July 6, 2011

The Best Chicken Enchiladas EVER*

I found this recipe via Pinterest last week [really ... are you shocked?] and had to try it. I had a craving for some mexican food, but we're on a budget these days and I had most of the ingredients at home. I had never made enchiladas before, so I figured it was worth a try!

It was a little time consuming [I'm used to 30 minutes or less type of meals] and I got home a little later than I would have liked to have gotten started on this, but in the end, it didn't matter. The result was SO tasty. Like, beyond words tasty. So good, in fact, that my husband ate four of them in one sitting. I could have easily eaten more if my stomach would have allowed.

I followed this recipe step by step [which rarely happens] and didn't deviate at all. As is, these were hands down the best enchiladas I have ever had in my life. Make these TONIGHT!

Chicken Enchiladas with Red Chile Sauce
adapted from Tide and Thyme, orginally from America's Test Kitchen


1 medium onion, chopped fine
2 jalapenos, seeded and chopped fine
1 teaspoon canola oil
3 medim cloves garlic, minced
3 Tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
3 teaspoons sugar
1 15-oz can tomato sauce
1 cup water
1 large beefsteak tomato, seeded and chopped
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts (2 large breasts)
1 cup extra sharp white cheddar, shredded
1 cup monterey jack cheese, shredded
1/2 cup minced fresh cilantro
12 (6-inch) soft corn tortillas
cooking spray, salt and ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 425.

Combine the onion, jalapeno, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and oil in a large saucepan. cover and cook over medium-low heat, stirring often, until the onions and peppers have softened, 8-10 minutes. Stir in the garlic, chili powder, cumin, and sugar, and cook until fragrant, less than 30 seconds. Stir in the tomato sauce, water, and chopped tomato. Bring to a simmer, and cook until slightly thickened, 5 minutes.

Nestle the chicken into the sauce. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook until chicken is cooked through (thickest part reaches 160 degrees), about 12-20 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate, and set aside to cool.

Strain the sauce through a strainer into a medium bowl, pressing the onion mixture to extract as much liquid as possible. Transfer the onions to a large bowl and set aside. Season sauce with additional salt and pepper to taste.

Shred the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Add to the onion mixture, and add 1/4 cup of the enchilada sauce, 1 cup cheese, and the cilantro. Toss to combine.

Stack the tortillas on a plate and cover with plastic wrap; Microwave on high until warm and pliable, 40-60 seconds. Spread the tortillas on a clean work surface, and spoon 1/3 cup of the chicken mixture evenly down the center of each. Tightly roll each tortilla and lay seam-side down in a greased 9x13 inch baking dish.

Lightly spray the tops of the enchiladas with cooking spray. Place in the oven, uncovered, for about 7 minutes, or until the tortillas start to brown slightly (skip this step if you don't like the crunch).

Reduce heat to 400. Remove enchiladas and pour sauce evenly on top. Top with the remaining cheese. Cover dish with foil, and bake an additional 20 minutes, or until heated through.

Remove foil and bake another 5 minutes, until cheese browns. Remove from oven and let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Serve with sour cream, guacamole, salsa, additional cilantro, etc.


E and R said...

Sounds delicious! I am definitely going to give these a try, thanks!

Lauren said...

These look amazing! I may have to try these out soon!

MrsV said...

These look so good. I'm gonna have to try them this week :)