Saturday, May 2, 2015

A Favorite Enchilada Recipe - Super Quick and Easy

Saturday Spotlight #17
Today my Saturday Spotlight is shining on Mexican food, in honor of Cinco de Mayo. 

Cinco de Mayo, literally translated, means “5th of May.” Although it is not a celebration of Mexican Independence Day,  Cinco de Mayo is a holiday celebrating a victory the Mexican army had over the French. 

Today I am sharing an enchilada recipe that is perfect for a Cinco de Mayo party, a potluck, or an easy family meal.

I lived in Spain for a number of years, so many people assume that I know a lot about Mexican cooking.  The two cuisines are really quite different, but I love both. I have discovered a number of good Mexican recipes over the years.  

Many years ago I got the idea for this dish from a recipe on the side of a bag of Kraft cheese!  I have added quite a few more ingredients, and changed the method quite a bit, however, so it now hardly resembles the original recipe. My guests have always enjoyed it - and I hope that you like it as well!

Mexican food, enchiladas

Quick and Easy Chicken Enchiladas


1 tsp olive oil (or use cooking spray)
1/4 cup chopped green onions
2 cups cooked, cubed chicken*
4 oz can diced green chilies
1 can of refried beans (optional, but these add a nice consistency to the filling)
20 to 24 oz salsa, divided
2 cups shredded cheese -Mexican Four-Cheeses blend or cheddar
approx. 8 (8 inch) tortillas
Accompaniments: guacamole, sour cream, salsa, and chopped green onions.


1. Spray a non-stick pan with cooking spray or lightly oil a regular pan.
2. Cook green onion in prepared pan over medium heat, for one minute.
3. Add diced green chilis, cooked chicken*, refried beans, 1/2 cup salsa, and 1 cup cheese.     Stir and cook just until warmed through and well blended.
4. Lightly spray a 9"x13" pan with cooking spray and then spread 1 cup of the salsa over the bottom.
5. Spoon 1/3 to 1/2 cup of chicken mixture down the center of a tortilla. 

Mexican food

6. Carefully roll up the tortilla around the chicken mixture and then lay seam down, on top of the salsa in the dish. 

Mexican food, recipe, enchiladas

7. Continue to fill and roll tortillas, placing them side-by-side until the pan is full.


8. Top tortillas with about 1/2 cup of salsa (or more if needed) and 1 cup shredded cheese.

recipe, enchiladas

9. Bake enchiladas at 350 degrees F. for 25 minutes, uncovered.

10. Serve with tortilla chips and offer guacamole, sour cream, salsa, and chopped green onions as toppings.

enchiladas, Mexican food, Cinco de Mayo fiesta

*Note: If you prefer not to pre-cook the chicken, dice about 3/4 pound of raw chicken breasts and cook in a skillet until thoroughly cooked through. Then proceed as above. 

5-2-15. Update: For a vegetarian option, a reader suggested substituting black beans for chicken.  This sounds like a great idea to try!

Do you have a favorite Mexican food recipe you like to prepare?
Do you have plans to celebrate Cinco de Mayo?
This post may be linked to one of the great link-up parties I follow and list on my blog. Check them out!


  1. I'm an enchiladas fan forever! :) Love every new recipe.

    I hope you will share your recipe with our Link Up - Idea box:


    1. Thanks for the invitation Mila - and the reminder that it is not too late to link up at your party ... done!

  2. Yum, these look delicious. Will definitely give them a try because my family loves mexican food. Have a great weekend!

    1. I love this recipe because it is so quick to make!

  3. One of our favorite "Go To" recipes ever since you gave it to me years ago, Susan! So quick and yummy! For our vegetarian family and friends we sometimes make half of the enchiladas using black beans instead of the chicken.

    1. Adding black beans is a great idea instead of chicken Sally! Thanks for the suggestion! This recipe just keeps evolving!

  4. Looks good. And my vegetarian self likes Sally's suggestion.

    1. Me too - I think I might add her idea at the end of the post!

  5. We are having margaritas and tacos. My husband doesn't care for refried beans but I love them so I will definitely try your enchilada recipe. Our son and his family are vegetarians so the black bean recipe will work for them and they love Mexican food. I will definitely be printing your recipe and saving it for when our kids and their families visit. Good make-ahead thing to make. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Lynn, feel free to omit the refried beans from this recipe. I think they make the filling a little richer, but I have made it without them, and it is fine.

    2. Thanks, Susan.

  6. I've never been a huge fan of Mexican food but these look delicious! I'll definitely give it a try!

  7. Thank you for linking up this delicious and festive recipe with Idea Box link party! Hope to see you again this Thursday for Week Nine! - Cheers, Christy


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