Chicken Enchilada Skillet

Growing up, it was always a big deal when my mom would make enchiladas. They were a family favorite but she would only make them every once in a while because of the lengthy process. She’d spend the afternoon cooking & shredding the meat, roasting the peppers, frying tortillas & tediously rolling them up. Walking in the door, the aroma of chili peppers & melty cheese would make you pause as your mouth quickly began to water. With aromas like that there was no doubt enchiladas were on the menu for dinner. You could taste her love in each little enchilada that her hands so neatly constructed & my family would down the pan in no time.

This healthy enchilada skillet eliminates my least favorite part about making enchiladas: Rolling them up. An alternative method with the same amazing taste of a traditional enchilada. Filled with lean protein from the chicken breast, melty cheese on top, packed with nutritious peppers, & full of flavor that’s bound to be a crowd pleaser. Cooking the enchilada skillet does involve a bit of multi-tasking so go ahead and make it a party by turning on some latin music (my choice is typically Shakira) & drop a paper umbrella in your drink as you dance from one side of the kitchen to the other!

Cooking the Ingredients

Chicken: This is kinda a given but don’t overcook the chicken. They cook in a snap so keep an eye on them so you don’t end up with dry chicken. When shredding the chicken, it is up to the cook how finely shredded they want it. You could even dice it instead to save time.

Poblanos: When broiling the poblanos, place a sheet pan underneath the rack to catch any juices that are released from the peppers. You can then use that pan to place the peppers on when removing from the oven to cool. Ever smoked the house up from drippings on the bottom of the oven?? Been there done that. When peeling the poblanos, make sure to thoroughly wash your hands after handling & avoid contact with your eyes. Unfortunately, I have also been there & ended up with burning poblano eyes. Not fun…

I like to roast a bell pepper while I’m at it to serve a pepper, zucchini, & corn salad on the side

Spices: It may seem like an ample amount of spices, but trust me, it makes the dish. The first time I made this dish I used about half the spices & ended up continuing to add more in with each trial. Between the sauce, chicken, peppers, & onions there’s a lot of ingredients that need to be spiced up so don’t skimp & get spicy with it!

Sauce: When it comes to the sauce, I like to use Old El Paso brand mild. I’ve tried other brands but find this one is more flavorful & bolder. The sauce will need to thicken slightly after all the ingredients are combined & simmering in the saucepan. Your house will smell like a dang good Mexican restaurant! Be careful not to thicken the sauce too much because we want it to easily coated the tortillas. It will be a bit on the saucy side because the dry tortillas will soak in the flavorful sauce as the skillet bakes in the oven.

Shortcut Method

Tight on time or exhausted at the end of the day, eliminate some of the steps with alternative methods to cut the time in half!

  • Instead of shredding the chicken yourself, why not have it pre-shredded. You can buy canned shredded chicken ready to be thrown into the sauce. Or pick-up a rotisserie chicken & simply chop into cubes.
  • Another step to eliminate is broiling the peppers. Buy canned, diced green chiles for a delicious alternative which will still add a bit of spice & bold flavor. I recommend adding about 6oz of the diced chiles.

Chicken Poblano Enchilada Skillet

  • Servings: 6
  • Print


  • 2 poblanos
  • 2 lg chicken breasts (about 24 oz)
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1 lg yellow onion
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon aleppo pepper
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 19 oz red enchilada sauce
  • 1/4 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 5 corn tortillas
  • 2 oz sharp cheddar cheese
  • 3 oz pepper jack cheese


  1. Broil poblanos until charred on both sides. About 10 minutes per side.
  2. While poblanos are broiling, bring a large pot with about 6 cups of chicken broth to a boil. There should be enough chicken broth to cover the chicken by about an inch. Cut onion into quarters, peel garlic, & cut chicken breasts into quarters. Add to broth & boil for 8 minutes.
  3. Remove poblanos & set aside to cool. Turn oven temperature to 475.
  4. Using a slotted spoon, transfer chicken, garlic, & onions from broth to a sheet pan. Spread out to cool. Cover broth, remove from heat & set aside.
  5. While the chicken cools, mix the dry spices together in a small bowl (cumin, coriander, garlic powder, chili powder, aleppo pepper, & oregano).
  6. Peel the skin off of the poblanos & chop. It’s ok if there are a few seeds mixed in.
  7. Shred chicken using a fork pulling apart against the grain. Place in a large bowl & sprinkle in spices. You will be adding the sauce to the bowl so make sure the bowl in large enough to hold the ingredients.
  8. Roughly chop the onion & garlic from the broth.
  9. In a skillet over medium heat, saute the onion, garlic, & poblanos until slightly golden. About 3-5 minutes. Add enchilada sauce, yogurt, 1 cup of reserved broth, & tomato paste to skillet. Simmer sauce for about 10 minutes stirring occasionally. It will slightly thicken.
  10. As sauce simmers, shred the cheeses & chop the tortillas into 2 inch long strips.
  11. Once sauce is very aromatic & slightly thickened, pour over the shredded chicken in bowl. Stir to combine. Add the tortilla strips & stir until well incorporated & completely coated with sauce.
  12. Transfer chicken & tortilla mixture back to skillet & top with the shredded cheese. Bake uncovered until sauce is bubbling & cheese is melted & browned. About 15 minutes.
  13. Remove from oven & let sit 5-10 minutes before serving. Enjoy with spanish rice & zucchini!

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