ChickenMalia Howe

Mexican Quinoa Casserole

ChickenMalia Howe
Mexican Quinoa Casserole

I made this dish for our Cinco de Mayo meal. You know, right before I devoured those churro crispy treats. This is a a lovely, healthful meal that I promptly ruined (health wise) by slathering it with guac and sour cream and eating far too many of those rolled tortilla chips from Costco. It makes a ton. We ate off it for 2 nights, and then another day for lunch. You could freeze it, omit the chicken and add some more veggies/beans, or taco meat. Very versatile and full of flavor. 

Mexican Chicken Quinoa Casserole

-adapted from

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 can diced green chiles
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces (about 2 large breasts)
  • 1 tablespoon, plus 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic (about 2 cloves)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, well drained (I don't think fire roasted is important here, by the way. I did use them, but didn't notice change in flavor)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 1/2 cups cheese of your choice (I used Colby Jack)

Fresh cilantro, for serving


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 9x13 pan with cooking spray and set aside.Cook quinoa according to package directions. Fluff with a fork and set aside. In a large, deep sauté pan or pot, heat the olive oil over medium high. Add the onion and sauté until slightly softened, about 5 minutes. Add the chicken, chili powder, cumin, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper. Continue to sauté until the chicken is cooked through and no longer pink, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic, drained tomatoes and cook 1 additional minute. Remove from heat. Stir in the black beans, green chiles, reserved quinoa, Greek yogurt, and 1 cup of the cheese. Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking dish and spread evenly in the pan. Top with remaining 1/2 cup cheese then bake, uncovered until hot and the cheese is melted, about 20 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes, garnish with chopped cilantro, and serve.