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For a good time, just pair JL WOOD Chard to enchilada lasagna!

For a good time, just pair JL WOOD Chard to enchilada lasagna!

Looking for a family favorite? Meal prepping for the week?

Bored and feeling the need for something exotic? Want a hearty meal?

Something you can make in one hour or less?

Don’t want to wait in a Mexican restaurant and pig out on chips?

Then enchilada lasagna is for you and your loved ones! And, compared to regular enchiladas, it is easy to make and not as messy in the kitchen.

It’s a perfect pairing with JL WOOD Chardonnay.

Chardonnay is very versatile. In this case, our quality chilled Chardonnay stands on its own. Because of its natural acidity, it provides a refreshing compliment to the deep, complex, and flavors of the meat, cheese, and heat from the chilis.

Our recommended choice is any of our JL WOOD labels. I’m very partial to the “JL” as it’s a no oak selection that puts the focus on the fruit and is a great everyday refresher. Another option is our Nouveau. Also no-oak, it has a unique flavor and aroma profile.


  • 1 package of 100% corn tortillas, regular size, with at least 8 tortillas
  • 1 can Hatch green enchilada sauce (Mild has some heat) 
  • 1 can chopped Hatch greet chilis (or Ortega’s if you want less heat)
  • 1 can of Rotel tomatoes with Hatch chilis (Original Rotel is fine)
  • 3 cloves of whole garlic
  • 1 medium onion (sweet, white, or yellow)
  • 4-5 cups of shredded jack and cheddar cheeses
  • Sour cream
  • 1 pound of chuck (80%) hamburger meat
  • Salt (kosher or sea salt)
  • Pepper
  • Chili powder
  • Paprika (plain or smoked)
  • Cumin powder
  • Cayenne powder
  • Dried oregano
  • Optional: Mexican Rice (recipe below for quick version)
  • Optional: Refried beans (recipe below for a quick version)
  • Optional: Fresh sliced avocado
  • Optional: Thinly sliced radishes
  • Optional: Lemon or lime wedges
  • Optional: Shredded iceberg lettuce

Pro-tip: Only buy tortillas from producers that will put 10 or 12 in the package. Resist buying from "corporate producers" that attempt to lure you with a low price but hide the fact that they put less -- six -- in the package. If you want to figure out who I'm talking about, look for the name brand with the big letters "organic".

From start to finish, this meal takes about 1 hour. Mexican rice and beans are optional.

Mexican rice should be done first. You can find all types of “authentic” recipes on the internet. Here’s a quick short-cut if you’re in a hurry.

In an electric rice cooker, add a cup or cup and a ½ of rice (any kind except Arborio), a teaspoon of salt, 3 or 4 tablespoons of Rao marinara sauce, 3 or 4 tablespoons of chopped onion, one roughly chopped clove of garlic, a tablespoon of green chopped chili, a shake of paprika, and a dash of Tabasco. Add an amount of water that is twice the amount of the dry rice. Set the cooker to “white” rice. It will be done in about 35 minutes.

Pre-heat your oven to 350F with the rack in the middle position.

Using a box or rotary grater, shred the two cloves of garlic and the onion.

The next step is to make the meat filling. In a medium hot pan, add the hamburger. No need for oil because of the meat’s 20% fat content and you want to brown the meat anyway. Use a spatula or food smasher to break up the meat into small chunks. Salt and pepper the meat to your preference.

Next, add your spices. Two tablespoons each of chili, cumin, and paprika powders. 1 tablespoon of dried oregano. And a very small bit of cayenne. Or more if you can take it!

Continue to use your smasher to stir and chop the meat into smaller bits.

When cooked to light brown, push the meat to one side of the pan, remove the pan from the burner (for safety) and then tilt the pan allowing the juices to flow to one side of the pan. You can use paper towels to remove soak up the excess fat from the meat. (I recommend paper towels that you discard in the trash as you never want to pour a fat into your drain.) You should leave about a tablespoon or two of fat in the pan for flavor.

Return to the burner and continue to cook until the meat is well browned.

Then add about a cup of water, turn the heat down to a high simmer, and allow the liquid to reduce. Stir occasionally. Remove from the heat when most of the liquid is gone.

Pro-tip: Instead of the hamburger meat, you can substitute left-over shredded pot roast with the spices listed. Or substitute shredded chicken with the spices listed. You don't need to brown the left-overs -- just heat and then spice up. I do recommend you add the water to infuse the flavors into the meat.

Now it’s time to build the enchilada lasagna.

First, using your grater, shred the cheese. (I always recommend tasting the cheese!)

Optional: Instead of grating jack and cheddar cheese, you can substitute freshly melted queso.

In a 9x9 pan, pour enough green enchilada sauce to coat the bottom.

1) Open your package of corn tortillas and pull out four. Here’s the trick: You want to cut your tortillas on two sides, to about a half inch in depth, to give you two straight sides that meet at a 90 degree angle (because the pan has corners). I use a pair of kitchen scissors to do this.

Pro-tip: For those of you that attempt to use every last bit of food, which is a good thing, then you have a choice about these little slivers of tortilla that you cut off. You can fry them into chips (always a great choice) or just layer them into the enchiladas. If you don't use them, be sure to put them in compost.

2) Then using the tortillas with corners, place and align into the pan making one layer. It’s ok that they overlap in the center. If they don't overlap, just layer on the pieces that you cut off.

3) Next, using a cooking spoon, take ½ of the prepared meat and spread on the tortillas. Next, using drained Rotel tomatoes (very important to drain), sprinkle and spread half of the drained tomatoes onto the meat.

4) Drop dollops of sour cream on the layer. You don’t need a continuous layer: just dollops. You’ll be amazed how this transforms this dish from good to great!

5)  Sprinkle about a third of your cheese on the layer. Or, as an option, substitute with fresh queso dip (don’t over do the queso; just a very healthy drizzle)

Then repeat one more time steps 1 through 5, creating another set of layers.

The last steps are as follows:

  • One more layer of cut tortillas on top of the other layers.
  • Pour the remainder of your enchilada sauce on top, covering all areas of the tortillas.
  • Sprinkle on the remaining cheese.

Place in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes.

After baking, let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

This recipe will serve 4 to 6 people. It will go farther with the Mexican rice and if you make refried beans.

Here’s how to make delicious Mexican refried beans from a can:

Put one can (Ortega with green chili preferred) of refried beans in a sauce pan. Set to medium. Add a quarter of a chopped onion. Add a teaspoon of chili powder. Add a teaspoon of cumin. Add a teaspoon of oregano. Then, a few dashes of Tabasco or a light sprinkling of cayenne powder if you like heat. Add half a cup of water and stir (this becomes easier as the beans warm up). When the beans are smooth but not runny, add a third of a cup of Jack cheese. If they are still thick -- hard to stir -- just add more water until creamy. That’s it.

To serve, cut a square of the enchilada dish like you would a lasagna. Then add big spoonfuls of refried beans and Mexican rice. If you have it, garnish with fresh avocado, a lemon wedge, sliced radish, more shredded cheese, and shredded iceberg lettuce (on the side).

When you serve, don’t forget the JL WOOD Chardonnay. Many of you will reach for a Coors, Corona, Modelo or Dos Equis beer. Those are fine and traditional choices.

You’ll “elevate” your experience with a glass of ice cold JL WOOD Chardonnay. With or without ice.

Or, even better, make a JL WOOD cocktail — the “Big Kiss”. And go beyond the margarita! Perfect for a crowd.  

BTW, the enchilada lasagna is perfect for you weekly meal preppers. It will taste better on the second day. So, consider making two pans and freezing one.