One of my favorite dishes in a Mexican restaurant is a plate of chicken enchiladas with a tangy green sauce, so when I ran across this recipe in my most recent issue of Cooking Light magazine, I knew I had to try it. I’m all for twists on a classic, and this was just that. I’m also all for tasty-yet-healthier versions of some of the not-so-healthy foods I enjoy. Plus, it’s a great family friendly dinner for a weeknight. It really was a win-win-win situation, as far as I was concerned.
I started by browning up some chicken breasts that had been sprinkled with salt, pepper, and cumin on the stove top. I just let them brown up a bit, before I moved them to a baking sheet and surrounded them with some chopped onion, garlic, and some canned tomatoes that I’d chopped up.
The whole pan went into the oven for about fifteen minutes. This helped finish off the chicken, and also roasted the vegetables to soften and bring out their best flavor.
Once the chicken was done, I removed it to a bowl and let it cool for a bit before shredding.
While the chicken was cooling, I made my green sauce. In a small bowl, I mixed together some canned salsa verde, the juice from one lime, and a handful of chopped, fresh cilantro.
Next, I shredded up my chicken, and mixed it together with those roasted tomatoes, onions, and the garlic.
And then, it was time to build my enchilada stack!
I used a large (10 inch) pie plate, but you could use an 11×7 inch pan, or another baking dish roughly that size.
I put a bit of the green sauce in the bottom of the dish and then laid in four of my corn tortillas. The tortillas were topped with half of the chicken mixture, and a scoop of the green sauce.
Then, I repeated the layers, finishing off with four more tortillas, the remaining sauce, and some shredded Mexican-style cheese. You don’t use a whole lot of cheese, but it’s no matter, because the filling and sauce have so much flavor, you don’t really need more. I suppose, though, that if you’re so inclined, you could add cheese to each layer.
The dish baked for around fifteen minutes, and then we were ready to dig in! I served it alongside some corn and a salad. It’s very filling, so I didn’t need anything more. It was delicious! The chicken is packed with flavor, and nice and tender, from cooking with the veggies, and the green sauce was light, and tangy, just the way I liked it.
So, two thumbs up for a great dinner! I love that I got my weeknight Mexican food fix, right in the comfort of my own kitchen.
STACKED CHICKEN ENCHILADAS
Adapted from Cooking Light
- 2 Tbsp. canola oil
- 1½ lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- salt and pepper
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 8 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 (15 oz.) can whole, peeled tomatoes, undrained and chopped
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- juice from 1 lime
- 1 (7 oz.) can salsa verde
- 12 (6 in.) corn tortillas
- 1 cup shredded Mexi-cheese blend
- sour cream, extra cilantro, for serving
- Line a baking sheet with foil. Place it in your oven. Preheat the oven to 425*, leaving the pan in the oven as it heats.
- Sprinkle both sides of the chicken breasts with cumin, salt, and pepper.
- Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the oil, and swirl to coat. In two batches, brown the chicken breasts in the pan, cooking 3 minutes on one side, and remove the chicken from the pan.
- When all of the chicken has been cooked on one side, take the hot pan out of the oven, spray it with nonstick spray, and place the chicken breasts on the pan, uncooked side down.
- Add the chopped onion, garlic, and tomatoes to the pan around the chicken. Bake, at 425*F for 15 minutes, or until the chicken is done.
- Allow the chicken to cool for a bit before shredding.
- Combine the salsa verde, the lime juice, and the cilantro in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Combine the shredded chicken with the tomato and onion mixture from the oven.
- Spray a large pie plate or 11x7 inch baking dish with nonstick spray.
- Spread ¼ cup of the green sauce over the bottom of the dish. Top with 4 of the corn tortillas, overlapping a bit. Layer in half of the chicken mixture, and drizzle ¼ cup green sauce over the chicken. Repeat the layers.
- Top with four more tortillas, and the remaining sauce. Sprinkle the cheese over the top of the dish.
- Bake at 425* for 15-20 minutes, until the cheese is melted, the tortillas are golden around the edges, and the dish is heated through.
- Serve with extra cilantro and sour cream.