America's Test Kitchen Chicken Enchiladas Recipe (2024)

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4.39 from 13 votes

ThisAmerica's test kitchen chicken enchiladasrecipe is one of the quickest and best tasting enchilada dishes you will ever try! It's super delicious, easy to make, and perfect for a midweek large family meal.

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Enchiladas Recipe (1)
Contents
  • 🌟 Why this recipe works
  • 🍽 Key Ingredients
  • 🔪 How to make
  • 💭 Cooking tips
  • 📖 Recipe Variations
  • 🥗 What to serve with
  • 🙋 Frequently Asked Questions
  • 🧊 Storing and ♨️ Reheating
  • 👪 Serving Size
  • 📋 Recipe
  • 💬 Comments

If you like easy casserole meals, check out my collection of best zucchini casserole recipes.

🌟 Why this recipe works

America's test kitchen chicken enchiladasis a recipe created with every home cook in mind. It's completely foolproof and requires no kitchen skills or fancy equipment to prepare these delicious oven-baked chicken enchiladas.

From start to finish, you will have this meal on the table in less than 45 minutes using minimal ingredients, which most of them may already be hiding in your cupboards.

Atk chicken enchiladasare the perfect family meal to enjoy during busy weeknights when time is limited. Plus, it's easy to prepare in advance and great for storing for eating any leftovers the following day.

Theatk enchiladasare filled with a delicious chicken mixture that is juicy and full of spices, topped with enchilada tomato sauce and cheddar cheese, then baked in the oven for perfection. To sum up the dish in one word (IRRESISTIBLE)!

This recipe is made for quick assembly to save on prep time, which gives plenty of room for further additions, making it versatile. Check out the variations section to upgrade yourtest kitchen enchiladas.

🍽 Key Ingredients

Atk enchiladasneed no special kitchen equipment - just a skillet and casserole dish to cook and bake the enchiladas. And they are filled and topped using staple pantry ingredients.

Chicken- Buy fresh chicken breasts (free-range if possible) for a better-tasting chicken mixture.

Chilies- Fresh or canned green chilies.

Sauce- You can prepare your own red enchilada sauce or buy a quality canned variety.

Herbs- You'll need some fresh cilantro to give these enchiladas a wonderful herbaceous flavor.

Tortillas- Corn tortillas work best for rolling the chicken enchilada mixture without falling apart. Use the large ones if you can find them.

Cheese- The choice of cheese for melting is cheddar, and for the mixture, were adding in crumbly queso fresco.

Substitutions

Chicken

To save on prep time, you can usearotisserie chicken and shred the meat or any leftover chicken you have from last night's dinner. I always make this recipe the day after a chicken roast dinner!

Cheese

A good substitute for cheddar cheese with similar qualities is Cantal, Colby, or Monterey Jack. And for the queso fresco, you could use feta.

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Enchiladas Recipe (2)

🔪 How to make

America's test kitchen chicken enchiladas are super easy to prepare and bake in 45 minutes. You will love the delicious spicy flavors and cheese pull from the melted cheese - and you can learn how to make it with myeasy-to-followinstructions and helpful top tops.

Preparations

  • Chop the canned or fresh chilies and the fresh cilantro.
  • Pat the chicken breasts dry and season with salt and pepper.

Cooking Instructions

There is a little bit of effort involved ahead of time prepping this recipe because you have to cook and shred the chicken, but then you can clean up while the enchiladas cook in the oven

Step 1
Preheat oven to 350. Pat chicken dry and season with salt and pepper.

Step 2
Combine the chicken and enchilada sauce in a medium saucepan & simmer for 10-15 minutes over medium-low heat. Then flip the chicken over, cover and cook for an additional 10-15 minutes until chicken reaches 160-165 degrees with an instant-read thermometer.

Step 3
Remove chicken from pan and shred into bite-sized pieces. Combine shredded chicken, ½ cup of the enchilada sauce, queso fresco, chiles and cilantro in a bowl. Add salt and pepper if desired. Cover to keep warm.

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Enchiladas Recipe (3)

Step 4
Lightly coat both sides of 6 tortillas with vegetable oil and place on a baking sheet. Bake until tortillas are soft & pliable, about 2 to 4 minutes.

