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New Mexico Hatch Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas

These New Mexico Hatch Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas are Indulgent, but not too heavy. Stuffed with chicken, roasted hatch chile peppers, and onions topped with a roasted tomatillo green chile sauce, and cheese they will transport you to New Mexico, especially if you take the time to grill the ingredients first.
Servings: 3 people
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
two cooked enchiladas on a plate topped with avocado slices

Living in San Antonio means we’re surrounded by hundreds of restaurants specializing in regional variations on the enchilada. This recipe for New Mexico Hatch Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas takes its inspiration from our western neighbor New Mexico, home of the Hatch green chile. Having spent a number of summer vacations in Ruidoso at my parent’s cabin, this recipe always makes me think of the smell of ponderosa pine trees and cool breezes in the afternoon.

two cooked enchiladas on a plate topped with avocado slices

Key Ingredients and Substitutions


This combination of ingredients is pretty classic, so it is worth the effort to track them down.

The complete ingredient list and measurements are listed in the printable recipe below.

  • Chicken thighs have a deeper flavor that balances out the other flavors; you can use skinless chicken breasts or shredded chicken if you prefer, but you be sacrificing some of the chicken flavor. Rotisserie chicken is also a good substitute and will give more flavor than using just chicken breasts.
  • Tomatillos are more or less indispensable. If you can’t get them in your produce section, you can substitute them with a jar of tomatillo salsa.
  • Hatch green chiles are in the recipe name for a reason; the closest substitutes would be Anaheim or poblano peppers.
  • Homemade tortillas are the ‘X’ factor that brings the recipe to the next level; it would be worth it to track down a Mexican restaurant that sells their homemade tortillas to go if you don’t want to make them. You can use corn tortillas or a half-and-half tortilla (mix of corn masa and flour).
  • Queso Oaxaca is the classic Mexican melty cheese, but you could substitute it with shredded Monterey Jack cheese.

How to Make Hatch Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas


Here are the quick step-by-step instructions with visuals; you can find the full instructions with the exact ingredients in the recipe card below.

Pro-tip: These enchiladas are the perfect freezer-to-oven dish so make a double batch.

1. Prep the Chicken, Onion, Peppers, and Garlic: Pat the chicken thighs dry with a paper towel, then salt and pepper and add some chili powder if you like it spicy. Cut the onion into half at the equator and then half again. Leave the tomatillos and garlic in their papery wrappers and the hatch chile peppers whole.

2. Grill the Prepped Ingredients: Place the head of garlic off on the edge of the flame and grill while the other ingredients are grilling making sure to turn it regularly. Grill the hatch chile peppers until they have a nice char on their skin then move off to the side away from the flame. Grill the onions until they have dark grill marks on each side and move them over to the side with the peppers. Finally, grill the chicken thighs for 6-8 minutes per side allowing them to develop grill marks. Don’t worry too much about the internal temperature of the chicken since it will be cooked again in the enchiladas.

3. Sweat the Hatch Chile Peppers: Place the hot roasted hatch chile peppers in a paper or plastic bag or a bowl covered with plastic wrap. Let the peppers “sweat” (the steam will help loosen the skin) for 15 minutes while preparing the remaining ingredients for the sauce.

4. Make the Tomatillo Green Chile Sauce: Rough chop two-thirds of the onion and add to a large pot or Dutch oven with a little oil, stirring occasionally until they turn translucent. Cut the root end of the garlic head off and gently squeeze the roasted cloves into the pot, turning it down to make sure the garlic doesn’t burn. Remove the papery skins off the tomatillos and remove the stem, then roughly chop them and add them to the pot. Gently peel off the skin of the hatch chile peppers, remove the stem, and rough chop. Add about a third of the hatch chile peppers to the pot. Give everything a thorough mix then turn it back up to medium-high. Once it’s bubbling, add the chicken broth and use an immersion blender to get the sauce to a smooth texture. You can also pour the contents into a regular blender or food processor if that’s what you have available. Finally, turn it down to medium-low to simmer for at least an hour, preferably two, until reduces by 20% or so, intensifying the flavor.

