Happy 2018 to one and all. I’m looking forward to posting more great recipes in the coming year although not sure I will be able to top this one. I have been making these heavenly (ultimate!) chicken enchiladas for quite some time now and have passed on the recipe to others with rave reviews all around. For some reason though, it never made its way to my blog so I am here to right that wrong!
The secret to this dish is the sweet and tangy chicken filling which is marinated in a simple lime and honey marinade. What’s interesting and a bit different is that the chicken is cooked BEFORE it is marinated so it’s extra juicy and flavorful. It’s also reduces marinating time, anywhere from half an hour to about 4 hours max.
Also honey…um yep, I’ve got that in spades! Pictured above is a golden batch of our very own Fall 2016 honey. Love finding new and different ways to use the honey from our bees 🙂
Regarding the chicken, this is a great way to use leftover chicken or rotisserie chicken. This time, I took advantage of organic chicken breasts on sale at Whole Foods and just poached a big batch (see The Kitchn blog for easy to follow directions on poaching chicken), using some for the enchiladas and some for weekday salads.
After marinating the chicken, it’s just a matter of combining some green enchilada sauce with a little cream and leftover marinade, wrapping the chicken in tortillas along with cheese, a quick assemble and then more cheese and popping into the oven for half an hour.
No doubt about it, these are rich, but oh so good. A perfect make-ahead dish for a crowd or make on Sunday and reheat for family dinners for the week. I like to serve mine with a side of Vigo Yellow Saffron Rice, a simple mixed green salad and plenty of cilantro and lime wedges. Oh yes, and a margarita! Kid/Teen/Young Adult/Family tested and approved!
Until next time be well, eat well and love lots!
Ultimate Chicken Enchiladas with Honey and Lime
- 5 TBS freshly squeezed lime juice
- 6 TBS honey
- 1 TBS chili powder (I love Penzey’s Chili 9000)
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- Pinch cayenne pepper
- 2 pounds cooked and shredded chicken
- 1 package of 8 “burrito” sized flour tortillas, or smaller tortillas if preferred
- 16 oz. freshly shredded co-jack cheese (or Sargento Reduced Fat 4-Cheese Mexican Cheese)
- 16-oz can green enchilada sauce (I use mild for my family but you can certainly up the heat a bit and use medium)
- 1 cup half & half, sour cream or Mexican Crema
- Sour cream (or Mexican crema), fresh chopped cilantro and lime wedges to serve (all optional)
Whisk together lime juice, honey, chili powder, garlic powder and cayenne pepper. Add cooked chicken and coat well. Marinate, refrigerated, for at least half an hour or up to 8 hours.
Preheat oven to 350°. Drain chicken and reserve marinade. Lightly grease a 9″x13″ baking pan and pour about 1/2 cup of the green enchilada sauce in the bottom of the pan.
Place tortillas on work surface. Divide chicken evenly among tortillas. Reserve a generous cup of the shredded cheese and divide the remainder among the tortillas. Roll each tortilla up and place, seam-side down, in the pan.
Combine the reserved marinade, remaining enchilada sauce and cream in a bowl and pour sauce over enchiladas. Sprinkle with reserved cheese. Bake for about 30 minutes or until enchiladas are heated through and cheese has melted. Let rest for about 5 minutes then serve with lime wedges, sour cream and freshly chopped cilantro.
Serves – 8