This Creamy Salsa Verde Green Chicken Enchiladas recipe is hands down the best enchilada recipe you will ever have! It is cheesy, with a hint of spice, topped with an incredible creamy avocado salsa verde sauce!
In New Mexico, you're not really living until you have enjoyed their famous Hatch green chiles! So of course we had to make a green chile dish for our New Mexico state dinner!
We whipped up some Creamy Salsa Verde Green Chicken Enchiladas and they are over-the-top good!
Now I know it's kind of an odd name, but there's no need to worry! Green chicken enchiladas are not made with green chicken!
The term "green" comes from the chiles! Both Anaheim and New Mexican green chiles work for this recipe (though folks from New Mexico would argue there is no substitution for fresh Hatch green chiles). These are rich in flavor, with a moderate amount of spice, and they taste so good with tomatillos and cheese!
Ingredients & Substitutions
Chicken - You can use poached, rotisserie, or even leftover chicken for this recipe! You just need a total of 4 cups of shredded chicken, which is about 2 pounds. Shredded turkey or pork could also be used.
Salsa Verde - Made with tomatillos, salsa verde is also called "tomatillo sauce." I love the Herdez brand!
Green Chiles - Canned green chiles are available year-round, which is why this recipe calls for canned chiles. If you are fortunate enough to get your hands on some fresh Hatch green chiles then roast 8 chiles at 450° for about 25 minutes, then dice them.
Tortillas - Corn tortillas are traditionally used in enchiladas, but my family prefers this recipe with flour tortillas. Either will work! If you are using corn tortillas that are smaller than 8 inches then you will get more than 8 enchiladas from this recipe.
Cheese - For the creamiest cheese, shred the cheese fresh. Pre-shredded cheese has a drying agent in it to keep the cheese from clumping together, and that makes it more challenging to melt.
Sour cream - You can also use Greek yogurt, following a 1:1 exchange.
Step One: Make Filling
It is so fast to make this filling, especially if you are using leftover chicken!
Simply saute some onions and garlic on the stove, then mix in the remaining filling ingredients.
Step Two: Fill and Roll Tortillas
Once they are mixed together the filling is ready to be rolled inside the tortillas!
Lay a tortilla flat and fill with about ½ cup of chicken filling.
Roll the tortilla, then lay it seam-side down in a baking dish. Don't feel like rolling the tortillas? No problem! Create an enchilada stack following the directions in this sour cream enchilada casserole recipe.
Tip: If you have trouble rolling the tortillas, warm them up first! This is especially important if you are using corn tortillas, as the corn tortillas will split if not warm.
Step Three: Make Creamy Avocado Salsa Verde Sauce
This sauce really is what makes the dish so delicious!
It is just a little bit spicy, with a touch of tang, and perfectly creamy! I could eat it by the spoonful!
It's a simple sauce too! Just mashed avocado, salsa verde, sour cream, cilantro, and a touch of lime juice mixed together.
As good as it is on its own, it is even better heated and smothered over the enchiladas.
Scaling the Recipe
This is an easy recipe to scale up or down, whether you are cooking for yourself or for a crowd!
Half of the recipe will give you 4 enchiladas. Bake it in an 8x8 pan for 25 minutes, then top it with cheese and continue cooking until the cheese is bubbly and the enchiladas are heated through.
What Should I Serve With Green Enchiladas?
Looking for a little extra crunch? Double the creamy salsa verde sauce and serve half of it as a dip with tortilla chips! (This sauce is also delicious on breakfast tacos!)
And these New Mexican Sopapillas are the perfect pairing to enjoy alongside your meal, or drizzled in honey for dessert!
Frequently Asked Questions
The filling and the sauce can both be made up to 3 days in advance. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
These enchiladas freeze great! You may even want to double the recipe to serve one and freeze one! Place the filled tortillas in a freezer-safe baking dish and wrap with plastic wrap and then foil, to avoid freezer burn. Place the sauce in a freezer bag or separate storage container so that the tortillas do not get mushy. When ready to use, thaw both containers in the refrigerator overnight, and then top the tortillas with the sauce before baking.
Sure! Replace the 4 cups of chicken with your favorite vegetable medley. Zucchini, eggplant, mushrooms, and corn are a delightful combination. Saute the vegetables until they are just tender, but still have a bite to them, then add to the remaining ingredients.
To add some additional nutrients to the dish, turn this into Spinach Green Chicken Enchiladas by adding 6 cups of fresh, uncooked baby spinach to the chicken mixture.
Other Recipes To Try
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Creamy Salsa Verde Green Chicken EnchiladasRecipe by:
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 3 garlic cloves
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 2 cans (4 ounces each) diced green chiles
- ⅓ cup salsa verde
- ½ cup sour cream
- ⅓ cup chopped cilantro
- 3 cups Monterey Jack cheese, divided
- 4 cups (about 2 pounds) shredded cooked chicken
- 8 8-inch flour tortillas
Creamy Avocado Salsa Verde Sauce
- 1 avocado
- 1 cup salsa verde
- ½ cup sour cream
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- 1 teaspoon lime juice
- Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Lightly spray a 9x13 baking dish with nonstick spray and set it aside.
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and cook until translucent, 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Stir in the spices and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Remove from heat and add in the lime juice, green chile, ⅓ cup salsa verde, ½ cup sour cream, cilantro, 1 ½ cup of cheese, and the chicken. Stir until combined.
- Mash the avocado and place it in a small bowl. Add the remaining salsa verde, sour cream, cilantro, and lime juice into the bowl and stir well.
- To assemble the enchiladas, lay a tortilla on a flat surface and fill it with a heaping ½ cup of the chicken mixture. Roll the tortilla and lay seam-side down in the baking dish. Repeat with remaining tortillas.
- Top the rolled tortillas with the creamy avocado-salsa verde sauce.
- Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and sprinkle the remaining 1 ½ cups of cheese over the top. Place the pan back into the oven uncovered, and cook for 5-10 minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbly.