Texas Ranch Chicken Casserole

This hearty Tex-Mex style casserole is comfort food at it's finest. With chicken, cheese, corn tortillas, peppers and a creamy sauce, it's a great dish for potlucks, parties, or just a weeknight meal.

This Texas Ranch Chicken Casserole is comfort food at it’s finest. Made as an enchilada-style casserole with tortillas, it’s creamy, hearty, and always a hit wherever we serve it.

This casserole was so delicious and and so easy to prepare. You could easily make it in the morning and throw it in the oven at dinnertime for a tasty meal in minutes.

History of king ranch chicken (or texas ranch chicken)

This recipe dates back to the early 40s and 50s. While there is no definitive story for where this came from, rumors say it began on King Ranch in Texas(hence the name), the largest ranch in the United States.

Most people assume that’s where the recipe originated, but nobody knows for sure who invented it.

Fun fact: there is actually no ranch in the recipe, but the ranch refers to “where it all began.”

HOw to make texas ranch chicken casserole

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large, nonstick skillet over medium heat, saute onion, green pepper and red pepper in oil until tender. Add garlic and saute an additional minute. Stir in chicken, soups, tomatoes and chili powder.


Line a 9 x 13 inch baking pan with half of the tortilla strips.


Top with half of the chicken mixture.

Top chicken mixture with 1 cup of cheddar cheese. Repeat layers.


Bake uncovered for 30 minutes or until cheese is completely melted.

What to serve with Texas Ranch Chicken Casserole

We like to serve King Ranch Chicken with a big green salad like this one, a big helping of green veggies (like our Oven Roasted Parmesan Broccoli), or a big fruit salad like this one.

Substitutions or additions

  • Other types of condensed soups (we know a lot of people don’t always have cream of celery on hand, so you could definitely do 2 cans of cream of chicken, or substitute another type of condensed soup. It may change the flavor slightly, but not too much!)
  • chips instead of corn tortillas
  • flour tortillas instead of corn tortillas
  • rotisserie chicken or canned chicken when you’re in a pinch

Can it be frozen?

Yes! You can definitely make this casserole ahead of time and freeze it before baking.

To freeze, assemble the casserole and cover tightly with aluminum foil, or use a freezer-safe baking dish with a tight lid (do not bake it first).

To reheat, thaw the casserole for 24 hours in the fridge, then bake as directed.

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More Casserole Recipes to Try

Serves: 8

Texas Ranch Chicken Casserole

This creamy casserole is packed with flavor and is sure to be a hit with your family!

25 minPrep Time

35 minCook Time

1 hrTotal Time

Save RecipeSave Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 onion (diced)
  • 1 green bell pepper (diced)
  • 1 red bell pepper (diced)
  • 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 3 cups cooked chicken breast (cubed)
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can cream of celery soup
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes and green chiles (undrained)
  • 1 Tablespoon chili powder
  • 12 corn tortillas (cut into 1-inch strips and divided)
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (divided)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large, nonstick skillet over medium heat, saute onion, green pepper and red pepper in oil until tender. Add garlic and saute an additional minute. Stir in chicken, soups, tomatoes and chili powder.
  3. Line a 9 x 13 inch baking pan with half of the tortilla strips.
  4. Top with half of the chicken mixture and 1 cup of cheese. Repeat layers.
  5. Bake uncovered for 30 minutes or until cheese is completely melted.

Tags

Cuisines
American
Courses
Main Course
Dinner
Cooking
Baking
Allergy
egg free
seafood free
treenut free
sesame free
mustard free
7.8.1.2
302
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If you love this creamy chicken casserole, you’ll love our creamy chicken taquitos, too. See how to make them below:

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Comment on this Recipe

45 Responses to “Texas Ranch Chicken Casserole”

  1. Kristina
    "Ranch" doesn't refer to the salad dressing, but an actual ranch in Texas. Like someone mentioned earlier, here in Texas, we call this recipe King Ranch Chicken (based on one of Texas' largest ranches near Kingsville, Texas). :-)
  2. Julie Heikes
    I made this tonight and it turned out great! I cooked the chicken on my griddle, and took it one step further on the recipe and made homemade corn tortillas then fried the strips so they didn't get mushy. My kids are asking for seconds!!! YUMM! Thanks for the recipe!
  3. Made this according to recipe but added 3/4 cup wild rice and 1 cup water. Made in my new rectangular 9 x13 crock pot. Put whole pieces of raw chicken on top, then spooned some of mixture over top of chicken. Cooked on high for 5 hours. Came out great. My husband said it reminded him of spanish rice.
  4. Heather
    Not my favorite. I tasted the mixture before layering it, and it was super bland. It was in desperate need of seasoning. I doctored it with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and cumin. I also topped it off with some sliced olives. Was ok, but I don't think I'll be making it again.
  5. Charlene B
    So far for recipes, you ladies are 2 for 2! This is the second recipe of yours I have tried, and it was a hit. I baked off bunches of chicken and vegetables on Monday, and had TONS of leftover cooked chicken (3 breasts, 2 legs, and 4 thighs). We were tired of the leftovers, so I went on a search to change it up. I came across your recipe, had everything at home, and figured why not! I used: 3 cups mixed chicken meat (white and dark from leftovers), HOT Rotel chiles and tomatoes, and flour tortillas. For the soups, I only had lowfat cream of chicken and lowfat cream of mushroom...so I made it work! Lastly, when sweet peppers are on sale, I buy them in bulk then spend a day dicing peppers. I freeze one diced pepper in a bag, so on busy nights I have cut up veggies ready to go (I do the same for onions too). So I used all green peppers, since that's what I had. Put is all together, and baked until bubbly. My husband had to helpings, and took some for his lunch today. This is a keeper, and is going in the file for leftover chicken night!

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