Chile Relleno Enchiladas [Gluten Free] - Robust Recipes (2024)

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Are you familiar with chiles relleno?

They’re so, so good. One of my favorite things to order at a Mexican restaurant, but when I set out to make them at home I felt overwhelmed.

I wanted to make an easier spin on chiles rellenos without as much work. This recipe for chile relleno enchiladas was inspired by Laura in the Kitchen. Thanks Laura for the idea to turn a time consuming recipe into something more manageable.

Chile relleno enchiladas are corn tortillas stuffed with roasted poblano peppers, melty monetary jack cheese, and cooked in a simple red sauce. It gives you the comfort of enchiladas with the exciting exotic treat of chile rellenos. A hybrid of two wonderful Mexican dishes.

We couldn’t get enough! I bet you will love them too!

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What are Chiles Relleno?

Chile rellenos in Spanish means “stuffed chilis”.

Literally any chili pepper can be stuffed with either cheese, or meat, or a combination. Then, it is often breaded and pan fried in a decent amount of oil so the exterior gets crispy.

The way that I have mostly had chiles relleno is made using a roasted poblano pepper that is stuffed with cheese. It is coated in a wet breading mixture and then fried. It is served with some kind of red sauce.

They come to your table piping hot, melty, and so delicious. A real decadent treat.

Just from the description of what a chile relleno is, I bet you can gather why I felt a little intimidated to make them. Not to mention the fact that I usually try to avoid recipes that are fried in oil.

That’s what is so fun about these chile relleno enchiladas. You get the best of both worlds. The flavor of chiles relleno without all the fuss, or frying in oil.

Are chiles relleno gluten free?

No. Not usually.

Traditionally the pepper is dredged in a flour and egg mixture and then fried. It creates a lovely, crunchy exterior on the peppers. However, unless there is a gluten free flour blend being used (and I bet most restaurants aren’t using a gluten free flour), the chile relleno isn’t likely gluten free.

Is this chile relleno enchiladas recipe gluten free though?


An easy way to keep these enchiladas gluten free is to use corn tortillas for the enchiladas.


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What kind of peppers are used in chile relleno enchiladas?

I used poblano peppers.

Although, a variety of chili peppers can be used to make chiles relleno, I am most familiar with the dish being served using poblano peppers.

Roasted poblano peppers, to be exact!

(Which is why the photo above the peppers are all charred. Roasting peppers is one of my fave things to do!)

Are poblano peppers spicy?

No. Not super spicy.

Poblano peppers can have a slight, mild heat, spicier then a sweet bell pepper. However, they are usually quite mild – nothing like jalapeno peppers.

Especially since we remove the seeds, where the heat lives, you won’t have much heat. Although, peppers can vary. I did get one or two bites that had a nice pleasant kick to them, but nothing that had me sweating.

So, non-spicy lovers rejoice. This recipe is for you too!

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What is the sauce?

Traditionally chiles relleno is served with a salsa roja. Which, translates to “red sauce”.

I used a sauce that is usually served with chile rellenos, rather than an enchilada sauce to give it more of that chile relleno vibe.

It is made using a combo of fresh tomatoes, garlic, cilantro, shallot, jalapenos (the sauce isn’t spicy), and spices. Everything is simply blended together until smooth, and then the sauce is simmered on the stove for a few minutes, just to give it a nice cooked flavor.

So easy!

I adapted my sauce recipe from Isabel Easts. She is the queen of Mexican recipes. I so need to try more of her recipes. Thanks Isabel.

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Ingredients for chile relleno enchiladas:

  • poblano peppers
  • Roma tomatoes
  • cilantro
  • shallot
  • jalapenos (for the sauce)
  • tomato paste
  • kosher salt
  • smoked paprika
  • cumin
  • dried oregano
  • avocado oil
  • chicken broth, vegetable broth, or water
  • Monterey jack cheese, shredded
  • corn tortillas

That’s all you need! That’s the whole ENCHILADA!!! 🤣😉

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Why you will love chile relleno enchiladas:

  • they’re cheesy – duh!
  • they’re Gluten free
  • they’re Vegetarian
  • Serves 6, ideal for feeding a crowd.
  • take less then 1 hour to make (about 45 minutes)
  • the perfect dish to help you celebrate Cinco de Mayo!!!

(especially if they’re served with a refreshing margarita).

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Are these enchiladas good for leftovers?

Yes and no.

Yes, because they are still delicious cheesy, saucy enchiladas that fill you up.

No, because like any enchiladas recipe, they are at their best when they are fresh from the oven.

Still, we personally loved every bite of leftover enchiladas! But, we are huge fans of leftovers in this house!

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I hope you enjoy these chile relleno enchiladas as much as we did. It’s always fun to a use a dish I love and make it into something new.

Oh, the endless possibilities of being a recipe developer.

Now, go. Make yourself a margarita and start cooking up some delicious chile relleno enchiladas!


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More Cinco de Mayo and Mexican inspired recipes for you to try:

  • vegan cashew queso
  • easiest pitcher margaritas (made in a blender)
  • homemade salsa (so easy)
  • lentil quesadillas (also vegetarian)
  • easy chicken enchilada casserole
  • smoky instant pot chicken tinga tacos
  • sofritas burrito bowls

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When you make this recipe please leave a comment below, along with a star rating. This helps to support my blog, plus I always enjoy hearing from you. Thanks, friends!

A note about the new nutrition facts attached to the recipe card: As of the publication of this post, I am now including the nutrition ingredients for each recipe. They will be on each new recipe going forward. I will gradually work to update older recipe posts with the nutrition facts.

