Skip the tortilla and in just 20 minutes of prep, you’ll have one of the tastiest low carb dinners out there: enchilada in a bowl!
I came up with this idea after making zucchini enchiladas, which are so dang tasty, but pretty time consuming to make the filling and roll.
And since I’m always looking for low carb recipes that are easy without any compromise in flavor, I realized I could turn my favorite enchilada filling into a low carb bake, then spoon it over fresh cauliflower rice (similar to my egg roll in a bowl recipe).
And it was a hit with the ENTIRE FAM. I think you’ll feel the same way, so let’s dive in!
So many reasons to LOVE these tasty bowls. To name a few:
- All the BEST parts of an enchilada, without the carbs. Who needs tortillas, it’s all about that filling baby!
- Quick and super easy! Whether you’re making high or low carb enchiladas, they’re extremely time-consuming to roll, stuff, and layer. Here we’re skipping 2 of those steps by making a simple bake you can eat with a fork!
- A delicious way to enjoy chicken, because chicken can get boring after a while.
- An awesome way to spice up your meal plan! This dish is loaded with flavor and textures, and a great way to mix things up if you’re tired of the same old same old.
Have I told you how easy this enchilada in a bowl recipe is to make?! Here’s all you need to know:
Low carb vegetables – I used onion and bell peppers for the classic flavors. Feel free to mix in your faves.
Enchilada sauce – These come in all sorts of heat levels, so make sure you like the amount of spice on the product you choose. I love Trader Joe’s brand (it’s spicy!).
Also, be leary of enchilada sauce with added sugar.
Taco seasoning – Storebought taco seasoning is loaded with sugar and/or cornstarch, so I stick to my low carb taco seasoning — and it only takes 5 minutes to throw together!
Chicken – No need to get fancy with the chicken here, as we’re adding loads of flavor elsewhere. I typically poach chicken for this dish (instructions below in the recipe notes), but you can use any shredded chicken you have/buy.
Low carb cheese – I LOVE adding cottage cheese to the filling for a bit of extra protein and creamy flavor. It can be swapped with sour cream or Greek yogurt.
We’ll be using shredded cheddar cheese, which you can swap with your favorite — Mexican cheese blend, pepper jack, you name it!
Low carb rice – We love to serve this dish over “rice”. Great options for this include: cauliflower rice (easy to grab a bag at the store), broccoli rice, or Miracle Rice (not my fave, but some people love it).
Tools To Make
One simple kitchen tool is all you’ll need for this enchilada in a bowl recipe: An oven-safe pan to saute the veggies then melt everything together.
You can use a pan and a casserole dish for this if your pan isn’t oven-safe.
Can You Freeze This?
Totally! Freeze before or after baking for easy to reheat meals.
There are SO many delicious ways to enjoy this enchilada bowl recipe — think of these as a dish you’d order from your favorite Mexican food joint and base your sides around that! Some of our favorites include:
- Over your favorite rice substitute (options shared above)
- Alongside low carb tortilla chips to dip in the extra sauce
- Get funky with your toppings, such as: pepitas for a delicious crunch or a generous dollop of guacamole, and always cilantro/lime/jalapenos.
- Scooped into tortillas of choice, such as these cheese taco shells or these almond flour tortillas.
Check out these enchilada in a bowl recipe variations for the meal that best suits your cravings:
- Switch up the protein. We’ve got the sauce and ratios down below, so if you have a different type of protein on hand, consider using that instead. Shrimp, beef, turkey, you do you!
- Turn this recipe into a low carb soup. Simply add chicken broth for a low carb chicken enchilada soup.
- This can also be turned into a low carb Mexican casserole by including your rice substitute in the bake and cooking everything together. Low carb casseroles are an easy way to feed the whole fam.
- Scoop this over your favorite veggies. One of my Mom’s classic dishes is zucchini enchilada boats (grab the recipe here), you can also do it over a bed of broccoli and cauliflower.
Can get enough of all the South of the border flavors?? ME NEITHER! Here are some more low carb Mexican food recipes:
- Cauliflower Mac and Cheese
- Loaded Cauliflower Casserole
- Keto Chicken and Dumplings
- Ground Chicken Casserole
- Cauliflower Rice Casserole
Enchilada in a BowlPrint Recipe Pin Recipe
- 2 Tablespoons Mild Tasting Oil (see notes below)
- 1 Cup Onion chopped
- 1 Bell Pepper Chopped
- 1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
- 1/2 Teaspoon Pepper
- 4 Ounce Can Green Chilies diced
- 4 Tablespoons Low Carb Taco Seasoning or 1 (1.25-ounce) package taco seasoning
- 1/4 Cup Water
- 3 Cups Chicken cooked + shredded
- 1 Cup Cottage Cheese
- 3 Cups Sharp Cheddar Cheese shredded
- 12 Ounce Jar Red Enchilada Sauce
- Cauliflower Rice
- Shred the chicken. See notes below* on how to poach the chicken.
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
- Heat vegetable oil (2 tablespoons) in a large oven-safe pan over medium heat.
- Once shimmering, add chopped onion (1 cup) and chopped bell pepper (1). Saute until soft, about 10 minutes.
- Turn off the heat in the pan, and stir in salt (1 teaspoon), pepper (1/2 teaspoon), diced green chilis (4 Ounces), taco seasoning (4 tablespoons), and water (1/4 cup). Stir until the taco seasoning dissolves.
- Add shredded chicken (3 cups), cottage cheese (1 cup), red enchilada sauce (12 Ounces), and cheddar (1 cup). Stir until well combined and the chicken is coated in sauce.
- Sprinkle remaining cheddar (2 cups) on top.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, or until heated through and the cheese starts to brown around the edges.
- Serve over cauliflower rice and top with your favorites. Enjoy!
Fans Also Made These Low Carb Recipes:
- Mild Tasting Oil. You want an oil with a high smoke point and mild flavor -- think avocado, vegetable, safflower, sunflower, peanut. Skip EVOO, coconut, or sesame oil.
- To poach chicken: Place chicken and a generous amount of salt and pepper in a large pot and cover with 1" of water. Bring water to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and let the chicken simmer for 15 minutes. Cut into chicken and make sure it's cooked through. Allow the chicken to rest 10 minutes before shredding.