Beef enchiladas are one of our favorite comfort foods. The combination of enchilada sauce, melted cheese, and a filling that gets its deep, robust flavors from the chilies and ground beef makes these enchiladas dynamite.
The best enchilada recipes go beyond simply tossing ground beef into a tortilla and calling it a day. They have interesting flavor and texture combinations.
In this piece
Easy Beef Enchiladas
To make these ground beef enchiladas standout we use a combination of diced poblano pepper and roasted green chilies. The poblano adds a little crunch to the dish while helping broaden its flavors.
Roasted green chilies are one of our favorite ingredients when we’re cooking Mexican, or Southwestern inspired dishes. The flavor in the chilies gives the dish a nice chili flavor without overpowering the other ingredients or adding too much heat.
We also like to create our own seasoning mixtures that can be fine-tuned rather than use packets of taco seasoning with who knows what in them. The mixture in this recipe is based on our classic American tacos.
The reason we combine all the seasonings and taco sauce with a little water before mixing it with the ground beef is it helps distribute the flavors and creates more body than simply adding every ingredient by itself.
This recipe will work with flour or corn tortillas. Our preference is to use 10-inch flour tortillas because we like the way they taste and how they hold together during the cooking process. We also decided to use a store-bought enchilada sauce to cut down the amount of work and overall cooking time.
A somewhat unique feature in this recipe is how we roll our enchiladas. We like to fold the edges of the tortilla inwards after they’ve been filled to help keep everything together and so we can fit 8 enchiladas into a 9 by 13-inch baking dish.
Being able to fit all the enchiladas in one dish makes prep, cooking, serving, and storage easier.
Rolling the Enchiladas
A tip when reheating enchiladas is to use the oven instead of the microwave. Reheat them in a 350℉ oven for 15 minutes, and they’ll be good as new. Use a microwave, and they’ll turn out a little gummy.
There’s a lot that can be done with these easy beef enchiladas. They can be frozen and heated up in the oven for a quick dinner. You can also substitute shredded beef or chicken for the ground beef. We’ve even explored adding a can of pinto beans to the filling to make them healthier and more sustainable.
If you’re in the mood for a different style of enchilada, try making our Shredded Chicken Enchiladas.
Serving Up Deliciousness
One of the best things about these easy beef enchiladas is they can be served straight from the baking dish with a bag of chips when you’re surrounded by hungry people, or they can be plated along with some Mexican Rice or Green Chili Mashed Potatoes for a nicer dinner.
A few of our favorite ways to top the enchiladas are with sliced avocados, diced white or green onion, along with some sour cream or homemade guacamole. If you’re going to use black olives, please use good black olives, not those mealy tasting ones that come in the can.
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 cup white onion, minced
- 1 cup poblano pepper, diced
- 4 oz roasted green chilis, diced
- 20 oz enchilada sauce
- 1/2 cup cilantro, minced & divided
- 8 10-inch tortillas, flour or corn
- 2 cups shredded Mexican cheese
- 1/3 cup taco sauce
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- Sauté the onion, poblano, and roasted green chilis in a little oil for a couple of minutes. Add in the ground beef, make sure to stir it regularly to break it into small bits as it browns.
- While the beef is browning, mix the taco sauce, water, garlic powder, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper.
- Once the ground beef has finished browning, drain any extra liquid, and turn the heat down to a low simmer.
- Add in the seasoning mixture, half the cilantro, and cook uncovered for 5 to 10 minutes or so, stirring occasionally, to incorporate all the flavors.
Making the Enchiladas
- Pour enough enchilada sauce to coat the bottom of the baking dish.
- Warm the tortillas in the microwave for 30 to 40 seconds. The tortillas should be warm enough that they’re pliable.
- Scoop a little more than a 1/3 of a cup of filling into the center of a tortilla, sprinkle on some cheese. Fold the tortilla over the top and pull it back, folding over the sides as you roll it up. Watch the video for more details.
- Place the enchilada fold side down in the pan.
- Once the pan is filled up, pour the remainder of sauce over the top, sprinkle on the rest of the cheese, followed by the rest of the cilantro.
- Bake in a 350℉ oven for 20 to 25 minutes.