Please keep in mind that these nutrition facts are always an estimation. Nutrition facts can vary depending on any substitutions you may use (which I often give suggestions for), and varying brands for products you may use (ex: different brands of tortilla shell nutrition facts may vary). Still, I hope you find it to be a helpful tool.

If there is an older recipe that you would like to see the nutrition facts for, leave a comment on that post letting me know, and I will put it at the top of my list to update. Thanks! 😊


Chile Relleno Enchiladas [Gluten Free] - Robust Recipes (11)

Chile Relleno Enchiladas

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  • Author: Emily
  • Prep Time: 20 mins
  • Cook Time: 26 mins
  • Total Time: 46 minutes
  • Yield: 12 enchiladas (about 6 servings) 1x
  • Category: entrée, dinner, easy
  • Method: blending, roasting, baking
  • Cuisine: gluten free, vegetarian, egg free, meatless, nut free
  • Diet: Gluten Free
Print Recipe


Chile relleno enchiladas are a twist on the traditional Mexican dish, chiles relleno. Enchiladas stuffed with cheese and roasted poblano peppers, and cooked in a homemade red sauce. Simple, and delicious!




  • 3 to 4 poblano peppers


  • 10 Roma tomatoes
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, including stems (Plus extra leaves, for garnish)
  • 1 small shallot
  • 1 to 2 jalapenos, seeded
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 cup avocado oil (or grapeseed oil)
  • 1/2 cup low sodium chicken broth, or vegetable broth (or sub water)

Remaining Enchilada ingredients

  • 3 to 4 cups (15 to 16 ounces) Monterey jack cheese, shredded (see notes)
  • 12 soft corn tortilla shells


  1. Roast the poblanos: There are two ways to roast poblanos. Gas burner method: place each poblano pepper onto an open flame on a gas burner. Allow the pepper to char on one side until it’s nice and black – about 2 to 3 minutes. Use tongs to carefully rotate the pepper onto the other side for another 2 minutes, or until most of the skin of the pepper is nicely charred. You can have more then one burner going at a time with this method. Oven broiler method: Place the poblano peppers on a sheet pan and place them under the broiler, as close as you can get them. Allow them to broil 3 to 4 minutes per side, until they are nicely charred and blackened. With both methods be sure to not walk away during the process. Once the peppers are charred, transfer them to a mixing bowl and cover them for 15 minutes. This allows the steam to loosen the charred skin of the peppers.
  2. Pre-heat your oven: Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. Make the sauce:To a blender add half of the ingredients, as much as will fit. Note: if you are using a high speed blender you can probably leave all of the ingredients whole. If you are not using a high speed blender, then you can cut the ingredients into chunks to help things blend up easier. Once half of the ingredients are blended, add the remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth, scraping down the sides as needed.
  4. Simmer the sauce: Transfer the sauce to a medium sauce pot. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer. Allow the sauce to simmer or 2 to 3 minutes, or until the sauce has turned a light orange-y pink color, and has reduced slightly. Remove from the heat. Taste for seasoning, and adjust as needed. Set aside.
  5. Finish the peppers: Once the peppers have cooled enough to handle, use a paper towel to peel off the charred skin, it should come off easily – you can use the stem as a handle for holding. The peppers don’t need to be perfect here, you can leave some of the charred skin on. Once all of the peppers have most of their skin removed, slice off the stem end and remove the seeds, cut the peppers in to strips.
  6. Assemble the enchiladas: To a 9×13 casserole dish, add 1 1/2 cups of the sauce to the bottom of the pan, spread into an even layer. Take a corn tortilla shell and add a small handful of the shredded Monterrey jack cheese to the tortilla shell, then add several strips of the roasted poblano pepper to the shell, roll the tortilla shell up, and place the tortilla seam side down in the pan. Repeat until you have filled up your entire baking dish (mine fit 12 enchiladas). Ladle about 1 to 1/2 cups of sauce over top of the enchiladas so that they have a nice coating (you may not use all of the sauce). Sprinkle another 1 to 1/2 cups of cheese on top of the enchiladas (depending on how cheesy you want your enchiladas to be is up to you – for the sake of pictures I used the entire 16 ounces of cheese, but I used less the other time I made it, either is delicious).
  7. Bake: Bake the enchiladas for 20 to 23 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly, and the cheese is a little charred on top.
  8. Serve: Cut into the enchiladas using a spatula and transfer the enchiladas to your serving plates. Garnish with cilantro leaves, if desired. Enjoy.


Cheese: I highly recommend shredding your own cheese. Pre-shredded cheese is coated with anti-caking agents so it doesn’t melt as nicely. I like to use either a box grater, or the shredding blade on my food processor.

Leftovers: The leftover enchiladas do re-heat fairly well, but of course, they aren’t quite as good as when fresh.

Leftover sauce: You will likely have leftovers sauce on hand. You could use it for other enchiladas, tacos, quesadillas, burritos, etc.

Nutrition facts: Nutrition facts are an estimation. They are calculated using 3 cups of cheese (versus 4 cups). Also, not all of the sauce was used in the final recipe.

Recipe is inspired by Laura in the kitchen. The chile relleno sauce is adapted from Isabel Eats.

Keywords: enchiladas, Cinco de Mayo, gluten free enchiladas, chile relleno, Mexican recipe, dinner, entree, vegetarian, meatless, vegetarian enchiladas

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Chile Relleno Enchiladas [Gluten Free] - Robust Recipes (2024)


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