Chili Tamale Pie

This comforting casserole is a great way to use leftover chili. Any chili recipe will work here!

Serves: 8Hands-on: 25 minutesTotal: 1 hour 5 minutesDifficulty: Medium

Serves: 8


  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • ½ medium onion, peeled and minced
  • 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 poblano pepper, seeded and minced
  • 1 tsp. salt, divided
  • 2 cups beef chili without beans
  • 8 oz. shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1 package (10 oz.) frozen corn, thawed
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1½ tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. chili powder
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 4 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro


  • Preheat oven to 375°F. Heat olive oil in a large cast-iron pan over medium heat. When the oil begins to shimmer, add the peppers, onion, chilies, and ½ teaspoon salt and cook until all the vegetables are very soft and beginning to brown around the edges, about 10 minutes.
  • Add the chili. Bring mixture up to a simmer then remove from the heat. Spread one third of the shredded cheese over the chili. Set aside.
  • Pulse the corn in a food processor several times until it is chopped, but not puréed. In a bowl, combine the corn meal, sugar, garlic, remaining salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a medium bowl. In another bowl combine the corn, buttermilk, eggs and vegetable oil. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and fold in another third of the cheese.
  • Pour the cornbread batter over the chili in the cast-iron pan. Mix the chili powder with the last third of the shredded cheese and sprinkle over the top of the cornbread batter.
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the top of the casserole is evenly brown and the center of the casserole springs back when lightly touched. Serve with sour cream and cilantro.