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Best Easy Chile Relleno Casserole (+ Gluten Free Option)

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Easy Chile Relleno Casserole is delicious vegetarian dish made with whole roasted Hatch green chiles, stuffed with Monterey Jack cheese, topped with an egg, milk batter, then baked into fluffy perfection. Easily adapted to be gluten free.

Whether you are looking for a breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner recipe, this Easy Chile Relleno Casserole fills the bill!

If you are looking for quick and easy casseroles, you might enjoy this Chicken or Turkey Divan or Chicken & Wild Rice Casserole.

Piece of Chile Relleno Casserole on a white plate with a fork holding up a melting cheesy bite.

Easy to whip up, uses canned whole roasted green chiles*, stuffed with cheddar or jack cheese then simply combine 4 additional ingredients mix, pour, bake! AMAZING!

*FRESH TIP | I have been unable to find whole roasted chiles lately, so I modified and used 2-3 (4 oz) cans of diced green chile’s instead and just place them in the dish, with diced chunks of cheese or shredded cheese. Turned out great!

A casserole dish filled with cheese stuffed hatch chile peppers, with an egg, flour and milk mixture poured on top, topped with grated cheese. | thefreshcooky.com

I love recipes like this, they work for any meal need, it tastes great leftover and reheated AND it takes less than 20 minutes to put together. It does take awhile to bake though, so make sure you allow for that timing.

Chile Relleno Casserole

I originally had this dish when a friend invited several of us over for brunch, it is the best brunch recipe!

I asked her for it on the spot and I have been making it ever since! Make it ahead, pop it in the oven and shazam when your guests arrive, out it comes, piping hot, dripping with melted, stringy cheese!

I grew up in Southern California with real Mexican food, real Chile Relleno’s, we had a family we helped out growing up that would make the most incredible rellenos, but they are a decent amount of work and we’re just trying to get dinner on the table some nights — amiright?

A casserole dish with baked chile rellenos, melty cheese, golden brown on top with a fluffy egg souffle type mixture. | The Fresh Cooky

What is the difference between a Chili, Chilli, and Chile?

I have always thought of “chili” as the beef based stew we make in the fall and wintertime, and Chile as something with peppers, turns out, I am not all that wrong, in fact, depending on where you live, just about any variation goes! I don’t care how you spell it — just make it! Your family will thank you!

The difference between chilichilli, and chile, is usually a matter of location. In American English, “chili” is the most common spelling for the spicy peppers as well as the stew and hotdog topping. In British English the preferred spelling is “chilli.” In Spanish speaking countries and regions of the US, “chile” is the most common variant.

Merriam-Webster
Facebook post for best easy chile relleno casserole with hatch green chiles and oozing melted jack cheese | thefreshcooky.com

How do you make Chile Relleno Casserole?

This casserole is so easy, because it’s made using canned whole roasted chile peppers.

No roasting, sweating and pulling skins off here, though you are certainly welcome to do so, probably taste even better! For me, this recipe is tops, because someone else did all of that for me!

But if you are a spice wimp (me-me-me!) then you will want to rinse the peppers in cold water and then carefully scrape the seeds out, the seeds are where the heat is. If you like the heat, by all means keep them inside!

Then you simply slice up a hunk o’ cheese, into long “sticks” and tuck them inside the chile peppers. My favorite for these is jack cheese, but you can use cheddar, pepper jack or any deliciously melting cheese, or be authentic and trying the delicious and slightly salty cotija Mexican cheese.

If the pepper splits, don’t worry about it, just roll it together as best you can and lay it in a lightly greased (spray oil works great here) pan. Tucked them nice and close together.

The original recipe makes a nice sized 9×9 dish of chili rellenos — it also very easily doubles, making it in a 9×13 dish.

finished pan of chile rellenos

Are Chili Rellenos Spicy?

This dish, made with canned chile peppers is very mild. I prefer roasted Hatch Green Chile’s which I can purchase in our local grocery store, they have delicious flavor but are still very mild, even for spice wimps like me!

If you want to kick up the spice in your dish, try using pepper jack cheese, adding a few (or a lot) of shakes of Tabasco or Cholula sauce to the milk and egg mixture.

Can I Make Chile Relleno’s Ahead of Time?

