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When Chuck and I were newly wed and I had not yet conquered the art of cooking from scratch, we ate a lot of chicken patties, burritos made from canned refried beans, spagetti…you get the picture. I wasn’t a fan of cooking (I’m still not) but one thing I really wanted to learn to make was chicken enchiladas. These were an absolute favorite in my house growing up. My mom didn’t make them very often because they were so much work. I can remember her boiling a whole chicken, removing the meat, dressing, it taking if for long walks in the park…okay, maybe not that last bit, but you know what I mean. Anyway, I loved them, she loved them, we all loved them. This was one of the first meals I learned to make from scratch. Over the years I have added my own twists to make this recipe my own. I don’t boil a whole chicken or make my mom’s enchilada sauce, but I have simplified and perfected a recipe that my whole family enjoys.
First, gather your ingredients. My mom makes her sauce from scratch, and I used to. Then one day, I accidentally bought a can of Rosarita Enchilada Sauce instead of Rosarita Refried Beans. Oops. When I opened the can and tasted it, I was hooked. This stuff was good. So good, I no longer bother to make my own.
And boiling a whole chicken? No way. I cook 4-5 chicken breasts in the Crockpot then shred them. You can also buy a rotisserie chicken and use that, or use leftover chicken.
The other items you need are: grated cheddar, green onions, olives, garlic salt, corn tortillas and a bit of oil for heating the tortillas.
I mix the shredded chicken, olives, green onions and garlic salt in a large bowl. While I am mixing I heat some oil in a pan. Softening the corn tortillas in the oil really is a must. I have tried to skip this step and the tortillas fall apart and the enchiladas don’t taste nearly as good!
Once the oil is hot, I place the tortillas in the oil for a few seconds to soften. Once they are soft, I pull the tortillas out with tongs and place them on napkins to soak up any extra grease.
Next I place a scoop of enchilada filling into the tortillas and roll them up.
Then I pour the Rosarita Enchilada Sauce over top. I smooth it a bit with a spatula to make sure the red, juicy goodness is evenly distributed. Next, I sprinkle with a bit of cheddar cheese. Then I bake in the over at 350 for 20-22 minutes, or until the cheese is hot and bubbly.
Before serving I like to top them with a bit of fresh cilantro, guacamole and sour cream…and then I add a side of refried beans and tortilla chips!
Forget your local Mexican restaurant…the recipe might just put them out of business.
This recipe also freezes beautifully! Just place in a disposable baking pan and cover the top with aluminum foil. When you are ready to bake, let it thaw for a couple of hours and then allow for a little extra baking time in the oven. You can also add any variations you like. I sometimes do a layer of refried beans, or add ground beef or rice. The possibilities are endless!
- 4-5 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 2 tablespoons garlic salt
- 1 bunch green onions
- 2 cups cheddar cheese
- 1 cup olives
- 20 ounce can Rosarita Enchilada Sauce
- 24 corn tortillas
- oil for frying tortillas
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Shred chicken and combine with: cheddar, green onions, garlic salt and olives.
- Gently fry tortillas in oil until just softened. Place on napkins to cool
- Fill tortillas with filling, layer in baking pan.
- Pour enchilada sauce over top, sprinkle with cheese if desired.
- Bake for 20-22 minutes, until cheese is soft and bubbly.
- Serve with; guacamole, sour cream and chips.