Mexican Food No More?
When you first learn of the low FODMAP diet and you see that onions and garlic and beans are a big no-no, your dreams of Mexican inspired meals might seem to be hanging by a thread. And yet, check out this plate of Chicken Enchiladas.
We can have all the flavor of those yearned-for Mexican dishes, such as with these Chicken Enchiladas, by using a little creativity in ingredient choices. We start with a low FODMAP homemade Red Enchilada Sauce.
Corn tortillas are stuffed with tender, gently spiced chicken, with the sauce ladled under, inside the tortillas and on top. Three kinds of cheese round out the dish along with scallions and cilantro for a green burst of freshness.
Speaking Of Corn Tortillas
Not all corn tortillas are created equally. For easiest rolling we recommend the type that do include gums, such as xanthan gum or guar gum. Not only are these gums low FODMAP, but Monash University has lab tested corn tortillas with gums, so there is not need to worry; they are low FODMAP.
That said, we have found that different brands roll more easily than others. Temperature can affect them, too. If they are too cold, they will have a tendency to crack. Follow our directions, take note of the brand you are using and try a different brand next time if you have issues with cracking.
Here’s the thing, though. This dish ends up looking a bit messy upon serving anyway, so don’t worry! The sauce and cheese can cover many cracks!
Everybody Loves These. Trust Us
These are a great family meal, for FODMAPers and non alike. There are do-ahead steps; kids can help roll up the tortillas…there are many, many reasons to make this dish.
But the #1 reason is this: they taste as good if not better than your local Mexican joint’s version – and these will keep your tummy happy.
You can see our Red Enchilada Sauce as a stand-alone recipe, for future use.
Low FODMAP Chicken Enchiladas
Our low FODMAP chicken enchiladas are Monash University diet compliant and even safe for the Elimination phase! Look for our kiwi icon for dishes that are safe even during the most restrictive part of the diet.
Red Enchilada Sauce:
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) EITHER Low FODMAP Garlic-Infused Oil or Onion-Infused Oil made with vegetable oil or purchased versions, such as FODY Garlic-Infused Olive Oil
- 1/4 cup (36 g) low FODMAP, gluten-free all-purpose flour, such as Bob Red Mill's 1 to 1 Gluten Free Baking Flour
- ½ to 2 teaspoons chilli powder, ground red serrano chillis
- 2 cups (480 ml) Low FODMAP Chicken Stock, either homemade or purchased
- 1, 14.5-ounce (415 g) can diced tomatoes
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 pounds (680 g) boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to ½ inch (12 mm) thick, then diced
- 1/4 teaspoon chilli powder, ground red serrano chillis or more to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon cumin or more to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon oregano or more to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons EITHER Low FODMAP Garlic-Infused Oil or Onion-Infused Oil made with vegetable oil, or purchased equivalent
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh green chilles, such as serrano, or to taste
- 4 ounces (115 g) sharp or extra sharp cheddar, grated (about 1 cup)
- 4 ounces (115 g) Havarti, grated (about 1 cup)
- 10 corn tortillas
- 7 ounces (200 g) feta or cotija cheese, (about 1 ¼ cups)
- 1/4 cup (4 g) chopped cilantro
- 1/4 cup (16 g) chopped scallions, green parts only
For the Sauce: Heat the oil in a medium sized pot over medium heat until hot, then whisk in flour and cook, stirring often, for a minute or two to lightly cook the roux, which is the basis for our sauce (you are just removing the raw flour taste). Whisk in chilli powder and cook for 15 to 30 seconds then slowly whisk in stock, then tomatoes, cumin, oregano and salt until combined. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook, stirring often, for about 10 minutes. Set aside. This makes about 3 cups of sauce; you might not use all of it for this recipe but it will keep, refrigerated, in a covered container for up to a week.
For the Enchiladas: Meanwhile, place diced chicken in a mixing bowl and add the chilli powder, cumin, oregano, salt and several grinds of black pepper and toss to coat.
Heat oil in a medium sized nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot, add chicken and cook, stirring often, until about halfway cooked through (just losing its pink color), about 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in green chillis (to taste) and a splash of the enchilada sauce and stir to coat. Continue cooking the chicken until cooked through, about 3 to 5 minutes more.
Position rack in middle of oven. Preheat oven to 350°F/180° Spread a little Enchilada Sauce in the bottom of an oven-proof glass 13 x 9-inch (33 cm x 23 cm) pan (or you can use two 9-inch/23 cm pie plates). Toss the cheddar and Havarti together in a bowl and set aside.
Take one corn tortilla, spread a little Enchilada sauce all over its surface using the back of a spoon and then place about ¼ cup (55 g) of the chicken (do this by eye) in a line down the center. Sprinkle with a bit of cheese (you will use about one third of the shredded cheese for this part of the recipe for all 10 tortillas). Roll up and place tortilla seam side down in prepared pan. Repeat with remaining tortillas, chicken and up to one third of the cheese, nestling each rolled tortilla next to one another.
