Tamale Pie is bursting with spice and hearty meat with a fabulous crust of tamale goodness and filled with beef, chiles, cheese and more. It is a delicious one pan meal and easy to make!
This flavorful pan-full makes a tasty weeknight dinner. It comes together in just about 30 minutes and is served straight from the pan. For more weeknight wonders try Taco Casserole, Ham and Cheese Sliders, and Pizza Casserole.
Easier than traditional tamales!
We adore tamales, but they sure are time consuming. We make them probably once a year. However, I LOVE tamales and their flavors!
This easy pie gives me my tamale fix with much less work and way less time. Win win!!!
Tamale pie is basically a casserole version of the traditional Mexcian dish. Tamales are made by taking the corn husk and spreading some cornmeal dough on it. Then you fill it with meat, beans, veggies, corn, cheese etc…to be steamed. This recipe takes the classic tamale flavors and turns it into an easy delicious casserole version.
How to Make Tamale Pie
PREP. Preheat the oven to 350.
BROWN. In a 10 inch oven-proof skillet, cook the ground beef, crumbling it into pieces as it cooks. When the ground beef is browned and cooked through, drain the grease.
COMBINE. Add the enchilada sauce, one can of green chilies, the chili powder, and the cumin to the skillet, and stir to combine. Sprinkle 1 cup of the shredded cheese on top.
MUFFINS. Prepare the corn muffin mix according to the directions on the box, then stir in the remaining can of green chilies and the remaining ½ cup of cheese. Spread the batter in an even layer over the beef mixture in the skillet.
BAKE & COOL. Bake 35-40 minutes, until golden brown on top and cooked through. Let cool 5-10 minutes before serving.
Don’t have an ovenproof skillet? Transfer the ground beef mixture to a casserole baking dish. Top with the cornbread batter and bake until the top has cooked through.
Beef variations: instead of using ground turkey or chicken. You can also spice up the beef mixture by adding chorizo.
Jalapeños: For a pretty crust add sliced jalapeños to the top of the batter. They will bake beautifully into a browned flavorful crust.
Cheese: You can use pepper jack, Monterey jack, or cheddar or a blend of your favorites.
Spice Level: Kick up the heat by adding diced fresh jalapeños or a bit of tabasco sauce or chorizo.
Make it a Freezer Meal
Make the casserole as directed and place it in a freezer safe casserole dish. Put it in the freezer until the batter has become solid. Wrap the pan with plastic wrap and again with foil. Label and freeze for up to 3 months.
When you’re ready to bake, remove the wrapping and let stand at room temperature for about an hour before baking. Because the dish is colder from being frozen, you may need to add a little more bake time. Bake until the middle is bubbly and the crust is cooked through and browned.
Sides and StorinG
Serve your tamale pie with:
Storing Leftovers: Divide leftover pie into individual sized portions. Store in airtight, freezer safe if applicable, container. Pie can be stored in the fridge for 3-4 days or in the freezer for 1-2 months. Reheat in the microwave, or transfer to an oven safe dish and bake in the oven until hot.
For more Mexican Casseroles, check out:
- Chicken Enchilada Casserole
- Taco Casserole
- Dorito Casserole
- Mexican Casserole
- Enchilada Casserole
- Frito Pie
Tamale Pie Recipe
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 10 ounce can red enchilada sauce
- 2 4 ounce cans green chilies
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 8.5 ounce box corn muffin mix plus ingredients called for on the box
- Preheat the oven to 350.
- In a 10 inch oven-proof skillet, cook the ground beef, crumbling it into pieces as it cooks. When the ground beef is browned and cooked through, drain the grease. Add the enchilada sauce, one can of green chilies, the chili powder, and the cumin to the skillet, and stir to combine. Sprinkle 1 cup of the shredded cheese on top.
- Prepare the corn muffin mix according to the directions on the box, then stir in the remaining can of green chilies and the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese. Spread the batter in an even layer over the beef mixture in the skillet.
- Bake 35-40 minutes, until golden brown on top and cooked through. Let cool 5-10 minutes before serving.