Chicken Enchiladas with Homemade Red Sauce

This is the recipe that started my love affair with Mexican food. Before I tasted this, I didn't think that I liked anything (beyond Nachos or that prepackaged, yellow Taco Kit) Mexican. My best friend's parents first made this for us one Fourth of July & I HAD to have the recipe. (They are amazing cooks, I'm always trying to replicate something that they make!) It's been more than 10 years & I've hardly changed a thing from the instructions that I wrote down that 4th of July evening. This is a fabulous recipe! Ingredients:
(For the Sauce)
2 Green Peppers
1 Pablano Chile Pepper
1-2 Jalapeno Peppers
1 medium Onion
4-5 cloves of Garlic
15 oz can of Tomato Sauce
6 oz can of Tomato Paste
1/4- 1/2 cup Chicken Broth
3 tbsp of Olive Oil
2-3 tbsp Fresh, chopped Cilantro or Parsley
1 1/2 tsp dried Oregano
2 tsp ground Cumin
Salt & Pepper to taste
What else you will need:
Tortilla shells, we use flour tortillas in the taco or fajita size.
Fillings & toppings:
You can fill your enchiladas with anything you'd like- shredded cheeses or meats like chicken, beef, or pork. Just make sure you have cheese to top with! We also like to serve them with sour cream & hot sauce. Directions:Roughly chop the peppers, chili & onion. Discarding all the seeds & tops of peppers. Depending on how spicy you like your food, take care with the jalapenos. I remove all the seeds & the ribs. But I am feeding a 4 year old so if you like heat you may want to leave some. Smash the garlic to remove the skins. Place them all in a large chefs pan or sauce pan with olive oil. Saute over medium heat, just until they are soft.
In a food processor or blender, puree the tomato sauce, paste, sauteed mixture, cilantro or parsley (we prefer parsley!). Add as much of the chicken broth as you need to the mixture moving easily.
Pour the sauce back into the pan that you sauteed the peppers & onion in. Add the cumin, oregano, salt & pepper. Cook over medium heat for 15-20 minutes. (This is when I get the fillings together.)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Make an assembly line with the sauce, tortillas, fillings, and a casserole dish (greased with non-stick spray). We filled our enchiladas with chicken & cheese. I baked boneless, skinless chicken breasts (2) seasoned with Adobo Seasoning (found in the spices or hispanic section of the grocery store) & drizzled with olive oil at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes. After letting it cool for a little bit we finely chopped it. I used shredded mozzarella cheese, but you can use any cheese you'd like.
Put a few spoon fulls of the sauce in the bottom of the greased casserole dish. I used a smaller dish, since I was only feeding 3 people. (These freeze fabulously so you can make a bunch or what I usually do is just freeze the left over sauce for another meal.)
Spoon a little of the sauce a tortilla & spread it around (both sides) then fill. I do mostly chicken with a little bit of cheese. (I put most of the cheese on the top later.)
Roll the filled tortillas like a burrito (fold up the sides & roll) and place on top of the sauce in the casserole dish.
Spoon more sauce over top of the tortillas, be generous- you don't want dry enchiladas! Top with cheese.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until the cheese starts to bubble. I sprinkle a little more chopped parsley on the top.
I made saffron rice with this but some times we make refried or black beans too. PS- This is my husband's plate. A normal person would eat 1-2 of these, depending on how you fill them & what sides your serve.


  1. These are super yummy. Now I am hungry.

  2. These looks soooo tasty! Thanks so much for the recipe, I needed a good enchilada recipe. The sauce looks delicious. :) I can't wait to try them!

  3. That looks fantastic. We love Mexican food and this looks delicious! I'm making note of it :o)

  4. This recipe looks fantastic -- I use Ancho Peppers in my sauce. I'm looking forward to trying your way. I've been posting lots of Mexican food recipes on my blog, let me know what you think please!