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4.57 from 99 votes

Beef Tamale Casserole

This Beef Tamale Casserole will certainly make your dinner time easy. We're talking comfort food to the max: layers of cornbread, enchilada sauce, spiced ground beef, all loaded with cheese then baked to perfection!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: beef tamale casserole
Servings: 8
Calories: 402kcal


For Cornbread

For Beef

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon cumin ground
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper or to taste

For Casserole

  • 10 ounce enchilada sauce (1 can)
  • 2 cups Monterey Jack cheese shredded (cheddar cheese or any blend of Mexican cheese works as well)
  • 1 tablespoon cilantro chopped
  • avocado optional
  • jalapeno pepper sliced, optional


  • Preheat your oven to 400 F degrees.
  • Add the cornmeal, sugar, salt, baking powder to a medium size bowl and whisk together. Add the egg, butter, and buttermilk and whisk well. Stir in the creamed corn and the green chiles. 
  • Pour the cornbread mixture into a large skillet or a 9x9 inch baking pan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until the edges are golden and the cornbread is done. Insert a toothpick in the center of the cornbread, if it comes out clean, it's done.
  • While the cornbread is cooking, prepare the beef. In another large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef and cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Add the onion, garlic, cumin, chipotle powder, chili powder, salt, pepper and stir. Cook until the onion has softened, another 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Add half of the enchilada sauce to the meat mixture and stir. Set aside.
  • When the cornbread is done, poke holes into it with a fork, or I used the end of a wooden spoon. Pour the remaining enchilada sauce over the top of the cornbread and spread. 
  • Top with the ground beef and the shredded cheese. 
  • Bake the casserole for another 15 minutes or until the cheese has melted and has started to lightly brown on top. 
  • Let cool for about 5 minutes, then top the casserole with cilantro and your favorite toppings.



  1. To save time, you can use a boxed cornbread mix for this recipe.
  2. I've made this several times with different types of cheeses. Monterey Jack cheese is good, you can also use a blend of cheddar cheese, or the Tex Mex blend.
  3. This entire casserole can be popped in the freezer, as long as it's tightly sealed. It can be stored this way for up to 6 months and just needs to thaw out overnight in the fridge when ready to eat. Just pop it in the oven set at 350 F degrees for 30 minutes when ready to enjoy!
  4. Nutritional information does not include any of the optional toppings.
  5. Please keep in mind that nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary greatly based on products used.


Calories: 402kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 99mg | Sodium: 964mg | Potassium: 541mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 810IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 313mg | Iron: 3mg