Enchiladas

Enchiladas are have two main components that need to be prepared; the enchilada sauce & the enchilada filling.

First, let’s talk sauce

Simply put, enchiladas are only as good as the enchilada sauce that smothers them. And since I love chicken enchiladas, I had no choice but to find a great recipe for enchilada sauce. So that’s what I set out to do. I tested countless recipes, compared homemade versions to pre-made versions, I tried it all until I was satisfied with what is now my forever enchilada sauce recipe. That’s the recipe you’ll find below.

Now, how ’bout that filling?

Enchilada’s can be made with just cheese, beans, pork filling, etc etc etc. I make them two ways- one version is insanely laborious and it only makes an appearance once- twice a year. Whereas the version I call “Easy Enchiladas” is on regular rotation around here. To make Easy Enchiladas I use my 3 ingredient slow cooker salsa chicken as the filling. (It doesn’t get easier than that recipe!) Once you have the chicken filling ready to go and the sauce made, it’s time to assemble.

Time to roll.

  1. Use a basting brush to create a layer of enchilada sauce on a baking sheet
  2. Roll the shredded chicken into store bought tortillas and position side by side. (I like to buy tortillas that are a corn / flour blend. If I can’t find those, I use pure corn tortillas which are both authentic and gluten free.)
  3. Top with enchilada sauce, smother with cheese. Bake at 375 until cheese is melted and enchiladas are heated through.
  4. Serve with sour cream, sliced jalapeños and your favorite hot sauce.

Feaster’s Tips:

Enchiladas can be made in entirely in advance up until baking time. They are are one of my favorite dishes to prepare and bring over to a friend’s house with a pitcher of margaritas!

Enchilada Sauce
Prep Time
3 mins
Cook Time
7 mins
 
Course: sauce
Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 2 Cups
Ingredients
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 tablespoon ground chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon salt – to taste
  • Pinch of cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 cups chicken broth (can use vegetable broth too!)
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • Freshly ground black pepper – to taste
Instructions
  1. Combine all the dry ingredients into a small bowl and set aside.
  2. Measure out tomato paste and broth.
  3. Heat a medium-sized sauce pan over medium heat and warm the oil until it’s it’s hot enough that a light sprinkle of the flour/spice mixture sizzles on contact. (Never leave your oil or it will overheat!)
  4. Once ready, whisk in the dry ingredients to the oil and cook until fragrant and slightly deepened in color, about 1 minute.
  5. Whisk the tomato paste. Then slowly pour in the broth while whisking constantly to remove any lumps.
  6. Raise heat to medium-high and bring the mixture to a simmer, then reduce heat as necessary to maintain a gentle simmer.
  7. Cook, whisking often, for about 5 to 7 minutes, until the sauce has thickened slightly and a spoon encounters some resistance as you stir it. (The sauce will thicken some more as it cools.)
  8. Remove from heat, then whisk in the vinegar and season to taste with freshly ground black pepper. Add salt to taste.

Recipe Notes

Enchilada sauce will keep well in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Or, freeze it for up to 3 months. Let it cool to room temperature before transferring to refrigerator or freezer. 

slow cooker chicken

Slow cooker salsa chicken is on pretty heavy rotation here at Casa De Collins! I’ll be honest with you and tell you that I considered not sharing this recipe because I didn’t want my secret to get out about how easy it is to make!

I don’t just love this recipe because it’s easy. It’s also:

  • Low carb / KETO approved
  • Gluten Free (Be sure to use gluten free ingredients)
  • Family friendly (everyone love its!)
  • Can be made in advance
  • Incredibly versatile
  • 3 affordable ingredients

This recipe checks all the boxes of a busy cook including the most important one- It’s really yummy!

This is a great recipe for families or groups of friends because it doubles and triples well. You can make any amount of this recipe if you follow this approach:

Add any amount of boneless chicken breasts into the bottom on the slow cooker. Add one teaspoon of taco seasoning per chicken breast. Top chicken with enough salsa to cover the chicken. Use tongs to toss and coat the chicken in the salsa. Set the slow cooker to low for 4-6 hours. Take note- the more chicken, the longer it may take. That’s all there is to it. (I do like to periodically check on it to make sure everything is coated and positioned well.)

To tell if the chicken is done, use two forks and see if a piece easily shreds. If it does, it is done. If sauce is thin, removed the chicken from the slow cooker and place in a large bowl. Top with about 1/8 cup of fresh salsa, per chicken breast and then begin to fork shred. The concept here is that as you shred, the chicken will absorb all the fresh flavors of the salsa. However you do not want it to be too wet, just seasoned so use your judgement. You can always add more. If the sauce is thick enough from cooking, you can shred directly in the slow cooker in the sauce in cooked in. (This all depends on the consistency of the salsa and how long you cook the chicken for. Either way is fine!)

Once it is all shredded, it’s ready to eat as is or ready to use any way you can think of.

Here are just a few of the ways I like to use this chicken.

