Chicken Enchilada Recipe

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Today, I’m sharing my chicken enchilada recipe. I could eat Mexican food every day of the week, literally. This recipe is an old one my family has used for years.

This chicken enchilada recipe is made with flour tortillas and has a sweet kick in the meat wrapped in a yummy creamy green enchilada sauce.

My goal is to have easy recipes for people to teach their kids and grandkids how to cook from scratch and to take advantage of right now. That is one skill every child needs in order to survive. It’s the little things like cooking rice, baking potatoes and making doughnuts that we all love, but might take for granted as we make them. Speaking of doughnuts, I need some sweets! LOL!

When I see a young child cooking scrambled eggs or making hard-boiled eggs, my heart swells with joy. I love the joy of cooking as a family on Sunday morning, and everyone taking part to prepare the meal.

Chicken Enchilada Recipe

Kitchen Items You May Need:

Chicken Enchilada Recipe

Step One

Preheat the oven to (350°F) = (176°C). Gather all of your ingredients so you’re ready to make the recipe.

Ingredients

Step Two

Combine the honey, lime juice, chili powder, and garlic with the chicken.

Make the marinate

Stir until completely mixed together. Place the bowl in the refrigerator covered with plastic wrap and marinate it for a few hours, or overnight.

Chicken and Marinate

Step Three

Spread half of the enchilada sauce in a greased 9-inch by 13-inch pan.

Spread half of the sauce

I like to put a handful of cheese before I place the enchiladas in the pan.

Sprinkle Cheese

Step Four

Layer the cut pieces of tortillas, cheese, and chicken mixture in the pan on top of the sauce. PLEASE NOTE: Today I rolled up the enchiladas instead of cutting up the flour tortillas. Please note, I made two vegetarian enchiladas with refried beans and cheese for one family member.

Assemble the enchiladas

You can see how I rolled up the flour tortillas. I should have used a larger pan, but I kept rolling them anyway. I placed a cookie sheet under the pan for drips.

Rolled Enchiladas

Step Five

Mix the remaining enchilada sauce with the cream. Spread the mixture over the top of the casserole and sprinkle with the last cup of grated cheese. Bake at (350°F) = (176°C) degrees for 30-40 minutes, or until cooked through.

Chicken Enchilada Recipe

Finished Product

Baked Chicken Enchiladas

I like to serve these with cilantro, sour cream, guacamole, and tortilla chips. We served this entree with a green salad topped with ranch salad dressing tonight.

Chicken Enchilada Recipe

Chicken Enchilada Recipe

5 from 2 votes
Chicken Enchilada Recipe
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Chicken Enchilada Recipe
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
40 mins
Marinate Chicken
2 hrs
Total Time
2 hrs 50 mins
 
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 6 people
Ingredients
  • 1 pound of cooked chicken shredded
  • 10 ready-made flour tortillas (I cut them into pieces so they are easier to serve from the pan)
  • 2- 16-ounce cans green enchilada sauce (one can to serve warm with the enchiladas)
  • 1 pound of grated Monterey Jack cheese or grated Mozzarella cheese (save one cup to sprinkle over the finished casserole before cooking)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
Combine the following ingredients:
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 large lime (squeezed or 5 tablespoons lime juice)
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to (350°F) = (176°C) degrees. Combine the honey, lime juice, chili powder, and garlic with the chicken. Stir until completely mixed together. Place the bowl in the refrigerator covered with plastic wrap and marinate it for a few hours or overnight. Spread half of the enchilada sauce in a greased 9-inch by 13-inch pan. Layer the cut pieces of tortillas, cheese, and chicken mixture in the pan. Mix the remaining enchilada sauce with the cream. Spread the mixture over the top of the casserole and sprinkle with the last cup of grated cheese. Bake at (350°F) = (176°C) degrees for 30-40 minutes, or until cooked through.

Chicken Enchilada Recipe

How do I store the leftovers?

I store mine in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.

Can I freeze the leftovers?

Yes, you can freeze them. Wrap the pan tightly with foil and freeze it for 1-2 months. Thaw the night before you want to serve them. Cover with foil to heat them up before placing the pan in your oven.

Can I use corn tortillas?

Sure, you can. This recipe tastes good with either corn or flour tortillas.

What can I serve with these enchiladas?

Can I use different meat in this recipe?

Yes, in fact, shredded pork and shredded beef work great in this recipe. I like shredded meats since they cook up better, are easier to serve, and the smaller pieces are easier to eat, particularly for the little kids.

What’s the difference between an enchilada and a burrito?

Typically enchiladas are made with corn tortillas and eaten with a fork. Burritos are made with flour tortillas and you eat them with a fork or pick them up to eat. Mark likes his burritos smothered with enchilada sauce, guacamole, and melted cheese. Needless to say, he eats his with a fork.

