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Bean & Cheese Enchiladas

When I was a kid, we lived in Texas for three years. In college, I worked at a Mexican restaurant for three years. But, I would never consider myself an expert on authentic Mexican cuisine. First off, I don’t like spicy food so that rules out a lot of things. Also, I’m not super adventurous with Mexican food. I have my handful of things I love and those are what I stick with, period. I want:

1. Great Mexican rice (this is often how I judge a Mexican restaurant)
2. The perfect tamale (so hard to find, thank God for The Tamale Man)
3. Carnitas
4. Plain old tacos. Nothing fancy and NO FISH!!! Gross.
5. Enchiladas! Enchiladas! Enchiladas!

True to form, I don’t care for traditional enchiladas. Enchiladas are usually made with corn tortillas but I prefer flour tortillas. Flour tortillas drenched in enchilada sauce to be exact (and therefore, not a burrito).

I like chicken enchiladas and I love cheese enchiladas but today I’m sharing my recipe for Bean and Cheese Enchiladas; Entry #3 in the GFBP (Good Food, Bad Pictures) series.

I love these for their simplicity and delicious flavor. I do create a little bit of a mess when I make them. I can justify the mess because 1. I am messy in the kitchen no matter what I am making and 2. I can make these ahead, keep them in the fridge and bake them right before dinner. I LOVE anything I can make ahead. It makes dinner so much more enjoyable. This is also a great meal to make ahead and freeze. Thaw then bake or be prepared to bake an extra 20 – 30 minutes if baking from frozen.

This is a good method for any enchilada. Think of different combinations you like, roll it in a tortilla and bake in the oven. I already mentioned how I love both cheese and chicken enchiladas. I have used leftover Thanksgiving turkey and made turkey enchiladas. You could try roasted veggies… what would you fill your tortilla with?

You don’t need many ingredientsIMG_9129

I begin by chopping up an onion; you want a small dice. Mine in the picture below are a little too big. You want to flavor the beans but not bite into a chunk of onion.IMG_9130

Microwave the onions for about 40 seconds, stirring halfway through. Add a can of refried beans and a couple tablespoons of enchilada sauce to the onions. Then, stir everything together.IMG_9131

Spray your baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.  After that, I get my stations ready:
1. Tortillas
2. Flat bowl filled with enchilada sauce
3. Bean mixture
4. Pile of cheese
5. Baking Dish

I put out a big piece of wax paper with the intention of keeping all of the mess on the wax paper (fingers crossed).IMG_9135

Dip a tortilla into the enchilada sauce so it is covered on both sides. It doesn’t need to be drenched, it just needs a coating.IMG_9134

Then lay the tortilla out and fill with a dollop of beans and a bit of shredded cheese.IMG_9137

Roll up the tortilla and place it in your baking dish.IMG_9138

Repeat this with the remaining tortillas. You can roll them kind of tight and squeeze them into your baking dish.  IMG_9141

Pour the remaining enchilada sauce over the top of the enchiladas and sprinkle with shredded cheese.


At this point, I put mine in the fridge until I was ready for dinner.IMG_9145

Then, I pulled them back out and baked them in a preheated oven until the cheese was nice and bubbly.IMG_9148

I should have served with shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes and a dollop of sour cream but… no time… That is why this is part of the GFBP series. Imagine how pretty it would look with all that on top. Then it would be a good picture. I slopped it on a plate and it was delicious! I hope you like it too!

Bean and Cheese EnchiladasIMG_9151

Serves 3-4

½ a small Onion, small dice
16 oz can Refried Beans
10.5 oz can Enchilada Sauce, divided
8 Flour Tortillas
1½ – 2 cups shredded Cheese, (Chihuahua if possible, Colby Jack is a good sub)

Preheat the oven to 350
Spray your baking dish with nonstick cooking spray

Put the diced onions in a microwave safe bowl.
Microwave on high for 40 seconds, stirring halfway through.
Add the can of refried beans and 2 tablespoons of enchilada sauce to the bowl of onions; stir until combined.
Pour the remaining enchilada sauce into a flat bowl (or something large enough to dip your tortilla into).
Set up your stations: tortillas, enchilada sauce, bean mixture, shredded cheese.

Dip a tortilla into the enchilada sauce so it has a thin coating on both sides.
Put a couple of tablespoons of the bean mixture in the middle of the tortilla.
Sprinkle a couple of tablespoons of cheese on top of the beans.
Roll the tortilla and place in the baking dish, seam side down.
Repeat with the remaining tortillas.
Pour remaining sauce over the rolled enchiladas and top with shredded cheese.

Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly.

Serve hot as is or with optional garnishes: shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes, chopped green onions and/or sour cream.



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