A simple and delicious new twist on the classic enchilada. Instead of being rolled up like traditional enchiladas, New Mexico-Style Enchiladas are layered with enchilada sauce and melted cheese between each layer. A professional cook, Ivy Odom of the Test Kitchen, describes it as “the New Mexican version of lasagna.” It’s as if the over-easy egg and flavorful toppings like cilantro, lettuce, tomato, and onion weren’t enough to make these cheesy enchiladas irresistible. Since each stack is prepared separately, you can easily add any toppings you choose.
Accompany this substantial entrée with fresh salsa and chips for a party. Try making these delicious enchiladas for a unique take on traditional Mexican fare. You need one taste to decide that this dish belongs in your regular rotation of weekday meals.
How would you define “stacked enchiladas”?
Chihuahua, a state in northern Mexico, is known for its stacked enchiladas. Corn tortillas are doused in salsa and topped with ingredients like shredded chicken, ground beef, and veggies to create a deconstructed enchilada.
- 2 (8-oz.) pkgs. red Chile enchilada sauce, such as Frontera
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 8 (6-inch) corn tortillas
- 2 cups shredded Mexican blend cheese
- 4 large eggs
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro, from 1 bunch
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh tomatoes, from 1 medium
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh sweet onion, from 1 small
- 1 cup thinly sliced romaine heart, from 1 heart
- Turn oven temperature to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Enchilada sauce should be heated in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirred periodically, for approximately 5 minutes. Put the heat on low and let the food simmer to keep it warm.
- Meanwhile, over medium-high heat, oil a medium cast-iron or nonstick pan. Warm tortillas for 30 seconds on each side or until they are just beginning to change color but are still limp and flexible. Place on a platter lined with paper towels to absorb any remaining oil. Transfer all the oil from the pan except two tablespoons to a heat-safe bowl. Put two teaspoons of oil in a cold pan and set aside.
- Coat both sides of a heated tortilla with enchilada sauce and set aside. Set the tortilla on a baking sheet or oven-safe plate. Place approximately two teaspoons of spice on the tortilla, then sprinkle on about three tablespoons of cheese. Warm some enchilada sauce and dip another tortilla in it, so it’s gently coated on both sides. After placing one tortilla on a dish or baking sheet, place another tortilla on top. Pour another two tablespoons of sauce over the tortilla and top with another three tablespoons of cheese. Four enchilada stacks should result from using all of the tortillas, dressing, and cheese. Heat in an oven to 350 degrees for 7 to 9 minutes or until the cheese has melted.
- While the enchiladas are in the oven, warm the two tablespoons of oil you set aside in a pan over medium heat. To the hot oil in the pan, crack two eggs and sprinkle with a quarter of the remaining salt. It takes roughly 2 to 3 minutes to get eggs over quickly. Once done, remove to a platter and put away. To finish the eggs and salt, repeat the process.
- Take enchiladas out of the oven once the cheese has melted. Set an egg on each stack and equally distribute the cilantro, tomato, onion, and lettuce on top.
The convenience of stacked enchiladas begs the question: why?
Stacks of enchiladas are a must-try if you ever find yourself in New Mexico. Traditional baked enchiladas need careful attention to detail while rolling and filling. These stacked enchiladas are a more straightforward, no-fuss alternative to the traditional Mexican dish.
By soaking up the sauce and the liquids from the ground beef and fresh tomatoes, the corn tortillas remain crunchy in some places and soft and chewy in others.