Gimme Some Oven

Chicken Enchiladas

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

My favorite chicken enchilada recipe is easy to make, customizable with your favorite fillings, and made with my favorite homemade enchilada sauce. It’s always a crowd fave, and perfect for meal prep and freezing too!

Chicken Enchiladas

Say hello to my all-time favorite chicken enchiladas. ♡

This chicken enchilada recipe was actually one of the first-ever posts that I shared here on Gimme Some Oven back in 2009. And now, more than a decade later, it still continues to be one of the recipes I make most often for dinner here in our house — and one of the recipes that our readers make most often too! I’m so happy you all continue to enjoy it!

For those of you who are new to this recipe, these Tex-Mex style chicken enchiladas are easy to make with a basic filling of sautéed chicken, green chiles, onions, beans and shredded cheese. Then they are rolled up in your choice of either flour or corn tortillas, baked until hot and melty, and sprinkled with lots of fresh toppings. But I have to say that the real magic of this recipe lies in the homemade red enchilada sauce that brings it all together. This red enchilada sauce only requires a few extra minutes of prep time, but the flavor that it adds to these enchiladas is major. Sooo much better than the canned stuff!

I’m also a big fan of these homemade chicken enchiladas because they are easy to make ahead (perfect for meal prep), the leftovers freeze beautifully (which is why I usually go ahead and make a double batch while I’m at it), and they are also a wonderful meal to pack up and bring to friends who may be in need of some cozy comfort food (another good reason to make and freeze a second batch ♡). This recipe can also easily be adapted to be gluten-free or customized with your choice of protein, beans or cheese. And if you’d really like to make the prep quick and easy, I’ve included a few additional time-saving shortcuts below too.

Bottom line, these chicken enchiladas have been one of my go-to recipes for years and years, and they are always a hit when we serve them to friends and family. So if you have yet to give this recipe a try, I say that it’s time we make some enchiladas together!

Chicken Enchilada Recipe | 1-Minute Video

Enchilada Sauce Recipe

The History of Enchiladas

We have the rich food traditions of Mexico to thank for bringing enchiladas to the world. ♡ Historians believe that the origins of enchiladas actually date back to Aztec times, when the tradition of rolling or folding food into corn tortillas is believed to have begun. (The word enchilada is derived from the Spanish verb enchilar, which means “to season with chili.”)

In the centuries and decades since, dozens of different varieties of enchiladas have become traditional in different regions around Mexico, as well as in various nearby countries in Latin America (such as Costa Rica, Honduras, Nicaragua and Guatemala). And of course, they have also become wildly popular in the United States as well, especially in New Mexican and Tex-Mex cuisine.

This particular chicken enchilada recipe probably most closely aligns with Tex-Mex and New Mexican styles of enchiladas, especially being made with flour tortillas (although you are welcome to use corn tortillas), filled with green chiles and soft shredded cheese, and made with a tomato-free red chile sauce. But if you are looking to try authentic Mexican-style chicken enchiladas, I would encourage you to consider this traditional recipe. So many delicious enchilada recipes to try!

Step by Step of How To Make Chicken Enchiladas

Chicken Enchilada Ingredients

Before we get to the full recipe below for how to make chicken enchiladas, here are a few notes about the ingredients you will need to make this easy chicken enchilada recipe…

  • Chicken: I typically sauté diced boneless skinless chicken breasts for the enchilada filling. But feel free to use pre-cooked chicken (such as a shredded rotisserie or any leftover diced/shredded baked chicken) if you would like to save some prep time.
  • Onion and diced green chiles: White, yellow or red onion will work for the enchilada filling sauté. Then I always like to add in a can of diced green chiles too for extra flavor.
  • Beans: I typically add a can of black beans or pinto beans to the filling for extra protein. But white beans, lentils or chickpeas would also work well here.
  • Tortillas: Corn tortillas are traditionally used in Mexican-style enchiladas, but I typically use flour tortillas (which are more commonly used in Tex-Mex and American-style enchiladas) since they are much easier to roll. That said, just about any style of tortillas will work in this recipe.
  • Cheese: I most often use either Asadero, Pepper Jack, or a Mexican-blend of shredded cheese for these enchiladas. But feel free to use any type of shredded cheese that you love best.
  • Toppings: When it comes to enchiladas, I vote the more toppings the merrier! Any combination of chopped fresh cilantro, sliced avocado, diced red onion (or quick pickled red onions), sliced radishes, fresh or pickled jalapeños, sour cream or Mexican crema, and/or extra cheese would be delicious!
  • Enchilada sauce: Finally, you can use any type of enchilada sauce that you prefer for this recipe, but I highly recommend using my favorite homemade enchilada sauce! It only takes a few extra minutes to prep and can simmer on the stovetop while you prepare the rest of the enchiladas. It’s made with simple ingredients that you likely already have in your pantry (oil, flour, a handful of spices, and chicken stock). But most importantly, it’s incredibly delicious and tastes a million times better than the store-bought canned stuff. Thousands of our readers have made and loved it over the years, so I highly recommend giving it a try!