5. Assemble the Enchiladas: Cut the chicken into half-inch cubes and set aside. Roughly chop the remaining hatch chile peppers and onions and mix them with the chicken. Spread about a third of a cup of the sauce on the bottom of an 8 by 13-inch casserole or baking dish. Lay out a tortilla and place the chicken mixture in the middle. Roll the enchilada up and place them seam side down in the dish. You should have room for six well-stuffed enchiladas, and once they are all in cover them with the rest of the sauce. Sprinkle shreds of the Oaxaca cheese over the top, adding as much as you want depending on your preference.

5. Bake to Perfection: Place the casserole in a preheated 350-degree Fahrenheit oven for 12-15 minutes, or until the cheese and sauce have started to merge and are bubbling. Let the enchiladas cool for at least 5 minutes before plating. Top with sliced avocado, guacamole, sour cream, cilantro, and/or tomatillo green chile sauce.

cooked enchiladas in a cassarole dish topped with cilantro and slices of avocado

Recipe Tips and Notes


  • Grilling the chicken, onion, peppers, and garlic is an optional step, but it brings so much to the flavor profile of the final dish that we highly recommend putting in the effort. We use lump hardwood charcoal when grilling, and the smoke is truly transformative. Alternatively, you can use a gas grill or broil them in the oven for some of the smokey goodness, but it won’t quite be the same.
  • Using the grilled ingredients and taking the time to reduce the sauce just intensifies the flavors. While it increases the time commitment, it pays off in the long run, so save this recipe for the weekend or make the sauce ahead of time for a quick and easy dinner.
  • If you have store-bought tortillas you may want to steam them in the microwave first to make them more pliable. Wrapping them in a moist paper towel and cook on high for 30 seconds.
  • You can grill the ingredients in advance and cook down the sauce and refrigerate everything for a few days. The assembly of the enchiladas and oven time is minimal, so a little planning can make you a weeknight hero!

Frequently Asked Questions


Can I freeze leftovers?

These are perfect for freezing. Make a double batch so you can eat one and freeze one for a quick weeknight dinner. For easy baking freeze these in a disposable pan and cover tightly with foil then place in a freezer-safe air-tight bag. Defrost leftovers in the refrigerator and then bake according to recipe card directions.

How to reheat enchiladas?

These enchiladas can be reheated in a microwave or in the oven. For microwave reheating, place on a microwave-safe plate and heat at 30-second intervals until thoroughly warmed. To reheat in the oven, place in an oven-safe dish and reheat at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 10 minutes or until thoroughly warmed.

What can I serve with Enchiladas?

Enchiladas are traditionally served in restaurants with rice, beans, or a simple salad.

two cooked enchiladas on a plate topped with avocado slices and sour cream

Let’s Connect! If you make our New Mexico Hatch Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas or any other recipe on Casual Epicure, please don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave a comment below. It helps others who are considering making our recipes and we love hearing about your cooking experiences. And if you snapped some shots, share them on Instagram, and be sure to tag @casual.epicure so we can feature them in our stories.

Other Recipes to Try


If you enjoy this recipe, we recommend checking out some of these:

two cooked enchiladas on a plate topped with avocado slices

New Mexico Hatch Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas

These New Mexico Hatch Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas are Indulgent, but not too heavy. Stuffed with chicken, roasted hatch chile peppers, and onions topped with a roasted tomatillo green chile sauce, and cheese they will transport you to New Mexico, especially if you take the time to grill the ingredients first.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Grilling Time 20 mins
Total Time 1 hr 5 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Southwest American
Servings 3 people
Calories 688 kcal

Equipment

  • Wood or Gas grill, optional
  • Large Pot or Dutch Oven
  • Immersion Blender
  • 8 x 13 Casserole Dish

Ingredients  

  • 1 white onion, large
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 2 pounds tomatillos, in their husks
  • 1 pound hatch chile peppers, grilled or roasted
  • 1 pound boneless chicken thighs, baked or grilled
  • 6 corn tortillas
  • 1 cup Queso Oaxaca, shredded

Garnishes

  • cilantro
  • sour cream
  • avocado slices or guacamole

Instructions 

Prep the ingredients

  • Pat the chicken thighs dry with a paper towel, then salt and pepper and add some chili powder if you like it spicy.
  • Cut the onion in half at the equator and then half again as if you were making extra thick onion rings. Leave the tomatillos and garlic in their papery wrappers and the hatch chile peppers whole.

