These quick and easy chicken enchiladas use canned red enchilada sauce and make a great meal for busy weeknights that the whole family will love. In this post, I'll provide simple step-by-step instructions and tips to help you make them perfectly every time!
- Chicken - Rotisserie chicken is the easiest choice for enchiladas, but baked chicken, poached chicken, or any other cooked chicken will work well for this. I like to put a batch of chicken breasts in my Instant Pot and cook them with salsa for use in this recipe.
- Veggies - Diced onion and green pepper add flavor to the filling. Black beans are great too. And if you like a little spice, seeded and diced jalapeno is another good addition.
- Sauce - This recipe calls for canned enchilada sauce. If you have a bit more time, you can make a quick homemade sauce too. If you prefer tangy green enchilada sauce, check out my Enchiladas with Green Sauce recipe!
- Tortillas - Corn tortillas are the traditional choice, but my family prefers flour tortillas in our enchiladas. The flour tortillas get soft and gooey when baked with the sauce, and they're less likely to break, making them easier to work with.
- Cheese - For this recipe, I went with store-bought Mexican shredded cheese. Shredding your own will give you a better melt, but we're going for easy here, and sometimes every minute counts!
- Add oil to a large skillet set over medium heat and saute the onion and green pepper until the onion is softened and translucent, around 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for around 30 seconds until fragrant.
- Add the shredded chicken, paprika, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, and ⅓ cup of enchilada sauce to the pan and stir to combine, then remove from heat.
- Pour around ⅔ cup of enchilada sauce to coat the bottom of your baking dish. Fill tortillas with chicken filling and approx 1 T of shredded cheese, roll, and place seam side down in baking dish. Continue with the remaining tortillas. Note: I recommend covering the tortillas with a paper towel and heating them in the microwave for about 20 seconds to soften them up before filling.
- Top with remaining enchilada sauce, then remaining shredded cheese. Then cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.
- Remove the foil and bake for another 5-10 minutes until the cheese is melted sauce is bubbling.
Storage and Reheating Tips
Store leftover enchiladas in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days.
Reheat leftovers in a 325°F oven until warmed through. Smaller portions can be reheated in the microwave.
Make Ahead Enchiladas
These red chicken enchiladas are perfect for an easy make ahead dinner! Prepare the enchiladas as directed, up to the baking step. Then cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 1 day.
When ready to bake, remove the enchiladas from the fridge for around 10-15 minutes. I do this while the oven preheats. Remove the plastic wrap and cover the dish with foil, then bake as directed.
How to Freeze Enchiladas
These enchiladas also freeze really well. Whenever I make them I usually make a double batch and freeze one batch in foil pans for later. To freeze, cover the unbaked enchiladas tightly with plastic wrap, then cover with foil and freeze for up to 3 months.
When ready to bake, remove the plastic wrap and cover with foil, then bake as directed. Add around 20 minutes to the baking time if baking from frozen.
Other Easy Weeknight Dinner Ideas
- Lemon Dill Salmon
- Chicken Marsala
- Oven Baked Chicken Tenders
- Lemon Garlic Chicken and Potatoes
- Easy Salisbury Steak with Mushroom Gravy
- Beef Tenderloin Tips in Mushroom Gravy
Easy Cheesy Chicken Enchiladas
- 3 cups shredded chicken
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup onion, diced
- ½ cup green pepper, diced
- 1 tbsp garlic, minced
- 1 tsp paprika
- ½ tsp cumin
- ¼ tsp onion powder
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- 2 10 oz cans red enchilada sauce, divided
- 2 cups shredded cheese, divided
- ¼ cup cilantro, chopped
- 10-12 tortillas, 6" fajita sized
- Add oil to a large skillet set over medium heat and saute the onion and green pepper until onion is translucent, around 5 min. Add garlic and cook for around 30 seconds until fragrant.
- Add chicken, paprika, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, and ⅓ cup of enchilada sauce to the pan and stir to combine, then remove from heat.
- Pour around ⅔ cup of enchilada sauce in your baking dish, just enough to coat the bottom.
- Fill tortillas with chicken filling and approx 1 tablespoon of shredded cheese. Then roll and place in the baking dish with the seam side down . Repeat with remaining tortillas.
- Top the enchiladas with remaining sauce, then remaining shredded cheese. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove foil and bake for another 5-10 minutes until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbling.
* All nutrition information we provide are estimates based on third party calculators. We encourage you to calculate these on your own for accurate results.