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The Best Homemade Enchiladas

As an athlete and mother of two young children, Lani is always looking for new ways to present her family with tasty and nutritious meals.

Carnitas and Cheese Enchiladas

Carnitas and Cheese Enchiladas

A Savory and Flavorful Meal

Tender pulled carnitas (pork), warm corn tortillas smothered in a delectable sauce, and topped with melted cheese—these enchiladas are a savory and flavorful recipe with influence from south of the border. No doubt, this will be a welcomed meal at your dinner table any night of the week. This recipe features carnitas (pork) as the meat but the same process can be used for chicken or beef.

What You Will Need:

  • Slow cooker
  • Large saucepan
  • Oven safe baking pan (suggestion 9in x 12in)
  • Pan spray
Ingredients for enchiladas

Ingredients for enchiladas

Ingredients

  • 2lbs carnitas
  • 9 corn tortillas
  • 3 Tbsp flour
  • 2 Tbsp taco seasoning, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp turmeric
  • 1/2 Tbsp nutmeg
  • 1 can Mexican spicy tomato sauce
  • 2 cups grated mild cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup diced onions
  • 1 cup oil (canola, vegetable, olive, etc.)
  • 3 Tbsp minced garlic
Chopped onions and minced garlic

Chopped onions and minced garlic

Step 1: Prepare the Carnitas

  1. Add diced onions, minced garlic, and 2/3 cup oil to your slow cooker on low and let simmer until onions are soft and translucent.
  2. Add carnitas and tomato sauce. Then add water until it just begins to cover your meat.
  3. Add all your spices and let simmer until meat is easy to pull apart with a fork or tongs.
  4. Using tongs or two cooking spoons, remove as much of the carnitas from the water in the slow cooker as possible and place in a large bowl. Important Note: Do not discard the liquid in your slow cooker!
Enchilada sauce and carnitas

Enchilada sauce and carnitas

Step 2: Make the Enchilada Sauce

  1. In a large saucepan, add 1/2 cup oil over medium heat. Once hot, add flour and stir into a roux (thick flour blob).
  2. Grab a whisk and add the liquid from your slow cooker to the roux. Whisk immediately until the consistency is smooth. If the sauce is not thick enough, continue adding flour and whisking until the sauce is to your liking.
  3. Bring sauce to a simmer, then remove from heat or place sauce in a large bowl.

Step 3: Assemble the Enchiladas

  1. Take a stack of 9 corn tortillas and wrap in a damp washcloth. Place in the microwave for 30 seconds to soften the tortillas. Softening the tortillas is important else, they will be too stiff to roll and will break as you form your enchiladas. Thirty seconds may not be enough, return tortillas (or just those which need more softening) to the microwave at 12 to 15 seconds at a time.
  2. Prep your oven-safe baking pan with pan spray. Or add oil to a cloth and spread over the bottom and sides of your pan.
  3. Set oven to 400 degrees.
  4. One at a time add roughly 1/3 cup carnitas and some grated cheese. Fold over the edges of the tortilla into a roll and place in your pan.
  5. Once your pan if full spoon in a copious amount of enchilada sauce. You need a large amount of sauce to counteract moisture loss during cooking. Be sure to fill spaces and corners with sauce.
  6. Top with cheese and bake for twenty minutes.
  7. Remove and let sit for 5 to 8 minutes.
  8. Serve and enjoy.

Serving Suggestions

The pan I chose holds nine enchiladas, but you can do as large or small a container as you like. These enchiladas, alongside my homemade Spanish rice, is to die for! (My recipe for the rice is here: ground turkey black bean tacos and spanish rice.) That is my favorite way to enjoy these enchiladas. However, the meat is so tasty and versatile that I like to place it and the sauce into storage bowls before making enchiladas because I do not use it all on one round of enchiladas. I like to leave room for other meal options such as crunchy and soft carnitas tacos and wet burritos.

Experience the World in Your Own Kitchen

Did you try it? What did you think?

© 2019 Lani Morris

Comments

Lani Morris (author) from Seattle, WA on October 12, 2019:

I use corn tortillas. Can you use corn tortillas? If not then uou can sub them out for gluten free tortillas:)

Tori Leumas on October 12, 2019:

This looks really good. I will have to try this sometime. I'm gluten intolerant, though, so I'll have to use gluten free flour, etc.