Sunday, July 6, 2014

Secret Recipe Club: Beef and Bean Enchiladas

My partner for this month's Secret Recipe Club was Sarah of Things I Make (for Dinner).  As you probably know if you are a regular reader of the blog, I am kind of obsessed with enchiladas.  I often make them without any recipe, but when I saw Sarah's post on beef and bean enchiladas, I knew I wanted to try her version!  The filling is simple and tasty -- total comfort food filling.  You could easily make this with shredded chicken if you prefer that to beef.  And, I love making my own sauce.  This version is easier than using chiles or tomatillos, and way more delicious than sauce from a jar.  My only caveat is that the recipe makes a lot of sauce.  I am a big fan of saucy enchiladas, but I would recommend using only half the recipe if you are using flour tortillas (as I did), as they can get a little soggy with too much sauce.  If you want to go the extra saucy route, I recommend swapping out flour tortillas for corn, which tend to hold up a little better.  Thanks for a great recipe, Sarah -- we really enjoyed these!

Beef and Bean Enchiladas (adapted from Budget Bytes, via Things I Make (for Dinner))
Serves 4

For the sauce:
1 T vegetable oil
2 T all purpose flour
2 T chili powder
2 cups water
3 ounces tomato paste (half a small can)
2 tsp cocoa powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp garlic powder
Pinch cayenne pepper (more to taste)

For the enchiladas:
1 pound ground beef
1/2 packet taco seasoning (I used Trader Joe's brand)
1 can refried beans
10 taco-size tortillas (flour or corn -- your choice)
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and spray a 9x13 pan with oil.
2. Make the sauce.  In a medium pan, heat up the oil over medium heat.  Add the flour and chili powder.  Stirring constantly, wait for the mixture to bubble and then cook for one minute.  Slowly whisk in the water, and then whisk in the tomato paste, cocoa powder, salt, cumin, garlic powder, and cayenne.  Bring to a simmer, and cook until the sauce is slightly thickened.  Set aside.
3. Make the filling.  In a large skillet, brown the ground beef, breaking it up as you go.  Add the taco seasoning and cook for a few minutes.  Once the beef is cooked through, add the refried beans and stir together until they are heated through and nicely combined with the meat.
4. Wrap the tortillas in a damp paper towel and microwave for about 30 seconds until they are slightly warmed and pliable.
5. Spread a little bit of sauce in the bottom of the prepared pan.  Fill each tortilla with about 1/3 cup of the filling, roll up, and then arrange in the baking pan.  It will be a tight fit, but they should all go in.
6. Cover the enchiladas with the sauce.  I used all the sauce but felt like it was too much -- next time I would use half the sauce and freeze the other half for another time.
7. Sprinkle the enchiladas with the shredded cheese.
8. Cover with tin foil and bake 20-30 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbling.  Let rest for a few minutes before cutting into the enchialads and serving.


  1. Mmmmm...enchiladas. That sauce recipe is so worth it and so easy! Glad you enjoyed :)

  2. I am definitely going to have to try these! They look so yummy.

    I wonder if you could just make the entire sauce recipe and then freeze half - for even easier enchiladas next time?

  3. Great pick. I love enchiladas too, but never make them!

  4. I absolutely adore enchiladas!

  5. sounds like total comfort food. yum!