Enchiladas are a popular menu item at many Mexican restaurants due to their exciting flavour. They symbolise the perfect traditional Mexican meal thanks to the excellent combination of tortilla, meat, cheese, and sauce. It is possible to prepare enchiladas with various meats, including chicken, beef, pork, shrimp, fish, etc. Vegetarian and vegan enchiladas are also available.
Chicken enchiladas are among the most popular and appreciated versions of enchiladas and are also one of the healthiest options for Mexican food because there’s not much fat in chicken breast compared to the amount of protein they contain.
How to make chicken enchiladas
Easy to prepare, these chicken enchiladas feature flour tortillas and shredded chicken topped with the best homemade enchilada sauce.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 10 mins
Total Time 1 hr 15 mins
Servings 12 enchiladas
1 medium white onion, peeled and diced
2 tbsp olive oil
1 ½ tsp sea salt
2 cloves garlic minced
1 tbsp chilli powder
½ tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp cumin
½ tsp cayenne pepper
2 15-oz can tomato sauce
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast
4 oz cream cheese room temperature
12 flour tortillas
4 oz shredded cheddar cheese
Preheat to 350°F (176 °C).
Place a 4-quart pot over medium heat and add the olive oil. To make the onion translucent, sauté it with salt for four to six minutes. Add the garlic, chilli powder, smoked paprika, cumin and cayenne powder when the onion is soft. Stir for one minute until the spices and garlic are fragrant.
Add the tomato sauce and chicken breast. Bring to a simmer. Cover and cook until the chicken breast reaches 160°F (71 °C), about 15-18 minutes. After the chicken is cooked, remove it from the heat and let it cool slightly in the sauce. In a greased 9x13 baking dish, lay a small amount of the sauce.
Shred the chicken with two forks into bite-sized pieces.
Combine the shredded chicken, 1 cup of prepared sauce, and cream cheese in a large bowl. Stir well to combine and dissolve the cream cheese.
Fill each tortilla with chicken filling. Place the rolled enchiladas in the prepared baking dish. Top with the remaining sauce, spreading it to cover all the enchiladas. Sprinkle with cheese.
Place in oven, and bake for 35-45 minutes, until sauce is bubbling and cheese is melted. Then remove the dish from the oven.
Serve the enchiladas immediately while they’re nice and hot and melty, garnished with fresh toppings.
Tips for making the best chicken enchiladas
In place of cheddar cheese, a Mexican blend cheese can be used.
You can avoid soggy enchiladas by briefly frying your tortillas in hot oil before filling and rolling them. This creates a barrier between the tortillas and the sauce, preventing them from absorbing too much of it. Fry the tortillas for about ten seconds per side until they just begin to crisp and brown. It's okay to drain them on paper towels if you are concerned about too much oil.
Add the remaining enchilada sauce to the top of the chicken enchiladas and use the spoon to open the space between each enchilada so the sauce can run down between them.
Storing and freezing enchiladas
You can keep enchiladas in the refrigerator for up to four days in an airtight container.
Let the enchiladas cool completely in the fridge before freezing them. Freeze the enchiladas in a freezer-safe container or freezer bag. Enchiladas can also be entirely wrapped in aluminium foil and frozen.
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