Easy Enchiladas – Dairy and Dairy Free Alternatives

Dairy Free Enchiladas

I haven’t eaten enchiladas in over three years, let alone MADE one so this was a risky choice for dinner!  Since cheese is the staple to this Mexican dish, it was interesting to try and play around with ingredients to make it a delicious dairy free option.  Although I’m sure the cheesy version was way more delicious (based on looks alone), I was completely satisfied with my version and without the cheese I was pleasantly surprised.  But, for you cheese lovers, you can also make yours look like this:
Chicken Enchiladas

The trick with these is the mashed black beans.  They give you the creaminess you’re missing from the lack of cheese, and it’s a nice surprise when you dig into the tortilla.

Of course, you can always ADD cheese to these which is what makes them so durable.  In addition to cheese you can add sour cream, lettuce, tomato, etc.. really anything your little enchilada heart desires!

RECIPE:

8 Enchiladas

For Smashed Black Beans:

1/4 cup minced yellow onion

2 teaspoons vegetable oil

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon salt

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 can (approximately 2 cups) black beans

1 cup chicken stock

1/2 cup water

1 tablespoon white vinegar

For The Enchiladas:

(8) whole Wheat Tortillas – Flour works too, but I was trying to make a healthier version

1.5 pound boneless chicken breasts

2 – 1/2 cans enchilada sauce divided

1 can (4 oz.) diced green chiles

1/2 chicken bouillon seasoning packet

1/8 teaspoon cumin

1 cup Mexican Cheese Blend (optional)

Cooking Spray

Toppings:

Sour Cream, Lettuce, Tomato, Scallions, Green Chiles, Jalepenos, etc…

Directions:

To make the smashed black beans:

1. Cook the onions in the vegetable oil in a large saucepan over medium heat until soft, about 5 minutes.

2. Add the cumin, oregano, salt and garlic, and cook another 2 to 3 minutes.

3. Next, add the beans, stock and 1 cup water and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to low and simmer 15 minutes.

4. When finished, remove the beans from the heat and strain, reserving the liquid. Mash the beans with a potato masher in a small bowl (or back into the pan), adding the vinegar and cooking liquid to keep the beans soft. I used about 1/2 cup liquid to keep it a thick paste, but feel free to add more if you want!

To make the enchilada meat:

1. Season chicken with cumin.

2. Add to crock pot and top with the 2 cups enchilada sauce, chiles, and bouillon packet and cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 6 hours.

3. When finished, turn crock pot off and remove chicken from crock pot and shred with fork.

4. Reserve 1 2/3 cup cooking juices into a cup or bowl and set aside.

5. Add the shredded chicken back to the crock pot (to save dishes) with the sauce and mix

To assemble chicken enchiladas:

**Preheat oven to 350**

1. Spray (2) 9 X 10 Baking Dishes with cooking spray.

2. Coat the bottom with the 1 2/3 cup reserved juices.

3. Take (1) Tortilla and fill the center with the smashed beans.

4. Top with the chicken mixture (about 1/3 cup).

5. You can sprinkle cheese (about 1/8 cup) at this point if you would like cheese on the inside.

6. Roll up and put into the baking dish.

7. Repeat steps 3-6.

8. When finished assembling, top with the 1/2 cup leftover enchilada sauce (and cheese if desired)

9. Cover and cook for 20 minutes then uncover and cook for an additional 5 minutes or until the cheese melts (if using)

10. Top with your favorite toppings…I did green chiles and scallions.

Serving Suggestions:

I served these with rice (you could also fill your enchiladas with rice) and a glass of dry white wine!

ImageThe Chef in the Works

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