I’m pretty sure nothing can beat this easy Enchilada Sauce. I’ve seen picky young eaters eye this dish skeptically; try it and then proceed to go back for seconds and even thirds! This recipe is honestly that good. And you get to feel awesome about feeding your family a delicious, affordable, and easy homemade meal that doesn’t have any extra processed ingredients hiding in it.Jump to Recipe
Easy Enchilada Sauce
And some commonly asked questions:
What is enchilada sauce made of?
An authentic Enchilada Sauce is made of chili powder, various spices, broth, tomato paste/sauce, and thickened with flour (for a gluten-free sauce, use cornstarch.)
What can I use in place of Enchilada Sauce?
A homemade sauce, of course! If you have tomato sauce, broth, spices, and a thickener, you’re halfway there.
What’s the best Enchilada Sauce?
Homemade is the best, and this recipe, well dang, it’s pretty good.
How do you thicken Enchilada Sauce?
Traditionally with flour, but I also use cornstarch so that my daughter, who needs to eat gluten-free, can enjoy this delicious meal too.
This is a budget-friendly recipe that helps stretch simple ingredients but tastes so satisfying and delicious. These enchiladas can be filled with meat, beans, rice, and topped with cheese and homemade sauce.
I don’t even follow a recipe for filling my enchiladas. I like to make a large pot of rice and beans for dinner one night, and the next day I take the leftovers, add some crock-potted meat and turn those leftovers into another exciting meal.
Plan ahead and set up the crockpot with meat the night before, for a minimal effort meal the next day. I also like to crockpot a larger piece of meat, and after its finished cooking, I shred the cooled meat and store in the fridge, and then I can mix up easy casseroles for the next few days.
Now, you may be thinking,
Why make homemade sauce when I can buy it?
Well, here’s a few reasons I decided to start making my own homemade Enchilada Sauce.
- It’s free of Hydrolyzed Soy & Corn Protein, food colorings, and overly processed ingredients. If you or a family member are sensitive to processed foods, then you already have a reason to make this homemade sauce
- The taste! It’s so delicious, it tastes nothing like store-bought enchilada sauce, and it’s an easy swap. Plus, you get to add and play with spice combinations.
- You get to control what goes in. Many homemade sauce recipes call for a flour paste to thicken the sauce, but I make mine gluten-free by thickening it with Bob’s Red Mill Corn Starch.
- It’s great for the budget, and I get to feed my family quality food.
In case you were wondering… Enchiladas are a delicious dish of tortillas that have been filled and rolled up with a yummy stuffing, placed in a casserole pan, covered in enchilada sauce, sprinkled with cheese, and baked until everything is crunchy, gooey and delicious.
Some people like to make their enchiladas with flour tortillas; I make them gluten-free by using gluten-free corn tortillas. I prefer to use the smaller corn tortillas (I get mine from Costco), and I fill them like tacos and lay them upright in the casserole pan. It’s a small thing, but I feel like it saves time versus rolling each tortilla up! Come on, you mommas get me, right? If I can find any way to cut down on the time it takes to get dinner on the table, I’m all for it!
Enchilada Sauce Recipe
This homemade sauce recipe is so easy and delicious. Stuff your Enchiladas with meat (shredded chicken/shredded beef/sautéed sausage), beans, rice, green chili peppers, sautéed veggies like mushrooms and onions, top it all of with cheese and homemade sauce, bake for half an hour and then enjoy!
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup of flour or cornstarch
- 3 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 3 cups of chicken broth or beef broth
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 16 ounce can of tomato sauce
Take a medium sized pot, and add the butter, flour or cornstarch, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper. Whisk over medium heat, until the butter is melted and the mixture is smooth.
Add the chicken broth and continue whisking over medium/high heat until the sauce has thickened. Whisk in the tomato sauce, take it off the heat and voila! You’re ready to start stuffing tortillas.
Assembling Enchilada Casserole
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
Enchilada Casserole Fillings:
Tortillas: Corn or Flour, I use small corn tortillas or medium-sized flour tortillas
Meat: shredded chicken/shredded beef/sautéed sausage
Beans/Rice: Literally any cooked beans that you have and left over rice
Veggies: Mushrooms, bell peppers, onions, (sauté them in butter over medium/high heat until soft)
Canned green chili peppers
5 cups of grated Cheddar Cheese (or Mozzarella/Pepper-Jack/Colby)
In a large bowl, add the meat, beans/rice, sautéed veggies, and anything extra and mix it all together.
Take the mixture and stuff the corn tortillas like tacos and place in a 9×13 casserole pan, once the pan is full pour the sauce over, coating all the stuffed tortillas.
Next, evenly sprinkle 5 cups of grated cheddar cheese on top and bake in the oven at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown around the edges and everything looks bubbly and delicious.
I love making this homemade enchilada casserole for families that are feeling under the weather, new mommas that have just had a baby, or anyone that needs a hot, delicious meal that warms up well. It’s also perfect for potlucks and hosting dinners. Add a big bowl of salad, some cornbread, and a simple dessert, and having someone over for dinner becomes a breeze.
I think having people over for a meal is becoming a lost art, but I also understand that people feel overwhelmed by it too. That’s where I think we need to simplify it and not feel guilty because we aren’t serving a five-course meal. Homemade food is a gift that we should share, and what better way to fellowship with others than over a meal?
What’s your favorite meal to make when hosting a dinner?
What’s for dessert, you ask? Well, homemade pie of course! Take your pick…