It is another busy week of running the kids here and there. The question that is always on my mind is “What should I make for dinner tonight”? The Italian in me was craving a delicious Lasagna with all its layers of my homemade sauce, creamy Ricotta cheese mixture and lasagna noodles. But the other half of me absolutely loves Mexican cuisine and wanted a dish that was a bit lighter. With our busy schedule, I was also looking for a meal that was simpler to assemble and get on the table for my family.
My family adores Enchiladas. Like me, they have become huge fans of Mexican cuisine. There is nothing better than finding an authentic Mexican dish with all those fresh flavors such as Avocados and Cilantro along with all the seasonings. I could put Cilantro on everything. Well, almost anything! These ingredients are definitely staples in my pantry and fridge along with beans & rice.
I thought, why not combine my two loves? I decided to make a Mexican Lasagna. It had all the layers I was looking for (similar to a Lasagna) and all the fresh ingredients like the Avocado and Cilantro. We lightened up our lasagna by using Corn Tortilla wraps instead of flour wraps. This also allowed me to make the dish gluten free. Instead of using beef, I baked and shredded chicken that was cooked in Salsa. You ask, “where is the side of rice and beans”? Don’t worry, we didn’t forget about them. You’ll find those in each layer of the lasagna. For a little kick we topped our Mexican Lasagna with my homemade Pickled Jalapeños.
I love how simple this dish was to create. I was able to serve my family a beautiful looking dinner even with our busy schedule. Not to mention, every bite and layer was so delicious and bursting with flavor from all the fresh ingredients. To make it even simpler, you can prepare your shredded chicken in advance (even the day ahead). What I love about a dish like this is you can add any of your favorite ingredients to the layers. You can also have fun with different toppings. Oh and by the way, it tastes just as yummy the next day leftover! I am just sad that our Mexican Lasagna is all gone! The family absolutely loved this dish. I see me making another one in my near future.
If you would like to top your Lasagna with Pickled Jalapeños click here to learn how easy they are to make: Pickled Jalapeños
Dee’s Mexican Lasagna
Makes approx. 8 Servings
15-20, Corn Tortilla Wraps
1 (19 oz.) large can, Enchilada Sauce *I used Mild in this recipe
1 can (7 oz.), Diced Green Chiles
1 Can (15.5 oz.), Black Beans, low-sodium
1 (8.5 oz.) Bag, Brown Basmati Rice *used Uncle Ben’s in this recipe
1 (16 oz.) block, Colby Jack Cheese, shredded
4 Chicken Breasts
1 small Jar, Salsa
1 Cup, Chicken Broth
1 Teaspoon, Garlic Salt
3-4, Garlic Cloves, rough chopped
- Sour Cream
- Avocado, sliced or cut into chunks
- Pickled Jalapeños *see below for my recipe
- Fresh Cilantro, rough chopped
- Extra Enchilada Sauce: to drizzle over top!
- Lime Wedges
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a baking dish with cooking spray.
Pour salsa into the baking dish (just enough to cover the bottom of the dish). Place the chicken into the baking dish and pour the remaining salsa over top. Add the chicken broth, garlic cloves, garlic salt and S&P. Bake in the oven for approx. 30 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Remove from the oven. Pull the chicken out of the dish and let it rest on a board until it is just cool enough to handle. Using 2 forks, shred all the chicken. As you shred the chicken place it back into the baking dish to let it sit in the salsa mixture (the chicken will continue to soak up all those flavors/juice).
Turn the stove up to 400 Degrees.
Heat a large cast iron skillet on the stove, over medium-low heat. Add a layer of Enchilada sauce to the bottom of the skillet (just enough to cover the bottom of pan). Add a layer of corn tortilla wraps (no need to preheat them). Add enough wraps to cover the bottom; I used about 5-6 per layer. Then add some shredded cheese, shredded chicken, diced chiles, black beans, brown basmati rice, and a little more cheese (so the next layer of wraps sticks to it when the cheese melts). Repeat the layers until you reach the top of your skillet. Once you have reached the top, you should have a top layer of wraps. Pour Enchilada sauce over top to completely cover the wraps (this will keep them from dying out too much in oven). Then sprinkle cheese over top.
Place the skillet into the oven and bake just until the lasagna is nice and bubbly and the cheese is all melted, about 20 minutes or so (cooking time can vary depending on how many layers you have).
Remove from the oven and set aside to rest for about 5 minutes. Cut and serve. Top with any of your favorite toppings: sour cream, diced Avocado (with a little squeeze of lime on them), pickled jalapeños, fresh chopped cilantro and a drizzle of Enchilada sauce.
Tortilla Wraps: I have cooked (baked) with flour tortilla wraps, Brown Rice Wraps and Corn wraps. I like the corn wraps in this recipe; I feel like they held up better than the flour wraps. The Flour wraps tend to get a bit gummy when cooking them in this dish. The Brown Rice Wraps are another great option if you like those. Both the Brown Rice and Corn Tortilla wraps are GF (gluten free); they make this dish a bit lighter to eat vs. the flour tortillas.
My Pickled Jalapeños are so delicious added to this dish. They add such a nice bite to the dish. Click here to learn how to make the Pickled Jalapeños: Pickled Jalapeños
If you like spicy food, feel free to add the Pickled Jalapeños to each layer of the lasagna or even hot sauce. You could also add some fresh chopped Cilantro to each layer if you like. You can add any of your favorite ingredients to this dish.
My kids are not big fans of beans, jalapeños and chiles (or anything too spicy), so I made them a small skillet that just had the wraps, enchilada sauce, shredded chicken and cheese.