Green Chile Enchiladas
I love enchiladas. Red or Green, I’m pretty pleased by a heaping plate of juicy meat, melty cheese and a savory, smokey, slightly spicy sauce. It’s the ultimate TexMex comfort food. This recipe spawned from me discovering beautiful assorted chiles for sale in bulk at my local supermarket one Tuesday morning. I’m a sucker for inexpensive good quality anything (hello, impulse shopper) and I could not pass these up. 2lb for 2 bucks? Yes, please. I continued shopping, grabbed a few ingredients, and headed home to brainstorm dinner.
If you’re into meal prepping all at once for a week, this particular recipe would come together as a quickish weeknight meal if you cooked your produce and shredded your chicken ahead of time. Then, the enchiladas literally come together and cook in about 60 minutes. (Real mom time with homework being done, dogs wanting to be fed, and life going on around her, not uniterrupted tv cook time) What mom doesn’t love that?
You will need:
2lb Boneless skinless chicken thighs
Approx 2lb of Anaheim, Poblano, Serrano and jalepeno chiles. (probably 1 jalepeno in the mix and the rest a less spicy blend but base your assortment on your famly’s pallet)
- Red Onion
- 1 C Sour Cream
- 2 tablespoons GF AP Flour (I prefer Cup for Cup)
- 2 tablespoons Butter
- 2C GF Organic Chicken Broth
- Fresh cilantro
- Ground Cumin
- Ground Coriander
- Ground Chili Powder
- Kosher Salt
- Black Pepper
- GF Corn Tortillas
- 2C Mexican Quesadilla cheese shredded.
Let’s get cookin’!
Fire your grill up to 350 degrees. (If you’re using a Traeger, set to smoke for 5 minutes, then crank up to 350)
Ready the meat:
I use chicken thighs because my family likes the flavor of dark meat and it’s an inexpensive cut to buy in bulk for this recipe. Boneless chicken breasts would work well too, you do what makes you happy.
Douse the chicken with a little oil to keep it from sticking and a good sprinkle of kosher salt and black pepper. I use kosher salt because I like the texture. If you only have table salt, that’s fine! The key part is seasoning your meat!
Prep your produce:
Give the chiles a good rinse and wipe down to make sure they’re clean and dirt free.
Peel the papery outer skin off the onion but leave it whole.
Cut the top off the garlic bulb, leaving the peel intact but tops of the individual garlic cloves visible.
Toss the veggies with a couple tablespoons of vegetable oil and salt. I use vegetable oil because it has a higher smoke point than olive oil.
Rub the garlic bulb in oil and wrap it in tin foil, leaving the top pieces exposed.
To prevent small bits of onion and chilies from slipping through the grates during the cooking process, I load them up in a grill basket. In the spring and summer (or year round here in Texas) you can find grill baskets at basically any supermarket on an end cap. They aren’t expensive and are super handy in multiple instances!
Once your grill has come up to temp, load everything onto the grates. Try to leave space between your meat and veggies, nobody likes to be overcrowded!
Grill your chicken until it reaches 160 degrees internally, pull from grill, and place in a mixing bowl. Cover the mixing bowl with tin foil and leave it be for a bit (like 10 minutes) so the juices redistribute in the meat.
Set a timer for 60 minutes. Halfway through, turn your veggies so they brown or char evenly. Once everything is cooked, pull from the grill and place on a jelly roll pan to cool.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Shred the Chicken.
Oh, you always use forks to shred your chicken and exhaust yourself in the process? Not today.
Amateur Tip (because I’m not a pro) – Get your hand mixer out and using the mixing beaters on a low speed, get after the chicken. In about 2 effortless minutes, all the chicken will be beautifully shredded and you will not be sweating and your uncramped hands will thank me. You’re welcome.
Mix ½ C shredded cheese in with the chicken. Roll two spoonfuls of the mixture into corn tortillas and line them in the greased baking dish.
Make the Green Sauce.
Lightly chop your onion into chunks, and squeeze the garlic cloves directly into a food processor. Chop about 4 tablespoons of cilantro up and add half to the mixture. Combine all of the produce in your food processor and puree. I like it to be sorta chunky but if you like it smooth, do that. Set aside.
Heat a skillet over med heat. Melt the butter. Once melted, stir in the flour and let it cook for about a minute. GF flour doesn’t have the floury taste of wheat flour. However, when you’re making any riff of a roux, you want the flour to lightly cook before you mix your liquid in.
Stir in the chicken broth. Once the sauce begins to thicken, add your chili, onion, garlic mixure to the pan and stir to combine.
Add 5-6 heaping shakes of cumin, coriander, and chili powder. Now, grab a spoon and taste your sauce. Season with salt and pepper accordingly.
Reduce the heat to low and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. After 10 minutes, stir in the sour cream and remove from heat and carefully pour over your chicken enchiladas. Top with remaining shredded cheese and chopped cilantro. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the cheese melts and everything is bubbly and delicious looking. Remove from the oven and let the dish sit for 5-10 minutes to allow everything to set up a bit. I like to serve this with my Mexican Caesar salad and Cilantro Lime rice which also come together ridiculously fast.