Updated Thu, Jan 10, 2013 11:21 am
I came across a recipe for Monterey Chicken Tortilla Casserole that I was eager to try; ingredients were basic and instructions were simple. The more I scanned over the recipe, prior to heading out to the grocery store, the more I kept adding to my grocery list. Before I even experimented with the original version I was already expanding on the possibilities of creating a wholesome and satisfying dish. I don’t want to imply the recipe was faulty, but, rather, lacking in content.
Here’s the original recipe:
1 cup coarsely crumbled tortilla chips
2 cups cubed cooked chicken or turkey
1 can (about 15 ounces) cream-style corn
¾ cup picante sauce
½ cup sliced, pitted ripe olives
2 ounces shredded Cheddar cheese (about ½ cup)
Chopped green or red pepper
DIRECTIONS – layer the crumbled chips, chicken, corn and picante sauce in a 1-quart casserole. Top with the olives and cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes or until the mixture is hot and bubbling. Top with the pepper. Serve with the chips.
Now, feast your hungry eyes on my version! I used a glass baking dish that would allow for several servings for lunch the next day and leftovers for another evening. I didn’t measure everything out because of working with such healthy products. This is the type of food that complements each other…and, you really can’t make a mistake. Helpful hint, the coarsely crumbled tortilla chips on the bottom were not as appealing as they could be, so, I recommend distributing them on TOP of the casserole about five minutes before the cooking time has expired or placing the chips on the dinner plate and out of the oven serving the casserole on them.
- Use cooking spray in baking dish
- Layer with the following items:
- Canned chicken breast with liquid completely drained off
- Black beans with liquid completely drained off
- Chunky salsa
- Cream-style corn
- Red, green and yellow bell peppers
- Black olives
- Banana peppers
- Cheddar cheese
- Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 40 minutes. Serve on a bed of iceberg lettuce (or greens of your choice), tortilla chips, salsa and sour cream.
I intend to make this dish again and again. Each bite is tender, moist and accompanied by a “yum!”