The Pioneer Woman

The Pioneer Woman

King Ranch Chicken

  • prep time75 min
  • total time 75 min
  • serves 8 - 12

A cheesy make-ahead chicken casserole.

383 Ratings
Directions for: King Ranch Chicken


Butter, for the baking dish

1 10.5-oz can cream of chicken soup

1 10.5-oz can cream of mushroom soup

1 10-oz can diced tomatoes with chiles, such as Rotel

2 Tbsp chili powder

½ tsp ground cumin

½ tsp kosher salt

½ tsp freshly ground black pepper

2 cups chicken broth

16 corn tortillas, torn into pieces

1 roasted whole chicken (rotisserie chicken works great!), cooled and torn into chunks

1 large white or yellow onion, finely diced

1 red bell pepper, seeded and finely diced

1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and finely diced

1 jalapeno, finely diced

1 ½ cups grated sharp Cheddar

1 ½ cups grated Monterey Jack cheese


1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

2. Make the soup/tomato mixture, which is very bizarre and might scare you off. But please: Be brave and stick with me through this challenging time. You won't be sorry! In a large bowl, combine the soups and diced tomatoes and chiles. Add the chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper and chicken broth. Then--this is the time to be strong--stir it all together. Trust me!

3. Line the bottom of the baking dish with half of the torn tortillas. Layer on half the chicken. Add half the onion, bell pepper and jalapeno. Sprinkle on half the cheese and pour on half the wacky soup mixture. Then repeat the layers, beginning with the rest of the tortillas, and ending with the rest of the you-know-what.

4. Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes, then uncover and bake until bubbling, another 15 minutes.

5. Look at that! Serve it with a salad and a dang hearty appetite.

6. To make ahead and freeze: Fold foil over the unbaked casserole and freeze until solid. Then, lift the foil-topped casserole out of the pan, wrap the whole thing in plastic wrap and freeze until needed. When ready to bake, remove the plastic wrap, put the foiled-topped casserole back into a 9-by-13-inch baking dish and thaw. Bake at 350ºF following the baking instructions above.

Tips and Substitutions

Cook’s Note
Change things up! Turn the casserole into well-behaved enchiladas. Put the vegetables and chicken into corn tortillas, roll them up, pour the sauce over them and top with cheese. Turn it until a lasagna! Use layers of cooked lasagna noodles instead of corn tortillas.

Source and Credits

Adapted from "The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Come and Get It!: Simple, Scrumptious Recipes for Crazy Busy Lives" by Ree Drummond © William Morrow 2017. Provided courtesy of Ree Drummond. All rights reserved.

See more: Casserole, Chicken, Cheese, Pepper, Tomatoes

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