Baked chicken enchiladas with Ancho chilli sauce

chicken enchilladas serve

Ancho chillies are a favourite of mine. They are quite mild, but have a distinct warm heat combined with a fruity and earthy flavour. I use them to make chocolate mole chicken. They can be a little difficult to come by in Australia. I usually find them at specialty delis or food shops (like Essential Ingredient). I use them here to take chicken enchiladas to a new level. You could easily omit them and use capsicum or another chilli variety. I like making my enchiladas with small corn tortillas – I like the texture and flavour combination better than wheat flour tortillas. That said, corn tortillas can be more flakey and buggers to roll. 

Baked chicken enchiladas with Ancho chilli sauce

  • Difficulty: easy-moderate (multiple steps)
  • Print

Serves: 4


  • 300 g chicken thighs (no skin)
  • bay leaf
  • 2 dried Ancho chillies, soaked in hot water for 30 minutes
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 red onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 440 g (1 can) tinned tomato, chopped
  • ½ cup grated tasty cheese, plus a little extra for topping
  • 250 g tub sour cream
  • 1 packet (8 or 10) small corn (or flour) tortillas


  • Place the chicken thighs in a pot on the stove top and just cover with water.
  • Add 1 teaspoon salt and a bay leaf.
  • Bring to the boil, turn down the heat to a slow simmer, then place the lid on and allow to simmer for 20 minutes.
  • Remove pot from heat and rest in poaching water for a further 20 minutes.
  • Remove from water and shred chicken using forks. Allow to cool.
  • Mix shredded chicken with grated cheese and half the sour cream (approximately 125 g).
  • Make the sauce by roughly chopping the softened Ancho chillies and removing their seeds.
  • Heat olive oil in a fry pan to medium, then add chopped onion and cook until soft and translucent (not browned), add garlic and fry a further minute or two.
  • Add the chillies, cumin, oregano, tomato, chicken stock and season with salt.
  • Simmer sauce for about ten minutes until thickened.
  • Allow to cool slightly, then blend to a puree with a stick blender (or keep chunky if you prefer).
  • Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan forced).
  • Lightly oil a pyrex baking dish and layer the bottom with most of the Ancho chilli sauce.
  • Warm the tortillas according to packet instructions (so they are soft and easy to roll).
  • Lie one tortilla flat on work surface and place 2 tablespoons of chicken mixture on the bottom edge and roll into a tube.
  • Place in baking dish and repeat with remainder of tortillas until all the chicken mixture is used.
  • Top with remainder of Ancho chilli sauce, sour cream (keep a tablespoon or so aside to serve) and scatter top with extra grated cheese.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes until brown and crisp on top.
  • Serve topped with a dollop of sour cream and fresh coriander leaves.
  • Accompany with guacamole and sweet corn.

chicken enchilladas



6 thoughts on “Baked chicken enchiladas with Ancho chilli sauce

  1. cheergerm

    Right up my alley. We have to use corn tortillas due to the coeliac hubby and I prefer their flavour but I agree, they are a bit of a pain in the tush.


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