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Easy Cheesy Cheese Enchiladas

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Restaurant style enchiladas — at home! My favorite are the very simple, yet sublime cheese enchiladas! These enchilada’s use your favorite red or green enchilada sauce. Soft corn tortillas filled with shredded cheese, diced onions, finished with more sauce and more Mexican cheeses, 30 minute meal and naturally gluten free.

This recipe is easy and the best as it’s so quick and simple, because (shocker) you can use your favorite store bought sauce, how very un-blogger like of me.

To complete this delicious dish, try either our Easy Spanish Rice or our Copycat Chipotle Lime Rice, both excellent!

Easy, cheese enchiladas in white casserole with spatula holding up enchilada dripping with cheese.

I know, I know the internet is filled with  recipes that claim “never make your own enchilada sauce again” and “10 minute enchilada sauce” which at some point I might try, I’ve tried a few but have yet to find one that I love.

Until then, I’m making them like my mom used to make with a store bought sauce and I have found a delicious, all natural jarred sauce that is made and jarred right here in Colorado.

top down shot of cheese enchiladas with brightly colored hot pad beneath, sprinkled with sliced black olives.

Ingredients & Substitutions

  • Enchilada sauce =>> this is my favorite! Nanita’s Finest found in our local grocery store. I mix the mild with the medium green chile sauce and it’s perfect!
  • White or Yellow Corn Tortillas | I typically use organic white, this keeps it gluten free and authentic
  • Oil | a non-flavored oil here, I typically use Avocado or Grapeseed oil both great at high heat
  • Cheese | Off the block shredded cheese is the best, as it doesn’t container stabilizers or any fillers, but I’ll be honest I usually use the pre-shredded Mexican blend cheese from Costco. Colby Jack, Jack, Pepper Jack, Cotijo and other Mexican cheese are all fabulous!
  • Onion | I like sweet yellow onion for this, the one place I don’t mind the onions being a bit crunchy
  • Other Mix-Ins | I realize I might be kinda boring in that I really like my enchiladas pure, just cheese and onions, but my family loves it when I mix in this healthy crack chicken or barbacoa beef!
Image of jars of Nanita's Finest New Mexico Style Green Chile sauce on counter

If you cannot find Nanita’s try looking for another natural enchilada sauce, a decent brand is Hatch; if you cannot find a natural one.

Try mixing two types; a red and a green chile sauce then use half and freeze the other half for another time.

How to make the best enchiladas

Preheat oven to 350° and prep baking dish, I typically use an 8×8 or 9×9 square* pan, sprayed with some oil and a few tablespoons of your sauce spread over the bottom.

FEEDING MORE? | *You may also make this is a larger casserole dish if desired or even a cast-iron skillet; simply increase all ingredients to meet your needs.

FB image with casserole dish filled with cheesy enchiladas and bowl of spanish rice in background.
  • Pour sauce into a medium saucepan and warm; in a small fry pan, heat a couple tablespoons of oil over medium heat.
  • Using tongs carefully place one corn tortilla at a time in the hot oil and fry for 15-20 seconds.
  • Flip and fry for 10 more seconds, this will help the tortillas to keep from breaking when rolling, remove from oil, allowing to drip for a moment, then quickly dip in the warm sauce to coat.
Cheese Enchiladas | www.thefreshcooky.com #cheeseenchiladas #enchiladas #mexican
  • Lay prepped tortilla in your baking dish and place a handful of cheese and a few diced onions in the center of the tortilla and roll carefully, placing enchilada seam side down.
  • Continue rolling until all tortillas are filled and tucked in next to one another.
Cheese Enchiladas | www.thefreshcooky.com #cheeseenchiladas #enchiladas #mexican

Gluten free enchilada recipe

YES, just remember to use corn tortillas (100% corn, some are combined with flour, so watch it) and make sure your sauce and shredded cheese is clean, this is a naturally GLUTEN FREE recipe!

In fact, you should probably shred your own cheese, it’s cheesier and meltier anyway!

Cheese Enchiladas | www.thefreshcooky.com #cheeseenchiladas #enchiladas #mexican

Chicken, Beef or Pork Enchilada variations

  • If desired, add shredded chicken (rotisserie chicken works great for this), leftover shredded pork or barbacoa beef, all delicious! Or try my Crack Chicken! It’s amazing!
  • Pour the rest of the sauce over the rolled enchiladas and sprinkle with a little more (or a lotta) cheese.
 Tray of enchiladas close-up before baking with shredded cheese and extra sauce on top.
  • Bake in 350° oven for 15-20 minutes until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbly. Serve immediately.

Delicious served with Spanish-Mexican Rice (linked at the top of the recipe), organic refried beans and crisp tortilla chips.

Suggested Toppings

  • chopped fresh tomatoes
  • fresh cilantro, chopped
  • sour cream
  • guacamole
  • salsa
  • sliced olives
  • minced onion
Melty cheese enchiladas in a baking pan with large spatula grabbing one of the enchiladas.

And there you have it, another delicious meal ready in a little over 30 minutes!

  • Your favorite casserole dish | Use the size that will work best for you, I love this Staub 2 pack, one small for two servings and the other slightly larger for our family of four.
  • Tongs | alligator tongs don’t tend to tear as much as a pair of regular tongs when handling the hot tortillas.
  • Large Spatula | Using a wide spatulas make it much easier for serving, or try a bench scraper too!

Don’t forget to sip something delicious with these cheesy enchiladas! 4 Ingredient Margarita’s, Hibiscus Mojito or this delicious Hibiscus Margarita, or try this festive and bright Passion Tea Lemonade (non-alcoholic).

finished enchiladas on a plate

More Mexican favorites!

Like this recipe?
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Kathleen Pope, The Fresh Cooky.

About Kathleen Pope

Recipe Innovator | Food Photographer | Food Writer

Hi, I’m Kathleen Pope. Here at The Fresh Cooky you will find easy, mostly from-scratch, trusted recipes for all occasions. From speedy dinners to tasty desserts, with easy step-by-step instructions. I am here to help teach you how to make mouthwatering recipes without spending hours in the kitchen. Read more about Kathleen here.

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  1. I made enchiladas a couple of days ago for a get-together. The host bought the ingredients and I made them. He had bought some soft corn tortillas, but I was prepared to do the usual prep, but didn’t have to. It made it sooo much easier. No frying or dipping. The sauce went in the bottom and on top, along with all that cheese. Delish.

    1. Sounds yummy Teri, did you make them more casserole style that way? I have never had good luck without dipping mine, which was the way I learned from our dear Mexican friends!