This very easy layered Southwest Chicken Casserole is an easy way to get the flavor or chicken fajitas with black beans and rice all in one pan! Rice, beans, chicken, peppers, onions, and cheese are layered and baked into one scrumptious meal.
I should create a new category for recipes with ingredients that can all be found at Target. I am an avid Target shopper, and I usually pick up a few groceries while I’m there. It is so convenient that they have a grocery section now, but the choices are still a little more limited than my regular grocery store. Even if you are shopping in a place with limited selection, I bet you can still find all the ingredients for this Layered Southwest Chicken Casserole. All the ingredients are super basic, but they come together to make something special!
To make this a 30-minute meal, I used one of my favorite shortcuts: frozen rice. Have you tried this stuff yet? I buy frozen brown rice, and I can have perfectly cooked rice ready in 3 minutes! If you prefer to cook your own rice or maybe have leftover rice from a previous night’s dinner, you can also use that of course.
The other important tip to get this meal ready in about a half hour is using thin chicken breasts. Have you seen the size of some of the chicken breasts in stores lately?? Sometimes one breast weighs almost a pound! If you use full thickness pieces (especially the big ones), they will take a lot longer to bake. You can either buy thin-sliced chicken breasts, butterfly cut your own thick pieces, or increase the baking time to make sure your chicken has time to cook through.
This easy chicken casserole recipe tastes a lot like fajitas with black beans and rice (minus the tortillas), and it is so dang easy the way it all bakes together at the same time. I just know you’ll want it to be on the regular dinner rotation at your house. Be sure to leave me a comment to let me know how you like it when you get a chance to make it!
Layered Southwest Chicken Casserole
This super simple chicken casserole is a perfect recipe for busy weeknights. It only takes a few minutes to put together, and the whole family will love it!
- Total Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: 4 1x
- 2 cups cooked rice (I use frozen brown rice.)
- 1 lime
- 15 ounces canned seasoned black beans drained
- 10 ounces Rotel tomatoes drained
- 1 pound thin-sliced boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 bell pepper sliced thin (or 8–10 mini sweet peppers sliced into rings)
- 1/2 red onion sliced thin (optional)
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- kosher salt
- 1 cup Mexican blend shredded cheese or more to taste
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Spray 13 x 9″ casserole dish with cooking spray, and spread cooked rice in the bottom. Squeeze juice of 1/2 the lime and sprinkle a few pinches of salt over the rice.
Spread black beans over the rice, and spread tomatoes over the beans. Arrange chicken breasts in a single layer over the tomatoes.
Spread sliced bell peppers over the chicken. Sprinkle casserole liberally with chili powder and lightly with salt. Cover dish with foil, and bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes.
Remove foil and sprinkle cheese over the chicken. Bake uncovered 8-10 minutes longer, until cheese is melted and chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. Serve immediately.
Tools I used in this recipe (affiliate links):
- Prep Time: 5
- Cook Time: 30
- Category: Main
- Cuisine: Southwest
I highly recommend serving this 30-minute casserole with fresh margaritas!
Note: This recipe was originally published in June 2013, but I updated it in November 2016.
This is my first visit to your site and I just found dinner tonight! Love this site, signed up for newsletter as well. Can’t wait to try something NEW for dinner tonight!! Hope hubby likes it (crossing fingers).
Andi Gleeson says
Hi, Roberta! I’m so glad you found me, and I hope you like this recipe! I look forward to hearing from you again soon :)
Stacy (@stacymakescents) says
This looks great! I pinned. :-) Visiting from Marvelous Monday.
The Weary Chef says
Thank you, Stacey! I appreciate your visit and comment!
David Hogman says
The chicken casserole looks fillings and delicious. Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe
The Weary Chef says
This one was good and so easy! A friend tried the recipe recently and said she loved it, so you don’t have to just take my word for it ;) Thank you again, David!
I’m all for easy! This looks so good and if I can get everything at Target, then thats just a bonus! I love all the peppers!
The Weary Chef says
I’m sure I looked crazy at Target the other day when I was standing around staring at the meat and vegetables trying to come up with a recipe! I have to admit that I don’t always have my menu planned a week ahead lately (even though this blog is built on meal planning!) so I’m often trying to come up with an idea on the fly. This one is a keeper! Thanks so much for your comment, Tanya :)
Norma Treciokas says
Delicioussss!! I prepared this casserole for my family and everything gone. This one is a keeper.
Thank you for sharing this delicious recipe.