The short answer is yes! Assemble the chile’s and cheese, mix the egg and milk mixture and pour over the chiles, cover and refrigerate until ready to bake.

Set on counter, allowing to come to room temperature 20-30 minutes prior to baking. They may be baked ahead of time, but you will not achieve the same fluffy rise as with the first baking.

casserole with hatch green chiles stuffed with cheese, with a milk, egg mixture poured on top, sprinkled with more grated cheese. Easy Chile Rellenos | thefreshcooky

Can I freeze Baked Chile Rellenos?

I love a good freezer meal, like this Coconut Lime Chicken or Chipotle Chicken so I am all about anything that you can double or triple and then stick one or two in the freezer for one of “those” days.

Make sure it’s completely baked and cooled, wrapped well. I would recommend allowing it to thaw in the refrigerator overnight, then reheating in a 250-300 degree oven (covered with foil) or microwaving.

Gluten Free Chile Relleno Casserole

I have made this dish gluten free many times, and it’s so simple to do, just swap your all purpose flour out for your favorite Gluten Free All Purpose Flour, this is my favorite!

I have many recipes on my blog that are either gluten free or easily converted to be gluten free. Why you ask?

Well my brother and his family are mostly gluten free and I have oodles of friends who are, so I make it a point of always trying to have a GF option!

Check out all of my Gluten Free options here!

forkful of chile rellenos

These rellenos are perfect for a weekend breakfast, great as an addition to any Cinco de Mayo spread, or an easy weeknight dinner.

Serve them with creamy refried beans, Mexican Rice, a little salsa and some sour cream. And perhaps a light and refreshing margarita as well!

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as our family does! If so, pop to the bottom and leave a comment!

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Easy Chile Relleno Casserole
Yield: 4-6 servings

Easy Chile Relleno Casserole

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 50 minutes

Best Chile Relleno Casserole is an easy, delicious vegetarian dish made with Monterey Jack cheese stuffed whole roasted chiles, topped with an egg, milk batter, topped with more cheese, then baked to fluffy perfection. Easily adapted to be gluten free.

Ingredients

  • 2-3 cans (4 oz each) whole roasted green chiles (or one large 27 oz can) I like Hatch Green Chiles, rinsed and seeds cleaned out (or 2-3 small cans of chopped green chili's)
  • ½ lb Monterey Jack Cheese, sliced into sticks (or try other cheese, pepper jack, cheddar, cotijo)
  • 2 eggs, large
  • ½ cup flour (substitute with a good 1-1 all purpose gluten free flour)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups milk (I used whole milk)
  • Extra cheese grated for sprinkling on top

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F and grease a 9x9 inch baking dish (or 8x11).
  2. Rinse chiles in cold water, scraping out seeds and the inside veins (leave seeds in if you desire a hotter dish). Cutting cheese into narrow sticks, place 1-2 sticks inside each chile and then place in greased baking dish.
  3. Beat eggs in bowl, gradually adding flour, salt and milk whisking until smooth. Pour over chiles and sprinkle with grated cheese.
  4. Bake 1 - 1 ½ hours or until browned and firm. Serve immediately

Notes

I have been unable to find whole roasted chiles lately, so I modified and used 2-3 (4 oz) cans of diced green chile's instead and just place them in the dish, with diced chunks of cheese or shredded cheese. Turned out great!

This recipe easily doubles or triples, in fact I can never find 4 oz chiles, and only find 27 oz, I typically double the recipe using all chiles between the two pans.

Make Ahead | You may assemble this dish up to 1 day ahead of time, covering and refrigerating. When ready to bake, remove from fridge and allow to sit on counter for 20-30 minutes before baking as directed above.

Freezer Friendly | Bake as directed allowing to cool completely. Cover with plastic wrap or foil and freeze, freezes well up to a month if covered well. Allow to thaw overnight in fridge, then reheat in 250-300°F oven covered with foil until heated through or may be reheated by the slice in the microwave.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 266Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 107mgSodium: 677mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 0gSugar: 1gProtein: 16g

The nutritional information is estimated and may not be entirely accurate, at times it pulls information for suggestions and options which may increase calories, etc. Nutritional information will change based on used ingredients, quantities used, etc.

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