Homemade Enchiladas Unbaked In Pan

Chicken Enchilada Recipe Variations

As I mentioned above, this chicken enchilada recipe is incredibly flexible, so please feel free to customize it however you would like! For example, feel free to…

  • Use corn tortillas: To make Mexican-style enchiladas, use corn tortillas (homemade or store-bought) in place of flour tortillas. Since corn tortillas are typically smaller, you will likely need to use nearly double the quantity of tortillas. (Just arrange them in the pan however you’d like.) Then to bring out that toasty corn flavor and prevent the corn tortillas from tearing, I recommend either flash-frying the tortillas for about 10 seconds per side in a skillet that has been lightly drizzled with oil. Or alternately, you can just dip the tortillas briefly in the warm enchilada sauce before rolling them up.
  • Use green enchilada sauce: Instead of red enchilada sauce, try making green chicken enchiladas with my homemade green enchilada sauce recipe. It’s also very simple to make and brings the most delicious savory green chile flavor to this dish.
  • Use a different protein: I most often make these enchiladas with chicken, but they would also be delicious with ground or shredded beef, shredded pork (especially carnitas), shrimp, or any other protein that you prefer.
  • Use different beans: As I mentioned above, white beans, lentils or chickpeas would also work well here in place of pinto or black beans.
  • Make vegetarian enchiladas: To make these vegetarian enchiladas, simply omit the chicken and replace it with veggies (such as roasted cauliflower, zucchini, bell peppers, etc), extra beans, or any other vegetarian fillings you prefer. To make vegan enchiladas, use a vegetarian filling as well as vegan cheese.
  • Make gluten-free enchiladas: To make gluten-free enchiladas, use gluten-free corn or flour tortillas. And also be sure to use a 1-for-1 gluten-free flour blend (in place of all-purpose flour) in the homemade enchilada sauce recipe.

Easy Chicken Enchiladas with Cheese

What To Serve With Chicken Enchiladas

Looking for some recommendations for side dishes to round out your meal? Feel free to check out our Mexican recipe archives for inspiration, or consider some of these favorite recipes…

Easy Chicken Enchilada Recipe

More Favorite Enchilada Recipes

Looking for more awesome enchilada recipes to try? Here are a few of my faves…

Best Chicken Enchiladas

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Chicken Enchiladas

Chicken Enchiladas

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.8 from 701 reviews
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 60 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x


My all-time favorite chicken enchilada recipe! See notes above for possible ingredient variations.


  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil (or olive oil)
  • 1 small white onion, peeled and diced
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced into small 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 (4-ounce) can diced green chiles
  • sea salt and freshly-cracked black pepper
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 8 large flour tortillas
  • 3 cups Mexican-blend shredded cheese
  • 1 batch red enchilada sauce
  • optional toppings: fresh cilantro, chopped red onions, diced avocado, sour cream, and/or crumbled cotija cheese


  1. Prep oven and enchilada sauce. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Prepare your enchilada sauce.
  2. Sauté the filling mixture. In large sauté pan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add diced chicken and green chiles, and season with a generous pinch of salt and pepper.  Sauté the mixture for 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the chicken is cooked through.  Add in the beans and stir until evenly combined.  Remove pan from heat and set aside.
  3. Assemble the enchiladas. To assemble the enchiladas, set up an assembly line including: tortillas, enchilada sauce, chicken mixture, and cheese. Lay out a tortilla, and spread two tablespoons of sauce over the surface of the tortilla.  Add a generous spoonful of the chicken mixture in a line down the center of the tortilla, then sprinkle with 1/3 cup cheese. Roll up tortilla and place in a greased 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Assemble the remaining enchiladas.  Then spread any remaining sauce evenly over the top of the enchiladas, followed by any extra cheese.
  4. Bake. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes, until the enchiladas are cooked through and the tortillas are slightly crispy on the outside.  Transfer the baking dish to a wire baking rack.
  5. Serve. Serve the enchiladas immediately while they’re nice and hot and melty, garnished with lots of fresh toppings. Enjoy!


