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Recipe: Enchiladas. The ways to make them are endless

An example. Kinda look like El Pato enchiladas "tan tan!"

As requested, here is my post on enchiladas. Hope you enjoy 🙂

There are a few schools of thought to making these delicious works of gooey wondrousness:

  1. They can only be made using ground beef, chicken, or cheese. I have had them with carne guisado, molé, and hell, even potatoes. In other words, the filling is entirely up to you and your taste.
  2. You have to make the filling from scratch. Sure, you can roast a chicken in the oven, but that takes a while. Why not go get an original recipe rotisserie chicken from the supermarket, chop that sucker up, and use that? Ideas are forming, I can tell 🙂
  3. One can only use “authentic” cheeses. Queso fresco is something I can eat oodles of. But I’ve used Gruyere before, and it was exquisite. The trick to this is simply, if the cheese melts well, use it. Back in the day, my mother used to cut up cubes of Velveeta and use that for the filling and topping. I’m not advocating it, I’m just telling the story as it happened.
  4. Enchilada sauce is the only way to go. Not even. Try sauteeing some onion, throw in stewed tomatoes and seasoning, and let it all break down and cook for a while. Another Mom story: She would use Wolf brand chili (no beans) as the sauce with the aforementioned Velveeta cheese. Let’s just say I didn’t exactly go that route, but hey, if it floats your boat, try it. It’s not BAD tasting at all… why won’t you believe me???

For now, we’ll go with the notion that you want to use Enchilada sauce. McCormick’s has a good one in powder form that you can find at your local supermarket. All it requires is water and some tomato sauce, and let cook for five minutes. If all you can find is the canned stuff, hey, that’s ok. Sometimes one has to experiment to find the right combination for deliciousness.

Fiesta Seasoning (based in Texas) also has an Enchilada sauce powder I like to use (check it out, they even have a recipe on their site). Follow the instructions on the bottle and it’ll make some tasty sauce.

A good typical combination is shredding up a brick of Monterey Jack and Cheddar cheeses. Those will yield good, melty results.

So the basic way of making these bad boys:


  • 1 package of corn tortillas (fresh from the tortilleria or the supermarket, it doesn’t matter)
  • Grated cheese – I really don’t like pre-shredded cheese because it seems like it’s too dry. Get a couple of bricks and grate them up. Big difference in taste.
  • Canola or Vegetable Oil
  • Enchilada Sauce – what kind is up to you.
  • Some sort of stuffing – ground beef, shredded chicken, fajíta, cheese, whatever’s clever.


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a rectangle cake pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Get a frying pan and put enough oil to cover the bottom. Set it at about medium heat. It shouldn’t take long to heat up.
  3. Get your sauce, cooked stuffing (no raw meat here, people) and cheese ready. I like to put them in seperate containers and arrange things like a factory line. Makes things easier.
  4. Put some of the sauce in the  cake pan and sort of coat the bottom lightly. This will prevent the tortillas from sticking during the baking process.
  5. This bit is important… you will need a pair of tongs and hopefully don’t mind some burnt fingertips. Get a tortilla and put it in the oil. After 5 seconds, use the tongs to flip to the other side. Take tortilla out of the oil and let it rest on a paper towel-covered plate. This should blot out a lot of the oil. If you’re hardcore, get some of the stuffing and put it down the middle of the tortilla, then roll it up and take the pain of the burned fingertips. That’s how they do it in the old country!
  6. Put the rolled up stuffed tortilla seam side down in the pan and make a row until you’ve gotten as many as you wanted.
  7. Top with sauce and cheese. Cover pan with foil and put in the oven to bake for 20-30 minutes.

An example of how most folks line them up.

Now, some folks don’t use the oil if they’re using freshly made warm tortillas. I tend to think if you don’t use oil to fry them up, they will break apart very quickly. It’s up to you how you want to do it.

Try these sides to compliment the enchiladas. After this meal, you’re going to want to go out and get an accordion and a sombrero and go sing your songs of heartbreak and love to the customers at the local cantina. ARRRIIIIIBBBBBAAAAAA!

  1. Ryan
    January 6, 2011 at 3:37 PM


    • Jen
      January 6, 2011 at 3:48 PM

      You’re welcome 🙂 The spousal unit told me you may have questions about the recipe. Feel free to holler or bug him and he’ll bug me. It’s all good.

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