There’s nothing better than having go-to recipes that you can serve to family and friends, knowing they’ll leave the table feeling very happy.
This, I’m happy to say, is one of those recipes.
Since reading Shauna Niequist’s book, Bread and Wine, several months ago, I’ve made these wonderful chicken enchiladas countless times, and they never fail to please. I’ve made just a few changes to suit our somewhat spicier taste, but the original version is amazing as-is.
Since the enchiladas are layered, instead of rolled, you can throw this dish together in just a few minutes, especially if you have pre-cooked chicken on hand. Plus, by stacking the ingredients it allows all of the wonderful flavors to blend together, so they end up tasting better than traditional rolled enchiladas.
I usually round out this meal with rice, black or refried beans, tortilla chips, salsa, sour cream, and guacamole.
For dessert, serve bowls of ice cream drizzled with caramel sauce, as Shauna recommends in her book. A perfect ending to the perfect meal!
Layered Chicken Enchiladas
1 cup sour cream (plus additional for topping)
1 28-oz. can green enchilada sauce (preferably Las Palmas brand)
2 4-oz cans mild diced green chilies
3 cups cooked chicken, shredded or diced (I buy the Del Real brand of pre-cooked, pre-shredded chicken)
2 cups shredded Monterey jack cheese (1 pkg.)*
2 cups shredded pepper jack cheese (1 pkg.)*
12 to 15 soft corn tortillas
1 bunch fresh cilantro, finely chopped (optional)
Preheat oven to 350F.
Mix green sauce, green chilies, and sour cream in a large bowl. Smooth one large spoonful of sauce over the bottom of a greased 9 x 13 pan, spreading to edges.
Layer 4 to 5 tortillas in the pan, tearing in half to make fit. (You don’t have to cover every inch of the pan.) Add half of the chicken, 1/3 of the sauce, and 1/3 of the cheeses. Repeat, so there are two complete layers.
Finish with a final layer of tortillas, 1/3 sauce and 1/3 cheese. Bake, uncovered, for 35 minutes, until cheese is melted and starting to brown.
Let sit for 15 minutes before serving. Top each serving with cilantro, if desired, and serve with extra sour cream.
Recipe slightly adapted from Bread and Wine, by Shauna Niequist.
*If you prefer a milder version, simply leave out the pepper jack cheese and use another package of Monterey jack.
*Update: I recently found this Tillamook cheese at the grocery store, and it’s just the right blend of mild and spicy, so I just buy two packages of it, rather than buying two different kinds of cheese.