Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Lightened Mexican Chicken Casserole

So, Cinco de Mayo is in a couple of days and I'm starting to see lots of yummy looking recipes for everyone's favorite Mexican dishes popping up on a lot of food blogs I regularly read.  I thought I'd offer up this recipe in honor of the week that also happens to be another of my favorite Weight Watcher Point's-friendly dishes.  I love this casserole because its another one of those dishes that tastes like something that's completely indulgent and fattening and you think, "this has to be blowing my diet" but ITS NOT! It even has several types of cheese in it! A total win/win situation!  You don't even have to tell your family this is a "light" recipe because I guarantee they won't know the difference.  

This is a good sized casserole that yields about 8 servings.  We find we usually enjoy this more the day after its cooked so all of the flavors have had a chance to meld together. 

Mexican Chicken Casserole

1 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
2 (4.5 oz) cans chopped green chiles, divided ( I only had 4 oz. cans and they worked fine)
1 3/4 pounds skinned, boned chicken breasts
2 tsp. olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup evaporated skim milk
1 cup (4 oz.) shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/4 cup (2 oz.) tub-style light cream cheese
1 (10 oz) can enchilada sauce
12 (6-inch) corn tortillas
cooking spray
1/2 cup (2 oz) shredded reduced fat- extra sharp cheddar cheese
1 oz. tortilla chips, crushed (the recipe says this is about 6 chips but on the brand I used, 1 oz= 12 chips so depends on the kind and size of chip)

Combine broth and 1 can of chiles in a large skillet; bring to a boil.  Add chicken; reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes or until chicken is done, turning chicken once.  Remove chicken from cooking liquid, reserving cooking liquid; cool chicken.  Shred meat with 2 forks, and set aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.  Add 1 can of chiles and onion; saute 3 minutes or until soft.  Add reserved cooking liquid, milk, Monterey Jack, cream cheese, and enchilada sauce; stir well.  Stir in shredded chicken; cook 2 minutes. Remove from heat.

Place 4 tortillas in the bottom of a 2 quart casserole coated with cooking spray.  Spoon 2 cups chicken mixture over tortillas.  Repeat layers twice, ending with chicken mixture.  Sprinkle with cheddar cheese and chips.  Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated.  Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Nutritional Information:  1 cup= 9 Weight Watcher's Points Plus (35.6g protein, 31.3, carbohydrates, 11.4g fat, 3g fiber).

Adapted from Cooking Light


  1. This looks like a tasty casserole! I'll probably halve the recipe and make it on May 4th so it will taste even more amazing (per your suggestion!)

  2. This looks so good, Ryan :) I love Cooking Light recipes!

  3. This looks delicious. I'm copying it to serve while my sisters are visiting (from Virginia) at the end of the month.

    Wow, it is a small world! The Brown Mansion was used as the school administration building for many years and was turned into a museum about ten years ago. Chesterton has become somewhat of an "artsy" destination.


  4. Lovely, tasty casserole. I can never get enough Mexican food.

  5. Ryan, this looks wonderful! I don't make a lot of casseroles, but somehow anything Mexican and cheesy is always worth it!!!

  6. love the cheese selection.. perfect to give that kick of slight heat :)

  7. I had no idea you were a WW fan. Me too! Love it! Although I must admit many of my food choices on my blog are not so WW friendly. I like that you have set aside a tag for this. The casserole looks delicious!

  8. I love that you were able to lighten this casserole. Mexican food can be very fattening. I've bookmarked this to try soon. I hope you have a great day. Blessings...Mary

  9. Yum, I love decadent food that turns out to be WW-friendly. This sounds really naughty but I can have second helpings without feeling too guilty? - totally win/win!

  10. What a great casserole. I love Mexican flavors and am thrilled to see a lighter dish with all of those great tastes!

  11. Mexican food seem to bewitch with their captivating exotic flavors and tastes, and it is amazing how many food lovers fell for its charm (although it's not hard to see why) :D


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