Comfort Foods for Fall: Chicken Enchiladas (quick and easy)

I know I've posted this at some point in the last 12 years - but it's a good reminder now that Fall is in the air.  This is a great Fall food.

This is a 'comfort food' - it's easy, and cheap to make, feeds a lot of people and tastes so good.  You can also add and delete things in it to make it your own.  It's a recipe I've been making since 2000.  At the time the 3 kids were little and we often had extra kids over for dinner; this was a meal I could whip up and make more or less of to feed as many as we needed.  Adjust pretty much everything to 'play with it' and you can also use more or less of the filling inside the flour tortillas to adjust for more people.  Make 2 pans (double the recipe) if you need to feed more people - and don't forget all the toppings!  You can add more or less of those as well.

Chicken Enchiladas

1 can cream of chicken soup (regular, fat free, etc.)
1/2 c sour cream
1 t dried minced onion
1/2 t dried minced garlic or 1 t fresh chopped or minced
1/2 c chopped green pepper
1/2 t chili powder
1/2 t cumin
3 oz. cream cheese of your choice
2 c shredded cheese - mild cheddar or a mix of cheddar/colby/mozzarella etc.
1-2 cups diced, cooked chicken
1 pkg. flour tortillas (low carb, whole wheat, regular... your choice)
*add anything else you like as well; a small can of green mild chilies, some jalapeno, salsa, diced tomato, a drained can of corn, some rinsed and drained cooked black beans, use beef or diced cooked leftover steak instead of chicken... the options are endless.

Be sure to taste test the mixture and add more or less garlic, cumin and chili powder according to your own tastes.  These amounts were from my original notes in 2000 but we normally use about a tablespoon of fresh garlic, and about 2 t each of cumin and chili powder, and we always add jalapenos etc.

Place the soup, sour cream, onion, garlic, green pepper, spices and cream cheese in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for 1 or 2 minutes until the cream cheese is soft and you can stir and blend it all easily with a wood spoon or rubber spatula.  Add the cooked, diced or shredded chicken, half the shredded cheese and add anything else you wish; adjust seasonings as spicy as you like.  When you are happy with the filling, spoon it into the flour tortillas.

Divide the filling equally between the flour tortillas.  If you have extra filling left, just spoon it over the top of the enchiladas. Top with the last half of the shredded cheese.  Cover with foil and bake in a preheated oven for about 20 minutes until it's warmed through; uncover and let it bake another 5-8 minutes until the top is golden brown and bubbly.

Serve as is or place random toppings out;  shredded lettuce, shredded cabbage, fresh diced tomatoes, avocados, onions, black olives, salsa, taco sauce, shredded cheese, sour cream, guacamole, diced jalapenos...

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No Pasta Lasagna - Low Carb

No Pasta Lasagna

I used my own homemade spaghetti sauce that I make, food vacuum seal and freeze.  Use whichever sauce you prefer just make sure you are reading labels to make sure of the carb and sugar content.

For the no-pasta noodles:
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 oz. cream cheese
  • 1/4 c parmesan cheese
  • 1 c mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 t Italian Seasoning, garlic powder and onion powder

Place items in a food processor and blend smooth.  Spread smooth into a 9X13" pan you've lined with parchment.  Bake about 20-25 minutes.  Let cool or chill while you make the rest.

  • 1 lb. ground beef (or mixture of beef/sausage if that's what you prefer.)

Brown in a pan on the stove with:
  • 1 t Italian seasoning, 1 t garlic powder, 1 t dried oregano, 1 t onion powder
Also use:
  • 1 1/2 - 2 c spaghetti sauce of you choice (I make mine homemade) Check carb and sugar counts on yours
  • 1 c ricotta cheese
  • 1-2 t dried basil
  • 1/3 c mozzarella or Parmesan cheese

Turn the 9X13 pan of baked cheese "pasta" the long way in front of you and slice it into 3rds.  You now have 3 sheets that are the same size as a bread loaf pan. These are going to substitute the pasta.  Mix the basil into the ricotta cheese.  Sometimes if the ricotta is a brand that isn't very thick (brands differ) then I beat in 1 egg.  Up to you.  I use cottage cheese with an egg when I don't have ricotta on hand.  You can also use sour cream instead of cottage cheese or ricotta if that's all you have on hand.

In a loaf pan, layer your lasagna as you usually do.  A bit of sauce, a sheet of cheese-pasta, meat, the ricotta cheese mixture, sauce, cheese-pasta, meat, ricotta.  Layer at least 3 layers and you should be to the top of the loaf pan.  Sprinkle with parmesan or mozzarella (or even a mixture of cheddar jack if that's what you have in the house).  Bake about 25-35 minutes at 350 until golden brown, bubbly and hot all the way through (depends on the thickness of your pan, your oven's 'personality' for baking, etc)  Let set at least 10 minutes to set up - or if you dig into it right away (like we always do) expect it to look more like a casserole on your plate because you didn't allow it to set up.  We enjoyed with a green salad and blue cheese dressing on the side.

The pasta substitute

Spread into a pan and ready to bake

This is your finished 'pasta' which is really an egg/cheese mixture

Layer as you usually do with lasagna - only use a bread or loaf pan

Ready for the oven

You might be interested in some products related to this post, available through Amazon;

USA Pan Bakeware Aluminized Steel 1 Pound Loaf Pan
Reynolds Kitchens Parchment Paper (SmartGrid, Non-Stick, 45 Square Foot Roll)
Cuisinart FP-8SV Elemental 8-Cup Food Processor, Silver


Homemade BLT's - Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato Sandwiches - an "oh yeah, I forgot about those" dinner!

Yeah, I know you don't actually need a recipe for these; but you might need a reminder they even exist.  And I only say that because in our family we will go 6 months without remembering they exist and then standing in the kitchen one night I'll suddenly realize I'm craving a BLT and I'll say to myself "Oh yeah.... I forgot all about those!"

So that is why I'm bothering to post this.  As a reminder that not only do BLT's exist... but they are so yummy!


2 pieces of toast

Sandwich together... and eat!

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