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The Best Homemade Chicken Enchiladas

Homemade Chicken Enchiladas with my Easy Enchilada Sauce are totally my jam.

chicken enchiladas with salad on plate

There are sauce people and there are non-sauce people. I am definitely a sauce person. Most of the time, I would happily leave out the “main” ingredient and just eat the sauce—ladled over rice or sopped up with hunks of crusty bread.

Ever since I can remember, I’ve based my meal choices on the sauce rather than on what was being sauced.

At a Thai restaurant, I’ll always choose a dish that comes with peanut sauce, curry sauce, sweet chile sauce.

chicken and black bean filling in red chile sauce in a bowl
A black bean and chicken mixture, drenched in red chile sauce, for homemade enchiladas

There’s a Peruvian restaurant in my neighborhood that I love, not for any particular dish or even a selection of dishes, but for the spicy-tangy cilantro dipping sauce they bring with whatever you order.

rolling up chicken and black bean enchiladas

In Mexican restaurants, I gravitate toward anything covered in any kind of mole or red chile sauce.

I’ve shared my homemade enchilada sauce recipe on the blog before, pairing it with tamales for the winter holidays. This delicious sauce, though, shows up on my table much more frequently on my homemade chicken enchiladas.

filled and rolled enchiladas ready for saucing

Why Chicken Enchiladas?

I adore red chile sauce. It is a versatile sauce that is delicious on a lot of things. One of my favorite things to put it on is enchiladas.

I’m sharing my recipe for black bean and chicken enchiladas here because it is my family’s favorite incarnation.

And also, to be honest, because I love that I can cook a whole chicken in my air fryer. It makes the most tender, succulent shredded chicken filling for my enchiladas.

Homemade chicken enchiladas with easy enchilada sauce and cheese

That said, I love enchiladas filled with all sorts of other things, too. A favorite vegetarian version is butternut squash with black beans, mushrooms, and spinach.

Shredded beef is also a great match with this rich, spicy sauce.

homemade chicken enchiladas with easy enchilada sauce
Yield: Serves 5

Chicken Enchiladas with Black Beans and Easy Enchilada Sauce

homemade chicken enchiladas with easy enchilada sauce

These easy chicken enchiladas are a super simple and very satisfying meal, especially if you already have some Easy Enchilada Sauce in the fridge or freezer. I heat the tortillas in the microwave rather than frying them one at a time in oil. It's much easier that way, and you easily cut a bunch of calories from the dish. If you're really pressed for time, you can skip heating the tortillas and just layer the tortillas and filling lasagna-style for an enchilada casserole.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes


  • 1 ½ pounds shredded cooked chicken (I used Air Fryer Whole Chicken, but you could use a rotisserie chicken or any leftover cooked chicken)
  • 2 cups (about ½ batch) Easy Enchilada Sauce, divided
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 10 corn tortillas
  • 2 cups shredded sharp white cheddar cheese
  • Sliced scallions or chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish (optional)


  1. Preheat the oven to 375ºF. 
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together the chicken, beans, and several large spoonfuls of sauce.
  3. Spoon ½ cup or so of the sauce into the bottom of a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.
  4. Wrap the tortillas in a slightly damp, clean dishtowel and heat them in the microwave for about 30 seconds.
  5. Lay one of the warmed tortillas on the sauce in the baking dish, and then flip it over to sauce up the other side. Put some of the chicken-and-bean mixture in a line down the center and then roll the tortilla up around the filling. Place the filled and rolled enchilada in the baking dish, seam-side down. Repeat with the remaining tortillas and filling, using more sauce to coat the tortillas as needed.
  6. Spoon the remaining sauce over the enchiladas in the baking dish and sprinkle the cheese over the top.
  7. Bake, uncovered, for 25 minutes, until the sauce is bubbling, the enchiladas are heated through, and the cheese is fully melted.
  8. Remove from oven and let stand for a few minutes before serving. Serve hot, garnished with scallions or cilantro, if using.


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Homemade Chicken Enchiladas with Easy Enchilada Sauce are simple to make and so delicious!
By on February 1st, 2019

About Robin Donovan

Hi, I’m Robin! I am a full-time food blogger, recipe developer, and cookbook author. I spend my days cooking, writing about, and photographing food.

I’m the author of more than 40 cookbooks, including Ramen for Beginners, 5 Ingredient Cooking for Two, Sushi at Home, The Baking Cookbook for Teens, and the bestselling Campfire Cuisine.

My food writing has also been featured in major print and online pubications including Cooking Light, Fitness, San Jose Mercury News, San Francisco Chronicle, and other popular publications.

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