Best Chicken Enchiladas Ever!
This is my all-time favorite chicken enchiladas recipe, made with a simple homemade red enchilada sauce that my friends all love!
I know that food bloggers are never prone to hyperbole. 😉 But with these enchiladas, I stand by the title that I gave to this recipe in my very first year of food blogging.
These truly are the best chicken enchiladas ever!!
Actually, I can brag on these ones because my friend, Liisa, was the one who taught me how to make them. She was my roommate for a few years back in my early twenties when I was learning how to cook. And let’s just say that I won the foodie roommate jackpot getting to live with a friend like her. She not only cooked breakfast, lunch, and dinner for herself almost every day, but she equally as obsessed with Mexican food as I was. And these chicken enchiladas were her specialty.
Years later, they have now become one of my specialties and all-time favorites as well. They are my go-to dish to bring to potlucks or to friends who have just come home from the hospital, they are my favorite freezer meal, they are a must every Cinco De Mayo, and they are always, always a hit at a dinner party. Case in point — just last night, I made a batch to take to a World Series watch party. And when I went back for seconds, the pan was already empty. Annnnd washed and dried for me, because my friends are awesome and know how much I hate doing dishes, ha.
Everyone loves these enchiladas!
So since this recipe has been buried in the archives for years, I thought I would pull it back up today to share the enchilada love with you. Hope you all enjoy these as much as I have!
Chicken Enchilada Recipe | 1-Minute Video
Chicken Enchilada Ingredients:
This chicken enchilada recipe is super-flexible and easy to customize with any of your favorite add-ins. But to begin, you will need:
- Chicken: I like sautéing chicken with onion and green chiles for extra flavor in this recipe. But if you’d like a shortcut, feel free to shred a rotisserie chicken, or use any leftover cooked chicken you might have on hand. (Here’s my favorite recipe for baked chicken breasts, that I recommend baking, shredding and freezing for recipes such as this.)
- Tortillas: I usually use flour tortillas for this recipe, since they are so much more forgiving and easy to work with when rolling enchiladas. But you’re totally welcome to use corn tortillas if you prefer.
- Cheese: Feel free to use any favorite shredded cheese blend in this recipe! I’m partial to Mexican cheese blends and pepper jack cheese for enchiladas.
- Fillings: Beyond the chicken, the fillings in these enchiladas are totally up to you! For this base recipe, I have kept things simple with just chicken, black beans and cheese (plus onions and green chiles for seasoning). But other options could include:
- Any other varieties of beans or cheeses
- Roasted vegetables
- Additional chiles/peppers
- …or whatever else sounds delicious!
- Toppings: It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of toppings when it comes to Mexican food, and highly recommend piling these high with any of the following:
- Chopped fresh cilantro
- Sour cream
- Diced onions (red, white or green onions)
- Corn tortilla strips
- …you name it!
All of that said, there is one other special ingredient in this easy chicken enchilada recipe that you must, must use, though. (I insist…) ♡
The Best Enchilada Sauce:
This homemade enchilada sauce recipe.
It is my all-time favorite, and tastes a million times better than anything you can buy in the can. Plus, it only takes a few minutes to whisk together, and then it can simmer and cook on the stove while you prepare the rest of your ingredients.
Trust me (and the thousands of readers who have also now made and loved this one). It’s the secret to this recipe and it’s amazing!!
How To Make Enchiladas:
Alright next, let’s talk about how to make enchiladas! Once you have your sauce, filling and tortillas all prepped and ready to go…
- Assemble your enchiladas. Lay a single tortilla on a flat surface. Spread a generous spoonful of enchilada sauce over the surface of the tortilla. Then layer your fillings in a line down the middle of the tortilla, roll it up, and…
- Arrange the enchiladas in a baking dish. You can either place them seam-side-up or seam-side-down, your pick. Then once all of the enchiladas are in the pan, pour any of the extra enchilada sauce on top and spread it around evenly. Sprinkle with some extra cheese.
- Bake the enchiladas. Then pop the pan in the oven and bake until the enchiladas are cooked through, and the tortillas are slightly crispy and the cheese completely melted. Transfer the pan to a cooling rack.
- Sprinkle on toppings. Then sprinkle with any of your desired toppings and…
- Serve! Preferably with even more toppings. 😉
What To Serve With Chicken Enchiladas:
If you’re looking for serving suggestions, feel free to check out my full selection of Mexican Recipes here on the site for a long list of ideas. But I would especially recommend serving these with:
¡Buen provecho, everyone! ♡
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Best Chicken Enchiladas Ever!
No kidding. These seriously are the best enchiladas ever, and it’s all due to a special (and easy) homemade enchilada sauce that will rock your socks off.
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil (or any mild oil)
- 1 small white onion, peeled and diced
- 1.5 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced into small 1/2-inch pieces (*or see substitution below for using pre-cooked shredded chicken)
- sea salt and black pepper
- 1 (4-ounce) can diced green chiles
- 1 (15.5 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 8 large flour tortillas
- 3 cups Mexican-blend shredded cheese
- 1 batch red enchilada sauce, or 1 can store-bought enchilada sauce
- optional toppings: fresh cilantro, diced red onions, avocado, sour cream
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare your enchilada sauce, if making homemade.
- In large saute pan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and saute for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add diced chicken and green chiles, and season with salt and pepper. Sauté for 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the chicken is cooked through. Remove from heat and set aside.
- To assemble the enchiladas, set up an assembly line including: tortillas, enchilada sauce, beans, chicken mixture, and cheese. Lay out a tortilla, and spread two tablespoons of sauce over the surface of the tortilla. Add beans in a line down the middle of the tortilla, then add in a spoonful of the chicken mixture, then sprinkle with 1/3 cup cheese. Roll up tortilla and place in a greased 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Repeat with the remaining ingredients. Then spread the remaining enchilada sauce on top of the tortillas, and sprinkle on the remaining shredded cheese.
- Bake uncovered for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and serve immediately, garnished with chopped fresh cilantro if desired.
*If you are using pre-cooked chicken, just leave it out of the saute and cook the onion and green chiles for 1 additional minute (instead of 6-8). Once you remove the onion and green chiles from the heat, stir in the chicken (which should be shredded or chopped into bite-sized pieces).
If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #gimmesomeoven. I'd love to see what you cook!