These chicken enchiladas verdes are cheesy, delicious, and a big hit with everyone in my family. They also freeze well so I can make a double batch and easily get two meals with half the work. This Mexican food dish may become a staple on your meal plan!
Chicken Enchiladas Verdes
So what are enchiladas verdes? Instead of using the typical enchilada sauce made with tomatoes and spices, we’re using one made with green tomatillos. It’s similar to green enchilada sauce, but it’s chunkier instead of blended. If you’re in a hurry you can always use a healthy jarred salsa, but I love my homemade roasted salsa verde recipe.
It’s easy enough to control the spice by choosing the peppers you want. For a spicier roasted salsa opt for more jalapeno and serrano peppers. If you want a milder version (especially for the kids!), then go for bell peppers and poblanos. I’ve had a harder time finding mild salsa verde at the store, especially one that isn’t full of junky ingredients, so making it is a great way to control the spice level.
Chicken Enchiladas Recipe
The nice thing about this recipe is it can use up that leftover rotisserie chicken. If you don’t want to cook a whole chicken, then chicken breasts are a faster option. Chicken thigh meat is also nice if you’re a dark meat person. And if you want to stretch your meat (have you seen prices lately?!), then add some pinto or black beans into the mix.
That’s a Wrap
I chose corn tortillas here because they’re gluten-free. They can be a little trickier to work with than flour tortillas, but I find they really add to the flavor of the dish. Sometimes enchiladas get soggy, but there’s an easy trick to help prevent that. Cooking the tortilla for a bit first helps it not get too soggy when it’s covered in the sauce.
Fresher Is Better
While I’m all for quick and easy recipes, that doesn’t mean I have to rely on premade, jarred food to make it. Tomatillo salsa made with fresh tomatillos, garlic cloves, fresh veggies, and a squeeze of lime juice tastes so much better in my opinion. Roasting the peppers really helps develop the sugars in them for amazing flavor. You could puree the salsa verde if desired, but I prefer to leave it as is.
What Kind of Cheese Goes on Enchiladas Verdes?
There are a lot of different cheese options that will work here. Anything that’s mild and not too overpowering makes a great enchilada topping. Something like blue cheese is way too strong for enchiladas, even though it makes a great topping for a salad. Monterey jack, mild cheddar, and pepper jack are good options.
Making Enchiladas Verdes
A word of warning here: hands will get messy making these. It’s okay though, we’re washable. This recipe is a fun one for the kids to help with since even little ones can help put in the filling and sprinkle the cheese on top. I’m a big advocate for teaching kids how to cook so they know how to make their own healthy meals. You may know that my son even co-authored a cookbook, Chef Junior, with some of his friends.
These enchiladas are easy to customize with your favorite toppings. Sprinkle on some tomatoes, chives, avocados, or whatever your family prefers.
Chicken Enchiladas Verdes
- In a medium-size bowl, stir together the chicken, 1 cup of the shredded cheese, the onion, 1/2 cup sour cream, salt, cumin, and garlic powder.
Assemble the Enchiladas
- In a small saucepan heat the salsa until warmed, but not too hot. It's easiest to make enchiladas with your hands and you don't want to burn them.
- Transfer the warmed salsa to a wide bowl or baking dish.
- In a skillet, heat a tortilla over medium heat until it's warm and pliable, then place it in the warmed salsa.
- Place another tortilla in the skillet to warm while you work on filling the first one.
- Flip the first tortilla over and remove it to a cutting board, scraping it lightly along the edge of the bowl to remove excess sauce.
- Spread 1/4 cup of the enchilada filling down the middle of the tortilla, roll, and place in a 9×13 baking dish.
- Repeat until all the tortillas or filling are used.
Topping the Enchiladas
- Whisk together the remaining salsa and sour cream and pour it over the finished enchiladas.
- Top with the remaining shredded cheese.
- Bake at 375°F for 10-15 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the enchiladas are heated through.
- Top with diced tomatoes, jalapenos, avocado, etc. as desired.
- You can use Monterey jack cheese blend, pepper jack cheese, or even a mild cheddar for these.
- These freeze really well, so make a double batch and have a freezer meal ready to go. Cook from frozen, covered, at 375°F for 35-45 minutes, uncovering for the last 10 minutes.
How does your family like their enchiladas? Leave us a comment and be sure to share with a friend!