There is nothing like fresh tortillas to make a great cheese casserole. When you are starting out making tortillas by hand, your tortillas might not turn out as nice and thin as those at the store, but that shouldn’t stop you. Use them for a casserole. You can use canned enchilada sauce as I did, or you can make your own salsa, which I will show in another post.
This is really a dead simple recipe, and you can throw it together quickly with your own chosen ingredients. To make it spicy, add jalapenos to the cheese. I used Penzey’s Crushed California Jalapenos because I don’t have to worry about getting jalapeno on my hands, wearing gloves, etc. If you don’t want to use fresh tortillas, you can use prepared ones from the store.
Let’s Make Fresh Tortilla Casserole
Working with Tortillas
No matter where you are sourcing your tortillas, it’s important to note that they must be heated before you can work with them or eat them. You can dip them in hot oil to soften them or crisp them up, you can hold them over a flame until they soften, or warm them up in a tortilla warmer in the microwave. For enchiladas and casseroles like this, frying them for a few seconds in hot oil is the preferred method.
- 6 to 8 corn tortillas, freshly made preferred
- 1 red onion, chopped
- 3 cups jack cheese, grated
- 1 teaspoon crushed jalapeno peppers
- Enchilada sauce of your choice
- 1/4 cup flavorless oil for frying
- Preheat the oven to 350 F/176 C. Have ready a square casserole dish.
- Put about a half an inch of oil into a skillet and heat it to shimmering. Open the can of enchilada sauce and pour a thin layer of it into the casserole dish.
- Heat a tortilla in the pan until it has softened, about 10 seconds, then drain it on a piece of paper. Put a layer of tortillas on the bottom of the pan.
- Mix together the cheese, onion, and jalapeno. Put most the cheese mixture on top of the tortilla, and pour a little fo the sauce on the cheese mixture. Set the rest aside to top the casserole.
- Top with the remaining tortillas.
- Pour the rest of the sauce over the tortillas.
- Top with the remaining cheese mixture.
- Put the casserole in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes or until all the cheese has melted and the casserole is bubbling.
- Serve with sour cream and your favorite hot sauce. Black beans prepared in the Instant Pot go well with this.