Beef and olive enchilada casserole is a family favorite around the Smith household. It started with my original beef and olive enchilada recipe and I when I realized you could make the enchiladas into a casserole, I went back and added the instructions to the original blog.
We’ve gotten to where we rarely make the enchiladas unless we’re making (sponsored) Cheesy Pork and Green Chile Enchiladas because we love making the beef enchilada casserole so much! It’s perfect for potlucks or to take to a friend’s house if they are sick. And if you’re not into olives, no problem. Just leave them out.
At the risk of sounding braggy, my husband’s coworkers request I make this every time they have a potluck at work. There have been times that it gets eaten before my husband even reaches the casserole!
Every time I mention on Facebook that we’re making this enchilada casserole I get asked for the recipe. I usually share that old blog post but decided the casserole deserves its own post. So, here you go. As is my usual method, I share all the words of the recipe then share the steps in pictures.
- 2 pounds lean ground beef (80/20 is my preference)
- 1 tablespoon dried minced onion (or fresh equivalent)
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 small (2.25 ounces) of sliced olives (sliced works better than chopped)
- 19 ounce can (or the equivalent, can be slightly more) of red enchilada sauce
- 6-8 flour tortillas (taco size)
- 3-4 cups of finely shredded Mexican/fiesta blend cheese (I usually split the difference)
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Mix in the pepper, minced onion and garlic powder into the ground beef as you brown it on medium heat.
- Before you drain the meat, add the olives, including the juice. Stir it all together. This lets some of the olive flavor infuse into the meat.
- Drain all the liquid into an approved container.
- Pour about 1/3 of the enchilada sauce into the meat mixture
- Mix in about 1 cup of the shredded cheese into the meat mixture.
- Pour about 1/3 of the enchilada sauce in a 11×9 (or similar) baking dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray (but not greased). Make sure the sauce is fairly evenly spread along the bottom.
- Place two tortillas side by side on top of the sauce (they will overlap a bit. That’s perfect).
- Spread about 1/3 to almost half the meat mixture over the tortillas. It doesn’t have to cover them entirely.
- Cover the meat mixture with two more tortillas.
- Spread about 1/3 of the meat mixture over these tortillas (this layer will have a bit less of the meat than the first layer).
- Cover that with two more tortillas.
- Sprinkle the remaining meat mixture over the tortillas.
- Sprinkle the remaining 2 cups of cheese over the entire casserole.
- Drizzle the remaining 1/3 can of the enchilada sauce over the cheese
- Bake on the center rack for 30-40 minutes. I usually take it out when the edges are starting to look lightly browned and the sauce is bubbly.
- Let cool a little bit before trying to cut (think how it is to cut a lasagna when it’s hot).
What’s your favorite enchilada recipe? What sides do you like with you enchilada casserole?