PW Wednesdays: White chicken enchiladas

White chicken enchiladas

We’re back! I feel like the two week hiatus between PW Wednesdays are like one long commercial break and we need an announcer in the background saying “stay tuned for what crazy (loaded with cream, butter and other fat) kind of dish will they will be making next!”

Well, the wait is over. We’ve got white chicken enchiladas on the menu today thanks to Tina.

White chicken enchiladas from Pioneer Woman

Honestly, this dish was a bitch to make. Good thing it was tasty. Super tasty. Like really good even after sitting around for 6 hours tasty (welcome to the life of a food blogger forever chasing natural light and making husbands eat mushy food hours later). It’s one of those dishes that leaves your kitchen a disaster zone no matter how much you try to clean as you go.

Step 1: make and shred chicken (30 minutes in and of itself)

Step 2: roast peppers, suffocate them in a plastic bag, peel their skins off and chop them (another 45 minutes)

Step 3: make the filling and sauce (15 minutes or so)

Step 4: bake (25 minutes)

See what I mean? It’s a time consuming bitch.

I even made the chicken and roasted the peppers the day before I made this to save some time and it was still time consuming and transformed my kitchen into a hot mess.

Per usual, Ree’s ingredient quantities are totally overkill. To feed 8, it calls for no less than 1 1/2 cups heavy cream, 1 cup sour cream, 1/2 stick of butter and 2 1/2 cups of cheese.

Also per usual, I didn’t follow directions. It’s a recurring theme in my life.

I halved the recipe and then even further reduced certain items and/or substituted them entirely (mostly those fatty ones above). The result was a super spicy (I used serrano peppers in my mix which are a bit hotter than your typical jalapeno), perfectly creamy (without being overkill) and cheesy chicken enchilada. Besides my beloved carnitas, this is probably my favorite recipe we’ve done so far.

Cheesy white chicken enchiladas

I’m learning to look at this book as more of a guideline than an actual recipe because it’s got some great ideas, it’s just that the execution is usually either off or not my cup of tea (read excessively fattening).

Although, one thing I’ve got to hand it to Ree on is making incredibly photogenic dishes. I swear her food just “pops” on the screen and usually makes me (like right now) wish I was eating it again even though it’s 11pm at night and I’m still stuffed from dinner.

For the recipe to these bad boys check out Tina’s blog.

And for other tasty recounts click away below!

Julie- Table for Two

Megan- Wanna be a Country Cleaver

Rachel- Baked by Rachel


Missed some of the previous PW Wednesday posts? Search no more…

Breakfast Pizza

Carnitas Pizza

Mushroom Swiss Sliders

Fried Chicken Tacos



  1. Kathryn

    It sounds like all of you had the same issues with the recipe and it does seem like an enormous amount of cream/cheese for one dish! The final product looks really really good though and I love your spicy additions.

  2. Anne

    Doesn’t seem like it is time consuming to me. Those times should overlap. Or are you expecting it to be done and baked in 30 minutes?

    1. Gina

      It’s not that I expected it to be done in 30 minutes, but more than an hour is excessive in my opinion for a weeknight meal. The steps can’t all be overlapped b/c making the sauce is very hands on and needs your full attention (making a roux, etc.) so if you are trying to shred chicken at the same time, you’d be screwed. Also, the peppers need attention to be roasted either on the grill or under the broiler to flip and roast consistently. Then they need 30 minutes in a sealed bag so you can be able to peel off the skins which in and of itself takes another 5-10 minutes to do + chopping. Personally, if I had tried to get the sauce and filling going while doing those other things, it would’ve been a disaster.

  3. Julie @ Table for Two

    completely agree with you! this book is definitely more of a guideline and you basically create your own method. i like how it allows us to be creative though, like we’ll take the base recipe and run with it. yours turned out great, and a lot healthier looking than mine haha

  4. Aparna B. @ Not A Leaf

    I’m with you 100%. Her recipes might be “Made for cowboys” but her typical reader ISN’T a cowboy so having a meal full of that kind of fat and horribleness isn’t my cup of tea :\ I almost always do what you do: See her recipe, then find a way to make it figure friendly, healthy and in my case, vegetarian. Not always successful but oh well. I gotta say Gina, I don’t even eat meat and these look delicious!

  5. katie @KatieDid

    yeah I try to avoid laborious meal making. Most of my meals are throw together 5 minute meals. This looooks great though, as all of her recipes always do. A little extra fat works magic.

  6. Megan {Country Cleaver}

    High five on the anti-corn tortilla movement. Seriously, I am so glad I halved the recipe and cut down the cream. It was nutso. If I was going to burn off 5,000 calories a day I would make this full-walrus version no problem, but since I sit on my ass at a computer all day – there is no way I can justify the excess cream.

  7. Cait's Plate

    I really need to delve into the whole enchilada thing. For whatever reason they seem so intimidating to me, but I need to get over that like yesterday because they look too good to pass up.

    1. Gina

      This was actually my first time making enchiladas b/c I too thought them to be super complicated. This recipe definitely doesn’t help dismiss that notion with all it’s steps but it helped me realize that they’re unnecessary and these are totally a doable weeknight meal with some tweaks in the process ;)

  8. Kat

    LOVE it! I always change up the recipes….it’s like I’m allergic to following directions (my husband would probably laugh at this comment).

  9. Nicole, RD

    Haha, I love your honesty. Sometimes dishes are worth all that effort, but only if you have the time. Have you ever tried shredding chicken in a stand mixer with the paddle attachment? Works AMAZING. My husband thinks it’s magical, I swear. He is also happy to be relieved of the daunting, time-consuming task of shredding chicken :)

    1. Running to the Kitchen Post author

      oh my gosh, so funny you said that. Rachel @bakedbyrachel showed that on instagram the day before I made these and so I actually tried it with this dish. I cannot believe how well it works! Life changing!

  10. Margarita

    Whoa! The original recipe sounds like a heart attack waiting to happen… I have made enchiladas before and like your version, it turned out just as great without all the excessiveness. Your enchiladas look amazing. How in the world did you keep your tortillas together, everytime I make enchiladas, mine always fall apart. They taste good, just not pretty. :(

    1. Running to the Kitchen Post author

      haha, it took a lot of careful extraction from the dish to get them to stay together!

    1. Running to the Kitchen Post author

      My mom actually got it for me and I’m pretty sure it was Homegoods (like every kitchen prop/dish I own :))

    1. Gina

      haha, yeah these posts are more of sharing an “experience” than a “go run out and make it right now” kind of thing ;) Especially this one!

  11. Cinnamon @ eatpraytri

    Wow…those are some seriously heavy ingredients. Sounds like you made great substitutions. This would probably be good to make and maybe freeze and then just thaw and bake for dinner one night. Hmmm….I love making enchiladas. You can really just be so creative with them!

  12. Jenn L @ Peas and Crayons

    You do realize I’m really jealous I’ve lost you on Wednesdays right? =) hehe! Though the PW posts are always drool worthy annnnd I get ya in real life at some point this summer — so i’ll survive! <3

    Happy wednesday biiiotch — keep chasing the light — your photos rock!

  13. Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love.

    I feel like I’m always trying to lighten recipes up. I try to think of it as a fun game! You did a great job with these! Looks like all you ladies cut down on the cream and fat. 1 1/2 cups of cream is just insane! Maybe to cut some of the time next time, you can just get a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store? I use them all the time when I know I need shredded chicken!

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