Growing up, at every family celebration and holiday we had tons of delicious homemade mexican food. I LOVE it all, the problem is that some traditional Mexican recipes can be super fattening, heavy, processed, and high in calories.
Take one of my favorites, enchiladas, for example. In the original recipe, they would use white flour tortillas (GMO, nutrient depleted, refined flour and lard) and fry them each individually in refined oil (trans fats), then fill them with processed cheese (enough said), and commercialized ground beef (filled with hormones and antibiotics), and the sauce was made with refined oil and white flour. Sure, they tasted good- all greasy and fattening, but in no way did it nourish the body and leave the eater with a sense of wellness and health.
Well, I am SO happy to share with you the revolutionized enchilada! This sauce is passed down from generations in my family and my nana is known for making the best enchiladas ever! I am so blessed that she passed this recipe on to me and that now I am able to share it with you guys. Of course the original recipe calls for ¨a little of this¨and ¨a little of that…to taste¨ haha…like most of our family recipes do, but I took the time to get the measurements right so we could be guaranteed success every time. This sauce is SO good and SO easy!! I know you will love these as much as my family does!
Makes about 8-10 servings
- 1-2 packs Gluten-Free brown rice tortillas
- 1 c. Shredded organic chicken breast/ grass-fed ground beef cooked/veggies or black beans
- 2 c. shredded Daiya vegan cheese or shredded organic raw cheese
- 1 can sliced olives (BPA free or glass jar is best)
- ½ onion diced (omit if you don’t like onions)
- 2-3 Cups organic chicken or veggie broth
- 2 Tb-1/4 c. Chili powder (I used ¼ c. And it did have a kick to it, if you don´t like it spicy, use less)
- 3 Tb. Organic Extra Virgin Coconut oil
- ¼ cup Pamela’s pancake & baking mix OR other gluten-free flour
- 1 Tsp. Garlic powder (no other ingredients but garlic)
- 1 tsp. Cumin Spice (if you don´t have this, don´t worry)
You will need to get all of your ¨stuffing¨ingredients ready first for simplicity. For chicken, boil approximately 2 chicken breast, let cool, and then shred with hands into little pieces and put into a bowl. Drain olives, dice onions, and put each into their own small bowl.
- Next we are going to start the sauce. Pour coconut oil into a medium sized pot over medium heat and add chili powder. Saute until you smell a ¨wonderful aroma¨, about 3-5 minutes.
- Add flour and stir until well combined.
- Add Chicken broth and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring frequently to make sure it doesn´t burn.
- If you want to do these the easy way, like I do, I choose to make a casserole out of it instead of rolling each enchilada. To do this, all you need to do is layer. I do a thin layer of sauce on the bottom, then tortillas, then sauce, cheese, olives, onions, veggies/meat and repeat all the way to the top. For the top layer, cover with sauce and sprinkle with cheese.
For those of you who would like to roll them here are directions:
- Take your tortillas and if stiff, which most are, warm them up by placing them in a pan (not microwave!) for 10 seconds on each side or so until flexible.
- Place tortilla inside pot of sauce, covering both sides with sauce. Be careful because the sauce will be hot. You can use a spoon or tongs to pull the tortilla out of the sauce.
- Place the sauce covered tortilla in the short end of the pan with half of the tortilla up on the side and half laying flat on the bottom to make it easier to stuff. Place cheese, meat/veggies, olives, onions to moderately fill tortilla, then roll tightly. Place your next tortilla part on the previous now rolled enchilada and part on the bottom so you have an “L” shape and a valley to put stuffing in. Roll that tortilla like the previous.
- Continue doing this with each tortilla until the pan is filled. As you get to the end of the pan, you can squeeze them together to make room for a couple more.
- If you are making these in advance and are not ready to bake them yet, place them in the fridge. You can even make these days or weeks in advance and freeze them. It works perfectly for an easy dinner one night.
To bake, preheat the oven to 375ºF and pop the pan of enchiladas in until bubbly on top and all the cheese is melted, about 20 minutes. Hope you enjoy!!
FACTS ABOUT COMMON ENCHILADAS AND INGREDIENTS
1. Ingredients in Old El Paso canned enchilada sauce
Water, Tomato Puree (Water, Tomato Paste), Modified Corn Starch, Dried Red Chiles, Soybean Oil, Sugar, Salt, Monosodium Glutamate, Citric Acid, Hydrolyzed Corn Gluten, Soy Protein and Wheat Gluten, Onion Powder, Autolyzed Yeast Extract, Spice, Garlic Powder, Red Pepper.
Soybean Oil (and other soy products) is almost always genetically modified unless otherwise specified. It is also an unhealthy oil and fat for our bodies to process, so it is better avoided.
Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) is a known neurotoxin, endocrine disrupter, and carcinogen, yet considered ¨Generally recognized as safe¨by the FDA and used as a flavor enhancer in many products. Look for it in many potato and tortilla chips, soups, spices, chinese food, flavored meats, prepackaged rice mixes (Rice-a-Roni), broths, bullion cubes. HERE is a resource of all the names MSG may be hidding behind.
Hydrolyzed Corn Gluten definitely doesn´t sound like something you will find growing in your garden. But it actually is used as an HERBICIDE! This also yet ANOTHER source of MSG. It is a chemical, highly processed ingredient that causes adverse effects in the body and digestive system.
Soy Protein & Wheat Gluten. Who would have thought that buying enchilada sauce would mess up many people´s stomachs due to the gluten content. Soy protein is also very difficult on the body as it is an extract of the whole soy bean and again most likely genetically modified which is a whole nother can of worms.
Autolyzed Yeast Extract is actually a component of broken down bakers or brewers yeast and a cheaper version of MSG, so be aware of it. It is believed to contribute to many health issues. This kind of yeast also feeds candida albicans which many people are running around suffering with these days due to poor diet, so try to avoid this ingredient when doing your shopping.
2. Taco Bell Spicy Chicken Enchilada Platter
TRANSFATS!!: 1.5g—Not safe in ANY amounts!
Sodium: 3330mg- 139% daily value!
WOOOW! That is an eye opener!
3. BAJA FRESH CHICKEN ENCHILADAS WITH SOUR CREAM
In 2 enchiladas, one serving
Sodium: 2655mg- 111% daily value!
I think I will stick with my delicious, easy, and very nutritious homemade enchiladas thank you very much! Let me know how you like these delicious Revolutionized Enchiladas!
Integrative RN & Health Coach