Campfire Chicken Enchiladas

Somehow food just tastes better when you’re out in the wilderness and eating a meal cooked from scratch is like taking a bite of heaven! While I don’t cook full meals when we’re camping every night, I love having unexpected dinners in the woods. It feels indulgent in the best way possible. Making enchiladas in the middle of nowhere can be a challenge, but prepping it before I go makes it really doable. Also, I’m terrible at following a recipe and therefore not great at giving exact measurements. Keep tasting what you’re cooking and add salt, herbs, spices to taste.

4-5 chicken breasts
One small yellow onion
2-3 cloves garlic
Grapeseed oil/ olive oil

Salt & pepper
chili powder
cayenne pepper
dash of cinnamon
16 oz jar of diced tomatoes
8oz chicken stock
Tomato paste
Fresh cilantro
Bunch of Kale, de-stemmed
Shredded cheese
I bag of flour tortillas

Brush chicken breasts with grapeseed oil and a rub on a mix of salt, black pepper, paprika, powdered mustard, cayenne pepper and a bit of brown sugar. Once grilled or baked to an internal temperature of 165, chop and set aside.

Enchilada Sauce: Saute chopped onion to a large sauce pan on medium heat with a tablespoon of olive oil. Stir every so often until onions start to brown. Add minced garlic (about 2-3 cloves), chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, a bit of coriander, and a dash of cinnamon. Stir to allow spices to warm without burning. Immediately stir in a jar of diced tomatoes. (I can my garden tomatoes in Ball jars, but if I’m buying tomatoes at the store, I try to find Organic tomatoes in glass jars.) Add 8oz chicken stock and stir. Then add tomato paste (I also get this is glass jars) until the sauce thickens to a nice consistency. Add salt and pepper and more cayenne, depending on how spicy you’d like your enchiladas. (I skip the spice if I’m going for a kid-friendly dish.)

Store about half of the enchilada sauce in a container to bring to the campsite. With the remaining sauce still in the pan, stir in de-stemmed and chopped kale. Let the kale simmer with the sauce until it cooks down a bit. This usually takes a few minutes. Stir in the chopped, grilled chicken and add chopped cilantro. I like to store this enchilada filling in a glass Tupperware container so I can pop it in the cooler without worrying about water leaks.
At the campsite: Line your Dutch Oven with a parchment liner, then start rolling the enchiladas. I spoon about ½ cup of the filling into the center of a tortilla, sprinkle shredded cheese (Monterey jack or crumbled Queso fresco) on top of filling and roll. Place rolled enchiladas in bottom of Dutch oven. Spoon sauce over the tops and spread sauce over the rolled tortillas. You can stack another layer of enchiladas on top then cover with remaining sauce (just make sure the Dutch Oven lid can close all the way). Finish by sprinkling the remaining cheese over the top of the enchiladas. If you have fresh chopped cilantro, it’s nice to sprinkle this over the top too. Because the chicken is pre-cooked, these enchiladas just need to heat up. Cook time depends on the heat of your coals, but about 30 minutes should be close to the right amount of time. Keep the lid closed fully while cooking.