Friday, January 11, 2013

Mexi-gan Healthy + Easy Enchiladas!

My boss loves enchiladas. I always see cans of enchilada sauce at her house and every time my mouth fills up with saliva at the thought of them. What's hilarious is that ... until this recipe... I had never had enchiladas! Though I'd heard of them, I'd never tried them, but for some reason they just seemed like they would be so incredible.
So, I looked up a recipe the other day intending to make them.
Um. no. Generally, I'm a fan of making things from scratch, but since I had no idea what enchilada sauce even *was*, I didn't want to conquer it from scratch. Plus, the recipes were very dairy-laden, which isn't cool since I have a dairy allergy. Booooo! So sad. After reviewing the recipes, though, it seemed there could be an easy way to make them and to make them delicious without dairy. And the very first try was a massive success! In a little over one week, we've had these four times. Heh... heh... yeah. I don't feel even slightly guilty since they're so healthy!
First of all, I ditched red meat. I have an iron allergy, too. We've made them with shredded chicken, ground turkey and ground chicken (which is cheaper and less fatty than ground turkey), all three ways rocked. So decide on your meat! You'll need 1/2 package of ground turkey (Jeannie-O is my brand of choice) or ground chicken. If you're going shredded, use about 2 cups.
Meat of choice
Whole wheat burrito/fajita tortillas (I like the ultra grain variety from Aztec)
1 can of tomatoes (with green chilies, if you like spice)
1 can of enchilada sauce (unless you're brave enough to make your own)
1 box of Mexican or Spanish rice
1 can of refried beans
Taco seasoning (or 1 tbs chili powder, 1/2 tbs paprika, 1/4 tsp ground pepper, 2 garlic cloves, 1/2 tsp onion powder)
1/2 white onion, chopped
Shredded lettuce
1 Roma tomato, chopped
Start out by seasoning and cooking your meat, adding in half of the onions, on the stove while simultaneously cooking your rice according to the product directions. You will only need about 1/2 of your rice, so you can eat the remainder with your enchiladas on the side... or save it for later... or do whatever you want! Also, if your rice calls for a can of tomatoes, only use half and reserve the other half for later.
Preheat your oven to 350* and place 5-6 tortillas in your baking dish (11x14).
Split your refried beans, meat + rice evenly among your tortillas in layers.
Roll them up and place them seam-side-down in your pan.
Pour your undrained can of tomatoes on top along with the enchilada sauce and remainder of the white onion. If you enjoy dairy, feel free to use a little bit of cheese on top, though it doesn't really need any. I put some on John's half :)
Bake your enchiladas for 15-20 minutes (just check it after 15 minutes to make sure they aren't burning. If you want them to be not-as-wet, bake another 5 minutes). Remove and top with shredded lettuce, chopped tomato and a bit of sour cream, if you'd like. Again, mine was awesome despite being dairy free.
These were super good and we have another pan in the oven right now for a late lunch! Mmmm. I can't wait to eat them. I called them Mexi-gan because they're more Michigan than Mexican. I remember being so surprised in Mexico by the taste of the food. I expected it to be much spicier, but the wonderful locals definitely didn't serve up the dishes I was used to in the states! Speaking of which- shout out to Memo, my best Mexican friend. Come visit us soon!
Welcome to Friday, ps! I hope your weekend is looking fantastic. The weather is *insane* here, so we'll be spending it outside. 50+ degrees in January? Yes, please. We will see YOU on Monday with some refashions + DIY's heading your way! All the best and as always, thanks for reading! 

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