Low-Carb Turkey Enchilada Casserole
This Low-Carb Turkey Enchilada Casserole uses roasted green chiles, and this is so good that I’ve been known to eat leftovers for breakfast!
I’m a casserole-loving girl, and I love to make Mexican casseroles that use those big cans of whole roasted green chiles. Green Chile and Chicken Mock Enchilada Casserole is the recipe that got me started making casseroles with layers of green chiles, and this Low-Carb Turkey Enchilada Casserole is a tasty variation of that same idea that uses red enchilada sauce, ground turkey, Poblano chiles, and plenty of cheese.
This is a flavorful enchilada casserole that will really get your tastebuds going! I’ve been working away at adding nutritional information to the recipes for several months now, and it’s helping me re-discover some old favorites like this recipe. You could definitely make this with ground beef instead of turkey if you prefer, and there really are endless variations on this theme of whole green chiles layered with meat, cheese, and green or red enchilada sauce. Hope you enjoy trying some of them!
What ingredients do you need for this recipe?
- Poblano (Pasilla) pepper
- olive oil
- ground turkey (or use ground beef if you prefer)
- salt and fresh ground black pepper
- canned red chile enchilada sauce
- sour cream
- whole roasted green chiles
- Mozzarella cheese
- grated Four Cheese Mexican Blend
Where Can I find Big Cans of Whole Green Chiles?
If you have a latin or Mexican market near you, that’s the best place to get a good price on the big cans of whole green chiles that I love to use in recipes. But if that’s not an option you can get whole green chiles in a can at Amazon.com. (affiliate link)
Preparing Ingredients for Low-Carb Turkey Enchilada Casserole :
(Scroll down for complete printable recipe, including nutritional information.)
- Chop up an onion and a large Poblano (Pasilla) pepper into pieces about 1/2 inch or slightly smaller.
- Heat a little olive oil and saute the onion and Poblano pieces over medium high heat until they’re starting to brown, 4-5 minutes.
- Remove the onion-pepper mixture, heat a little more olive oil, and add the ground turkey and cook over high heat until it starts to brown. (Most ground turkey has water added, so you need to let that evaporate before any browning will start.) Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- This is the gluten-free red enchilada sauce I used for this recipe and unless you really like a lot of heat I definitely recommend getting MILD. If you need gluten-free and can’t find this sauce, La Victoria also makes a gluten-free enchilada sauce. (Those are affiliate links, but neither company has paid me to promote their products, and I’m pretty sure they don’t even know I am alive!)
- When the turkey is nicely browned, put the onions and peppers back in the pan, add 2 cans enchilada sauce, and let the mixture simmer until most of the liquid is reduced, about 30 minutes on low. (If you’d like to reduce the carbs even more, you can probably get away with only one can of sauce, but I haven’t tried that.)
- While the meat mixture simmers, drain the large can of whole green chiles well. Use your fingers or a knife to split the green chiles open, stacking them into two piles so you can make two equal layers in the casserole dish. (I pat them dry with paper towels if they still seem wet.)
Assembling and Cooking Low-Carb Turkey Enchilada Casserole :
- When the meat mixture has cooked down, turn off the heat and let it cool enough that you can add sour cream without it curdling. Once the meat mixture has cooled about 10 minutes, stir in the sour cream.
- Spray a 9″ x 13″ (or similar size) casserole dish with non-stick spray and make a layer of green chiles, completely covering the bottom of the dish.
- Spread half the turkey/sauce mixture over the green chiles.
- Sprinkle that with half of each type of cheese.
- Then make another layer each of whole green chiles, sauce, and cheese.
- Bake at 375F uncovered for 35-40 minutes, or until the top is nicely browned and the casserole is bubbling. Serve hot (with sour cream if desired.)