Pour Enchilada Sauce over the rolled tortillas and sprinkle with the remaining shredded cheese and feta evenly over all. Bake for about 20 to 30 minutes or until filling is hot and cheese is bubbly. Sprinkle cilantro and scallions over the top and serve immediately.
Dédé’s Quick Recipe Tips Video
- You can prepare the enchiladas ahead. After sprinkling with the cheeses they can be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated overnight. Bring to room temperature while oven preheats. You can also heat these in the microwave, but it will depend on your familiarity with your unit. Start by trying high power for 10 minutes, check, and proceed from there.
All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more. For a more detailed explanation, please read our article Understanding The Nutrition Panel Within Our Recipes.
Tell Us What You Think
35 comments for “Low FODMAP Chicken Enchiladas”
I made these tonight. Despite the tortillas breaking apart when I tried to fold them, they ended up being SO tasty! Once I covered everything in the sauce and cheese, it mostly covered up the broken bits anyway. Will definitely make them again, but will try a different brand of corn tortilla so I can get everything looking as pretty as the picture.
Hi Emma! Thank you for letting us know about your experience. The texture of corn tortillas can vary tremendously. I find the organic and more rough-hewn ones, which I love for flavor and texture in flat applications, completely fall apart! Look for more conventional corn tortillas for this dish. Also make sure they are not cold, which makes them brittle and inflexible as well. But as you said, once it all gets in your mouth it is yummy!
This is my favourite FODMAP recipe! It tastes amazing and even my husband who has no diet issues eats this and really enjoys it.
Caroline, Thank you so much for letting us know! We are committed to bringing you delicious low FODMAP recipes!
This is definitely going to be a regular in our house. Thank you!
Thank you for letting us know! I developed this recipe fairly early on in my own FODMAP journey because Mexican food, with all of its garlic and onions and beans, seemed to be such a hard thing to tackle. We agree that this is a great addition to one’s repertoire and if any of you who are reading this have been missing your Tex-Mex flavors, give this one a try.
Can this be cooked, then frozen, thawed and reheated?
Hi Wendy, they can. They do become a bit mushy, but they will taste just as good. In my pre-FODMAP days, with a dish like this, I would probably refresh a frozen batch with a little more sauce and a little more cheese, but we have to be cognizant of FODMAP load. If you do OK with lactose, I would probably add a little cheese right before heating up (or hold some back and use at that point).
This is my new favorite low FODMAP recipe!! Super flavorful and satisfying. Thank you!!
When I realized I could enjoy Tex-Mex foods and flavors and still have them be low FODMAP it was a revelation! Thank you for letting us know.
What can I substitute for the onion/garlic infused oil? My housemate is dreadfully allergic to both, even in oil form. Any suggestions?
I would just use a vegetable oil. You will not get any onion or garlic flavor but it seems as though you need to avoid them anyway. You could also try a pinch of asafoetida, which has a garlicky flavor. Use only a tiny amount. It can be stinky out of the jar, but it mellows and adds a garlic flavor when cooked.
Thanks! I am anxious to try them! They sound delicious!
If your tortillas are falling apart try dipping them in the sauce for a bit before rolling them. I’s a little messy but works great if the tortillas aren’t too dry. Made it with leftover smoked chicken (yum) the last time.
I’ve been using a lot of fresh chives instead of onions (easier to find large bunches and they are less expensive at the Asian markets). Chives have been very helpful to me for Mexican and Indian recipe alterations. Some are even garlic chives which are good but I’m hoping they are also low-FODMAP (even though they haven’t bothered me). I even tried taking some sprouted onions, planting them and using their tops as they grow and that seemed to also work.
What do you think about these substitutes Dede?
Enchiladas again tonight 🙂 !
Diane! Love the creativity. I have dipped my tortillas also on occasion. This is a great technique tip, for sure. Chives are a great low FODMAP “onion” substitute and we love using them, too. As far as your other substitutions, the proof is in your personal tolerance testing. If these items have been tolerated well by you, then they are perfect for your own personal low FODMAP approach! This is great encouragement to help people think outside-the-box. The ultimate goal is to eat as broadly as possible.
I would like to give you a huge thank you for all the recipes you continue to send me. I have tried quite a few and for the most part they are soo good. I”M of the older generation and have not mastered the art of sending pictures of my cooking creations, they taste every bit as good as they look . I’M sure going to try this tortillas recipe ..
Jane, thank you so much for writing us and sharing these words. It means so much to us. Our goal is to help people just like you.
We made this tonight for our family Christmas dinner, and it was DELICIOUS! However, the prep time said 15 minutes. Well… it took me and my son about 2 hours! But we had lots of fun along the way, with plenty of laughter as the tortillas broke apart and the filling spilled out of the enchiladas when we tried to roll them. It ended up being more of an enchilada casserole – which my mom used to make for our family of 10 on holidays. Next time we won’t even try to roll them; we’ll just layer them like a lasagna.
