Quick Chili Rellenos – The Month of Mexican

Home - Mexican - Quick Chili Rellenos – The Month of Mexican
This is a great way to use up leftover mashed potatoes. In case you are thinking that this does not seem like a Hispanic dish, remember that the potato plant originated in South America, and was taken back to Europe by Conquistadors.
Quick Chili Rellenos

Quick Chili Rellenos

These cheesy Quick Chili Rellenos are great for a weeknight and a good way to use up leftover mashed potatoes.

I made these Quick Chili Rellenos one day when I had a leftover chili from Elena’s Green and Armenian restaurant, and leftover mashed potatoes. This comes together very quickly and you can add meat or fish if you want.  It’s a great recipe for a weeknight.  Of course, expand it to fit your family.

These also heat up very nicely in the microwave if you have leftovers. You can also put them in a freezer container and freeze them, covered. Reheat them in the microwave for about 5 minutes.

So, you may be asking why mashed potatoes.  Remember, potatoes started in the Americas and were part of the Columbian Exchange along with peppers and tomatoes. You can read more about the Columbian exchange to find out what other plants and animals were part of the interchange.

What Kind of Chili to Use

The ideal chili pepper to use for this is the Poblano. If you are in Northern Mexico, the United States, or Canada, you may have problems finding it as in those areas, it’s called a Pasilla. That’s a mistake. A Pasilla pepper is actually the dried form of chilaca pepper. Why is there confusion? The answer is lost to history as either a grocer or distributor made the mistake, and the name stuck, at least in the North.

Pablano chilies are relatively mild, however, they can occasionally surprise you. There is no way to tell by looking at them. So, if the one you are eating is too spicy, put some sour cream on it and drink some milk. Dairy is known to quickly to cool your mouth. It does this because milk and ice cream contain molecules that are nonpolar, called casein. Casein molecules attract capsaicin molecules. They surround the capsaicin molecules and wash them away, similarly to soap washing away grease. A piece of bread or other starchy food, which is made of non-polar molecules, would also help ease the discomfort.


If you are very sensitive to capsaicin, then by all means, use a bell pepper. You can also substitute plain jack cheese instead of pepper jack and omit the dried jalapenos.

Want vegan? Substitute your favorite cheese alternative or omit the cheese completely.

Let’s Make Quick Chili Rellenos

Mis En Place
Quick Chili Rellenos

Quick Chili Rellenos

This is a great way to use up leftover mashed potatoes. In case you are thinking that this does not seem like a Hispanic dish, remember that the potato plant originated in South America, and was taken back to Europe by Conquistadors.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings (slide to adjust): 2 servings
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Diet: Gluten Free
Difficulty: Easy
Newsletter: 2019-05-31
Allergen: Capsaicin, Dairy, Nightshades
Calories per serving: 276kcal


  • 2 Pasilla Chilies, (Pablano) charred and peeled
  • ¼ pound Pepper Jack cheese , sliced
  • ½ cup Jack cheese, grated
  • 1 cup Mashed potatoes
  • ½ teaspoon Jalapeno crushed
  • ½ cup Green enchilada sauce
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • ¼ cup Parmesan
Ingredients necessary for the recipe step are in italic.


For the Air Fryer

  • Put the chilis in the air fryer at 400 for 20 minutes. Put them in a bowl and cover them either with a shower cap, plastic wrap, or a towel. Let them sit for 20 minutes then remove the charred skin.

For the Conventional Oven

  • Preheat the oven to 350. An eight-inch pan is a perfect size for this.
  • Mix the mashed potatoes with the crushed jalapeno.
  • 1/4 pound Pepper Jack cheese
    For the cheese, you will need eight slices of cheese. You can use regular Jack cheese or Pepper Jack. I used Pepper Jack in these.
  • 1/2 cup Green enchilada sauce, 1 tablespoon tomato paste
    Combine the enchilada sauce with the tomato paste and mix it thoroughly. Put a little of the sauce at the bottom of your pan.
  • 2 Pasilla Chilies, 1 cup Mashed potatoes, 1/2 teaspoon Jalapeno crushed
    Put some of the mashed potatoes on each pepper. Spread it out.
  • Put the cheese on top of the potatoes.
  • Bring up the sides of each pepper and secure them with a toothpick.
  • Put the completed peppers in the pan on top of the sauce.
  • Pour the remaining sauce over the peppers.
  • 1/2 cup Jack cheese, 1/4 cup Parmesan
    Top with the grated cheese.
  • Bake in a 350 oven for about 30 minutes or until all the cheese has melted and slightly browned.
  • If you are using an air fryer, put the casserole directly in the air fryer and set it to 350 for about 20 minutes.
  • Let the casserole sit for a few minutes before serving so the cheese calms down. Serve with sour cream and salsa for garnish.
    Quick Chili Rellenos


If you don’t like spicy, you can use only Jack cheese, or use a rather large, heart-shaped bell pepper instead of the Pasilla.
For gluten intolerant, be sure to check the ingredient list on the green enchilada sauce.  Most enchilada sauces are gluten-free.


Serving: 70gCalories: 276kcalCarbohydrates: 12gProtein: 15gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 11gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 53mgSodium: 815mgFiber: 3gSugar: 4g
Got Questions? Let me know!Mention @arbpen or tag #arbpen!

4 thoughts on “Quick Chili Rellenos – The Month of Mexican”

  1. I was looking for a good way to use up some leftover mashed potatoes and came across this post. I happened to have everything I needed to make it, and my boyfriend and I just loved it. Thank you and best of luck.

  2. What a great thing to be able to have chili in under an hour! That’s really tasty, too. Thanks!

  3. I don’t like hot, spicy food, but my husband does. I made these for him, and he made me try it. They were really good, but still too spicy for me. I’ll make them with cheddar or plain Monterey Jack next time so I can enjoy them, too. They are definitely in my rotation now.

  4. I’m gone to tell my little brother, that he should also try these. They were super easy to make and I just happened to have some leftover mashed potatoes to make them. Lovely!

Comments are closed.

Optimized by Optimole
%d bloggers like this: