I have been searching high and low for my favorite chicken enchilada recipe. I've tried everyone's - Giada's, Ree Drummond's, Jessica Alba's, a zillion people on Epicurious and Allrecipes.com. But I haven't found THE ONE. Until now, that is. This recipe is a blend of trial and error (a lot of error - there have been batches lost to too much spice, too much cheese, too much sauce, too little sauce, etc.) I am excited to share this with you! I hope you love it as much as my family does :)
- 3-4 boneless, skinless organic chicken breasts
- 4 32-oz. boxes of chicken stock
- 1-2 package tortillas (I prefer flour)
- 2 15-oz. cans red enchilada sauce
- 1 can green chilies
- 1 can diced black olives, drained
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 24 oz. Mexican-style cheese, shredded (this could be 3-4 packages)
- 1 8-oz. package cream cheese, softened
- 3/4 cup, plus 1/2 cup more, cilantro, roughly chopped
- 1 green pepper, seeded and diced
- 1 tbsp. diced garlic
- salt & pepper, to taste
1. Heat oven to 425 degrees.
2. Place the chicken and 1 tbsp. diced garlic in a large stockpot and cover with the chicken stock. Toss in a bit of salt and pepper for good measure. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and let the chicken cook for about 20 minutes, or until cooked all the way through. It should be white and easy to slice through (that's how you will know it's done!)
3. While the chicken is cooking, you can prep everything else. In a smaller stockpot, pour the 2 cans of enchilada sauce and the 1 can of green chilies in and heat over medium-low. Let it slowly heat up. Make sure to stir every few minutes.
4. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine 18 oz. of the shredded cheese, the drained black olives, and the chopped cilantro. Mix well. Set aside.
5. Go ahead and de-seed and dice up the green pepper. Dice the yellow onion.
6. Once the chicken is finished cooking, remove from heat and drain out the broth. Move to a large plate or cutting board and shred the chicken meat.
7. Heat a large deep skillet over medium. Add some olive oil to the pan and allow 1-2 minutes to heat. Add in the diced onion and green pepper. Toss in a bit of salt and pepper, for funsies. After 3-4 minutes, when things are getting soft and slightly browned, toss in the shredded chicken. Then add the magic ingredient: the cream cheese. Allow the cheese to melt over the chicken, and mix everything well, so the chicken, cheese, onion and green pepper make a creamy situation. Yum. Yum yum yum. Lower the heat.
8. Now it's time to dress your tortillas! Lay your tortilla flat and add some of the chicken mixture down the middle. Then top with the cheese, olive + cilantro mixture. Roll the tortilla up and place seam-side down in a large glass oven-safe pan. Repeat this with all the tortillas until your pan is full. Note: I had enough ingredients to make 1 large 9x13 pan and another 8x8 pan.
9. Pour the enchilada sauce over the top of all the tortillas in the pan, making sure to completely saturate the tortillas.
10. Top the tortillas with another 8 oz. of shredded cheese.
11. Bake in the oven at 425 degrees for 20 minutes.
12. Top enchiladas with 1/2 cup of cilantro. Dress with sour cream, black beans or green onions - or nothing at all! These enchiladas can stand alone and stand proud.
I really really REALLY love this recipe. It's taken me a good bit of trial and error to get here, so I am proud to share this with you. I hope it warms up your home on these days that are getting chillier and chillier :) Happy yummy dinner to you and your family!