Cheese Enchiladas with Red Sauce Recipe

Cheese Enchiladas with Red Sauce

These cheesy enchiladas bathed in a homemade red sauce are a classic Tex-Mex dish perfect for a satisfying meal. You can adjust the spice level of the sauce to your preference.


For the Red Enchilada Sauce

  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 2 cups chicken broth

For the Enchiladas

  • 14-16 white corn tortillas
  • 16 ounces shredded Mexican cheese blend (Monterrey Jack, cheddar, Asadero)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil (for coating tortillas)


Make the Red Enchilada Sauce

  • Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in flour and cook for 1 minute to create a roux.
  • Add chili powder, onion powder, oregano, salt, garlic powder, and cumin. Whisk constantly for 1-2 minutes, toasting the spices.
  • Stir in tomato paste and cook for another minute.
  • Slowly whisk in chicken broth, making sure to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
  • Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until slightly thickened. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.

Prepare the Enchiladas

  • Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Lightly grease a 9×13 inch baking dish.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in a skillet over medium heat. Warm each tortilla in the hot oil for a few seconds per side, just until softened and pliable.

Assemble the Enchiladas

  • Pour about ¼ cup of the red sauce into the bottom of the prepared baking dish.
  • Place a warmed tortilla on a plate. Add a generous amount of shredded cheese filling (around ½ cup) in the center of the tortilla.
  • Roll up the tortilla tightly and seam side down. Place the rolled enchilada in the baking dish.
  • Repeat with remaining tortillas and cheese filling.

Bake the Enchiladas

  • Pour the remaining red sauce over the top of the rolled enchiladas, evenly coating them.
  • Sprinkle any remaining cheese on top.
  • Cover the baking dish loosely with foil. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  • Remove foil and bake for an additional 5 minutes for a crispier top (optional).


  • Let the enchiladas cool slightly before serving. Enjoy them with your favorite toppings like sour cream, chopped fresh cilantro, diced tomatoes, sliced avocado, or chopped onions.


  • You can substitute canned enchilada sauce for the homemade version. Choose a sauce that matches your desired spice level.
  • For a richer flavor, add a can (4 oz) of diced green chiles to the red sauce while simmering.
  • If your tortillas are cracking, try dipping them in the warm sauce before filling and rolling.
  • Leftover enchiladas can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in the oven or microwave until warmed through.


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