What do you do when you can’t decide between beef enchiladas and cheese enchiladas? You make Tex Mex enchiladas, which combine the best of both worlds with cheese stuffed tortillas in a chili con carne sauce.
My version uses extra lean ground beef and one skillet to make a lower calorie, super easy spin on this amazing dish. I’ll walk you through the recipe and ingredient substitutions below, and you’ll find a printable recipe card at the bottom of the post. Let’s roll!
Tex Mex Enchiladas Part One: Chili con Carne
These chili cheese enchiladas start with a simple ground beef chili. To make it, add a diced onion and bell or poblano pepper to a large skillet with a tablespoon of olive oil. Feel free to add more veggies or spicier chiles in this step.
Cook the veggies for a few minutes until they begin to soften before you add a pound of extra lean ground beef and break it apart to fully cook. Unlike my firecracker ground beef, you’re not looking to brown the ground beef or veggies. They’ll both cook down into tiny tender morsels in the chili.
However, there’s no harm in browning the ground beef on its own first to develop flavor via the Maillard reaction. Start the beef in a hot skillet on its own before adding the veggies after browning one side for a few minutes. See my ground beef and quinoa skillet for an example.
Once the ground beef is fully cooked, add a large can of crushed tomatoes and a packet of chili seasoning. I used the same Texas chili seasoning from my ground pork chili, but any store bought or homemade chili seasoning works here.
The final ingredient for these chili con carne enchiladas is beef broth. Any broth or even water works here, but a flavorful broth or stock will definitely add something to the finished dish. Let the chili con carne simmer away while you prepare the cheese stuffed tortillas.
Tex Mex Enchiladas Part Two: Cheese Stuffed Tortillas
Since these are meant to be low calorie enchiladas, the recipe calls for Carb Balance tortillas from Mission. This is a change from traditional corn tortillas, but these tortillas reduce the carb count and add a ton of fiber to the dish.
Ignore the different look of the tortillas in the photo below. I borrowed some process shots from my one skillet Traeger enchiladas here, which use a corn and flour blend.
For the cheese enchiladas mixture, you’ll need shredded Mexican cheese, light mayo, and garlic powder. My smoked enchiladas also incorporate sliced scallions, but those are optional. Reduced fat cream cheese, fat free Greek yogurt, or light sour cream would all be serviceable substitutes for light mayo.
You could reduce the fat content even further by swapping the cheese mixture for something like roasted vegetables, black or pinto beans, or another veggie filling. And there’s always the option to skip the filling altogether and go with something like the chopped corn tortillas in my green chile ground beef enchilada skillet.
Baking Skillet Enchiladas
Once you have your filling settled and tortillas rolled, it’s time to add them to the ground beef chili and top with more shredded Mexican cheese.
You should be able to fit 8 standard tortillas in an 11″ cast iron skillet with a tiny bit of space in between. Don’t worry if you have to squeeze the tortillas into a smaller skillet, they should still cook fine.
Side note: For an extra kick, you might consider adding sliced jalapeño on top like in my Texas tamale pie recipe.
Bake the cheesy ground beef enchiladas for 15-20 minutes at 400ºF to melt the cheese and thicken the chili con carne.
And there you have it—one pan enchiladas. Let’s look at some pairing ideas.
What to Serve with Tex Mex Ground Beef and Cheese Enchiladas
Starting with the garnish, these Tex Mex enchiladas are on the heavier side with the rich beef and chili and a healthy amount of cheese. Taking some time on the garnish will lighten and brighten the dish.
Think of fresh ingredients like avocado, cilantro or scallions, and lime or citrus. I also like to mix all of the above with a tangy ingredient like fat free Greek yogurt or light sour cream. A vinegar heavy hot sauce also adds a nice punch.
Other pairings and sides for enchiladas might include:
- refried canned black beans
- creamy avocado salsa verde
- skillet Mexican street corn salad
- creamy cilantro sauce
- Mexican cauliflower rice
- frijoles charros (charro beans)
That should cover all the bases. Drop any recipe questions you might have in the comments below. I hope you enjoy these Tex Mex enchiladas. If you do, I always appreciate recipe reviews!
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1 White Onion, diced
- 1 Bell Pepper or Poblano Pepper, diced
- 1 pound Ground Beef (96/4)
- 1 packet Chili Seasoning
- 28 oz can Fire Roasted Crushed Tomatoes
- 1 cup Beef Broth or Water
- 8 Mission Carb Balance Tortillas
- 6 oz Shredded Mexican Cheese, divided
- 1/4 cup (60g) Light Mayo
- 2 teaspoons Garlic Powder
- Preheat your oven to 400ºF and heat an oven safe skillet with olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and pepper and cook for 2-3 minutes until the veggies begin to soften before adding the ground beef. Break the beef apart and fully cook.
- Once cooked, add the chili seasoning, crushed tomatoes, and broth. Bring to a boil before reducing to a simmer for 10-15 minutes while you prepare the tortillas.
- In a bowl, mix together 3 oz shredded cheese with the mayo and garlic powder. Fill each tortilla with about 1 tablespoon (18-20g) of the cheese mixture and tightly roll.
- Place the rolled tortillas in the skillet, sealed side down, on top of the beef chili and top with the remaining cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes until the cheese is melted and the tortillas are golden brown around the edges. Garnish with avocado, cilantro, and fat free Greek yogurt, if desired.
Each serving weighs about 9.5 oz or 265g.
You can use 2 oz reduced fat or fat free cream cheese, fat free Greek yogurt, or light sour cream in place of mayo. Or you can use cheese on its own.
Search "Mason Woodruff One Skillet Tex-Mex Enchiladas" to log this recipe in MyFitnessPal.
Check out my green chile ground turkey skillet enchiladas next.
Serving Size:1 Enchilada
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 315Total Fat: 16gCarbohydrates: 33gProtein: 21g