Chicken Enchiladas with Roasted Vegetable Sauce

This recipe popped into my inbox yesterday morning and I thought it looked like a pretty tasty and healthy vegetable and chicken enchilada recipe so I made it for dinner with a few modifications. Since it was written for two and there were going to be three of us I doubled all of the ingredients and figured it would make a little extra but that would make a nice lunch for tomorrow. One unknown was the bell pepper. The ingredient list doesn’t have a bell pepper in it but the instructions do, so I added a whole red bell pepper to the ingredients. I made the recipe without the jalapeño until the end when I put the ingredients together into the enchilada. Then I added a roasted chopped jalapeño to the enchiladas for my husband and myself and left it out of Aidan’s enchiladas. We all really thought these were particularly flavorful; a rarity for my son who eats Mexican but often doesn’t really love it. What I especially like is how may vegetables this incorporates. We all agreed this is a keeper!

Chicken Enchiladas with Roasted Vegetable Sauce

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Incredibly rich, smoky, and delicious vegetable and chicken enchiladas.

Credit: Food and Wine


  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small sweet onion, chopped
  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño
  • 3 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika (the smokiness makes this really unique and interesting)
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon sugar or honey
  • Kosher salt • Fresh ground pepper
  • 28 oz can of organic no-salt added diced tomatoes
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 ears of fresh corn, cooked and shucked
  • 12 oz. bag of fresh spinach
  • 6 – eight inch corn or flour tortillas (I like to use the corn and wheat hybrid tortillas, they taste like corn but are actually pliable)
  • 1 1/2 cups cheddar-jack cheese blend
  • Handful of fresh cilantro, chopped


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Heat a large saucepan on medium high to high heat and add about a tablespoon of olive oil. Cook the onion and bell pepper until soft and translucent, about 5 to 7 minutes, stirring frequently, but allowing the peppers and onions to “roast” some. I think next time I make this I will actually roast the vegetables in the oven with a little olive oil instead. This will make the flavor richer.
  3. Add the garlic, jalapeño, chili powder, cumin, paprika, oregano, sugar, salt and pepper and cook, stirring, for 1-2 minutes. *NOTE: I roasted the jalapeño in the oven during this time and added it later to the actual enchiladas (in the filling) that my husband and I would be eating as my son won’t eat spicy food – this is an easy adjustment. Also add a second jalapeño or a Serrano if you like your food very spicy as one didn’t add that much spice in my opinion.
  4. Add the tomatoes and remove from the heat.
  5. Blend the mixture in a blender or food processor until smooth. Return the tomato mixture to the saucepan and over medium heat and bring to a simmer.
  6. Add the chicken breasts to the tomato mixture and turn down heat to a simmer and cover and cook for 10 minutes. Flip the chicken and cover and cook for 10 more minutes, or until the chicken is no longer pink and cooked through.
  7. While the chicken is cooking cook the spinach for 1 minute in the microwave, squeeze out water and chop. Cook the corn for about 5 minutes in the husk in a microwave (or grill) and slice off the cob. Set aside.
  8. Transfer the cooked chicken to a cutting board and shred with two forks.
  9. In a large bowl combine the chicken, corn, spinach, 1 cup of cheese and 1 cup of tomato sauce.
  10. Wrap the tortillas in a damp paper towel and warm them in the microwave for 30 seconds or until pliable.
  11. Lightly spray a square 8×8 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Spread a thin layer of the tomato sauce on the bottom of the baking dish. Spoon the chicken mixture into the tortillas and roll them up (adding jalapeños now if you are only adding them to some). Place enchiladas in the baking dish seam side down. Top the enchiladas with the remaining sauce, try to cover all of the tortilla on the top so they don’t dry out. Sprinkle the tops of the enchiladas with about ½ cup cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the enchiladas are hot and the cheese is melted.
  12. Top with chopped cilantro and additional jalapeños if you wish. Enjoy!

Cooking the onions and peppers.
All the spices!



The simmering sauce after puréeing
Before baking
Single enchilada. Yum! I do wish I had a little extra sauce to spoon over it…maybe next time.

One thought on “Chicken Enchiladas with Roasted Vegetable Sauce

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