Cheese Enchiladas – The Hard Way

not-so-easy cheese enchiladas from thishappymom.comYesterday, I posted a story about 4 year old Watty bringing me a “recipe” for Cheese Enchiladas and then expecting me to make them.  I did, but I didn’t have all the ingredients.  I didn’t have canned enchilada sauce, but found a recipe for it.  The recipe called for canned tomato sauce, but I didn’t have any.  So I made some.   Feel free to use canned tomato sauce.  My recollection is the homemade sauce was delicious, but I don’t think I ever went to the effort of making it again.

Here’s the very convoluted recipe for making Cheese Enchiladas – The Hard Way.

Homemade Tomato Sauce (way better than the canned stuff).

  • 1 huge onion, sliced thinly on the new food processor
  • 1 green bell pepper, sliced on the new food processor
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • 2 cans diced tomato in juice
  • glob of oil
  • pinch of salt

Saute the onions, bell peppers, and garlic in a big pot.  Cook until there is lots of caramelized color.  Add the canned tomato stuff and salt.  Rinse the cans with about 1/2 a can of water (total) and pour into the mixture.  Cook on simmer for 30 minutes.  Use the immersion blender to process until smooth.  Wow.  This stuff has great flavor!  Yield was about 4 cups.  I have 2 cups left, perfect for making taco meat, spaghetti sauce, or even chili.  But I could also add a can of milk and have some awesome cream of tomato soup.  With a few herbs, it would have been a nice finished sauce.

I know the stuff straight from a can is more convenient, but this stuff will definately change a recipe for the better.  Wow.

Enchilada Sauce (a summary of several different versions)

  • 2 to 4 tablespoons mexican seasonings (chili powder blend)
  • 1 tsp cocoa powder (unsweetened)
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • pinch salt
  • 2 cups tomato sauce (see above)
  • 2 cups water

Combine the spices and flour with enough liquid to make a slurry.  Pour into small saucepan with remaining liquid and bring to a boil.  Simmer until the sauce until it tightens (about 20 minutes).  That’s it.  If you’ve ever read the ingredients on a can of enchilada sauce, you know that lists some rather “unnatural” ingredients.  This is a nice contrast.

You do NOT taste the cocoa powder.  It lends a dark color and a depth of flavor, but that’s it.  There’s nothing “chocolaty” about this sauce.    You control how spicy this sauce is based on what combination of seasonings you use.

Assembling the cheese enchiladas:

  1. Microwave your corn tortillas between two plates until they become soft and pliable.  Generally this is 3+ minutes, but I tend to let corn enchiladas live in my refrigerator on an almost permanent basis.
  2. Mix 1 tsp of cumin powder and 1 tsp garlic powder in with your bag of grated cheese (I use sharp cheddar).
  3. Roll about 3 tablespoons of cheese in each tortilla.
  4. Snuggle the rolled tortillas tightly into a pan to keep them from unrolling.  I use a bread pan to hold about 3 enchiladas, or an 8×8 baking dish to hold 7-8 of them.
  5. Cover with sauce and top with some more cheese.
  6. Bake until the cheese melts (about 15 minutes at 350).  Let them sit for a few minutes before serving.

Serve them with lots of healthy vegetables and salsa to make up for all that cheese!  Or not.

Get social:
Susan Baker
I have a passion for encouraging weary worn out mothers to find joy in everyday motherhood and peace in unlikely places. I have two elementary school boys, one nerdy husband, and two cats. I have a strange fascination for bad puns, the color pink, socks, and books. I worry about running out of toilet paper, wine, and chocolate.. I serve an amazing God. I live an ordinary life filled with wonder.
Susan Baker
Susan Baker

Latest posts by Susan Baker (see all)


  1. Cocoa powder, nice, kind of a mole variation. Enchiladas are a handy food for kids. I have a family-style baked casserole that I make with corn tortillas, queso ranchero, potatoes, sour cream, and salsa verde. Usually I use jarred salsa verde but I bought some tomatillos and am trying to motivate to cook those up soon. More effort, for sure, but I’ll bet it will be good.
    Mary recently posted..Brunost!My Profile

Speak Your Mind


CommentLuv badge
Social media & sharing icons powered by UltimatelySocial
Copy Protected by Chetan's WP-Copyprotect.
%d bloggers like this: