Enjoy A Taste Of Tradition Easily

Tamales are a traditional Mesoamerican dish made of a masa dough and fillings, and then steamed in a corn husk or banana leaves. While tamales certainly are delicious, the time-consuming nature of making them may compel some to avoid preparing them at home.

This recipe for “Chicken Tamale Pie” offers the flavors of tamales in a single-pan dish. Try it, courtesy of “30-Minute Meal Prep” (Sourcebooks) by Robin Miller.

Chicken Tamale Pie
Serves 4

1 (8.5 -ounce) box corn muffin mix (such as Jiffy)
1⁄3 cup milk
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 large egg
2 teaspoons taco seasoning
1⁄2 cup corn, canned, fresh or frozen (thawed if frozen)
2 cups shredded, cooked chicken
1 cup red enchilada sauce, divided
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese, or a blend of cheddar and Jack, or Mexican cheese blend
Fresh cilantro leaves (whole or chopped) for serving

1. Preheat the oven to 400 F. Coat a 9-inch pie plate or oven-safe skillet (such as cast iron) with cooking spray.

2. In a large bowl, whisk together the corn muffin mix, milk, butter, egg, and taco seasoning. Fold in the corn. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan, and smooth the surface. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until a wooden toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean or with moist bits clinging to it.

3. Meanwhile, in a large skillet or saucepan, combine the chicken and 3⁄4 cup of the enchilada sauce. Set the pan over medium heat and warm the mixture through.

4. Using the end of a wooden spoon or spatula, poke holes all over the cornbread in the pan. Pour the remaining enchilada sauce into the holes. Top the cornbread with the chicken mixture. Top with the cheese.

5. Bake for 5 minutes, until the cheese melts.

6. Top with fresh cilantro, and serve.

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