Stirring at the beginning of the boiling process will help to keep the pasta from sticking to itself.

Once your pasta has cooked for a few minutes and is firm yet starting to soften, it is al dente.  The best way to test this is to try it! Al dente pasta will feel firm, not crunchy when you bite it. You can also break a piece of pasta in half to see if it’s the perfect al dente. The pasta will be mostly cooked with a small center of uncooked pasta running through the middle.

Drain your pasta. You can now add them to the casserole!

Fiesta Chicken Casserole

How to Freeze Chicken Casserole

My favorite way to freeze a casserole is to bake it in a disposable foil pan OR to line the casserole dish with foil before filling. If you bake it in the disposable pan you can freeze it as you normally would. If you are using the foil method, prepare your ingredients and place in the pan. (DO NOT BAKE!) Place the entire pan in your freezer to set (about 2 hours) and then remove. Wrap the casserole tightly and then place in a large freezer safe plastic storage bag or wrap well with plastic wrap. It stacks easily in the freezer in this form! Be sure to label it as well.

When ready to bake, remove from freezer and thaw overnight. If you need to bake it quickly, place the frozen casserole in a casserole dish covered about 15 minutes at 350°F. Remove the foil from the top (or carefully peel it back) and then bake for the full baking time. (For this recipe specifically, 20 minutes)  If thawed, remove plastic wrap, uncover the top of the casserole and bake as directed.

Looking for More Casserole Recipes?

Tuna Casserole

Hamburger Casserole

Tator Tot Hotdish

Ham and Cheese Breakfast Casserole

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Comments

  • Eva P. says:

    Hi Amanda,

    This looks festive and delicious! I was wondering, I am not a big salsa girl, you think this would taste just as sgood if I sub the salsa with some marinara sauce?

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      I think the addition of salsa would be amazing!

  • Jess K says:

    Such a pretty, colorful casserole! Love the extra tips for making this in the slow cooker. Can’t wait to try, pinned!

  • Suzanne Fletcher says:

    This is the 2ndx I’ve made this and I love it! I added a can of diced tomatoes as well to all ingredients listed. This is now on my top 5 favorite crockpot recipes!

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      That’s awesome Suzanne!

  • Betty Davis says:

    I made but haven’t baked yet , instead of tomatoes I put a can of Rotel , I like it spicy and thought about draining a can of diced tomatoes to garnish I don’t have fresh and some green onions , I know it’s gonna be good ! Ty !

  • Anne says:

    Made this recipe exactly as written. It is so good! It is almost better the next day when reheated as the flavors get to really meld together. Thank you!

  • James Ogletree says:

    I will try this soon simple and I’m certain it will be so good , thanks for sharing

  • Judy Flaig says:

    Love the recipes on the go alot use the slow cooker.

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