These Beef Enchiladas are a family favorite – they’re loaded with beef, onions, green chiles and drenched in a four-cheese mix and topped with spicy enchilada sauce!
Friends, I can not believe that it’s taken nearly 4 years to post one of my most favorite recipes on the planet. Seriously. I don’t mean to keep these types of things from you guys…
But, if you want to know one of my all-time favorite recipes, the secret has now been revealed.
—> This is it.
I’ve been making these weekend enchiladas for a lottttt of years, and they have been a long-time family favorite. They do require quite a bit of prep time, so they’re best saved for the weekend, when you have time to craft them and put them together. But, let me assure you, they are worth the time, effort, and the wait!
There are many ways recipes will tell you to put enchiladas together (e.g. dip the enchilada into the sauce before filling) but my secret is to flash fry the tortillas in oil and blot them dry before stuffing.
The reason to flash fry them is:
- it makes them slightly firmer in texture
- it makes them pliable so they won’t tear and
- it helps the enchilada sauce adhere to the tortilla when baking
Which all equals goodness in your final recipe!
Now for the stuffing. 🙂
The trick is, you want to have plenty of ingredients inside your tortilla, but not so many that you can’t easily roll them. Here is how I layer each of mine – filling down the center, almost to the edges, leaving the filling about 1/2″ from the outer edges, so it doesn’t fall out when you roll them. As you roll them, they will spread out a bit when you tuck them into the pan.
In this recipe, you will also notice there is also a mix of cooked onions, as well as raw onions. The cooked onions add great flavor to the beef and the raw onions are great for a pop of onion flavor and great texture in your baked Beef Enchiladas. I swear it makes a difference! 🙂 If there’s one thing I know for sure – it’s making a fantastic enchilada, after years and years of practice.
Another tip that I’ll share is – I always use the leanest ground beef. Often times, this means that I don’t need to drain the beef after cooking and with the onions, spices and other ingredients, it doesn’t lack any flavor!
Before you get started frying your tortillas, be sure to have all your paper towels folded and ready. The frying will go really fast, as the tortillas only need to be in the oil for a few seconds before they’re ready to be removed and drained. By being prepared, you’ll can move quickly from one tortilla to the next, stacking and layering so they can drain and cool.
Note: your oil should *not* be so hot that it’s popping in the pan – it should only have small bubbles that form – and when you place the tip of the tortilla into the oil, it should sizzle. As it gets coated and cooks, the tortilla will float to the top and bubble. As you remove it with tongs to the paper towel, you should notice that the tortilla is firmer in texture than when it was uncooked. It should still be pliable, but firmer.
One final tip I’ve learned over the years. Use YELLOW CORN TORTILLAS. In my experience, they are not as soft as the white corn tortillas, so they stay firm, they don’t tear and they hold up when drenched in melting cheese and enchilada sauce.
- 1 and 1/2 cups yellow onion diced and divided
- 1 1.20 pound package ground beef
- 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1 teaspoon cayenne
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 2 cups canola oil
- 1 10.84 ounce package yellow corn tortillas
- 12 7" x 11" paper towels, folded in half
- 1 6-ounce can black olives, sliced
- 1 7-ounce can green chiles, diced
- 3 cups Mexican Four Cheese blend shredded
- 1 10-ounce can enchilada sauce
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Spray a large skillet with cooking spray. Heat on high until hot and add 3/4 cup onions, ground beef, garlic, cayenne, cumin, salt and pepper. Turn down to medium-high and cook until beef is done throughout. Drain. Remove beef mixture and set aside to cool. Wipe out skillet with paper towels.
- Add canola oil to pan and heat until hot (small bubbles will form at bottom of skillet). Turn down to medium or medium-high and fry one corn tortilla at a time until tortilla floats to top and has firmed up a bit, but is still soft and pliable. Tortilla should be pliable but slightly firmer than when uncooked. Remove from oil, place on paper towel lined plate, and place another paper towel on top. Repeat for remaining tortillas until done. When oil cools, discard.
- Spray a casserole dish with cooking spray. Lay corn tortilla in a dish and layer with hamburger mixture, raw onions, black olives, green chiles, and cheese. Roll, leaving seam side down. Repeat with remaining tortillas. Top with any remaining onion, olives, green chiles and shredded cheese. Pour enchilada sauce over the top.
- Place in oven and bake for 15-30 minutes until cheese is melted and enchiladas are hot throughout. Remove and serve.
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