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Chicken Tamale Pie

This spicy dish is inspired by the corn husk-wrapped tamales of traditional Mexican cuisine. Combined with the concept of chicken pot pie, this dish is an unusual but delicious spin on classic Canadian comfort food.
Serves: 4
Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 40 min


½ lb lean ground chicken
½ cup onions, diced
1 cup salsa
7 tbsp water
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin, ground
1 tsp oregano, dried
10 drops hot pepper sauce (optional)
1 cup corn niblets, frozen
1 red pepper, diced
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded, chopped
1 cup black olives, sliced
salt, to taste
¾ cups cornmeal (polenta)
¼ cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp chili powder
8 tsp vegetable oil
1 egg
½ cup 2% milk
2 tbsp cilantro, fresh, minced
½ cup low-fat mozzarella cheese, grated

Food Safety

Before you start, wash all surfaces and your hands with soap and warm water, and remember to wash your hands, utensils and cutting boards after they touch raw meat or eggs. Avoid cross-contamination by using a different cutting board for your meat and other ingredients. Make sure you’re cooking to safe temperatures and chilling any leftovers within two hours. For more food safety tips, visit our Food Safety at Home Section.


  1. Sauté ground chicken and diced onion in a large skillet until chicken is browned; drain.

  2. Stir in salsa, water, 1 tsp (5 mL) of chili powder, ground cumin, oregano and bottled hot sauce (optional); bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3-4 minutes. Add corn, red pepper, jalapeño pepper, sliced olives and salt, if necessary, to taste.

  3. Preheat oven to 350ºF(180ºC).

  4. In a separate bowl combine cornmeal, whole wheat flour, baking powder and 1 tsp (5 mL) of chili powder for topping.

  5. Beat vegetable oil, egg, milk and minced cilantro. Add to dry ingredients. Stir until just combined. Do not overmix.

  6. Spray an 8” square casserole with vegetable oil cooking spray and spread chicken mixture evenly over bottom. Top with cornmeal topping. Sprinkle dish with shredded cheese.

  7. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until knife inserted into cornmeal comes out clean and the dish is slightly browned.

Helpful Tip

Serve with additional garnishes such as diced jalapeño, sour cream and salsa. For a less spicy version omit the jalapeño and the bottled hot sauce. For a complete meal serve with a mixed green salad.

Nutrition Info

Per 400 g serving Amount
Protein21 g
Fat27 g
Saturated Fat3 g
Carbohydrate43 g
Fibre8 g
Sugar7 g
Cholesterol95 mg
Sodium1190 mg
Per 400 g serving % Daily Value
Vitamin A20
Vitamin C100
Vitamin B620
Vitamin B1219