I had a mad craving for these Enchiladas Suizas the other day…but sadly, my fridge was lacking the main ingredient for the green sauce: tomatillos. What was a girl to do? Luckily, I had plenty of tomatoes. So, I decided to make an Enchiladas Suizas Rojas version instead! A creamy, spicy, tomato-based sauce, smothers tortillas filled with shredded chicken. These enchiladas are then topped with cheese and broiled until bubbly and golden.
What are Enchiladas Suizas?
Enchiladas…a filled tortilla, topped with a spicy red or green sauce. What makes Enchiladas Suizas different from other enchiladas is the cream added to the sauce.
The original Enchiladas Suizas were made with a tomatillo and cream-based sauce, popularized by the famous Sanborn restaurant chain in Mexico. The restaurant menu also boasts an Enchiladas Suizas Rojas version. This version uses tomatoes instead of tomatillos in the sauce, but both versions use cream…making them “Suiza style.”
How to make Enchiladas Suizas Rojas
If you like the original green Enchiladas Suizas, then you should definitely try this red version. It is perfect for those times when tomatillos are scarce or when you just feel like using tomatoes instead. I love the combination of the spicy habanero peppers and the creamy sauce, not to mention the bubbly, golden cheese on top, yum!
Start with the salsa
The salsa is the element that takes the longest to come together in this dish, so I like to start with boiling the salsa ingredients. Add the tomatoes, onions, garlic, and peppers to a pot and cover with water. Heat to a boil and continue to simmer until the tomatoes become fork-tender and the skins begin to crack, about 20 minutes. You can adjust the number of chile peppers to your liking or substitute for another pepper altogether if desired.
Discard the cooking water and add the vegetables to a blender. Wait for the vegetables to cool and then add the chicken broth, salt, and cream. Blend until smooth.
Fill the tortillas
Next, you will need to lightly fry each corn tortilla to make them soft and pliable, perfect for filling and rolling! Heat the vegetable oil in the skillet until shimmering. Then place each tortilla in the hot oil for just a couple of seconds on each side. Take care to not let the tortillas become crispy! Put each fried tortilla onto a paper towel-lined plate so the excess oil drains off. Once the tortillas are cool enough to handle, fill them with about 1/4 cup of chicken each. I love to use leftover rotisserie chicken for these enchiladas. It makes putting these enchiladas together fast and easy. Line up your rolled and filled tortillas in a glass baking dish and get ready to put everything together.
Putting it all together
Use the leftover oil from frying the tortillas to gently fry the salsa for about 5 minutes. Then smother your filled tortillas with the sauce, cover with cheese and broil on high until the cheese is bubbly and golden. Keep an eye on your enchiladas to keep them from burning! I have found that 5-7 minutes is the perfect broil time for my oven. But, every oven is a bit different.
Once these are out of the oven, divide the enchiladas evenly between 4 plates. I like to top these with an extra drizzle of Mexican cream, a bit of shredded cheese, and finely sliced onions. Enjoy these with Mexican White Rice and traditional black beans for a complete Mexican meal!
Enchiladas Suizas Rojas
- 4-5 Roma tomatoes ~1 pound or ~500g
- 1/2 medium white onion quartered
- 1-2 habanero peppers
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- salt to taste
- 1/4 cup Mexican cream substitute sour cream if Mexican cream is unavailable
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil I use safflower
- 8 white corn tortillas ~6 inches in diameter
- 2 cups shredded chicken
- 1 cup shredded manchego or gouda cheese or 3 large slices
- In a large stock pot over medium-high heat, place tomatoes, onion, garlic, peppers. Cover with water. Simmer covered until tomatoes are softened and the skins crack, about 15-20 minutes4-5 Roma tomatoes, 1/2 medium white onion, 1-2 habanero peppers, 2 cloves garlic
- Remove ingredients from pot, place in a blender, add chicken broth, salt to taste and allow to cool slightly. Add sour cream and blend until smooth.1/2 cup chicken broth, salt to taste, 1/4 cup Mexican cream
- In a large non-stick skillet, heat vegetable oil over medium-high heat, about 2-3 minutes, until shimmering.1/2 cup vegetable oil
- Gently fry each tortilla for about 5-7 seconds per side, or until soft and pliable. Remove them to a paper towel lined plate and repeat the process for the remaining tortillas.8 white corn tortillas
- Evenly divide chicken between tortillas and gently roll into logs or fold over into tacos. Place the tortillas in a 9 x 13 inch glass baking dish.2 cups shredded chicken
- Using the remaining oil in the skillet, heat to medium and gently fry the tomato sauce, about 5 minutes
- Preheat oven to a high broil
- Cover tortillas with sauce and sprinkle shredded cheese over top1 cup shredded manchego or gouda cheese
- Once oven is pre-heated, broil enchiladas for 5-7 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and starting to turn golden
- Divide enchiladas evenly between serving dishes, top with additional toppings and serve immediately
Additional toppings could include Mexican or sour cream, diced onions, shredded cheese, and/or sliced avocados.