Storage instructions: Leftover (cooked) enchiladas can be transferred to a sealed container and refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 3 months.

Make ahead instructions. If you would like to make a pan of enchiladas in advance, follow the recipe instructions through step 3 (assembling the enchiladas). Wrap the pan tightly with foil. Then you can either refrigerate the enchiladas for up to 3 days, then bake as directed. Or you can freeze the enchiladas for up to 3 months, then let them thaw in the refrigerator for 24 hours, then bake as directed.

Share this Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

2,055 comments on “Chicken Enchiladas”

1 27 28 29
  1. Found this recipe about a year ago and I have made it 3 times, huge hit with the family!!!! Tasty tasty tasty!!!!
    I also made up some lime and cilantro rice with black beans, corn and jalapeños then added it to my chicken and onions, added some enchilada sauce and then filled the shells. Makes so much more and fills those tortillas right up!!!
    Thank you for the amazing dinner👍👍👊🏻

  2. The sauce was very good – I added the heavy cream and a few tbsp of tomato paste. It was VERY spicy so next time I will only do 2-3 tbsp or chili powder instead of 4 tbsp.

  3. My friend made incredibly good enchiladas, used hand made tortillas.
    Thank you for the recipe😊

  4. I love this recipe. Whenever I make a big batch of shredded plain chicken in the crockpot, I like to use some for this recipe. The sauce is excellent!

  5. Recipe is delicious. I’m not going to lie…I made them extra unhealthy but extra delicious by adding a block of cream cheese to the filling. I also used rotisserie chicken and it worked fine. Then, after spreading the remainder of the sauce and before I added the cheese on top, I poured 3/4 cup of heavy whipping cream over top. I also had extra mexican cheese so I added extra on top. What came out of my oven was a true masterpiece! I called them Creamy Chicken Enchiladas. Squeeze of lime and a dollop of sour cream…SO good! Thanks for the recipe!

  6. I make this recipe all the time. Especially with the homemade sauce can’t be beat and super easy to make.
    Only changes I make is shredding the chicken over cubing it – I feel as if shredded chicken is a better option for enchiladas.
    We also add black olives to the recipe and they add an amazing flavor to the dish along with some sprinkled cojita cheese crumbled on top.

  7. The best enchiladas ever! We used a couple of tablespoons of refried beans in each enchilada (instead of adding whole beans), and much less cheese than called for. Made the homemade red enchilada sauce as written, then added in a little hot sauce to kick it up a notch. These were really good! Thank you for the recipe!

  8. Delicious! I’ve made this a bunch of times for family and friends. It’s one of the most requested recipes I make and it’s always a hit! I really like the homemade enchilada sauce recipe that goes with it – make it every time. I’ve also made these with veggies instead of chicken and sometimes have substituted vegan cheese for family with dairy/lactose issues. Comes out delicious every time!

  9. I come back to this recipe again and again. I love to cook and my extended family always says I’m decent at cooking. However, I could never figure out enchiladas, and it frustrated me. My enchiladas would never be a as good as I wanted them to be. Then I tried this recipe and had success! This recipe is really easy to follow and the enchiladas always turn out so good! I use Hatch Medium Enchilada sauce and add sautéed diced onion to rotisserie chicken in the filling. It’s a keeper!

  10. This is a great recipe…you have to make the enchilada sauce…it is the bomb! I use rotisserie chicken(Costco’s) I sauté a small onion and garlic then add the chicken…use a good sprinkle (or 1 teaspoon) of taco seasoning and a few red pepper flakes or a bit of jalapeño chopped and fry a bit, also a chipotle pepper, canned gives it a nice smoky flavor instead of refs or jalepeno, if you like spicy….I remove it from the pan, let it cool a bit, and add a bit of greek yogurt or sour cream to make it sticky…so it stays together in the tortilla, also adds a nice texture to the filling…I always use corn tortillas. So if you make the sauce the day before…and the chicken mixture…and add the sour cream or yogurt just before filling the tortillas…these are easy to throw together…one of my favorite dishes…Yummy!!

  11. This meal was served to me a few years ago and I insisted on getting the recipe and I’ve been making it ever since. I love serving it to company because it can be prepared beforehand and tastes so good.

