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Spinach Enchiladas

Despite the perceptions of many, Tex-Mex meals can be reasonably healthy! Today's recipe is a vegetarian dish, Spinach Enchiladas. I suggest you make the tomatillo sauce the day before. It's a great sauce and has many uses! You can keep the sauce around for a week in the refrigerator. Use it also on eggs, tacos, as a salsa. By the way, if you're in Austin and looking for good vegetarian enchiladas, go to Mother's Cafe.

September is National Biscuit Month Follow all of the national food holidays on our American Food Holidays page!

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Enjoy this Texas Cooking recipe and have a great week!


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Spinach Enchiladas with Tomatillo Sauce

Spinach-filled enchiladas served in a green "tomatillo sauce" is a South Texas favorite. This recipe is from The Enchilada Queen, who calls these Crystal City Enchiladas. Of course, Texans know that the small town south of San Antonio, Crystal City, is the state's Spinach Capitol. Enjoy these wonderful enchiladas.


Tomatillo Sauce

  • ½ large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic, minced or put through a garlic press
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 1 pound fresh tomatillos, husks removed, chopped

Spinach Filling

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • ½ cup chopped bell pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 11-ounce bags of fresh spinach


  • 3 cups shredded Monterrey Jack cheese
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • Cilantro

Make the Tomatillo Sauce:

  1. Loosen the husks by soaking the tomatillos in a bowl of cold water. Drain and peel off the husks.
  2. In a saucepan, cover the tomatillos and garlic in a saucepan halfway with water. Bring to a boil. Boil until the tomatillos become soft, about ten minutes.
  3. Drain the water from saucepan. Transfer the garlic and tomatillos to a blender and puree.
  4. In a medium saucepan, heat the 2 tablespoons of oil over medium heat. Sauté the onion and pureed tomatillos. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Bring to a simmer and cook for five minutes.

Make the Spinach Filling:

  1. Over medium heat, heat the oil in a large skillet until it shimmers.
  2. Add the onion, bell pepper and garlic. Cook until onion is soft and translucent but not browned, about 3 minutes.
  3. Add ¼ cup of water, the spinach and salt to the saucepan. Cover and lower the heat. After 2 to 3 minutes, check to see if the spinach has wilted. Once the spinach wilts, remove the lid and simmer over very low heat - about 4 to 6 minutes.
  4. Drain excess liquid.

Make the Enchiladas:

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. Lightly grease a 9x13-inch Pyrex dish.
  3. Place around one tablespoon of cheese and two tablespoons of the spinach filling in the center of the tortilla. Roll and place seam-side down in the baking dish. Repeat until all the tortillas are filled. Arrange them in the dish with 1/8" inch in between.
  4. Pour ¼ cup tomatillo sauce over each enchilada and spinkle the remaining cheese evenly with the remaining cheese.
  5. Heat the oil in a second skillet on medium heat. (It's ready when you see the oil "shimmer".) Have the corn tortillas ready.
  6. Bake for 7 to 10 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbly. Serve immediately.

Bonus Recipes - Migas with fresh tortillas, Chicken Flautas

Kitchen tools you'll need: 9x13 Baking Dish, Blender, Graters, Mixing Bowls, Oval Platters, Skillets, Tongs

Lone Star List

Here are 10 things that caught my eye this week!

  1. The Sweet Teaspoon: Pecan Pie Cups recipe, Imperial Sugar: German Chocolate Cupcakes
  2. Austin Chronicle: Local Austinites unwittingly declare new Subway brisket sandwich "the real deal" It's a trick!
  3. Texas Highways: 33 Roadside Restaurants for Your Next Texas Road Trip - These family-owned eateries around Texas are worth the drive.
  4. Dallas Morning News: Bootmaker Miron Crosby launching latest collection in Dallas after its runway debut in New York In a 166-year-old factory in Mercedes, Texas, artisans are pegging soles, sanding leather hides and using vintage sewing machines to affix colorful inlays for Dallas-based bootmaker Miron Crosby.
  5. Food & Wine: 4 Pro Tips on How to Assemble the Ultimate Cheese Board - There is no party snack like a great cheese board.
  6. New in the Book Pile!
    Smokelore: A Short History of Barbecue in America by Jim Auchmutey.
  7. Houston Chronicle J.C. Reid: Craft barbecue is reconnecting with its meat-market origins .
  8. MySA: Anthony Bourdain's estate getting auctioned; preview in New Braunfels!
  9. NYT Food: My mother's best (and only) dish - Baked Apples
  10. MySA: In time for Fall, 14 things to know about Lost Maples State Natural Area - two hours west of San Antonio in Vanderpool.

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