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Enchiladas Recipe (4)

Step 5
Quickly place tortillas on a flat surface and place ⅓ cup of the chicken mixture into each one. Tightly roll each tortilla around the chicken and place in a 9x13 baking dish. Repeat steps 4 and 5 for the remaining 6 tortillas.

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Enchiladas Recipe (5)

Step 6
Increase oven temperature to 450 degrees. Pour 1 more cup of enchilada sauce over the tortillas

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Enchiladas Recipe (6)


Step 7
Sprinkle with the cheddar cheese. Cover with foil and bake for about 10 minutes. Remove foil and bake an additional 3 to 5 minutes to melt the cheese.

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Enchiladas Recipe (7)

Step 6
And bake!

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Enchiladas Recipe (8)

Whew, finally you get to enjoy the world's most perfect enchilada recipe.

💭 Cooking tips

Roll each tortilla tightly

Ensure that each tortilla is wrapped and rolled tightly to prevent all the enchiladas from unfolding during baking. The best way to do this is by not overfilling them with too much mixture and keeping it tucked in tightly as you roll the corn tortilla over.

Meat thermometer

If you don't have a meat thermometer to check the temperature of the chicken, you can check if it's cooked by cutting through the middle to see if the juices are clear and there is no pinkness.

Heating the torts

Don't preheat corn tortillas until you're ready for rolling. Otherwise, they will go cold and lose their softness for easier rolling.

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Enchiladas Recipe (9)

📖 Recipe Variations

Americas test kitchen chicken enchiladasare versatile and can be made to suit different needs from adding more spice to changing the meat while still following the same recipe.

Protein

You can even makeAmerica's test kitchen beef enchiladasby swapping the chicken for ground beef for a twist in protein. Or mix it up with Italian sausage or ground turkey.

Veggies

These easy chicken enchiladas taste delicious with caramelized onions added to the mixture or placed on top of the enchilada sauce. Or add some black olives and chopped green onions for color.

Spices

If you're like me, you may want to increase the heat by adding a teaspoon of chili powder to the enchilada mixture or use hot chilies with the seeds for a serious kick.

Without corn tortillas

People on a low-carb or keto diet may want to remove the corn tortillas to keep the carb count to a minimum, and it's possible to enjoy the same flavor using thislow-carbchicken enchilada recipe.

🥗 What to serve with

America's test kitchen chicken enchiladas are filling on their own or can be served with other delicious side dishes when you have more guests to feed. Try some of these easy, tasty recipes to serve with your enchiladas.

Vegetables

Vegetables are a staple side dish in my house. You can use whatever you have on hand in the pantry to make some healthysteamed vegetablesor if you have some asparagus on hand, try these salty, delicioussautéed asparagus.

Rice

One of my favorite low-carb side dishes that pack a punch in flavor is this easycauliflower ricerecipe with lime juice and cilantro. It's pairs really well with enchiladas and is so fragrant and delicious.

🙋 Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use flour tortillas for enchiladas?

Yes, you can use flour tortillas. Most enchilada recipes like this one traditionally use corn tortillas, but if you want to use flour tortillas, make sure to use the 7 or 8-inch ones and warm them up before rolling.

What is Enchilada Sauce?

Enchilada sauce is a sweet and spicy tomato-based sauce used to make enchiladas and other Mexican cuisine types. It is easy to make at home by blending onions, garlic, tomatoes, broth, chilies, oregano, salt, and pepper in a food processor - then the sauce is simmered until thick and then cooled.

Check out my delicious homemade enchilada sauce which tastes fantastic with this enchiladas recipe.

🧊 Storing and ♨️ Reheating

Theseatk enchiladasare perfect for storing any leftovers to enjoy later or preparing in advance.

Fridge- Allow any leftovers to cool and cover the baking dish with aluminum foil, or if you don't have room in the fridge, you can transfer the contents to an airtight container. It will keep for up to 2 - 3 days.

Freezer- To freeze uncooked enchiladas, prepare the recipe in a large aluminum tray and freeze it for up to 4 months. For cooked leftovers, place the contents into an airtight freezer container.

