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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 and 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 recipe fills the bill!

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

Fork holding up cheesy bite of baked chile relleno casserole with square of chile relleno on plate.

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. Plan ahead, this recipe for baked chile rellenos does take awhile to bake

Baked Chile Relleno Recipe

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

Ingredients for Easy Chile Relleno Recipe

Pretty basic ingredients; remember the quantities and all details are in the recipe card at the end of the post.

  • Whole roasted green chiles | I use canned, but home roasted is great. May also substitute chopped green chiles as well.
  • Monterey Jack Cheese | Slice into sticks! Can also try Pepper Jack cheese, Cheddar, Cotijo, etc.
  • Eggs | I always use large eggs in my cooking and baking
  • All purpose flour | May substitute with a good 1-1 all purpose gluten free flour, this is my favorite.
  • Milk | I use whole milk in my recipes, but you can substitute whatever you normally use
  • Extra cheese grated for sprinkling on top

How do you make Chile Relleno Casserole?

Why is this easy chile relleno recipe so great, 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 Casserole 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 try as much as possible to provide an easy gluten free variation; my brother and his family are 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, try making them along with this delicious Chilaquiles Recipe for a great 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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37 Comments

  1. I will try your delish recipe tonite to go with a ‘foraged’ green salad. Yeah, what is it with not being able to find a 29 ounce can of Whole Mild green chiles? – when I finally searched online, – ebay was selling a case of them for $104.00!?? Holy Cow!!

  2. 5 stars
    My husband loves chile rellenos but I had no idea how to make them. I found your recipe and decided to try them. (I didn’t know I could get canned peppers. Where have I been?) This recipe is delicious and I would definitely serve this to guests. Win-win! My husband loved this dish!

  3. The first time I made this it was a big hit with my husband, not so much my picky 20 year old. I followed the recipe exactly. At the request of my husband I am now making it for a second time. It’s a keeper recipe!

  4. Yummy. I added an extra egg because I used 2% milk. I roasted, peeled seeded and chopped four Poblano chilies. I layered torn up slices of Monterey Jack cheese and mixed it with the chilies. I used King Arthur gluten free flour. I baked it for 1 1/2 hours. I love the custard center. I’d make this again.

    1. I love hearing how you made this yours Jean!! And way to go on roasting, peeling and seeding your poblanos! Wahoo! And that you made it GF, I have made it many times GF as it’s so easy to adapt! Thanks for sharing!

  5. 5 stars
    I made this dish and my husband and I Loved it . We had some leftovers the next day and it was just as wonderful as the day before. Would definitely make it again.

  6. When I was young, my dad, brother and I would make a chiles relleno for every mother’s day! I have no idea what happened to that recipe, but excited to make this one to bring back wonderful memories.

    Thanks.

  7. 5 stars
    We couldn’t get enough of this casserole! Even my girls, who are sometimes skeptical of spice, adored it. We’ll definitely be making this again soon!

  8. 5 stars
    I’ve made chili Relleno’s for years but they are so much work – love the casserole version. Just as tasty and a ton easier to make!!

  9. 5 stars
    I am so excited about this because I love chile relleno! I don’t make them at home very much because they are a little labor intensive but this casserole was so easy to make and tasted just like the original but without all the work!