Layer by Layer: Enchilada Casserole (aka the Lazy Enchilada)

This recipe is much like the King Ranch Chicken that I posted a few weeks back but with different sauce and with hamburger instead of chicken.  It is equally as tasty, equally as easy to put together and it makes fantastic leftovers just like any casserole.


1-2 lbs ground beef

1-2 packets of McCormick (or Lawry) Enchilada seasoning

Mild cheddar cheese, grated (I’d say at least a 2-3 lb block, depending on how much cheese you like)

1/2 – 1 onion, diced

1-2 jalapeños, diced

1-2 large cans of tomato sauce

2-3 tbsp vegetable oil

18 soft corn tortillas



Spray a big casserole dish with Pam (or generic version, or even just lightly grease with oil) and set aside until ready for it.  Then turn on the oven to 425°.  I large pot, sauté the onion in the 2-3 tbsp of oil until translucent.  Add in the hamburger and ground up until it’s in smaller chunks.  Add a little garlic salt for taste.  When the hamburger is done cooking, drain out the oil in a jar.



After you drain the grease from the hamburger, pour in the tomato sauce and stir.  Add in the packets of enchilada seasoning, stir, then add in the jalapeño.  Turn the heat down to low.

Now take your casserole pan and set it onto a cookie sheet.  I do this in case any of the sauce bubbles over, it’ll land on the pan instead of the oven itself.  This is where your layering begins.  I always start with a little of the sauce in the very bottom of the pan, but it’s probably not necessary.  On top of that, add your first six corn tortillas.  Next ladle some of the sauce across the tortillas.  Add a layer of grated cheese.  Then six more tortillas, sauce and cheese.  Depending on how deep your dish is, you should get three layers of tortillas.

When all of your layers are finished, top with the remaining cheese.  You should have a nice thick layer here.  Then put it in the oven and bake at 425° for 20 minutes until the cheese is melted on top.  I usually do about 25 minutes so that the cheese starts to bubble and crisp a little more, but that’s my personal preference.  Once you take it out of the oven, let it sit for 5-10 minutes so that it’ll be hot but shouldn’t scald the mouth.  I always make jasmine rice to go with this.  Salad works really well as another side.


Plate up with rice and salad and enjoy!  ♥♥


19 Comments Add yours

  1. Eve says:

    I can haz such a want to swim in this!!! XD

    1. LOL That would be a bit spicy, greasy and messy!

  2. Katy says:

    We’ve eaten some green chile enchiladas recently. I don’t know that I’ve ever used a mix for enchilada stuff, but I’ve also never made enchiladas. 😛 My dad does, though, and he pretty much always has a bunch of homemade green chile around for quick meals. Om nom nom. I really would like to do more casserole type stuff… it’s really such a good way to combine and cook things with a minimum of dirty pans… and yet I never do! Another thing on the to-cook list…

    1. Kass loves green chili chicken enchiladas. There are a few places she likes to get them at around here, one in particular. I love “normal” enchiladas with the red sauce, but I want to branch out and try a few different things. Casseroles are easy and make great leftovers, but you want to watch them because they -can- be heavier. There’s a Mexican casserole (did I already give you the recipe for it?) that I need to make again soon, and I’ll post that one to here, too.

      1. Katy says:

        I haven’t had the traditional red enchiladas in quite a while. My dad used to make them, too, but at the time I refused pretty much anything even pretending to be a little spicy. Now he’s more fond of green chile, I think because it’s just what he can get easily here.

        Casseroles are something we pretty rarely (if ever) made in my family, so it just kind of didn’t ever occur to me to make them. Though it’s a valid point about them being heavier.

        You probably did give me the Mexican casserole recipe… I know you gave me a folder full of recipes.

  3. I still love traditional red enchiladas. I usually make the enchilada casserole at home, which is semi-traditional. It just uses tomato sauce. Though I want to try it with something different soon just to play with enchiladas. There’s a restaurant here in town called Mamacita’s, and Kass tried chicken enchiladas with this one sauce that’s usually put on the shrimp enchiladas…it’s a cilantro cream sauce. It’s soooooooooo light there. Whenever I get the chicken enchiladas with those and the charro beans instead of refried, I walk away full but not miserably full. It’s great. I’d love to figure out how to make it.

    I’ve got a casserole that I’m going to make this winter when it’s cold because I can’t imagine eating it in the summer when it’s so damned hot. It’s a biscuit-topped stew one. They have them in boxes, but they’re over-priced and I can’t think that they’re tasty. I’ve always just made them from scratch, and none of them ever wind up leftover for long. I’ve always made it with chicken stew, but I might try it with homemade beef stew one of these days.

  4. I’m going to be making this on Sunday and was wondering how big those ‘large’ cans of tomato sauce are supposed to be. Cause I got some BIG ones. Not bulk big, but 29 oz big. Too big?

    P.S. I FIANLLY found the enchilada seasoning. Had to go to a completely different grocery store to do so though… >.<

    1. I think that should be the right size. I can’t remember now. You’ll know when you open them and put them in the pot though. And yay for finding the packets! They do seem to be out a lot.

      1. Ha! They weren’t just out, the first grocery I went to didn’t even have a place on the shelf for them. They had practically twenty dozen different taco seasoning packets but no enchilada packets. 😛

        Oh well, I got ’em eventually. 😀

        1. That’s weird. And which HEB did you go to to not find them and which one did you find them at?

          1. The Weber and Holly one was out, the giant Staples and Saratoga one was the store I found them in.

            1. While I don’t like the Weber and Holly HEB because they are -always- out of shit, I -hate- the HEB Plus. I think I hate -all- HEB Pluses because it seems like the rudest people shop at them. You could always try the HEB at Robert and Alameda. I always liked that one, and you can sometimes run into Robb and Vanessa there. 🙂

              1. True! But with that one being so small, you sometimes can’t find what you’re looking for. As annoying as the Plus one is, if you go around 9 in the morning or 11 at night Monday-Thursday, you’re usually alright.

                1. I was always at the mercy of someone else’s schedule, so I couldn’t go when it was less busy. The HEB Plus in Taylor is just as bad. The people treat my brother like shit. He has to use those riding carts because it hurts his knees to walk the store, and people there just walk right in front of him and hover and he can never get what he wants because those fuckers are rude. And the HEB Plus in Kyle can be just as bad. It’s like…people hear the word Plus and they think they can behave however they want.

                  1. Funny, I’ve never had any trouble at the Taylor HEB, except those funny looks from a mom and her daughter back when I had really short hair and they were trying to figure out if I were a boy or a girl. 😛

                    1. It probably also has a lot to do with the fact that you’re young and cute and perky and not an “overweight” middle-aged man who has to use one of those carts. You’re easier to maneuver around and people aren’t tempted to just stand in your way and look at you as if you don’t have a right to exist. People suck.

  5. Lol! I just realized you wrote “Heat the oven” not “Pre-heat the oven”. I ❤ you!

    1. No no no. I learned my lesson from George Carlin. You -heat- the oven, you board a plane. You get IN the plane, not ON it. Seriously, I think some of the strongest English language lessons I’ve learned were from him and not from grade-school teachers.

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