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What to Serve with Enchiladas: 11 Mexican Fiesta Hits

June 18, 2021 5 min read

What to Serve with Enchiladas: 11 Mexican Fiesta Hits

Wondering what to eat with enchiladas? We've built a list of the very best healthy Mexican side dishes to pair with these cheesy baked roll-ups. Check out some of the best side dish options below!

The 11 Best Mexican Classic Side Dishes for Enchiladas

#1: Homemade Tortillas & Tortilla Strips

Why bother with store-bought tortillas when you can wrap your enchiladas in homemade ones instead? All you need is some masa flour, water, and a tortilla press - you'll be making fresh tortillas in a few minutes flat! 

Wondering what sides to serve with chicken enchiladas? 

Use these tortillas in your enchiladas, and fry some to enjoy with some salsa or guac for a classic Mexican appetizer the whole family will enjoy with the simple recipe below. 

Homemade Tortilla Strips

Serves: 8

Prep Time: 5 mins

Cook Time: 15 mins

Ingredients
  • 4 tortillas
  • 4 tsp of cooking oil ( or 2 cups if frying)
Directions - Baked
  1. Lightly grease a large baking tray and preheat your oven to 350°F.
  2. While your oven preheats, slice your tortillas into long, thin strips or triangles for chips.  
  3. Once you cut your tortilla strips, place them onto your lightly greased baking tray.
  4. Lightly coat your strips in cooking oil, then place the baking trays into the oven. Your tortilla strips will take around 10 minutes to cook, but you can leave them for a few minutes longer if you prefer crispy tortilla strips.
  5. Flip the tortilla strips at the 5-min mark to ensure even cooking. 
  6. Once cooked, remove your trays from the oven. Allow the tortillas to cool and enjoy immediately, or store them away for later use. 
Directions - Fried
  1. Start by stacking your tortillas into a flat pile. Use a knife to slice the tortillas into long, thin strips.
  2. Place a large cast-iron skillet or wok onto the stovetop. Add 2 cups of frying oil (or enough to cover your tortilla strips). Heat the cooking oil until it's just starting to bubble.
  3. Once heated, place your tortilla strips into the oil in small batches to give them room to fry. Cook your tortilla strips in the oil for 5 minutes or until golden brown, turning them regularly.
  4. Once your crispy tortilla strips are golden, remove them from the pan and allow them to cool on paper towels.
  5. Repeat the process until you've cooked all your tortillas. Serve the strips immediately or store them for later use. 

#2: Refried Beans

One of the best sides to go with enchiladas are these refried beans. They're a high-protein option that tastes so much better at home. Combine sauteed veggies with pinto beans, hot sauce, and butter, then process them until almost smooth (we like to leave a few chunky beans in there). Sprinkle some fresh cilantro on top and a squeeze of lime for a fresh, tangy flavor! 

Serve with chips, or add these beans right into your enchilada rolls. 

#3: Beans and Rice

This side dish for chicken enchilada is quintessential to Mexican and Latin culture, with black beans, steamed rice, and sweet green peppers topped with fresh lime juice, cilantro, and cumin. Beans and rice are an excellent high-protein, hearty plant-based option for vegans, vegetarians, and meat-eaters alike. 

#4: Homemade Guacamole

There's a reason we're all obsessed with avocados - they're rich, they're delicious, and they're full of heart-healthy fats! They also make good side dishes to serve with enchiladas - make some simple homemade guacamole with mashed or pureed avocado, garlic, fresh lime, and salt. 

If you're feeling spicy, add some cilantro, chopped tomatoes, and green onion for a chunky guac/fresh salsa combination that tastes good on everything. 

#5: Mexican Cabbage Slaw

Fresh, zippy cabbage slaw cuts the richness of those cheesy enchiladas and offers a few extra servings of tasty veggies. We like to add cabbage, cumin, red onion, carrots, and apple cider vinegar to ours, but the options are endless for these Mexican vegetarian side dishes. 

#6: Grilled Sweet Onions

We first tried these thick-cut, sweet grilled onions a few years back, and they were a huge hit. We especially love to pair these good sides for enchiladas for a new spin on taco night. 

Serves: 4

Prep Time: 10 mins

Cook Time: 30 mins

Ingredients

  • 2 sweet onions
  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • Salt
  • Fresh ground pepper

Directions

  1. Hold one of the sweet onions with the root end pointing sideways over a cutting board.
  2. Push a BBQ skewer through the center part of the onion. It is best to position it around ¾-inch away from the root of the onion. Place the flat end of the skewer next to the onion within the circumference.
  3. Slice the root off of the onion on one side. On the other side of the onion's skewer, slice the onion so that the skewer goes through the slice's center.
  4. There should be a section of the onion's skewer sticking out and away from the onion. Cut this using a knife.
  5. Do the same with the remaining onion until both onions are sliced evenly. Aim for each slice to be around 3/4 of an inch thick. 
  6. Ensure no skewer pieces are sticking out of the onion by trimming them.
  7. Carefully brush olive oil on both sides of each slice. You can then season them with salt and pepper
  8. Heat your grill for 5-10 minutes.
  9. Set the grill burners to low and place the sweet onions on the grill. Cook the onion slices on the low burner, flipping them every 10 minutes until golden brown.
  10. Remove the onions from the grill when they are both golden brown and tender, typically 25-40 minutes.

#7: Spanish Rice

We know exactly what to make with enchiladas - this Spanish rice is actually Mexican-style fried rice with adobo sauce and salsa to give it that classic red hue. Hearty and a little spicy, it's the perfect blend and one of our favorite Mexican side dish recipes. 

#8: Salsa Fresca

One of the quintessential Mexican sides and appetizers is chips and salsa. Instead of a cooked red salsa, try making salsa fresca instead! 

Chopped ripe tomatoes, garlic, fresh lime, chopped onion, and jalapeno make a classic chunky salsa you can scoop right on top of enchiladas or on the side with some homemade tortilla chips. 

#9: Cucumber Avocado Tomato Salad

What salad goes with enchiladas? Bright, fresh veggies like these blend well to make a refreshing salad to go with enchiladas. 

Chop some cucumber, ripe tomatoes, and fresh avocado and mix with red onion, cumin, and a lime dressing to up your fiber and nutrient intake. 

#10: Elote / Mexican Street Corn

Mexican street corn is addictive. No wonder it's a massive hit at those street stands between the rich sour cream sauce, cheese, and spicy chili flavors. Just be sure to keep a few napkins on hand because things are bound to get messy!

#11: Grilled Avocado

Grilled avocado makes one of the most straightforward sides to serve with enchiladas. Heat the BBQ, cut your avocados in half, and grill them with the skin on for a delicious topping or side with your cheesy Mexican roll-ups. 

Final Notes on what to serve with enchiladas

Though we've gone classic with our side dishes, enchiladas are a nearly universal food and can pair well with dishes from all sorts of cuisines! 

Try one of our options above, or keep it simple with a fresh green salad or grilled potatoes. You can't go wrong when you're enjoying these cheese-filled delights!

Enjoyed this article? Check out our enchilada vs burrito article to learn even more! 


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