Fully Loaded Cheese Enchilada

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Servings : Prep Time : Cook Time : Ready In : This recipe for a fully loaded cheese enchilada is fully loaded, with flavor. Cheese, onion, peppers, and black olives combine in a rolled tortilla that is then covered in a rich red sauce. Quick and easy.

a finished casserole of fully loaded cheese enchilada

Fully Loaded Cheese Enchilada or partially fully loaded. The answer is up to you. This is not your ordinary cheese enchilada recipe, it’s an easy fully loaded cheese enchilada recipe.

Fully Loaded Cheese Enchilada

Ingredients

  • 8 (6-inch) corn tortillas
  • Cooking spray or neutral oil
  • 5 cups grated cheese (I use a 50/50 combo of medium sharp cheddar and jack cheese ) 3/4 cup reserved
  • 1/2 cup finely diced onion
  • 1 - 2 roasted poblano chilies, skin removed, seeded and diced
  • 1 (small 2.25 ounce) can sliced black olives, coarsely chopped
  • 1 recipe Gail's Enchilada Sauce or Gravy or your favorite store brand (I like to use a combo of the two, half a recipe of Gail's Sauce and 1 can Las Palmas Medium-Hot Enchilada sauce)

Method

Step 1

Heat the oven to 350°F.

Spray or brush both sides of the corn tortillas, place on a cookie sheet and place in the oven for 2 - 3 minutes or until soft and pliable. Stack on a plate and set aside.

Step 2

Place about 3/4 cup of the sauce onto the bottom of a 12 x 9 inch baking dish. Working one at a time, place 1/8th of the remaining cheese down the center of each tortilla, top with diced onion, poblano chilie, and chopped black olive. Roll and place seam side down into the baking dish. Once all the enchiladas have been prepared, spoon the remaining sauce over, covering all the tortilla, and top with the reserved cheese. Place in the oven and cook, for about 30 minutes, or until hot and bubbly with the cheese fully melted. Allow to stand for about 5 minutes, then serve.


 

 {The making of Fully Loaded Cheese Enchilada}

 

saucing a fully loaded cheese enchilada

 

Man (or woman) does not live by bread alone. Or by low-fat food. Or, in my opinion, by any one diet or food. Food is a celebration and should be celebrated.

I live by the 80/20 rule. My diet is 80% good for your body food, and 20% good for your soul food. These days I’m feeling more 50/50, but I still try to maintain a healthy lifestyle and diet.

Fully Loaded Cheese Enchiladas are not bad for your body, and they are great for your soul.

Soul food. Comfort food. Oozy richness in my mouth food. Melty cheesey good food.

One of my favorite, Friday night Mexican night foods.

Since these are “cheese” enchiladas, let’s start with the cheese.

The Cheesy Part

You can make these enchiladas with all cheddar, all jack, or a combination of the two. I choose a combo for texture and taste.

These can be made with mild, medium sharp, or extra sharp cheddar cheese. I find mild too American cheese like in flavor, extra sharp too sharp, so I go with Goldilocks and use medium sharp.

Just right.

I find that pre-packaged Mexican blend cheeses don’t have the same melt-ability as a block of cheese so this is one time where grating your own on a box grater really helps out with the finished dish.

You could also add a bit of Cotia cheese for added flavor.

Or Pepper Jack for extra heat.

Using the cheese at room temperature is also better than right out of the refrigerator cold, so feel free to grate the cheese and let it sit out for a while, a half an hour is great which gives you time to dice the onion, roast the poblano, and chop the olives.

 

roasting chilies for fully loaded cheese enchilada

 

My Simple Method for Roasting Peppers

My method for roasting all types of peppers is simple. Place your oven rack on the upper shelf in your oven, closest to the broiler, turn the broiler on high, place a large piece of aluminum foil on it, and then place your peppers on the foil. As they char, turn with tongs so all sides become charred, then remove them to a large bowl and cover that with the piece of aluminum foil you used to cook them on. Allow them to sit and steam (and cool) for about 15 minutes, then remove the skins with your fingers, gently pull the stem from the top (most of the seeds will come out with the stem), then open and remove any remaining seeds. Dice at will.

For this recipe, I prefer the flavor of poblano chilies. They offer a deep smokiness. But you could also use California (or Anaheim) chilies or even Hatch chilies. In a pinch, feel free to use an already prepared canned chili, I prefer Ortega® brand and always buy the whole chilies so I can dice them myself, into my own preferred size of a dice.

Softening the Tortillas

Most enchilada recipes tell you to dip the tortillas into the enchilada sauce to soften them up. And yes, this does work. It also will make your tortilla soggy, to begin with, then when you pour more sauce on top and cook it, most of the time what you will have in the end is a mushy cheese filled tortilla.

My method is simple. Coat the tortillas with cooking spray or brush lightly with neutral oil. Place on a cookie sheet, overlapping slightly is fine, and place in a 325º F oven for about 3 minutes. The tortillas are now soft and pliable and lightly coated with oil to keep them from getting soggy. I allow them to sit for about 2 – 3 minutes so they don’t burn my fingers when I fill and roll them, but if you have asbestos fingers, go ahead with the recipe right away.

I always use corn tortillas, unless I’m making a burrito. BUT, I know some of you might not like corn tortillas, and/or can’t easily find them. In that case use flour, but don’t precook them. The final result will be more like a Taco Bell Enchirito, than my enchilada, but it will still be delish.

 

filling a fully loaded cheese enchilada

 

The Saucy Sauce

What makes a great enchilada? Well, the inside, of course, and the sauce. You can’t put a bad sauce over a good enchilada and expect it to be excellent. Right?

One of my favorite parts of cooking is being able to experiment with flavors until I find one that I love. It’s taken me a while with enchilada sauces. I was raised on canned sauces, such as Las Palmas or Old El Paso. Both sauces are good, made with more chilies than tomato sauce (tomato sauce is not enchilada sauce).

BB was raised on his mother’s southwestern style enchilada sauce, which is really more of a chili gravy. Again, no tomato in the sauce.  Just chili powder, spices, and beef broth.

Also a very good sauce.

What I found to be the BEST sauce though, is mixing the two together. There are certain flavors in the canned sauces that I have been unable to replicate on my own, and Gail’s Enchilada sauce turns out, for me, to be just a little too much on the brown chili gravy side of the spectrum, so mixing the two together gives me my ying and yang of enchilada sauces. Perfect for these fully loaded cheese enchiladas.

 

Putting it Together

Once you have all the components ready, these fully loaded cheese enchiladas are a cinch to put together. Simply put a bit of everything down the middle, take on edge and put it over the filled middle, pull it back slightly to get everything more or less on one side, then tightly roll it up. Place it seam side down into your prepared pan.

 

prepping the pan for fully loaded cheese enchIlada

 

Continue until you are done with all…

 

fully loaded cheese enchilada in a casserole dish ready to cook

 

Place in the oven for about 30 minutes and

 

a finished casserole of fully loaded cheese enchilada

 

Yummy fully loaded cheese enchiladas!

 

a plate of loaded cheese enchilada

 

Serve with some refried beans, authentic Mexican rice, and Simple Guacamole with chips.

 


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Recipe Comments

  1. posted by BB on December 8, 2017

    they are the best.
    The red sauce is similar to SoCal mexican food; authentic

      Reply

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