Easy Turkey Enchiladas

I started making turkey enchiladas many years ago as a way to use up turkey leftovers after Thanksgiving. They are amazingly fast to pull together, meaning you’ll impress family and friends with something that seems complicated but is super-easy (don’t tell!). And these enchiladas are naturally gluten-free.

If you don’t have turkey, substitute leftover chicken. Or make them vegetarian with grilled or roasted vegetables. While I like to do the traditional rolled-up version of enchiladas, sometimes, I substitute what I call an enchilada pie: I layer tortillas, sauce, meat or veggies, and a bit of cheese (sort of like a lasagna). When made like this, the end result reminds me of chilaquiles.

Be prepared to work assembly-line style by having all your ingredients lined up and ready to go before you get started.

A note about store-bought enchilada sauces: to my surprise, many of the sauces I see on market shelves are not gluten-free. In this recipe, I use tomatillo salsa with some green chiles in place of green enchilada sauce — I love how it adds tanginess to the dish. For enchiladas made with a red sauce, I start with my own Red Chile Sauce, adding flavors to suit my mood.

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Easy Turkey Enchiladas

By Kassia Krozser Published: September 30, 2013

  • Yield: 6 Servings
  • Prep: 20 mins
  • Cook: 35 mins
  • Ready In: 60 mins

While this started as a way to use up leftover turkey, this gluten-free dish is flexible enough to accommodate many meats, sauces, and variations.



  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Make the sauce by combining the salsa, green chiles, and 1 teaspoon cumin in a blender. Blend until reasonably smooth. Pour the blended mixture into a saucepan and heat. Taste your sauce, and adjust the seasonings as needed. You want the sauce to be heated through, but not too hot to touch.
  3. Place about 1/2 cup of the sauce in a bowl large enough to dip your tortillas, reserve the rest.
  4. Add the olive oil to a skillet and heat until shimmering. Add the onions and saute until very soft and translucent. Add the garlic and saute for one minute. Add the remaining teaspoon of cumin and saute for about 30 seconds or until very fragrant. Add the turkey and saute until heated through.
  5. Ladle approximately 1/3 cup of the sauce mix into the bottom of baking pan (13 x 9 is a good size) or spray the entire pan with cooking spray.
  6. Ladle approximately 1/3 cup of the sauce mix into the bottom of baking pan (13 x 9 is a good size) or spray the entire pan with cooking spray. Dip one tortilla into the sauce in the bowl and lay flat on a working surface. Spread about 1/4 cup of the turkey mixture onto the bottom third of the tortilla. If using cheese, sprinkle a small handful of cheese over the turkey. Roll the tortilla and place in the baking dish. Repeat with the remaining tortillas.
  7. Ladle the remaining sauce over the tortillas, cover with foil, and bake for 35 minutes. Let rest for about five minutes before serving.
  8. For serving, drizzle crema over the enchiladas.

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