Green Chile Enchiladas

Mexican and Tex MexGluten-FreeVegetarianEnchiladas

Green chile enchiladas made with corn tortillas, roasted Anaheim green chiles, jack cheese, and a roasted tomatillo salsa verde sauce.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

If you were to ask me what my favorite food was in the whole world, I would most likely respond, enchiladas!

Not the exotic, wonderfully complex authentic enchiladas from Mexico, but the cheesy casserole American version my mom made for us growing up.

Just smelling the tortillas being lightly fried (to soften them so they roll up easily), and my tummy will leap for joy knowing that enchiladas will be ready shortly.

This is the scent of my childhood, my mom in the kitchen, the family around the table.

We always make enough for leftovers because as my father will happily tell you, there is nothing better than my mom’s enchiladas, re-heated for breakfast.

Homemade Tomatillo Sauce

My tomatillo plants are still producing, as is the Anaheim green chile plant, so I decided to do a green chile salsa verde version of my mom’s enchiladas.

Note that this recipe can be much easier to prepare than what I’ve shown here. If this weren’t tomatillo season, and if I had only half an hour to prepare a meal for the family, I would use prepared tomatillo salsa, instead of roasting my own, and use prepared canned chiles too if I didn’t have fresh chiles or time to roast them.

Then it’s just a matter of frying the tortillas in a little oil, rolling them up with cheese and chiles, assembling them in a casserole, covering with sauce and cooking until the cheese melts.

(Speaking of which, I used half a pound of Jack cheese, which is on the light side. My mother would typically use a pound.)

Green Chile Enchiladas Recipe

  • Yield: Serves 4-6

You can easily substitute prepared canned tomatillo salsa verde for the tomatillo sauce (you'll need 3 cups), and canned whole Anaheim green chiles for the chiles (remove the seeds and stems if still in the chiles).


  • 1 1/2 pounds tomatillos
  • 3 cloves garlic, still in their peels
  • 2 jalapenos
  • Salt
  • 3-4 large Anaheim chiles
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • Canola or extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 pound to a pound Monterey Jack cheese, grated (quantity depends on how cheesy you want the enchiladas to be)
  • Sour cream
  • Cilantro


1 Prepare the tomatillo sauce: Remove the husks from the tomatillos. Rinse off the tomatillos.

Cut the tomatillos in half and place them cut-side down on a roasting pan lined with aluminum foil. Place the garlic and jalapeños on the pan with the tomatillos.

tomatillos cut in half on sheet cooked tomatillos on cooking pan

Broil on the top rack on the oven for 5-7 minutes until the tomatillos are lightly charred. Remove from the oven and let cool to touch. Remove garlic from the garlic skins, discard the skins.

Cut open the jalapeños and remove and discard the seeds and the stems.

Place tomatillos, cooked garlic, the jalapeños, and 1 teaspoon of salt in a blender, pulse until well puréed. Set aside. (You can make several days in advance and store in the refrigerator.)

2 Roast the Anaheim chiles: If you have a stove-top gas burner, you can roast the chiles directly over the flame of the burner (see How to roast chile peppers over a gas flame), otherwise use a broiler and broil the chiles in a roasting pan, turning them until they are blackened all over.

Place the blackened chiles in a bowl and cover with a plate. Let the chiles steam in their own heat for 5 minutes. Then remove the chiles from the bowl and peel off and discard the blackened skin.

Slice open the chiles and remove and discard the seed pod, any seeds (they're hot!) and the stems. Slice the chiles into strips.

3 Cook the tortillas: Heat a couple tablespoons of oil in a frying pan (cast iron works well) on medium high heat.

Once the oil is hot, add a corn tortilla to the pan. The tortilla should sizzle as it hits the pan. Turn it over and let it cook until little pockets of air start to bubble up in the tortilla.

tortilla being fried in oil in skillet tortilla on spatula

Then use a metal spatula to remove the tortilla from the pan, shaking off any excess oil, to a plate lined with paper towels.

Continue to the tortillas this way, adding more oil as needed, separating the tortillas that are cooling with paper towels.

4 Assemble the enchiladas: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spread a little of the tomatillo sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 casserole pan.

One by one, place a little grated cheese and a strip or two of green chiles in the center of the tortillas, roll them up, and place them seam side down in the casserole.

cheese and green chile pepper inside tortilla rolled up green chili enchiladaglass dish full of uncooked green chili enchiladas green chili enchiladas with homemade tomatillo sauce and cheese in baking dish

Once you have filled the casserole with the rolled tortillas, spread the remaining tomatillo sauce over them, and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.

5 Bake: Bake for 15 minutes at 350°F, until the cheese is melted.

Serve with sour cream (thinned with some water) drizzled over, and some chopped fresh cilantro. Also good with it is thinly sliced iceberg lettuce that has been sprinkled with cider or white vinegar and salt. Makes for excellent leftovers, will keep in the refrigerator for days.

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green chili enchiladas on plate garnished with sour cream and cilantro

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Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

More from Elise

40 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!


    I know this IS an old post, but hopefully you can reply.
    1. Can this be made a few hours ahead of time then refrigerated, then cooked? I’m thinking that the tortillas are going to be mushy. Would you increase the cooking time?
    2. I have roasted, peeled hatch chiles in the freezer. I want to add chicken to the enchiladas. Since the hatch Chile’s are HOT, would it be better to dice them and add them to the chicken instead of using an entire slice in the wrapped tortilla?

    Thanks much, Elise. Ive been looking for a good green chile enchilada recipe and this one looks like a winner!

    Show Replies (1)
  2. Lisa

    You guys have so many great enchilada recipes and I love them all! My daughter is a vegetarian so I often make these for a mid-week dinner. Terrific flavors. Thank you!


  3. Diana

    My husband lived in Mexico for 2 years so he’s developed quite a snobby Mexican food taste. This is his most favorite recipe that I make. Every time I make these (which according to him isn’t often enough) he declares it belongs on a restaurant menu. We double the sauce and put half in the freezer so it’s not as much work. But totally always worth the work.


    Show Replies (1)
  4. Bracamontes G.

    Esta receta esta encantadora, deliciosa y muy facil de preparar.
    Gracias Simply recipes.
    Gabriel Bracamontes de Guadalajara Mexico.

    De nada, Gabriel! ~Elise

  5. Susan Sentman

    Why did my corn tortillas get soggy? The dish was good, but those soggy tortillas definitely brought it down a few notches.

    It could be the brand of tortilla. ~Elise

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green chili enchiladas on blue plate with sour cream and cilantroGreen Chile Enchiladas