  • Chicken Enchiladas (my favorite!)
  • Tex-Mex salads (or topped on any salad)
  • Wraps with lettuce, tomato & cheddar cheese (a side of sour cream or guac doesn’t hurt!)
  • Hard shell or soft tacos (most common!)
  • The ever reliable….quesadilla (who doesn’t love a quesadilla?)

Feaster’s Tip:

When hosting Taco night, I rinse out the slow cooker and re-add the now shredded chicken, and set the slow cooker to “keep warm” until ready to use. I set up the taco bar and everyone can help themselves and build their own tacos!

Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken
Prep Time
2 mins
Cook Time
6 hrs
 
Course: dinner, entree, lunch
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: chicken
Author: Christina Collins
Ingredients
  • 3 Boneless chicken breasts
  • 3 tsp Taco seasoning
  • 1 jar salsa (enough to cover chicken breasts)
Instructions
  1. Lay the chicken breasts into the bottom of the slow cooker

  2. Add 3 teaspoons of taco seasoning and enough salsa to cover the chicken.

  3. Use tongs to toss and coat the chicken, then nestle back to submerge the chicken in the salsa.

  4. Cook on low for -6 hours or until the meat shreads easily with a fork.

  5. Remove chicken to a bowl and add about 1/2 cup of fresh salsa. Fork shred and let the chicken absorb the flavors of the fresh salsa.

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

This recipe doubles well. 

 

Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken

Holy cow folks. Local Taste has done the homework for you and found you THE BEST game day recipe you’ll ever need! It is actually unbelievable that this recipe only requires two ingredients. Thats right- I said TWO! Chicken breasts and hot sauce. Okay, you need water too, but hopefully you have a running faucet and I don’t need to include that as an ingredient.

Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken is really simple to make. Literally, anyone can do it so you have no excuse not to serve up some home-cooking at your Super Bowl party this weekend. (I’m talking to all you lazy bones out there.)

All you need to do is add boneless chicken breasts to a slow cooker, combine equal parts water and hot sauce (NOT Tabasco or Sriracha) and pour over the chicken until just covered. Turn your crockpot on low for about 6 hours until chicken falls apart easily with a fork. Drain, shred, top with extra hot sauce if desired and serve!

This recipe hails from the Feast & Merriment culinary blog. They recommend setting up a ‘make your own’ Buffalo chicken slider bar with slider rolls, lettuce and blue cheese dressing. Guests will absolutely love this and it gives you, the host, one less thing to do at your own party!

Happy Crockpot Cooking!

Pulled pork

My sister doesn’t cook as often as I do so when she said she had a recipe I should try, I knew it must be both easy and delicious, so it was time to get cooking. I made it once, and I was hooked! It is now one of my most popular recipes amongst my friends and feasters, and puts a smile on my guests faces every time!The best thing about this recipe is you only need three basic ingredients- pork shoulder, root beer and your favorite BBQ sauce. When it comes to BBQ sauce, I like to keep it simple and classic with Sweet Baby Ray’s original BBQ sauce! But BBQ is a matter of preference and whether you make your own, prefer Carolina style or Texas inspired, you really can’t go wrong.I highly recommend you plan to keep busy outside your house while this is cooking because I promise you- the smell is simply tantalizing after just a few hours!When I have planned far enough in advance, I typically whip up a spice rub of brown sugar, ancho chili powder, kosher salt, fresh cracked pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, thyme and a pinch of cayenne. You can use any pre-made rub but I just make my own.  I put the rub on, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and let it sit for up to 24 hours. (Be sure to put it on a plate or in a pan because it could get messy and leak once the rub starts to break down and do its thing.)Over the years, I have served this up a few ways, but my feasters (AKA neighbors & friends!) all agree, on potato rolls with tangy coleslaw is the way to go.

Pulled Pork
Cook Time
6 hrs
 
Course: entree
Cuisine: American
Keyword: pork
Author: Christina Collins
Ingredients
  • any size pork shoulder (be sure it will fit in your crock pot!)
  • 1-2 cans root beer
  • 4 tbsp homemade or your favorite bbq dry spice rub (optional but recommended)
  • 1 bottle of your favorite bbq sauce (I like Sweet Baby Rays original bbq sauce)
  • Potato buns optional if making sandwiches.
Instructions
  1. If using a dry rub, rub meat all over, Wrap in plastic. Place onto a sheet pan (to catch leaks!) and place into refrigerator overnight. 

  2. Uncover and discard plastic wrap and place the meat into the slow cooker. 

  3. Pour enough root beer into the slow cooker until the meat is just covered. Turn onto low and cook for 6-8 hours or until meat shreds easily with a fork. 

  4. Drain the root beer. Discard the bones and excess fat. Shred the meat and return to the slow cooker. 

  5. Gently fold in just enough BBQ sauce to lightly coat the meat. Server immediately or keep on the warm setting for up to an hour. 

  6. Serve with buns, coleslaw and extra bbq sauce on the side.