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From the kitchen: Chilaquiles {Two Ways}

May 1, 2013




Yesterday I spent the afternoon with one of my oldest friends (we met in the 5th grade!) as she tutored me in the art of making Chilaquiles (chee•lah•kee•lez). My friend Melinda has been making this traditional Mexican dish for our group of girlfriends for years. It’s the perfect hangover food – cheesy, easy to make, and superbly delicious. Chilaquiles are typically made for breakfast using leftovers from last nights dinner. Stale tortillas are fried to a crisp then combined with meats, cheeses and salsas. As with many Mexican dishes, variation is common depending on the region and personal preferences. We deviated a bit from Melinda’s usual all cheese variety and made a smokey chipotle chicken as well as a chorizo scramble version. Both were ridiculously tasty, but I think I was partial to the chipotle adaptation. Smokey adobo sauce combined with tart whole tomatoes, crispy chips, and melty cheese is a magical marriage of flavors. I could have eaten the whole skillet on my own! But I’m glad I had Melinda there to share the yumminess with. Friends who chilaquile together are friends for life! Now, go make these for your friends! -xo






Chipotle Chilaquiles with Chicken (adapted from Rick Bayless)

Makes about 4 servings


One 14-ounce can whole tomatoes, drained and 1/4 cup liquid reserve

1 chipotle in adobo + 1 tablespoon adobo sauce (TIP: buy a small can and freeze what you don’t use in a ziplock for later)

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1/2 large white onion, thinly sliced

2 garlic cloves, very finely chopped

3/4 chicken stock or low-sodium broth


3 cups corn tortillas, cut into triangles

1 1/2 cups shredded chicken (TIP: a store-bought rotisserie works really well here)

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese or queso añejo (more if desired)

1/3 cup sour cream

1/8 cup finely chopped cilantro leaves

1/8 cup chopped green onion

1 egg, fried (optional)


In a very large, deep skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add fresh tortilla chips and fry until browned and crispy, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a large plate lined with paper towel to drain while you prep everything else. Keep the empty skillet heating over a low flame.

In a blender, combine the tomatoes with their reserved 1/4 cup of liquid and the chipotle with adobo sauce; blend until almost smooth.

In the heated skillet, add the onion and cook over moderately high heat until browned around the edges, about 6 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Pour in the tomato puree and simmer, stirring, until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the stock and boil the sauce over moderately high heat until slightly thickened, about 8 minutes (longer if sauce seems too watery). Season with salt and remove from the heat.

Gently stir the tortilla chips into the sauce, making sure they are well coated. Top with the shredded chicken and the Parmesan cheese. Dollop the sour cream over the chilaquiles, sprinkle with the cilantro and green onion, and top with fried egg if desired. Serve immediately.


Chorizo & Egg Scramble Chilaquiles (adapted from my friend Melinda’s family recipe)

Serves 4-6


1/2 pound chorizo

4 eggs

3/4 cup (6oz.) El Pato Hot Tomato Sauce (found in the Hispanic foods section of your grocery store)

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

3 cups corn tortillas, cut into triangles

1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

1/3 cup sour cream

1/8 cup finely chopped cilantro leaves

1/8 cup chopped green onion


Whisk eggs in a small bowl. Set aside.

Squeeze chorizo out of its casing into a hot non-stick skillet. Cook over medium heat, breaking up with the back of a wooden spoon for 5 minutes. Add the eggs and stir together to combine. Continue cooking until eggs are fully cooked, about 5 minutes more. Transfer mixture to a clean dish and set aside.

In a separate, large, deep skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add fresh tortilla chips and fry until browned and crispy, about 8 minutes. Add tomato sauce and stir to coat the chips. Add chorizo mixture and cheese, stir well to combine evenly. Remove from heat. Top with sour cream, cilantro and green onion. Serve immediately.


21 Comments leave one →
  1. May 1, 2013 3:48 am

    I finished my lunch half an hour back and just sat down to read your post, i am already hungry. Craving for nothing but ‘chilaquiles’ (btw how do u say that).

  2. May 1, 2013 4:01 am

    This looks great, I want to eat it now. Thanks, will have to make it !

  3. May 1, 2013 4:47 am

    I just love your blog! Beautiful pictures…

  4. May 1, 2013 5:30 am

    My mouth is watering right now! That’s my kind of lunch! Delish! Give me a squeeze of lime and I’m in food bliss!

  5. BLYSS chocolate permalink
    May 1, 2013 6:26 am

    wow fantastic! am in love!

  6. May 1, 2013 7:22 am

    Perfect timing! I was just looking for a recipe like this. Thanks for sharing:)

  7. May 1, 2013 7:40 am

    Oh my gosh, I love chilaquiles so much.

    I made this altered version of chile colorado this weekend for a nacho night with our friends. I wanted to make it a little more enchilada sauce-like because we used to get this amazing nachos from a place near our school in North Portland that would use the sauce to melt the cheese. Anyway, the sauce turned out perfectly and after a liberal dousing of it on all of our meals, we still had leftovers. My friend stole my leftover sauce, made chilaquiles with it for breakfast the next morning and then sent me a picture! So now I’m doubly jealous of your beautiful meal. I’ll have to write about that recipe sometime. It was really good.

  8. May 1, 2013 10:06 am

    Love Mexican cuisine :) this looks delicious!

  9. May 1, 2013 10:46 am

    I love chiaquiles! I make them with a tomatillo salsa. They are so delicious and flavorful. I love your variations.

  10. May 1, 2013 10:53 am

    amazing! i used to live near a little taco truck and they had the best chilaquiles. i miss that truck so much, but i will have to make these recipes in its honor!

  11. May 1, 2013 10:55 am

    These sound and look amazing!

  12. May 1, 2013 6:56 pm

    Reblogged this on All Fried Were the Western Chicken and commented:
    Thought this looked amazing and wanted to show y’all chickeneers~
    -Raining Chocolate

  13. May 1, 2013 9:28 pm

    I can’t get over your photographs. Absolutely breathtaking. I have made chilaquiles before…I do not recall it being as gorgeous as this! :)

  14. melinda permalink
    May 1, 2013 9:58 pm

    that adobo sauce was insane!! xoxo, had so much fun =)

  15. Mert Parsons permalink
    May 2, 2013 7:30 am

    Fabulous post, Paola! The photographs are so amazing that we can almost taste the food!
    XOX, Mert

  16. October 28, 2013 6:22 am

    I love your blog. I love your detailed posts with all the photos

  17. May 2, 2014 9:37 pm

    oh. wow. I’m so excited to make this now. thank you!!

  18. May 3, 2014 7:04 am

    Oh my gosh, so much amazingness in one dish, I don’t think I can handle it! Wow!!


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