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Are enchiladas Mexican or American?

Enchiladas originated in Mexico, dating back to Mayan times. They began as a corn tortilla wrapped around some fish and were considered a snack more so than a meal. They have become a favorite here when we think of having Mexican food for a meal, whether at home or dining out.

Are black olives an authentic Mexican food?

No, they don’t use black olives in their Mexican dishes. Ground meat is rarely used and shredded meat is used instead.

Do I have to marinate the meat?

No, you don’t have to, but it gives the meat a little extra flavor.

Can I use rotisserie chicken?

Yes, in fact, that’s what I used today. We used to buy the whole cooked rotisserie chickens at Costco and then trimmed the meat from the bones. I still like the flavor and texture of that meat, but for convenience sake, now more often than not we purchase their pre-cooked and packaged rotisserie chicken, it is so handy!

Can I use canned chicken?

Yes, you can use canned chicken, just skip the marinate. I love canned chicken breasts from Costco. There are so many recipes you can use it in. No cooking, chopping, etc. Just drain the liquid from the can and you’re set.

Can I make this dish part vegetarian?

Yes, you can, but I recommend at least half of it with marinated meat. I did add some refried beans to 1/3 of the casserole for the vegetarians in my family.

Final Word

I’m so glad I knew how to cook various Mexican meals as my girls were growing up. As a family, having taco Tuesdays, burrito brunches, and enchilada evenings were a true delight for all of us. Besides having delicious meals together, the girls learned how to make their Mexican favorites so they could put their skills to use growing up, when away at college, and now as they prepare meals for their own children and their friends.

I particularly like this recipe because it allows for some real creativity as you choose various cheeses, meats, types of sauces, etc. Let me know if you made this entree, and if so, how it worked out for you. Spending time in the kitchen with family is one of my favorite pastimes, and I hope you enjoy it too. May God bless this world. Linda

8 thoughts on “Chicken Enchilada Recipe

  • March 25, 2022 at 7:18 am
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    Good Morning Linda! This looks delicious!! I totally agreee….I could eat Mexican food every day. Maybe some Asian tossed in on a few nights too. ; )

    Reply
    • March 25, 2022 at 7:45 am
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      Hi Steff, oh I love hearing you love Mexican food too! Yep, and some Asian tossed in sounds great! My granddaughter brought a dish over yesterday with rice noodles and vegetables. It has a citrus dressing, oh my goodness, yummy! I have never cooked rice noodles, I will be now!! Linda

      Reply
  • March 25, 2022 at 7:46 am
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    5 stars
    Yum! These are so good! They were a hit with the whole family!

    Reply
    • March 25, 2022 at 9:13 am
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      Hi Heidi, thank you for the 5 stars, my friend! Thank you for trying them! Linda

      Reply
  • March 25, 2022 at 11:51 am
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    5 stars
    These sound really good. For me my Mexican is Taco Bell or homemade Tacos that is about as far as I get.
    I have to be really careful because of the cilantro so I try not to venture out to far.
    You mentioned sweets ( of course I would pick that short sentence out of your post) I made cookies
    yesterday cause I was having a craving for sweets. I made my Cornflake cookies. To me they aren’t
    overly sweet and I can eat for breakfast cause of the cornflakes, dunk in milk and there is my breakfast.
    I can justify anything.

    Reply
    • March 25, 2022 at 12:30 pm
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      Hi June, thank you for the 5 stars, my sweet friend!! I got the giggles over “I can justify anything!” Are cornflake cookies like Cowboy cookies? Now I want to make some breakfast cookies!!! LOVE THIS! Linda

      Reply
  • March 25, 2022 at 3:30 pm
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    Hi Linda,

    Great post. My question is completeely off the subject of your post, but hope that you can help me.

    I want to make some chickpea snacks from canned chickpeas. Most directions say to use an oven to dry the chickpeas. Can you also use a food dehydrator? Which method do you think would work better?

    Thanks for your input.

    Suzanne

    Reply
    • March 25, 2022 at 5:48 pm
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      Hi Suzanne, oh these sound great!! I looked in my dehydrator book and didn’t see anything. I looked up some recipes and you basically bake the chickpeas in the oven at 350 degrees on parchment paper on a cookie sheet or greased pan. You take a bowl and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and add your favorite spices. Bake for 45 minutes or until slightly browned. You could dehydrate them plain in a dehydrator (my Excalibur says 125 degrees for green peas). I did a post and they took 3 hours. I know they’re not chickpeas, but if you dehydrate them they would be less apt to go rancid (no oil). I would try dehydrating them first. Now, I want to try doing them. Stay tuned. Great idea!!! Linda

      Reply

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