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Red Tex-Mex Beef Enchiladas

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Kresa is a wife and mother to two beautiful children. She enjoys cooking for her family and creating new recipes for them to try.

Red Tex-Mex enchiladas with a side of Mexican-style rice

Red Tex-Mex enchiladas with a side of Mexican-style rice

Red Tex-Mex Enchiladas

Enchiladas are a staple of Tex-Mex cuisine.

In fact, Texas is famous for its Mexican food (as well as its barbecue). You can find enchiladas in just about any Mexican restaurant you visit, whether it's in Texas or Virginia. Although they differ from region to region and state to state, red enchiladas are among the most popular. Texas has some of the best enchiladas and Mexican food that you will ever eat.

I learned this recipe from my mother, who has been making these enchiladas since I was a little girl. She has made them for several of her friends and co-workers. They are a big hit every time! I enjoy making them for my family.

I hope that you enjoy this recipe and share it at your next gathering—or just make them for your next family dinner.


For the Sauce:

  • 5-6 dried New Mexico red chili pods (I like to use Barker's dried New Mexico chili pods)
  • 4-5 cups water
  • 1/4 -1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp. flour
  • Cumin to taste (I use only a pinch)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp. oil

For the Enchiladas:

  • 1 lb. ground beef plus garlic powder, cumin, salt, and pepper (to taste)
  • 10-12 corn tortillas
  • 2 cups shredded cheese (I use Colby-jack)
  • Oil for frying tortillas


  1. Remove the seeds from the chili pods and rinse the pods; removing the seeds will ensure that you get a smooth sauce. After removing the seeds, put the water and chili pods in a small pot or saucepan and bring to a boil, add the garlic powder, cumin, salt, and pepper. Boil for about 10-15 minutes, the pods will become wilted and soft. Remove the sauce from the heat and allow it to cool.
  2. Once the water and chili pods have cooled, pour them into a blender and blend for at least 5-10 minutes until you have a smooth sauce (you may see very small bits of the chili pods, which is completely fine). Add the tbsp of flour to the sauce and blend for another 2 minutes. Heat the 2 tbsp. oil in a saucepan or iron skillet; pour in the blended chili pods and simmer on medium heat for 5-10 minutes or until the sauce has thickened a bit, place stove on the lowest possible heat setting until you are ready to assemble. If you have a warm setting or "warm zone" on your stovetop, that is even better!
  3. In a small pan, heat oil and fry the tortillas for about 10 seconds each; place them on paper towels to drain. (I prefer to do this while the chili pods are boiling to cut down the cooking time, but you can do this step before or after you have made the sauce if you prefer.)
  4. Take 1 lb. of ground beef and cook thoroughly, add the garlic powder, cumin, salt, and pepper to taste; drain the beef and set aside.
  5. Once you have finished cooking the beef and frying the corn tortillas, it is time to assemble the enchiladas!
  6. Take a tortilla and dip it in the enchilada sauce to coat it; make sure that you coat both sides of the tortilla with the sauce. Place the tortilla on a plate and top it with ground beef and cheese, then coat another tortilla and layer it on top of the assembled tortilla, top with ground beef, cheese, and more sauce. This will make 2 enchiladas
  7. Repeat the steps to make more layers if you desire.
  8. Serve immediately and enjoy with a side of rice, beans, or a salad.


  • I prefer to place the assembled enchiladas in the microwave for about 1 minute to make sure that the cheese melts properly, don't worry, this will NOT affect the taste of the enchiladas.
  • Some people prefer to put a fried egg on top of their enchiladas, but I am not a fan of eggs, so I skip the egg.
  • You can also assemble the enchiladas in a casserole dish and heat them in the oven to make an enchilada casserole. I like to do this for gatherings to save time. The enchiladas are still delicious, even as a casserole.

I really hope that you enjoy this recipe as much as I do, and I hope you share it with your friends and family, as well!

Questions & Answers

Question: Are these enchiladas spicy from the chili pods? There are some in my family that cannot handle the heat.

Answer: You can use mild chili pods if you prefer your enchiladas less spicy.

© 2019 Kresa