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Beef Picadillo Enchiladas

Enchiladas are one of the best Mexican dishes around. The crisp yet soft corn tortillas filled with meat and topped with cheese are by now a classic. But, this Cuban way of making the dish uses picadillo- a spiced, sweet-and-savory beef mixture- to make it a truly special meal.

The ground beef in this recipe is mixed with a few unusual ingredients to liven up the whole dish.

To start with you’ll need some Chine five-spice. This blend can sometimes be found in grocery stores. But, if like me you can’t find it you can make it yourself. Toast some star anise, fennel seed, and peppercorns on the stovetop until fragrant. Then grind them and combine them with ground cinnamon and ground cloves- 1 teaspoon of each ingredient. This will make more than what’s needed for this recipe, but you can bottle it and save for other recipes.

Some of the other ingredients that make this filling special are golden raisins and sliced green olives. It might sound like too much, but trust me- it all works perfectly together in this recipe. It’s flavorful and dynamic and the subtle sweetness really brings it all together.

This sauce is loaded with meat. And, it’s not too spicy which makes it a good choice for mixed crowds or those who don’t like it hot.

Beef Picadillo Enchiladas

Two kinds of cheese on top make this a special dish as well. Cheddar and queso fresco means that every single bite is full of creamy deliciousness.

These enchiladas are so unique and tasty that they might just be my new favorite!

Beef Picadillo Enchiladas

Yield(s): 6-8 servings

30m prep time

35m cook time

586 calories

Rated 5.0 out of 5
Rated by 1 reviewers

Allergens: Corn, Milk

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  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 (14 oz) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup green olives, sliced
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 14-16 (6”) corn tortillas
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1/2 cup crumbled queso fresco
  1. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Add 1 tablespoon oil to large skillet. Heat oil over medium-high heat and add onion and pepper. Cook for 5 minutes then add beef, Chinese five-spice, cumin, coriander, salt, and pepper. Cook for 8 minutes or until beef is browned. Stir in tomatoes, olives, and raisins. Bring to simmer for 2 minutes. Taste and add salt and/or pepper if needed. Remove from heat.
  2. Add remaining oil to clean skillet and heat over medium. Fry each tortilla for 10 seconds on each side.
  3. Add a couple spoonfuls of meat sauce to bottom of 9”x13” baking dish. Place 1/4 cup sauce and a sprinkle of cheddar cheese in the center of tortilla. Roll up tightly and add to pan. Repeat for remaining tortillas. Spoon remaining sauce over enchiladas followed by remaining cheddar and all the of the queso fresco. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until cheese is melted and browned at edges.

Recipe adapted from Food Network.