  12. This was fantastic! Thank you! – I made the sauce, and used leftover cooked chicken. The whole family loved it. I made a Mexican slaw to go along with it.


  13. No one cares about the history. We just want the recipe.

    • Tried and true. I prefer the ground beef and I don’t know why. AND I do care about the history. A shame people don’t. Happy Holidays.

    • Someone’s taken the time to give you their recipe for free, and you respond with a rude comment. And oddly enough, some people do care about the history. Perhaps you should buy a cookbook instead.

    • Tap on “JUMP TO RECIPE” and you’ll spare yourself from the history.

      Anyway, I make this recipe pretty often, it’s a family favorite and the leftover don’t last more than a day. I’ve made these enchiladas (beef and rotisserie chicken), so many times that I now have a reputation for them and my boyfriend even bragged about how good they were to his old friends when we visited them in another state LOL! This stays bookmarked!

    • In my youth, I found history boring. Learning names, dates and places usually revolving around war was a snore-fest for me (and still is to a certain extent).
      I ask you to reread your comment though. You took liberties to speak for everyone, including myself, to rebuff the time and interest the author spent expanding knowledge. As you mature, you’ll find that expanding your knowledge base can be fun and interesting. History defines our cultures and food is universally a love language.

    • I love history

    • If you just want the recipe, just click “Jump to Recipe at top of page”, Don’t be a Karen!!

    • boo 🍅🍅🍅

  14. If you use your homemade sauce it says not to freeze, but the enchilada recipe says you can freeze. So which is correct.

  15. I made this last night with some leftover roasted chicken. Stuck pretty close to the recipe but made a few changes. (I also used the enchilada sauce recommended in this recipe. I added some of my homemade smoked paprika in place of part of the chili powder. Also added a couple tablespoons of sundried tomato paste to the sauce.) For the enchiladas, I used a larger can of green chilies and also added some sundried tomato paste to the meat mixture. I used home canned pinto beans in the filling and made a fresh salsa for a topping. My husband, who has been eating my enchiladas for 20 years, said these were the best he has ever had. I will be making these a lot in the future. Very tasty!!

  16. This was my first to fix n all from scratch yes the sauce too sure smells good can’t wait to taste

  17. I made it using refried beans instead of black beans. Turned out seriously good.

  18. The enchiladas were fabulous. I’d never made them before but definitely will again. My husband loved them. I also made your recipe for the enchilada sauce. Since I’m GF, I used Siete almond flour tortillas which worked perfectly.

  19. Maybe this is a silly question, But why can’t you just mix all the stuffing ingredients in one bowl and put it in the tortilla shell? Then one person could do it and save a lot of time. Is there a benefit to the assembly-line technique that I’m missing? Thanks in advance!

  20. I’ve made this so many times (and with different protein sources like ground beef & bison). It’s so good! Thank you! ❤️

  21. A great recipe. Made it last night. Also made the homemade red enchilada sauce. Loved it!!! Super quick and easy and i know exactly what’s going into it.
    For the enchilada filling I sauteed onions and some diced pepper. Also added some cauliflower rice to the mixture. And because i love cilantro, i finely chopped some into the filling as well. This became a ‘deluxe’ enchilda! Super filling. Great reviews from my guests. Will be making again and again.

  22. Wow just finished this yumo enchilada recipe! My tweeks: I used GF corn tortillas and coated them with the fabulous enchilada sauce, used shredded rotisserie chicken and pinto beans & sheep’s milk cheddar cheese. I used less cheese too since I can’t eat much dairy. The corn tortillas rolled up without breaking since I coated them with the sauce. Love this recipe and it is in my rotation!

  23. My kids who don’t like much loved these! Beans and all!! Thank you. It’s a keeper.

  24. It doesn’t say how much enchilada sauce you need if you’re not making the batch recipe… much is 1 batch equal to??

  25. Ooooh! Wow! This was a REMARKABLY GOOD! I recommend making the red enchilada sauce and adding 2 tablespoons of tomato paste. Don’t forget some smoked chili powder! We used the corn tortillas— highly recommended. Topped with tomatoes, red onion, cilantro and sour cream. This one is going into our favorite recipes for sure!! Thank you.

