A complete guide on how to make enchiladas

Coming together and sharing a meal with family and friends is what Mexican food is all about. 

While many of us dream of visiting this beautiful country, you don’t need to be in Mexico to enjoy some of its most famous dishes. With a little help, you can make your own tasty, fresh Mexican food right in your own kitchen.

We’re here with the tips you need to make enchiladas – from covering off what they are to helping you figure out what to serve with them.

What are enchiladas?

How to make enchiladas

First, a quick overview: what are enchiladas? 

Enchiladas are similar to a burrito. They consist of a corn or flour tortilla, stuffed with fillings and wrapped tightly. They’re covered in sauce and cheese and served with a variety of side dishes – it’s one of the few Mexican dishes you enjoy with a knife and fork. 

Enchiladas likely started as a street food and evolved over time – the earliest known form of the dish was simply a rolled tortilla dipped in chilli sauce. The word itself is a compound of two Nahuatl words, ‘chilli’ and ‘flute’.  

What’s in enchiladas?

There are many different takes on the enchiladas, but it typically consists of a combination of meats, vegetables, beans, cheese, salsa, tortilla and sauce. Other ingredients like sour cream, rice, guacamole and coriander are also frequently added to the mix.


  • Tortillas
  • Soft tortillas are the first ingredient you’ll need to make enchiladas, and look for ones that are large enough that you can easily fill and roll. Our Super Soft Flour Tortillas are perfect for this. If you prefer you can choose whole wheat or corn.

  • Meat filling
  • Chicken and beef are the two most common fillings for enchiladas. You don’t have to prepare meat specially for this dish – you can make use of leftover burrito filling, for example. If you prefer to eat vegetarian, you can enjoy them with black beans.

  • Cheese
  • Cheese is used as the final ingredient to enchiladas and is sprinkled over the wraps along with the sauce.

  • Sauce
  • It’s the sauce that truly sets enchiladas apart from burritos and tacos, and arguably the most important ingredient of this dish. Our Old El Paso™ Cooking Sauce for Enchiladas takes all the fuss out of preparation. Use this as a base and blend in coriander, parsley, lime juice and garlic to give it extra flavour.

How to make enchiladas?

How to make enchiladas

Enchiladas are surprisingly straightforward once you have all your ingredients together. 
First, decide on fillings. The possibilities here are nearly endless; try tuna for a lighter take on this dish, or make it for breakfast using bacon and egg. If you want to go vegetarian, fillings like black beans, chickpeas, sweet potato and aubergine all taste great. 

Add a large dollop of filling to your tortilla, roll, and place inside a baking dish with the seam facing down to keep them in place. Cover in your sauce, sprinkle over with cheese, and cook. 

How to make enchilada sauce?

Enchilada sauce is a chilli flavoured sauce that gives enchiladas its memorable taste. You can make your own using tomato paste, vegetable broth, flour and spices including chilli powder, cumin and garlic powder.

If that seems like too much work for a weeknight, we don’t blame you. You can get an authentic taste and focus on your fillings instead by using our Old El Paso™ Cooking Sauce for Enchiladas. 

Add it to a blender or food processer along with parsley, lime juice, coriander and garlic. Blend together until smooth – that’s all there is to it! 

What to serve with enchiladas?

How to make enchiladas

Enchiladas are one of the few Mexican dishes that you need utensils to eat, so take advantage of this opportunity when you’re making your sides. Some dishes that work particularly well are:

  • Fried Rice
  • Fried rice is a Mexican staple and a great way to make this dish a little heartier if you’re serving it for dinner. You can incorporate meat and vegetables or keep it simple and use a plain rice and let it absorb any extra enchiladas sauce.

  • Refried Beans
  • Creamy, refried beans are also a delicious accompaniment to go with your enchiladas. Serve them on their own or with a bowl of tortilla chips for everyone to share. You can cut down on prep time by keeping a can of our Old El Paso™ Refried Beans to hand.

Black Bean and Cheese Enchiladas

black bean & cheese enchiladas