More Casseroles for Dinner:
Casserole Recipes Index Page ~ Slow Cooker or Pressure Cooker
Spaghetti Squash Casserole ~ Well Plated
Layered Mexican Casserole with Chicken, Pinto Beans, and Cheese ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Healthy Mexican Casserole ~ Lauren Kelly Nutrition
Chicken and Asparagus with Three Cheeses ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Easy Stuffed Cabbage Casserole ~ Wonky Wonderful
Weekend Food Prep:
This recipe has been added to a new category called Weekend Food Prep to help you find recipes you can prep or cook on the weekend and eat during the week!
- 1 onion, chopped in pieces about 1/2 inch or slightly smaller
- 1 large Poblano (Pasilla) pepper, chopped in pieces about 1/2 inch or slightly smaller
- 4 tsp. olive oil
- 2 lbs. ground turkey (or use ground beef if you prefer)
- salt and fresh ground black pepper to season turkey
- 2 cans (15 oz.) red chile enchilada sauce (I recommend mild unless you really like a lot of heat; I used Hatch Gluten Free Red Chile Enchilada Sauce which is low in sugar.)
- 3/4 cup sour cream (plus more for serving if desired, optional)
- 1 large can (27 oz.) whole green chiles (I used Hatch Whole Green Chiles)
- 2 cups grated Mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 cup grated Four Cheese Mexican Blend
- Chop onion and Poblano (Pasilla) pepper, then heat 2 teaspoons olive oil in a large heavy frying pan and saute the onions and peppers over medium-high heat until they’re starting to brown, about 5 minutes.
- Remove onions and peppers to a bowl, heat the other 2 teaspoons olive oil and saute the ground turkey over medium-high heat until it’s nicely browned, breaking apart with the turner. (Most ground turkey in the U.S. has added water, so you will need to evaporate all the water before the browning will start.) Season the turkey with salt and fresh-ground black pepper to taste.
- Once the turkey is well-browned, add the sauteed onions and peppers back into the pan with the meat, add the 2 cans red chile enchilada sauce, and simmer over low heat until the mixture is thickened and most all the liquid has evaporated, about 30 minutes.
- When the meat/sauce mixture is thickened, turn off the heat and let cool for about 10 minutes. Preheat oven to 400F/200C.
- While the meat cools, drain the whole green chiles into a colander placed into the sink. Use your fingers or a knife to split the chiles open and remove any seeds, stacking them in two piles so you can make two equal layers of chiles in the casserole. (Pat each chile dry with a paper towel as you go if they seem wet.)
- When the meat mixture is cool, stir in the sour cream.
- Spray a 9 inch x 13 inch glass or crockery casserole dish with non-stick spray. (Any size similar will work.)
- Lay half the whole chiles in the bottom of the casserole dish, making sure the entire bottom is covered. Spread half the meat/sauce mixture over the chiles and top with half the Mozzarella and half the 4 Cheese Mexican Blend.
- Make another layer each of whole green chiles, meat/sauce mixture, and cheese.
- Bake uncovered for 35-40 minutes, or until the top is nicely browned and the casserole is bubbling.
- Serve hot, topped with a dollop of low-fat sour cream if desired.
- Leftovers will stay good in the fridge for several days and can be reheated in the microwave, or in the oven.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 538Total Fat: 38gSaturated Fat: 14gUnsaturated Fat: 19gCholesterol: 184mgSodium: 524mgCarbohydrates: 10.7gFiber: 1gSugar: 3gProtein: 43g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.
Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
This casserole using low-carb ingredients like ground turkey, chiles, and cheese would be approved for all phases of the South Beach Diet and most other types of low-carb eating plans. I use gluten-free enchilada sauce partly because it won’t have flour, but if you can’t find the gluten-free enchilada sauce I used, look for enchilada sauce with the lowest amount of carbs. South Beach recommends lean ground turkey and reduced fat cheese and sour cream; other diet plans will prefer full-fat dairy products and might prefer ground beef.
Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. Use Casserole Recipes to find more recipes like this one. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.
Historical Notes for this Recipe:
This Low-Carb Enchilada Casserole was first posted March 5, 2014. The recipe was updated March 4, 2020.