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Baked Chicken Enchilada Meatballs

Cheesy chicken enchilada meatballs served in homemade red enchilada sauce and loading with fresh toppings. Crunchy lettuce, onions, cilantro, avocado and crispy tortillas make for a super tasty Mexican inspired weeknight dinner.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Dinner
Servings: 15
Author: the communal feast

Ingredients

  • 2 lb ground chicken
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro finely chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/3 cup Monterey Jack shredded
  • 4 corn tortillas
  • tajin
  • toppings: romaine lettuce diced onions, cilantro, avocado, mexican crema or sour cream
  • Enchilada sauce:
  • 1 dried ancho chili
  • 2-3 guajillo chile peppers
  • 4 dried chile de Arbol
  • water
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 14 oz can san marzano tomatoes
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 chicken bouillon cube

Instructions

  • Bring a medium size pot filled with water to a boil. Use kitchen scissors to cut the tops off the chiles and remove all the seeds. Add the dried chiles for the enchilada sauce and let those simmer for 20 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  • For the meatballs: combine ground chicken, breadcrumbs, egg, and spices. Mix until just combined using your hands. Use a large cookie scoop to portion out the meatballs into even sizes. Coat your hands with a touch of olive oil and roll them out into even round balls. Transfer the meatballs into a large baking dish lightly coated with olive oil. Bake for 20 minutes.
  • Enchilada sauce: to a blender, transfer the mexican chiles, pour in 1/3 cup of the water from the pot, and add the remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth. Pour through a strainer to remove any extra seeds and skins that didn't blend well. You should be left with 1 1/2 cup of red sauce.
  • Once the meatballs have finished their initial bake time, combine the cream and the red sauce together and pour overtop the meatballs. Cover with foil and bake the meatballs another 10 minutes in the sauce. After 10 minutes, remove from the oven and cover with the shredded cheese. Return to the oven one last time, cooking uncovered for 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbling.
  • To make the crispy tortilla topping: cut the corn tortillas into quarters and cut into little strips. Heat a skillet with olive oil. Once hot, add the tortilla strips, season with some tajin and stir occasionally until crispy. About 3 minutes.
  • Serve topped with shredded lettuce, diced onions, chopped cilantro, avocado, jalapenos and drizzle with crema.

Notes

Enchilada sauce: if you don't have dried mexican chiles on hand easy substitutions are ancho chile powder or smoked paprika dried ancho chili) chipotle peppers in adobo which is easily found in grocery stores and thai bird chiles in place of arbol chiles which are quite spicy. Of course another option is to use store bought sauce as an alternative.