  26. Love this recipe! Especially the homemade sauce. I actually double the batch of sauce and leverage all of in the dish. This is because it’s so good, we want our enchiladas swimming in it!! Other adaptations include using chicken bone broth instead of regular chicken stock and using Ancho Chili Powder (as mentioned) and Cayenne Pepper in equal parts to replace Chili Powder. I also use fresh garlic with the onions and skip the chilis and beans. A little heavier on the cheese, too. It’s so awesome each time and the family loves to wolf down a fresh batch of these kickn’ enchiladas!!

  27. Made this tonight with some adjustments based on the ingredients I had and it was fabulous! SO delicious, my BF said it may be one of his favourite meals we’ve cooked. We had some leftover chicken thighs and just used those, and also added a green pepper. I made the homemade sauce which definitely made the dish, I made broth using chicken bones and zazzed it up a bit with some cinnamon and extra spice. Can see how making more of them almost would be the same amount of work so will certainly be making a huge batch next time! Definitely make these!!!

  28. Definitely not my favorite enchilada recipe. The flour tortillas wind up gooey. I guess that’s why I’ve only used corn tortillas in the past for enchiladas. Sure it would be good with those.

  29. Oh my goodness…these enchiladas are phenomenal!! They come out perfectly and are so delicious!!! A huge hit in my household!

  30. So much better than take-out even!

  31. Can you edit the Make Ahead Instructions so that it is clear to leave the sauce and cheese off if storing them in the fridge for 3 days? The instructions say to complete step 3 and then cover in foil – but step 3bincludes adding the sauce and cheese. It’s good thing I read the comments or I would have had soggy enchiladas on Sunday! (Tonight is Friday, I’m getting ready to prep these).

  32. Sounds really good. Will try soon

  33. Really good I use the basic recipe as a base and added some more cumin, paprika, red pepper and corn as well as onion garlic powder. We appreciate having a good base to start with as I have not made enchiladas for years and needed a little reminder. Very good. I’m sure the basic recipe was very good from what I saw that I just wanted to throw it all the extra stuff I had to make a stretch.

  34. I made these tonight along with your enchilada sauce and my parents could not stop raving about how good they were! I will never make my enchiladas another way again!

  35. I’ve been eyeing this recipe for months. My delay was based on my 92 yo mother being reluctant of spice. After making the sauce and getting a smile of approval… Today! I finally made it. Mmmm-mmm! So good. I added a tsp of ground cumin to the chicken while cooking.
    Thank you for this recipe (and the sauce).

  36. Amazing! I used shredded chicken that I cooked in the crock pot with salsa. This will be a staple!


  38. Instead of using black beans, I spread refried beans and the tortillasThen put the enchilada sauce on top of that and added the rest of the ingredients. Awesome recipe! Thank you

  39. I made this recipe and also the sauce. It was wonderful. Very authentic Mexican. My family loved it. I will be repeating it for company. I love showing off by making something as fine as this.

  40. OMG I can’t believe this blog is ranking number 1 on google for how to make enchiladas, when this is the worst method to make enchiladas , actually this are not enchiladas, this are wraps or burritos with a topping, not being a hater , is just a reality.

  41. I love your homemade enchilada sauce recipe! This is the 2nd time I’ve made it and this time I doubled the recipe.

    For the enchiladas, I browned ground beef & chicken, added diced tricolor peppers, onion, corn, & black beans, plus stirred in equal parts of cream cheese & sour cream to the filling mixture. I followed the the rest of your instructions. Yum!!!

    Thank you for this easy flexible recipe that is loved by everyone who’s tasted it!

  42. Your enchilada sauce recipe is a game changer! I could never figure out why my enchiladas didn’t taste quite right but with that sauce they are amazing!!

  43. Just made this and I added mushrooms to the slurry and it was wonderful.

  44. I’ve been using whole wheat tortillas and they work nicely. Also, I always wash and rinse the black beans even if they are low sodium to reduce the sodium in the recipe. Adding a light base of sauce to the bottom of the cooking dish helps keep the bottom of the tortillas most. If you can find Mexican cheese in your area, Cacique queso fresco works nicely when combined with Colby and Monterey Jack.

  45. Hi,
    Did you change this recipe this year? I swore I made it in the past from this website and it called for two different kinds of cheeses, corn tortillas, and the homemade enchilada sauce had cocoa powder and coriander. Was this not you? If it was, could you please send me the original recipe cuz I really love that one. Lmk thanks

  46. Best enchilada recipe I have found. Made the black beans separately and just did the chicken mixture. Outstanding