The King Ranch Chicken casserole is a fairly easy and inexpensive casserole to make with minimal preparation time. It requires a limited cooking knowledge to prepare. It is a very filling casserole, a 9 x 13 pan will feed about 8 adults. This is a Mexican type of food and is similar to enchiladas. The main ingredients are tortillas, chicken, peppers, onions, and cheese. If you like Mexican food and enchiladas you will love this casserole! This is also an excellent casserole for someone that is single or has a small family that wouldn't be able to eat a whole 9 x 13 casserole, because it is very good reheated unlike many other foods.
Step 1: Ingredients
Listed below are the ingredients needed to make King Ranch Chicken casserole. The photo below also shows what each ingredient looks like and labels each one.
1 Medium Pepper
1 Medium Onion
2 cans of Cream of Chicken Soup
2 cans of Rotel
3 Boneless Chicken Breast
9 8" Tortillas
12 oz. Shredded Cheddar Cheese
8 oz. Mozzerella Cheese
Step 2: Cube and Cook Chicken
To begin you will need to cube the chicken using an appropriate meat knife. The best way to cube it would be to cut the chicken breasts into about 5 lengthwise strips and then cut the strips into cubes. The cubes should be no bigger than the ones shown in the photos below. The smaller they are the more evenly they can be distributed throughout the casserole. Once it is cubed you will then cook it in a medium size frying pan on medium-high heat until the chicken is white all of the way through. You will need to stir it around once in awhile while you are cooking it to ensure that it all gets cooked evenly and thoroughly. Feel free to season it with your favorite chicken seasoning for added flavor.
Step 3: Dice Pepper and Onion
Next you will dice the pepper and onion. You can do this by using a knife or if you have some type of food processor, such as a Pampered Chef Food Chopper, that would work well too. Make sure to take the outer dry skin off of the onion before dicing it. If you choose to use a knife the best way to cut up the onion is to cut it into sixteenths cutting from the top to the bottom and then cutting those strips into small pieces. Cutting the pepper is similar to the onion. You will quarter the pepper and clean the seeds out of it. Then you will cut the quarters into strips and and cut the strips into small pieces. The pieces should be as small, if not smaller, as the pieces shown below in the second photo.
Step 4: Create Rotel Chicken Mix
For this step you will need to mix the cream of chicken soup, Rotel, cubed chicken, diced peppers, and onions together in a medium to large microwavable bowl. You may need a can opener to open the cans of soup and Rotel. You do not need to drain the Rotel, just dump all of the contents into the bowl. Once you have this all mixed together you will then heat it in the microwave for 3-4 minutes on high power. You will need to stir it a couple of times during this period to ensure that it gets heated evenly.
Step 5: Mix Cheese
Next you will mix the mozzarella and cheddar cheese together in a medium size bowl. If you don't like mozzarella or cheddar cheese feel free to use what ever kind of cheese you like. You can use boughten shredded cheese or if you prefer to buy a block of cheese and shred it you can do that also.
Step 6: Layering Ingredients
The next step is to assemble the casserole in a deep 9 x 13 inch pan by layering the tortillas, Rotel chicken mix, and the cheese. You begin by greasing the bottom of the pan with butter or some type of cooking spray. You will then tear three tortillas into small pieces and spread the pieces across the bottom of the pan. Next you will spread one third of the Rotel chicken mix across the tortillas. Then on top of the mix you will spread one third of the cheese. Try to spread the ingredients evenly across the area of the pan. You will repeat these layers two more times and then the casserole will be ready to cook!
Step 7: Cooking
You will need to make sure the oven is preheated to 325 degrees farenheit. You will then cook the casserole for approximately 50 to 60 minutes or until it is hot in the center. To check if it is hot in the center you can stick a butter knife or something similar, like the handle of a spoon, into the center of the casserole and then touch it to your lips or feel it with your fingers. The residue on the knife should be hot all the way down to the tip of the knife. To finish cooking the casserole you should turn the oven up to 400 degrees farenheit and cook it for an additional five minutes. Once this is complete the casserole will be ready to serve! Depending on how hot you like your food you may want to let it cool down for a few minutes before eating. If you would like you can serve the casserole with hot sauce and sour cream or anything else that you might like on enchiladas or tacos. This casserole is also good served with sides of Mexican rice and refried beans. Thank you for your interest in this Instructable, and I hope you find it useful! Enjoy!
Step 8: Additional Option
This is another way you can make the Rotel Chicken mix but it may take a little longer. In a large sauce pan saute the peppers and onions in 1/4 of a cup of butter over medium heat. Once the peppers and onions are cooked and tender add the cream of chicken soup, Rotel, and chicken, and mix together. Heat this mixture completely through. You will then follow the rest of the instructions in the same order to finish making the casserole.