Hi Joe, thank you for letting us know your experience. When we launched, I did not include prep and cook times, as they vary so from cook to cook. Also, please note that the chicken should already be diced or shredded, the cheese grated, the pepper already minced etc. In other words, when you see a recipe and it says 1-pound chicken in the Ingredient section and then in the Directions it tells you to shred it, then the action of working with the chicken would be added to to the Prep time. This is one of the reasons I dislike listing the times as it can appear misleading. Google Search rewards sites that use them, so we did a big overhaul mid 2019 and added them. The rolling step can be a bit of a pain as GF tortillas are not as pliable as conventional. Layering is a great idea! Since my twins were little we have a dinner we called “layered burrito” which is essentially what you described. GO FOR IT!
I love this recipe and have made it multiple times now. I just use regular olive oil (with no garlic infusion) because I was nervous about not getting the right kind – I don’t feel like it is missing any flavor. Because I can’t find low-fodmap stock, I have used just plain water with a tsp of salt. I have made this with ground beef instead of chicken. I also use a combination of chili powders – smoked paprika, chipotle powder, cayenne and ancho chili powder. I put a combination of green onion, cilantro, tomato, and fresh jalapeños on top after baking and before serving. Again I am so thankful to have found this recipe since it allows me to have Mexican and it helped me see that I can make lots of my favorites without using onions, garlic, and chicken broth.
Lynette, I LOVE your original approach. You made the recipes yours and kept it low FODMAP. Maybe next you might try making your own oil! It’s easy!
Looking forward to trying these! Quick question – recipe says it serves 6, but it has 10 tortillas which implies 10 enchiladas. How do you split the 10 enchiladas to serve 6? Is the nutrition info per 1 enchilada, 1.5 enchiladas? Thanks so much!
That’s right…the nutrition and FODMAP load is based upon dividing the recipe into 6 servings and it does not divide equally per tortilla.
These are AWESOME. A couple notes that others may find helpful: 1) wrap your stack of tortillas in a wet paper towel and microwave for about 45 seconds–this will make them more pliable and they will roll up beautifully. 2) I used 4 medium jalapeños for the peppers and removed the ribs and seeds from 3 of the 4, and this yielded enchiladas that were plenty flavorful but barely spicy at all. I didn’t miss the spice (even though I like spicy food) because they were so delicious in general, but next time I may try adding a little heat back in. Thank you so much!
Laura, GREAT tip using the microwave to warm the tortillas. They can be persnickety. I find that ones that contain gums are more pliable, and thankfully, they have been lab tested by Monash and are low FODMAP! Keep cooking!
The corn tortillas completely broke apart when I filled them and rolled then. The result was unappetizing. I now read the suggestion to warm the corn tortillas in the microwave before trying to fill them. I will try that if I ever make these again.
Hi Linda, it all depend on the tortillas that you buy. Some are much more flexible than others. Some need coaxing. Certainly straight out of the fridge can lead to issues regardless. Luckily Monash has tested and approved tortillas both with and without gums. I suggest trying some with gums for more pliability.
Awesome recipe! Paired it with Lime Cilantro Rice and your fresh salsa
Oh My Susie, that’s a meal! So glad we are helping you enjoy your time in the kitchen and at the table!
I made this tonight and it was very yummy! What size tortillas do you recommend? The ones I ended up with are 5.5” across and that just seems too small. I did this in two 8×8” pans (keeping one for later) and I fit 5 rolled tortillas across, and then one at the top (so we each got 3, plenty of food). Also my husband didn’t want chicken so I put a pork loin in the crockpot all day with 2/3 cup of enchilada sauce to make shredded pork for the filling. And finally, my sauce still had tomato chunks so once it cooled a bit, I used my immersion blender to make it a little smoother. Will warm up the tortillas first next time!
Hi Michelle, unlike flour tortillas, corn tortillas are more standard in size, hence there not being specificity in the recipe, and yes, most are around 6-inches. Love the idea of half chicken and half pork.
Also, I don’t think the recipe says where to add the serrano chilles? I got jalapeño instead but I didn’t end up putting them in! But it was spicy enough for me without them. Now I have to figure out what to do with red jalapeños…
It is the chilli pepper and it is listed.
This looks like a good bet for trying. As someone noted in their comment, just layering with the corn tortillas would make it into a “bake” or casserole. Another idea is to use the prepped solid polenta, cut in slices, for layering. I did this in my pre-restricted days and love the flavor and the mushiness of the polenta.
Tangentially-related comment: do you have recipes for spice mixes on the site? I’m thinking of chili powder, curry, taco seasoning, ranch dressing, etc, which traditionally use onion and garlic powder. I’ve been making up my own with some success, but it would be great to have some pointers, and some new ones to try.
Thanks for all this. The site has been a huge help to me over the last few months.
Hi there! Yes, the layering is a great trick, which I do at home all the time. With the polenta we would just need to recalculate FODMAP load. I love your idea about spice blends…I have thought about it from time to time. Maybe time to get it done!