Grill the ingredients

  • Place the head of garlic off on the edge of the flame and grill while the other ingredients are grilling making sure to turn it regularly.
  • Grill the hatch chile peppers until they have a nice char on their skin then move off to the side away from the flame.
  • Grill the onions until they have dark grill marks on each side and move them over to the side with the peppers.
  • Finally, grill the chicken thighs for 6-8 minutes per side allowing them to develop grill marks. Don't worry too much about the internal temperature of the chicken since it will be cooked again in the enchiladas.
  • Place the hot roasted hatch chile peppers in a paper or plastic bag or a bowl covered with plastic wrap. Let the peppers "sweat" (the steam will help loosen the skin) for 15 minutes while preparing the remaining ingredients for the sauce.

Make the tomatillo sauce

  • Rough chop two-thirds of the onion and add to the pot, stirring occasionally until they turn translucent.
  • Cut the root end of the garlic head off and gently squeeze the roasted cloves into the pot, turning it down to make sure the garlic doesn't burn.
  • Remove the papery skins off the tomatillos and remove the stem, then roughly chop them and add them to the pot.
  • Gently peel off the skin of the hatch chile peppers, remove the stem, and rough chop the add about a third of them to the pot.
  • Give everything a thorough mix then turn it back up to medium-high. Once it's bubbling, add the chicken broth and use an immersion blender to get the sauce to a smooth texture. You can pour the contents into a regular blender or food processor if that's what you have available.
  • Finally, turn it down to medium-low to simmer for at least an hour, preferably two, until reduces by 20% or so, intensifying the flavor.

Assemble the enchiladas

  • Cut the chicken into half-inch cubes and set aside. Roughly chop the remaining hatch chile peppers and onions and mix them with the chicken.
  • Spread about a third of a cup of the sauce on the bottom of an 8 by 13-inch casserole or baking dish. Lay out a tortilla and place the chicken mixture in the middle. Roll the enchilada up and place them seam side down in the dish.
  • You should have room for six well-stuffed enchiladas, and once they are all in cover them with the rest of the sauce. Sprinkle shreds of the Oaxaca cheese over the top, adding as much as you want depending on your preference.

Bake

  • Place the casserole in a preheated 350-degree Fahrenheit oven for 12-15 minutes, or until the cheese and sauce have started to merge and are bubbling.
  • Let the enchiladas cool for at least 5 minutes before plating. Top with sliced avocado, guacamole, sour cream, cilantro, and/or tomatillo green chile sauce.

Notes

1. You can grill the ingredients in advance and cook down the sauce and refrigerate everything for a few days. The assembly of the enchiladas and oven time is minimal which makes for a perfect weeknight dinner.
2. If you have store-bought tortillas you may want to steam them in the microwave first to make them more pliable. Wrapping them in a moist paper towel and cook on high for 30 seconds.
3. Grilling the chicken, onion, peppers, and garlic is an optional step, but it brings so much to the flavor profile of the final dish that we highly recommend putting in the effort.
4. These enchiladas can be reheated in a microwave or in the oven. For microwave reheating, place on a microwave-safe plate and heat at 30-second intervals until thoroughly warmed. To reheat in the oven, place in an oven-safe dish and reheat at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 10 minutes or until thoroughly warmed.
5. These are perfect for freezing. Make a double batch so you can eat one and freeze one for a quick weeknight dinner. For easy baking freeze these in a disposable pan and cover tightly with foil then place in a freezer-safe air-tight bag. Defrost leftovers in the refrigerator and then bake according to recipe card directions.
6. Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.  The nutritional value is only for the enchiladas and does not include the nutritional value for any garnishes such as sour cream or avocado.  The nutritional value does not include any additional toppings.
7. Be sure to check out the Key Ingredients along with the Recipe Tips and Notes sections found in the post, for more tips, options, substitutions, and variations for this recipe! You will also find step-by-step photos there.

Nutrition

Serving: 2 enchiladasCalories: 688 kcalCarbohydrates: 59 gProtein: 57 gFat: 24 gSaturated Fat: 11 gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2 gMonounsaturated Fat: 11 gCholesterol: 157 mgSodium: 912 mgPotassium: 983 mgFiber: 10 gSugar: 26 gVitamin A: 288 IUVitamin C: 927 mgCalcium: 37 mgIron: 16 mg
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