Chili Cheese Potato Casserole

Last Updated on

If your family is anything like mine, chances are that at some point you have been begged to make chili. So you do as requested, and everyone devours it that first night, singing its praises with every mouthful. Then, you end up with a ton of leftovers never to be touched again.

When they dramatically declare starvation, and you mention the big pot of goodness in the fridge, they give the side eye. So the question becomes; what to do with it?

  • Do you freeze it?
  • Give it away?
  • Toss perfectly good food?

The answer is none of the above.

I’ll tell you what you do, you make chili cheese potato casserole! It’s a delicious way to use leftover chili, and put those leftover chili haters in their place. It’s as easy as roasting some potatoes and layering them in a casserole dish with the chili and some cheese.

No leftover chili you say?

No worries. I’ve got you covered with a full recipe for this cheesiest of potato chili casseroles.

Why You’ll Love This Chili Cheese Potato Casserole

  • It’s a satisfying comfort food
  • Super Easy To Make
  • Great way to use leftover chili
  • Travels well to gatherings/parties
  • Makes a great dinner for larger groups


  • Shred or grate the cheese. It melts and just tastes better than pre-shredded packages.
  • If you’re short on time, you can use canned chili. 2 cans should do the trick, but it might not have the depth of flavor you’re expecting.
  • Check the casserole about halfway through. Not all ovens are the same. It may cook faster than expected.


  • Ground beef
  • Stewed tomatoes
  • Russet potatoes
  • Canned kidney beans
  • Tomato paste
  • Chili seasoning
  • Onion powder
  • Fresh pepper
  • Canned green chilies
  • Block of cheddar
  • Block of Monterey Jack
  • Block of Colby
  • Ancho chili powder (optional)

How To Make Chili Cheese Potato Casserole

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Start off by peeling and cutting the potatoes into thin slices (about an 1/8 inch). Place the slices onto a baking sheet, drizzle with a tablespoon of olive oil and toss. Sprinkle a bit of salt on top and pop in the oven for about 20 minutes.
  3. While the potatoes are baking, put the ground beef into a large skillet, on a medium-low heat. Break it up with a spatula until browned. Drain the excess grease.
  4. Mix in the stewed tomatoes, chili seasoning, kidney beans, onion powder, tomato paste, fresh pepper, green chilies, and Ancho chili powder (if you want some extra spice). Stir well with a slotted spoon and let simmer for about 5 minutes.
  5. Be sure to drain the beans and tomatoes.
  6. Meanwhile, start grating the cheeses. It’s helpful at this point to recruit (or bribe) someone to come help. Grate all 3 blocks. It’s better to have too much than too little.
  7. Once the potatoes are fork tender, take them out, and set aside for a few minutes.
  8. Turn off the chili and give it a good stir.
  9. Now, grease a 13 x 9 casserole dish.
  10. Start the layering with the potatoes. Then scoop out the chili for the next layer. Be sure to use a slotted spoon and let any excess liquid drain out before adding it to the dish. Then add a layer of cheese.
  11. It’s basically like making lasagna. Repeat until the dish is full, but not overflowing. Leave a bit of space to add more cheese later.
  12. Cover the casserole with foil, and place in the oven for 20 minutes, then add some more cheese and bake for another 15 minutes (uncovered), or until the cheese is browned to your preference.
  13. Let the casserole sit for about 10 minutes then serve with your favorite toppings.


  • Chili Mac n Cheese – skip the oven and boil some noodles instead. Mix everything together for a tasty stove top meal.
  • Garden Variety – get creative and add some mushrooms, zucchini, or onions to the mix.
  • Creamy Delight – add a can of cream of mushroom soup to give your casserole a touch of creaminess and earthy richness.

Serving Suggestions


  • Crumbled bacon bits
  • Sour cream
  • Greek yogurt
  • Avocado/Guacamole
  • Cilantro
  • Scallions
  • Fresh lime juice


  • Want a healthier alternative? Use ground turkey instead of beef.
  • Instead of sliced potatoes try ready-made mashed potatoes or tater tots.
  • Feel free to use your own spices instead of chili seasoning.


1. Can you make cheesy potato casserole ahead of time?

You absolutely can make this delicious cheesy potato casserole ahead of time. Just prepare all your ingredients and layer the casserole dish. Cover well with foil, and place in the fridge. Then just pop it in the oven when you’re ready to bake it.

2. How should you store leftover chili potato casserole?

The leftover potato chili casserole should be covered well and stored in the refrigerator. It will stay good for 3–4 days.

3. Can the potato chili casserole be frozen?

Yes. Just transfer it to a freezer safe container. It will stay fresh for up to 6 months. Be sure to thaw it out before reheating.

Chili Cheese Potato Casserole

Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Course: Main Course
Keyword: Casserole
Servings: 6


  • Large skillet
  • 13 x 9 casserole dish
  • Slotted Spoon
  • Cheese Grater
  • Potato peeler
  • Knife


  • 1 pound of ground beef
  • 3 russet potatoes
  • 1 - 8 ounce block of cheddar cheese
  • 1 - 8 ounce block of Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 - 8 ounce block of Colby cheese
  • 1 can of stewed tomatoes drained
  • 1 can of pinto beans drained
  • 1 packet of chili seasoning
  • 1 can of green chilies 4 ounces
  • 1 teaspoon of onion powder
  • 2 tablespoons of tomato paste
  • Fresh ground pepper to taste
  • Ancho chili powder optional


  • Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Peel potatoes and cut into thin slices, about an 1/8 of an inch thick.
  • Place them on a baking sheet, drizzle with a teaspoon of olive oil and toss around, covering them. Then lightly sprinkle them with salt. Place them in the oven for about 20 minutes.
  • Place the ground beef in a large skillet on a medium low heat. Break it up with a spatula, and move it around until browned.
  • Drain the excess grease from the pan.
  • Add stewed tomatoes, chili seasoning, onion powder, fresh pepper, tomato paste, green chilies, kidney beans, and Ancho chili powder (if you desire). Stir together and simmer for about 5 minutes.
  • Grate all the cheese blocks and set aside.
  • When the potatoes are done, remove them from the oven.
  • Remove the chili from the stove and stir well.
  • Grease a 13 x 9 casserole dish.
  • Layer in the ingredients starting with the potatoes. Continue with a layer of chili (use a slotted spoon to drain excess liquid before adding), then add a layer of cheese. Repeat until the dish is almost filled. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.
  • Uncover, and add some more cheese and bake, uncovered for another 15 minutes, or until the cheese is golden brown enough for you.
  • Let the casserole sit for 10 minutes before serving.