March 07, 2018

Homemade Chicken Enchiladas - the Red Enchilada Style (not the white style)

Our family has always loved and eaten homemade enchiladas but overwhelmingly preferred the 'white' style with chicken.  It was quick and easy to whip up with the kids were little, using a can of cream of chicken soup, a few other ingredients and throw it together and bake.  As a matter of fact, their friends loved to eat over on those nights as it was a hit with them as well; two of them went home and made their Moms ask me for the recipe.  However, sometimes we go back to the 'red' sauce based version just to mix it up a little.

Since we typically eat a lower carb lifestyle, I use a low carb tortilla in these but any flour tortilla will do.  I also make all our taco, chalupa and enchilada sauces from scratch but obviously you can use the canned version from the store.  Most people do.  These are super fast to throw together.

If you have an instant-pot you can throw the chicken breasts in there with some water/broth along with the jalapenos or green chilies - or you can add them when the chicken is done and you are shredding it.  The order you add things together in this recipe doesn't matter.  The way you cook your chicken doesn't matter.  It can be leftover roasted chicken, or any style you wish.  It just has to be pre-cooked and either chopped or shredded, as the dish bakes in less than 30 minutes.  Just enough to heat through.

Red Sauce Based Chicken Enchiladas

  • 8-10 Low Carb Flour Tortillas
  • 3 oz. cream cheese (option)
  • 2-3 boneless chicken breasts - cooked tender and shredded
  • 3 green onions - chopped
  • 3 T either mild green chilies (the canned kind) or diced jalapenos if you like more spice
  • 1 t fresh, minced garlic
  • 2 c shredded cheddar cheese (or a mixture of cheddar, mozzarella, monterey jack, etc.)
  • 2 cans Enchilada Sauce or make your own homemade (I do - recipe follows)

Easy sauce from scratch:
  • 2 1/2 - 3 c chicken broth or water - use the broth leftover from cooking your chicken breasts in the instant pot, saucepan, etc. or just use store bought or make your own with water and chicken bouillon base or cubes or just use plain water.
  • 1 1/2 t cornstarch
  • 3 T tomato paste (from the 6 oz2 . can style - I empty the can and keep it in a baggy in the freezer to break off what I need
  • 2 T chili powder
  • 1 T paprika
  • 2 t cumin
  • 1 t oregano
  • 1 t salt
  • 1/2 t chipotle seasoning (I use 1-2 t Mrs. Dash Chipotle seasoning mix)
  • 1/2 t garlic powder
  • 1/2 t onion powder
  • 1/2 t fine ground coffee powder
  • a little sweetener to taste - just enough to cut the acidity; perhaps 1/2 - 1 t
In a saucepan, mix the cornstarch with the brother or water until smooth.  Add all the other ingredients and bring to a simmer over medium heat.  Simmer for about 15 minutes. 

I like to line my pans with foil for easy clean up.  Place a little enchilada sauce in the bottom of the pan.  In a bowl, mix the chicken, cream cheese, jalapeno's or chilies, green onions and garlic.  To each tortilla, place some of the chicken mixture with some cheddar cheese.  Roll up and place seam side down in the pan.  Continue with the rest of the tortillas.  Depending on full you fill them you have enough to do 10 on average but can do up to about 14 or as few as 8.  I just fill up the bottom of a 9X13" pan - lined up side by side.  If you have extra filling just spread it out on top of them all.  Top with the remaining cheese.  Pour the enchilada sauce over all.  Bake about 30 minutes at 350 until they are golden brown and bubbly. 
Serve with the typical condiments; sour cream, diced tomatoes, guacamole, shredded lettuce, salsa, etc.  Whatever you like.

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