Zucchini Enchiladas will be your the most hearty dishes for any gathering or family’ night. This recipe for zucchini enchiladas is a perfect weeknight meal that the whole family will love! Made with “zucchini tortillas,” shredded chicken, enchilada sauce and shredded cheese. It’s low carb, gluten-free, paleo-friendly and keto-friendly!
We all know cucumber but do you know its friend zucchini? If you’re looking for some zucchini recipe ideas or ways to swap bread and pasta for zucchini, you’ve gotta try this zucchini enchiladas recipe! It’s a Mexican inspired dinner recipe that is packed with protein, flavour and nutrition! Honestly, you may not even miss the tortillas or any crabs!
We have to be honest, whether you’re following a low carb diet plan or not, these Chicken Stuffed Zucchini Enchiladas are going to be a big hit. The chicken filling alone is worth making, we use any leftovers for lettuce wraps, in a salad or yeah – wrapped up in a tortilla. Because we’ve got kids who certainly aren’t following a low carb diet plan so making recipes like these low carb enchiladas makes everyone happy!
There are three parts to making this recipe. First, you’ll need to prepare the Enchilada Sauce. (optional if you are getting the ready-made one). Next, you’ll prepare the chicken filling. Next, you’ll prepare and roll the zucchini so they can be used in place of the tortillas. Finally, you’ll bake it!
Homemade Enchilada Sauce
The key to this dish is the sauce, full of authentic Mexican flavour. It comes from a combination of dried spices, which are sautéed in oil to bring out their best, and umami-rich tomato paste. To save time we want to get the ready-made enchilada sauce however we couldn’t get one at our nearest supermarket thus we decided to make our homemade version. It is simple and really delicious, you could pre-made it ahead and store them in the fridge.
You will need garlic powder, cumin, dried oregano, chilli powder, flour, oil and chicken stock. We don’t want to get all the herb as we may only use it only for a time, thus we got the Old El Paso Taco Mild Spice Mix where it contains all the ingredients you need other than oil, chicken stock and flour.
Start by combining the spice mix and flour in a bowl. In a pot of medium heat, add in oil and the mixture, using a whisk stir well. Slowly add in the chicken stock portion by portion and mix well. Cook, whisking often, for about 5 to 7 minutes, until the sauce has thickened a bit and a spoon encounters some resistance as you stir it. Season it with salt and pepper if needed.
How to make the Chicken Stuffing?
Start with 3 cups of shredded chicken. You can use chicken breast, chicken thighs or even ground chicken or ground turkey. What works well is using leftover rotisserie chicken. I also like to boil some chicken breasts with water and bay leaves for 30 minutes and then shred the chicken while it’s warm.
Regardless of what chicken meat you use, you’ll want to mix the chicken with sauteed onions, garlic and spices. Then add some store-bought or homemade enchilada sauce on top and mix everything together.
How to prepare the zuchinni?
What you need to start with is the right tool. A Y-shaped vegetable peeler is the best tool for getting the zucchini sliced really thin, so it easily rolls up around the chicken filling. Slices that are too thick won’t easily roll up and will probably break upon you.
Only use the wide parts for best results. Then stack three strips on top of each other, (slightly overlapping), place the chicken mixture towards one end and tuck and roll.
Putting it Together
The recipe will yield about 24 rolls total, and you will have some leftover zucchini slices, scraps and bits. You can chop those up to use in a zucchini bread of frittata or even a salad. Then just arrange the zucchini enchiladas in the baking dish and add some enchilada sauce on top. Add some shredded cheese on top and bake in the oven until the cheese melts. And then it’s ready!
When they come out of the oven, hit the zucchini enchiladas with some fresh cilantro, some sliced jalapenos if you like some heat and even some sliced avocados for a creamy touch.
Things to take note of
- Press the zucchini slices between paper towels to remove excess moisture. This may not be necessary for the zucchini you use, but if you notice that it has a lot of moisture, be sure to dab it dry. This will avoid any soggy zucchini situation.
- Use a vegetable Y-peeler to make the zucchini strips thin and wide. It might help to halve the zucchini lengthwise before starting. And if you have a mandolin slicer, that might actually be even easier and faster. I relied on my cheap handy dandy Y-peeler. I don’t recommend using a knife.
- Test a couple strips to ensure you have the right thickness. If it’s your first time making these, you may want to roll a couple strips with the chicken filling to make sure they don’t break. If they break, that’s a sign that you need to slice them thinner.
- Be careful not to overstuff the zucchini rolls. You want to use 1-2 tablespoons of the mixture and not more than that so they’re easy to roll and won’t burst open in the oven.
- Do not freeze the zucchini enchiladas. Zucchini has a very high moisture content, so it doesn’t respond well to freezing. When frozen, it accumulates ice crystals, which leads to sad and soggy zucchini. You can freeze the chicken mixture though!
Ready surprise with the taste, the umami of the juicy chicken burst and combine well with the zucchini the first you bite it. We would recommend serving these as soon as possible while they’re warm and the cheese is melted because who could resist that cheese pull.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion chopped
2 cloves garlic minced
2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chilli powder
Salt and pepper to taste
3 cups shredded chicken
1 ½ cup enchilada sauce divided
2-3 zucchinis large
2 cups Mexican blend cheese shredded
Cilantro, jalapenos, avocados for serving
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- In a large skillet over medium heat, heat olive oil. Add onions and cook until they soften. Add garlic, cumin and chilli powder. Season with salt and pepper, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the cooked shredded chicken and 1 cup enchilada sauce, and stir until coated.
- On a cutting board, use a Y-shaped vegetable peeler to peel thin slices of zucchini. Each zucchini should yield about 10 wide slices. Save the ends that are hard to peel for another use.
- Layout 3 slices, slightly overlapping, and top with a spoonful of chicken mixture. Roll up and transfer to a baking dish. Repeat with the remaining zucchini and chicken mixture. It should yield about 24 total rolls.
- Pour the remaining enchilada sauce over the zucchini enchiladas and top with shredded cheese.
- Bake in the preheated oven until cheese is melted, about 20 minutes.
- Garnish with cilantro, jalapenos and avocados, and serve immediately.