Monday, February 1, 2016

King Ranch Chicken Casserole

I posted this picture of my King Ranch Chicken casserole the other day on Facebook and had a few requests for the recipe. This is a traditional Texas casserole, supposedly from the kitchens of the actual ranch in south Texas. King Ranch is one of the largest ranches in the U.S. and is about 825,000 acres – their website says they are bigger than the state of Rhode Island. I was told this was served to ranch hands for lunch, etc. I can’t verify that story, but I can verify that is one of the yummiest (and easiest) casseroles to make. It also freezes well. I usually just add a simple tossed salad to the side and call it a meal. My bad picture doesn't do it justice!   :)

*1 large  chicken, baked, boned and shredded
1 (10 3/4-ounce) can cream of chicken soup
1 (10 3/4-ounce) can cream of mushroom soup
1 cup chicken broth
1 (10-ounce) can of Ro-Tel tomatoes
½ large onion, chopped
1 clove garlic
½ bell pepper
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp cumin
Chili powder to taste
**12 (8-inch) corn tortillas cut into small squares
2 cups store-bought grated Mexican-blend cheese (8 ounces)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large saucepan set over medium-high heat, sauté the onion, garlic, and bell pepper. Combine the cream of chicken soup, cream of mushroom soup, chicken broth, and tomatoes. Stir in salt, pepper, cumin, and chili powder. Stir until warm, about 5-10 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Grease a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.  Layer the tortillas, then the chicken, then the sauce, then cheese in the pan. 

Bake for 45 minutes or until the cheese is hot and bubbly. Enjoy!!!

*If you don't want to bake a whole chicken, just get some breasts and thighs, or the chicken pieces of your choice. I like to mix the white and dark meat in most of my recipes, because the dark adds extra flavor. 

**I have also used flour tortillas, which I prefer to corn. It makes a milder casserole, and I really like the flavor. 

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