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Enfrijoladas is a dreamy traditional Mexican dish. Enfrijoladas originated in Mexico with a universal problem, leftover food and not wanting any of it to go to waste. Traditionally this dish was made using stale tortillas dipped in leftover frijoles from the night before. Leave no food behind.

Enfrijoladas are similar to enchiladas. Enfrijoladas are made by soaking a tortilla in black bean puree, frying it, folding it onto itself, baking and sprinkling them with Mexican table cream and crumbled cheese. An Enchilada is a corn tortilla rolled around a filling and covered with a savory sauce that can be filled with many different ingredients, including meats, cheese, beans, potatoes, vegetables, or combinations.

Our Enfrijoladas Recipe is inspired by the traditional Mexican custom, but we added a modern take. In this recipe we aren’t frying them before baking and we fill them with a small amount of pulled chicken and melted cheese. This helps keeps the meal a little lighter and simpler. In about 40 minutes you have a filling and distinct meal. 

When I traveled through the Mexican Riviera I ate and drank delicious foods, but I felt as though I had tasted it all before. But when I made it to Puerto Vallarta it was a breath of fresh air. Everything was authentic and balanced. Unassuming holes in the wall, always had stand out meals. You know the food is exceptional when even fried foods seem light! 


The enfrijoladas in Puerto Vallarta were made with fresh tortillas and filled with chicken and a creamy cheese that melts easily.  We don’t make fresh tortillas for this but we are adding chicken and cheese. But remember – balance. You aren’t making a burrito. Less is more in this case so don’t overfill so all the ingredients have a chance to shine. 

This is a great dish for a dinner party because it can be assembled in advance and popped into the oven when ready to eat. We highly recommend garnishing or serving with our Avocado Crema.

If you want to keep it Vegetarian feel free to sub the chicken for roasted veggies or extra beans. It also couldn’t hurt to throw a fried egg on top!

Let’s Cook!


Recipe by Abuelas Cuban CounterCourse: EntreeCuisine: MexicanDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time




  • 2 cans of black beans 

  • 2 cooked chicken breasts, shredded

  • ½ teaspoon of cumin powder

  • ½ teaspoon of garlic powder

  • ¼ cup of cilantro 

  • 1 sprig of fresh oregano (just the leaves)

  • ½ teaspoon of salt and freshly cracked pepper

  • 2 cups of Oaxaca or mozzarella cheese, shredded

  • 1 cup of cotija cheese, crumbled

  • A few dashes of hot sauce

  • 8 tortillas (Use a tortilla that can bend without falling apart. It can be corn, flour, gluten free, almond, low carb, etc)

  • Garnish: Mexican table cream or sour cream, cilantro, Avocado Crema, sliced serrano pepper or our quick pickled onions


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • In a food processor or blender add the cans of beans, cumin, garlic powder, cilantro, oregano, hot sauce, salt and pepper. Check for seasoning and add anything if you need more of it. Transfer to a bowl or baking dish.
  • Dip the tortillas in the bean puree. Fill them with chicken and shredded cheese. Fold them in half and place them in the baking dish. It’s ok if they overlap slightly. Line them up one after the other. You may need more than one baking dish.   Enfrijoladas Step
  • Bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes. 
  • In the meantime, make the quick pickled onions. You can also add whatever remaining bean sauce is left over to a small pot with a few tablespoons of water and heat through. You can serve this with the enfrijoladas for anyone who likes extra sauce.
  • Once they are ready top with crema, crumbled cotija, pickled onions and cilantro. Serve while they are still hot.