Imagine sitting down to a warm, hearty meal that marries the smoky flavors of BBQ with the comforting essence of a casserole. That’s exactly what you get with a BBQ Chicken Casserole—a dish that's become a favorite for home cooks and BBQ enthusiasts alike. This recipe combines the best of both worlds, offering all the deliciousness of BBQ chicken in a convenient, easy-to-make casserole.

bbq chicken casserole


What You'll Need

  • 2 cups shredded cooked chicken (preferably smoked or grilled)
  • 1 cup BBQ sauce (store-bought or homemade)
  • 1 can (15 oz) sweet corn, drained
  • 1 can (15 oz) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup diced red onion
  • 1/2 cup diced bell peppers (any color)
  • 1 cup cooked rice
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

High-Quality BBQ Sauce and Chicken

For the best results, choose a high-quality BBQ sauce that suits your taste—whether it’s tangy, sweet, or spicy. If you’re making the BBQ sauce from scratch, consider using a mix of ketchup, apple cider vinegar, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, and a pinch of smoked paprika for an authentic BBQ flavor. Opt for free-range or organic chicken to ensure tenderness and flavor.


Cooking and Shredding the Chicken

  1. Cook the Chicken:
    • Grilled: Season chicken breasts with salt, pepper, and a bit of olive oil. Grill on medium heat for about 6-7 minutes per side or until fully cooked.
    • Smoked: Smoke the chicken at 225°F for about 1.5 to 2 hours until the internal temperature reaches 165°F.
    1. Shred the Chicken:
    • Once the chicken is cooked, use two forks to shred it into bite-sized pieces. Set aside.

    Preparing the BBQ Sauce (If Making from Scratch)

    1. Mix Ingredients:
    • Combine 1 cup ketchup, 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, and 1 teaspoon smoked paprika in a saucepan.
    1. Cook:
    • Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Cook for about 10 minutes until the sauce thickens. Set aside.

    Preparing the Casserole Dish

    1. Preheat Oven:
    • Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
    1. Prep the Dish:
    • Lightly grease a 9x13-inch casserole dish with cooking spray or olive oil.

    Assembling the Casserole

    Layering Instructions

    1. First Layer:
    • Spread cooked rice evenly at the bottom of the casserole dish.
    1. Second Layer:
    • Add shredded chicken evenly over the rice.
    1. Third Layer:
    • Pour BBQ sauce over the chicken to cover it completely.
    1. Fourth Layer:
    • Add diced red onions, bell peppers, corn, and black beans.
    1. Fifth Layer:
    • Dollop sour cream over the vegetable layer and spread evenly.
    1. Final Layer:
    • Sprinkle shredded cheddar and mozzarella cheese evenly on top.

    Tips for Perfect Flavor Balance

    • Ensure each layer is evenly distributed to get a taste of every ingredient in each bite.
    • Feel free to add a dash of hot sauce if you like a bit of heat.

    Cooking Instructions

    Baking the Casserole

    1. Cover and Bake:
    • Cover the casserole dish with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes.
    1. Uncover and Bake:
    • Remove the foil and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
    1. Check for Doneness:
    • Make sure the casserole is heated through and the cheese is lightly browned.


    Plating and Presentation

    • Plating:
    • Scoop portions onto plates using a large spoon or spatula.
    • Garnishing:
    • Sprinkle chopped fresh cilantro on top for a burst of color and flavor.

    Complementary Side Dishes

    • Salad:
    • A crisp green salad with a tangy vinaigrette pair perfectly.
    • Cornbread:
    • Warm cornbread makes an excellent side to soak up all the flavors.
    • Coleslaw:
    • A creamy coleslaw adds a refreshing crunch.


    There you have it! Your ultimate guide to creating an irresistible BBQ Chicken Casserole. Not only is this dish bursting with flavor, but it’s also easy to make and perfect for any occasion. We encourage you to give this recipe a try and share your experience with us. We’d love to hear your feedback and see your delicious creations!

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