My favorite ever Easy Shredded Chicken Enchiladas Recipe-- easy to make, with a simple, but delicious homemade red enchilada sauce. This classic mexican dish is baked as a casserole and served with fresh toppings like limes, cilantro, and sour cream.
Today I am sharing with you one of my family’s favorite recipes. These easy chicken enchiladas were a family classic growing up that was "special" in the rotation. Special, because it takes a little time to prepare, but also special because of how delicious it is.
My mom originally found this easy enchiladas recipe in a magazine as an ad for Crisco oil. But like all good recipes, over the years it has shifted and changed to suit our family’s taste. The result-- a slightly healthier dish with more green chiles! The chiles included in this are mild canned green chiles. They really don’t add a lot of heat, they just add flavor!
Ingredients in Shredded Chicken Enchiladas
- Shredded Chicken: I generally used boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Feel free to use pre-shredded chicken or rotisserie chicken if you want to cut down on prep time. We often use this Instant Pot shredded chicken for enchiladas. I honestly find this the best way to cook chicken for enchiladas, because in the time it takes to make the red sauce and gather the remaining filling ingredients, the chicken can be cooked from start to finish.
- Green Chiles: They have mild heat and come already chopped in the can. Our family adds extra chiles because they really bulk up the filling and add great flavor! Don't be worried about them being too spicy, they are made from Anaheim peppers which are low on the Scoville scale, about 500.
- Cilantro: An important flavor component and adds freshness.
- Corn Tortillas: About 12 small to medium sized corn tortillas will use up all of the shredded chicken mixture and fill a 9x13 baking dish. You can also use flour tortillas if your family prefers.
- Red Enchilada sauce: This homemade enchilada sauce is where it's at! It is made with super simple ingredients like flour, oil, spices, stock, and tomato sauce. Most likely all pantry staples! You can make it more or less spicy, depending on your liking -- simply add more or less chili powder.
How to make enchiladas with red sauce
Heat oil in a medium saucepan. Add oil, flour, and chili powder. Whisk together and cook for 1 minute. Add in cumin, garlic powder, stock, and tomato sauce. Simmer for about ten minutes, whisking often.
Combine chicken, green onions, ¾ cup of cheese, sour cream, chiles and cilantro. Stir in ½ cup of the finished enchilada sauce and add salt and pepper to taste.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Warm tortillas in the microwave or on the stove burner (this make them more pliable and less prone to breakage when you're wrapping).
Add a ½ cup of your enchilada sauce to coat the bottom of a 9X13 dish.
Add a heaping spoon of filling to each tortilla, and roll. Place each enchilada seam side down in the casserole dish, lining them up beside each other. Continue with the remaining tortillas until all the filling is used up. Top with the rest of the enchilada sauce and remaining cheese.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, until cheese is melted and bubbly.
Can you make chicken enchiladas ahead of time?
Totally. The only risk you run is the corn tortillas getting soggy or falling apart a bit on the bottom-- but this is a casserole, it’s not meant to be pretty! This could be made the morning of or the day before serving. Simply do all of the prep work until the final 15-20 minute bake in the oven.
This dish freezes well and it's not a bad idea to make a double batch (trust me, your family will be asking for these again!). My mom used to make this as a meal to bring to people when they needed one, and it was always very well received!
What sides go with chicken enchiladas?
These enchiladas are great on their own. But we always serve them with fun toppings like extra greek yogurt/sour cream, salsa, lime, hot sauce, cilantro, green onions, and avocado. Here are some other great sides that would be delicious served with these creamy shredded chicken enchiladas:
- A Classic Margarita
- Guacamole <--- This is a given!
- Buttery Lemon Herb Rice
- Carmelitas (the perfect dessert)
Shredded Chicken Enchiladas with Red Sauce
A Mexican classic, Shredded Chicken Enchiladas with Red Sauce are made with corn tortillas, shredded chicken, and green chiles- baked in a rich red sauce, and topped with cheese.
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1-2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 ½ cups (14 oz.) chicken broth
- 1 cup (8 oz.) tomato sauce
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 cups cooked, shredded chicken
- ½ cup thinly sliced green onions
- ½ cup Greek yogurt
- 1 ½ cups Monterey Jack cheese, divided
- 2-3 (4 oz.) cans mild green chiles
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro
- 12-15 corn tortillas
- Heat oil in a medium saucepan. Add oil, flour, and chili powder. Whisk together and cook for 1 minute. Add in cumin, garlic powder, stock, and tomato sauce. Simmer for about ten minutes, whisking often.
- Combine chicken, green onions, ¾ cup of cheese, sour cream, chiles and cilantro. Stir in ½ cup of the finished enchilada sauce and add salt and pepper to taste.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Warm tortillas in the microwave or on the stove burner (this make them more pliable and less prone to breakage when you're wrapping).
- Add a ½ cup of your enchilada sauce to coat the bottom of a 9X13 dish.
- Add a heaping spoon of filling to each tortilla, and roll. Place each enchilada seam side down in the casserole dish, lining them up beside each other. Continue with the remaining tortillas until all the filling is used up. Top with the rest of the enchilada sauce and remaining cheese.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes, until cheese is melted and bubbly.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 432Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 64mgSodium: 866mgCarbohydrates: 37gFiber: 6gSugar: 5gProtein: 27g
Melissa Szymczak says
These look delicious! I’ll be making them this weekend for sure. Think I will add black beans- my family likes them in these.
That would taste good! And it would add some protein as well!
love enchiladas. i will probably go the lazy route and use store bought rotisserie chicken!
I think that's super smart!!
Mary Belter says
Have you ever used flour tortillas?
Thanks for sharing
I haven't, but I'm sure they would be totally fine! They're milder in flavor than corn, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing
JoAnne McIntire says
this is grandma. I am at aunt missy’s with aunt trinity and aunt shannon. they are doing a cook ahead day and I am supervising
YAY! Good thing you were there to supervise! ;p