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Cast Iron Chicken Enchiladas & How to Make Homemade Red Enchilada Sauce

Posted By Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom On February 3, 2014 @ 5:00 pm In chicken,Freezer Friendly,Gluten Free,How To,Recipes,Skillet Dinners | 6 Comments

This recipe is featured in the 21 Freezer Cooking Recipes from Costco Meal Plan #5. [3]

“Mom, that says my name.”

“You’re right buddy…that does say “T” for Tyler!!!”

My sweet 4 year old was outside with me, ‘helping’ me take the photos of these enchiladas. He took one look inside the pan and got so excited and declared that he can’t wait to eat these. (Or the dairy free version that I made! I doubled this one up…one dairy free, one with regular cheese…so that we would have plenty to enjoy over the past weekend.)

Tyler is learning about letters in his preschool class, starting with the letters in his name, and all the names of his friends and brothers. Our conversations about letters usually go like this…

  • A is for Austin and Aidan.
  • R is for Ryan and Riley.
  • C is for Charlie, and for my last name too.
  • E is for you mommy, and Evan too.
  • And T is for me.

He is super ecstatic about the new letters that he’s learning, loves making letters out of sticks and play-doh…and could hardly stand that there was a ‘T’ in his dinner. {hehe}

Really, these are just regular old chicken enchiladas…but made with a homemade red enchilada sauce, and in a cast iron skillet. Also, really helps cut down on cooking time if you have the chicken cooked and shredded ahead of time. This is the recipe I’ve been using lately for shredded chicken [4].

How to Make Homemade Red Enchilada Sauce

(Cute kids, not included. I only had 7 how-to photos and needed 2 filler picts!)

  • Step one: Add chicken or vegetable stock to saucepan.
  • Step two: Add tomato paste to saucepan.
  • Step three: Add spices and whisk together.
  • Step four: Bring to bubbling.
  • Step five: Add few spoonfuls to bottom of skillet or baking dish.
  • Step six: Add few spoonfuls to cooked and shredded chicken [4] and mix together.
  • Step seven: Add enchiladas, the spoon the rest of the sauce over top. Add cheese. Cook.
  • But don’t cook the kids

Recipe below written for 1 pan worth of sauce. 

Cast Iron Chicken Enchiladas & Homemade Red Enchilada Sauce

Yield – 4 servings or 12 enchiladas

Preparation Time – 15 minutes

Cooking Time – 20-25 minutes


  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 12 oz. can tomato paste
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder or 1 Tbsp minced onion
  • about 1 tsp salt and pepper each
  • 3 cups cooked and shredded chicken [4]
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • about 1 – 1 1/2 cups shredded jalapeno jack or pepper jack or Mexican blend cheese
  • Fresh veggie for side dish (we had corn and black beans)


  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • In a medium saucepan, whisk together the broth, tomato paste, ground cumin, garlic powder, onion powder or minced onion and salt and pepper. Bring to bubbling, then remove from heat.
  • Spoon about 1/3 of the sauce into the base of a cast iron skillet or 9×13-inch baking dish.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine the cooked and shredded chicken with about 1/3 of the sauce. Spoon the chicken mixture evenly into 12 corn torillas. Roll and place seam side down in. the sauce in the skillet. Repeat until the chicken mixture is used up or the skillet is full.
  • Spoon the remaining sauce over top of the enchiladas. Top with shredded cheese.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until cheese has melted on top.
  • Prepare veggies.
  • Serve Cast Iron Skillet Chicken Enchiladas with corn, black beans or other favorite veggies.

Freeze & Thaw Instructions: To freeze, place enchiladas (before baking) in a disposable pan with foil and cover with lid, label it and place in the freezer. Freeze up to 6 months in fridge freezer or 12 months in a deep freezer. Thaw in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours. Bake as directed above in the disposable pan or transfer to a cast iron skillet if you prefer.

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URLs in this post:

[1] right into your inbox: http://www.5dollardinners.com/contact/get-emails

[2] get meal plans delivered to you each week: http://www.5dollarmealplan.com

[3] This recipe is featured in the 21 Freezer Cooking Recipes from Costco Meal Plan #5.: http://www.5dollardinners.com/21-freezer-meals-from-costco-for-150-that-will-rock-your-palette-and-make-your-wallet-smile/

[4] shredded chicken: http://www.5dollardinners.com/slow-cooker-cilantro-lime-shredded-chicken/

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