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After making what I’m pretty sure is the best enchilada sauce recipe a few days ago, it was time to put it to good use. Naturally, I’ll have to make low carb enchiladas with it as soon as possible. But, this week I wanted something different, and this easy tamale pie casserole recipe was born.
How To Make Tamale Pie Gluten-Free
Most commonly tamale pie recipes are made using cornmeal. This was something I definitely wanted to avoid, for multiple reasons.
Even though corn is usually gluten-free, it’s high in carbs, often GMO, and not the most nutrient-dense, either. These are reasons to consider alternatives even if you aren’t low carb. So, a tamale pie with cornbread topping was out.
Fortunately, it was pretty easy to make a tamale pie gluten-free. Who needs the corn when you can use a delicious almond flour pie crust instead?
Unlike many old fashioned tamale pie recipes, this one has the crust on the bottom instead of the top. I just made the savory version of the press-in crust like I normally would. I actually like it better this way, because it means that I get to have a gooey cheddar cheese layer on top. It’s so good!
An Easy Tamale Pie Recipe
Even though it looks impressive, this entire recipe for tamale pie is pretty simple. Don’t be startled by the multiple parts involved. They are all pretty basic.
Overall, this is a very easy tamale pie recipe. The main steps are straightforward. Bake the crust, brown the ground beef with green chiles and enchilada sauce, and fill the pie shell with the meat. Top it with generously with cheddar cheese, then place it in the oven until gooey and hot.
Like I said, I used my favorite almond flour pie crust, but you can use any kind you like. You could even add some Mexican spices to it!
Since the crust and gluten-free enchilada sauce can be made in advance, this tamale pie casserole is actually very quick to put together. And even if you don’t prepare anything ahead, you can do many of the steps in parallel.
That’s the key to making this dish as quickly as possible. Just bake the crust, cook the sauce, and brown the ground beef all at the same time!
I couldn’t decide if I should call this a tamale pie or a tamale casserole. It kind of has aspects of both, even though it looks like a pie. I settled on tamale pie casserole.
No matter what you call it, I hope you’ll add it to your rotation for Mexican night. The nice thing is, there’s no need to wonder what to serve with gluten-free tamale pie. It’s enough for a meal all on its own!
Easy Gluten-Free Tamale Pie Casserole Recipe:
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Easy Tamale Pie Casserole Recipe - Gluten Free
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- 1 recipe Almond flour pie crust (savory version with no sweetener & 1/2 tsp salt)
- 1 tsp Olive oil
- 3 cloves Garlic (minced)
- 1 lb Ground beef
- 1 tsp Sea salt
- 1/2 tsp Black pepper
- 1 4-oz can Green chiles (drained)
- 1/2 cup Gluten-free enchilada sauce (or any kind you like)
- 1 cup Cheddar cheese (shredded)
- Fresh cilantro (for garnish - optional)
RECIPE TIPS + VIDEO in the post above, nutrition info + recipe notes below!
Click on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
- If not using store bought enchilada sauce, make homemade gluten-free enchilada sauce according to the directions here.
- Make the savory almond flour pie crust according to the directions here. (After it's done, remove from the oven and leave the oven on at 350 degrees F (177 degrees C).)
- Meanwhile, heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and saute for a minute, until fragrant.
Add ground beef to the pan. Season with sea salt and black pepper. Increase heat to medium-high. Cook for 7-10 minutes, breaking apart with a spoon or spatula, until the meat is browned and fat cooks away. (If the beef is browned but you still have liquid left, drain it before proceeding.)
When the beef is cooked through, stir in the green chiles (drained) and enchilada sauce. Cook for another 3 minutes.
Transfer the meat mixture evenly into the baked pie crust and compress the top. Sprinkle shredded cheese on top. Bake for 10 minutes, until the cheese is melted. Garnish with fresh cilantro, if desired.
Cook times are based on having enchilada sauce ready in advance, and baking the pie crust in parallel with cooking the ground beef.
Serving size: 1 slice, or 1/12 of entire recipe
Nutrition Information Per Serving
Where does nutrition info come from? Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy, sourced from the USDA Food Database. You can find individual ingredient carb counts we use in the Low Carb & Keto Food List. Carb count excludes sugar alcohols. Net carb count excludes both fiber and sugar alcohols, because these do not affect blood sugar in most people. We try to be accurate, but feel free to make your own calculations.
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