Reheating- You can preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and bake them until piping hot (around 1o minutes for refrigerated and 18 minutes for frozen). Or you can microwave the leftovers at 1-minute intervals until hot.

👪 Serving Size

This Americas test kitchen chicken enchiladas recipe will give you approximately 6 servings. You could easily double or triple the recipe to freeze some or give it away to friends and family.

Atk chicken enchiladas are constantly requested in my house because they are so darn tasty, and the kids love them, which is a bonus.

📋 Recipe

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Enchiladas Recipe (10)

America's Test Kitchen Enchiladas

This enchilada recipe is inspired by America's test kitchen. I love how they find the best possible way to make a dish by testing it over and over again with different ingredients and different methods until they find the best possible combination of taste, texture, etc. for a perfectly foolproof recipe. Their website says they test each recipe between 30 and 70 times!

4.39 from 13 votes

Print Pin Rate Save

Course: dinner

Cuisine: Mexican

Prep Time: 30 minutes minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes minutes

Servings: 6

Calories: 420kcal

Author: Kim Grabinski

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. boneless - skinless chicken breasts trimmed & pounded if necessary
  • Salt & pepper
  • 2 ½ cups of enchilada sauce - store bought or from scratch
  • 1 cup finely crumbled queso fresco or feta cheese
  • 1 4 oz. can of green chiles
  • ½ cup minced fresh cilantro
  • 12 6-inch soft corn tortillas
  • Olive oil spray - or you can use olive oil in a little bowl with a brush
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Lime wedges - optional
  • Sour cream - optional

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350. Pat chicken dry and season with salt and pepper.

  • Combine the chicken and enchilada sauce in a medium saucepan & simmer for 10-15 minutes over medium-low heat. Then flip the chicken over, cover and cook for an additional 10-15 minutes until chicken reaches 160-165 degrees with an instant-read thermometer.

  • Remove chicken from pan and shred into bite-sized pieces. Combine shredded chicken, ½ cup of the enchilada sauce, queso fresco, chiles and cilantro in a bowl. Add salt and pepper if desired. Cover to keep warm.

  • Lightly coat both sides of 6 tortillas with vegetable oil and place on a baking sheet. Bake until tortillas are soft & pliable, about 2 to 4 minutes.

  • Quickly place tortillas on a flat surface and place ⅓ cup of the chicken mixture into each one. Tightly roll each tortilla around the chicken and place in a 9x13 baking dish. Repeat steps 4 and 5 for the remaining 6 tortillas.

  • Increase oven temperature to 450 degrees. Pour 1 more cup of enchilada sauce over the tortillas and sprinkle with the cheddar cheese. Cover with foil and bake for about 10 minutes. Remove foil and bake an additional 3 to 5 minutes to melt the cheese.

  • Serve with remaining enchilada sauce, optional lime wedges and optional sour cream.

Notes

Roll each tortilla tightly

Ensure that each tortilla is wrapped and rolled tightly to prevent all the enchiladas from unfolding during baking. The best way to do this is by not overfilling them with too much mixture and keeping it tucked in tightly as you roll the corn tortilla over.

Meat thermometer

If you don't have a meat thermometer to check the temperature of the chicken, you can check if it's cooked by cutting through the middle to see if the juices are clear and there is no pinkness.

Heating the torts

Don't preheat corn tortillas until you're ready for rolling. Otherwise, they will go cold and lose their softness for easier rolling.

Nutrition

Serving: 2enchiladas | Calories: 420kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Fiber: 5g

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Enchiladas Recipe (2024)

FAQs

What is the secret to good enchiladas? ›

Pre-fry your tortillas

Fry each of your tortillas in hot oil before adding in your enchilada filling. This will help keep the tortillas from soaking up too much of your sauce too quickly, which can also cause them to break apart.

Is it better to cook enchiladas covered or uncovered? ›

If you don't cover the enchiladas the tops will dry out and become tough. I tend to cover them for most of the cooking process, then once they're hot all the way through, I'll uncover, and put them under the broiler to crisp up the cheese on the top. I don't know about should, but I do.

