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Three-Cheese Chicken Enchiladas

(Enchiladas De Pollo Con Tres Quesos)

Three-Cheese Chicken Enchiladas (Enchiladas De Pollo Con Tres Quesos) recipeThese luscious enchiladas are emblematic of the cooking of northern Mexico, where people are crazy about cream, cheese, and Colorado chiles. In true northern style, not only are the enchiladas generously sauced with the region’s favorite red salsa, but they also have three kinds of cheese as well as Mexican crema. Some enchiladas, like these, are nestled into baking dishes, covered with sauce and cheese, and baked; others are just filled, sauced, and served.

Three-Cheese Chicken Enchiladas (Enchiladas De Pollo Con Tres Quesos) recipe.

Three-Cheese Chicken Enchiladas Three-Cheese Chicken Enchiladas (Enchiladas De Pollo Con Tres Quesos)

Pati Jinich
These luscious enchiladas are emblematic of the cooking of northern Mexico, where people are crazy about cream, cheese, and Colorado chiles.
Course Dinner
Cuisine Latin American, Mexican
Servings 6


For the Colorado Chile Red Salsa (makes 2 cups)

  • 1 pound ripe tomatoes or 1 (15-ounce) can whole tomatoes
  • 2 dried colorado chiles, stemmed and seeded
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped white onion
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

For the enchiladas

  • 16 corn tortillas
  • Double recipe Colorado Chile Red Salsa
  • 4 cups shredded cooked chicken or rotisserie chicken
  • 1 cup crema or sour cream
  • 2 cups grated Oaxaca cheese or mozzarella (8 ounces)
  • 2 cups grated asadero, Muenster, or Monterey Jack cheese (8 ounces)
  • 1 cup crumbled Cotija cheese or grated Pecorino
  • 1 ripe avocado, halved, pitted, and sliced, for garnish (optional


Make the Colorado Chile Red Salsa

  • Combine the fresh tomatoes, if using, chiles, and garlic in a medium saucepan, cover with water, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, until the tomatoes are cooked and mushy and the chiles are soft.
  • Using a slotted spoon, transfer the tomatoes, chiles, and garlic to a blender. Add the canned tomatoes, if using, the onion, salt, and pepper and puree until smooth.
  • Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Pour in the tomato sauce, cover partially, and simmer for 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the flavors and color have deepened and the sauce has thickened slightly. Serve hot, warm, at room temperature, or chilled.
  • The salsa will keep, tightly covered, for up to 5 days in the refrigerator or for up to 2 months in the freezer.

Make the enchiladas

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F, with a rack in the middle. Heat a comal or large skillet over medium-low heat for at least 5 minutes.
  • One or two at a time, heat the tortillas on the comal or skillet, without overlapping, for about a minute per side, until malleable and warm. Cover or wrap in a kitchen towel to keep warm.
  • Pour about 1 cup of the salsa into a 9-x-13-inch baking dish and spread it evenly over the bottom. One by one, place each tortilla on a cutting board and sprinkle about 1⁄4 cup of the chicken evenly down the middle. Roll up into a chubby soft taco and place seam down in the baking dish. Pour the remaining salsa over the enchiladas and top with the cream. Cover with the grated cheeses and sprinkle the Cotija, Romano, or Parmesan over the top.
  • Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the cheese has completely melted and begun to lightly brown around the edges. Serve hot, with sliced avocado (if desired).


Treasures of the Mexican Table by Pati JinichExcerpted from PATI JINICH TREASURES OF THE MEXICAN TABLE: Classic Recipes, Local Secrets © 2021 by Pati Jinich. Photography © 2021 by Angie Mosier. Reproduced by permission of Mariner Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Keyword Avocado, Cheese, chicken, Chiles, Lime, Tortillias

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