Are enchiladas better with corn or flour? ›

While some recipes use flour tortillas, corn tortillas are traditional — and for good reason — are the better option for enchiladas.

Which sauce is better for enchiladas? ›

If you prefer a creamy enchilada sauce, La Victoria Creamy Chili premade enchilada sauce is the best enchilada sauce at the grocery store. This premade enchilada sauce, which comes in a jar rather than a can, isn't spicy at all, even though it has the word “chili” in its name.

What is the best cheese to melt on enchiladas? ›

Use a shredded Mexican cheese blend for the best melting and flavor. A rustic cut blend of 4 cheese is the best all-around cheese for enchiladas. Look for one that includes Montery Jack, Cheddar, Asadero and Queso Quesadilla Cheese. Avoid using all cheddar as it can be too oily.

Do you put sauce on enchiladas before or after baking? ›

Easy Cheese Enchiladas Recipe

Happy to report it couldn't be easier. Step 1: Make 10 minute homemade red enchilada sauce using fridge and pantry staples. Step 2: Sprinkle shredded Mexican blend cheese into the centers of corn tortillas then roll and place inside a casserole dish. Step 3: Cover with red sauce then bake.

Do you put enchilada sauce before or after cooking? ›

11 Answers
  1. I do the same, just putting the sauce on the top, although it is helpful to lightly grease the dish that you are cooking the enchiladas in to avoid them sticking. – Ian Turner. ...
  2. Doesn't do any good to put the sauce on top before baking cause it all runs down to the bottom of the pan while baking and gets soggy.
Jul 27, 2010

Why are my chicken enchiladas soggy? ›

If you are actually following a quality enchilada recipe, you should have already dipped your tortillas into your chosen sauce before baking. This process softens the tortilla and infuses it with flavor, so if you just dump the rest of the good stuff on top of your dish before baking, you are begging for a soggy mess.

Can you pre make enchiladas or will they get soggy? ›

If you would like to make a pan of enchiladas in advance, follow the recipe instructions through step 3 (assembling the enchiladas). Wrap the pan tightly with foil. Then you can either refrigerate the enchiladas for up to 3 days, then bake as directed.

Do enchiladas taste better with corn or flour tortillas? ›

Corn tortillas go well with Mexican dishes like tacos, enchiladas, and tamales. They are also perfect for use in tostadas, sopes, and quesadillas. Flour tortillas are often used in burritos, fajitas, and chimichangas. They are also great for making quesadillas, sweet dishes like dessert tacos, and breakfast burritos.

Should flour tortillas be fried before making enchiladas? ›

A Tip About Tortilla Prep

Frying them gently in a little oil both softens the tortillas and also greatly enhances their flavor. You can do this one at a time, or you can adopt my mother's trick. She places another tortilla either on top of the tortilla in the pan (and then flips both tortillas), or beneath it.

What is good with chicken enchiladas? ›

10 Delicious Side Dishes for Enchiladas
  • 01 of 11. Grilled Corn Salad. View Recipe. ...
  • 02 of 11. Green Rice with Green Chiles. ...
  • 03 of 11. Jicama Mango Salad with Cilantro and Lime. ...
  • 04 of 11. Chef John's Gazpacho. ...
  • 05 of 11. Best Spanish Rice. ...
  • 06 of 11. Lemony Cabbage-Avocado Slaw. ...
  • 07 of 11. Mexican Style Cornbread. ...
  • 08 of 11. Simply Guacamole.
Nov 23, 2020

What are the correct tortillas for enchiladas? ›

Corn tortillas are traditional for enchiladas, but flour tortillas also work. Choose 7- or 8-inch flour tortillas or 6-inch corn tortillas—they fit best in most pans. Recipes vary, but for a 3-quart rectangular casserole dish, you will need about eight flour or corn tortillas. Get colorful!

What can I add to canned enchilada sauce to make it taste better? ›

Then when the sauce is almost finished, a quick blend with a blender or immersion blender results in a smooth sauce. Add seasonings - Cumin, chili powder, Mexican oregano, etc. are great ways to punch up the flavor of canned enchilada sauce. You might also consider adding a few dashes of your favorite hot sauce.

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