Today we serve up a delicious Ground Turkey Enchiladas recipe! A healthy turkey and black bean enchilada filling gets topped with a zesty chipotle sauce. We serve these enchiladas with a pair of Mexican wines, to further enhance the meal. Disclosure: The wines discussed here were provided as a complimentary sample.
I’ve been getting a little roll with enchilada making lately!
After not making enchiladas for quite some time, I recently made Beef and Black Bean Enchiladas, and they came out great. When I had a chance to do some pairings with Mexican wine for a virtual tasting event coming out, I figured it was a good time for more enchiladas! (although as we will discuss, these wines from Mexico can pair with much more than Mexican food).
Why make ground turkey enchiladas?
Using ground turkey for an enchilada filling is a good healthy choice. We add black beans to make the filling hearty and increase the nutritional value.
Another benefit of making ground turkey enchiladas is that the relatively mild turkey meat really lets that chipotle sauce shine. The sauce we use in this recipe is basically the same that we used for the beef enchiladas, but with the turkey, I definitely tasted those spices more.
Ground turkey is great to have around. I tend to buy a couple packages when I see it on sale, and pop it in the freezer. Take it out a day ahead of using it to defrost in the fridge.
Here are some of our tips for making the turkey enchiladas. Scroll down to the recipe card for all the details!
- Start by making the sauce — the sauce ingredients get heated in a sauce pan, then pureed with toasted pumpkin seeds (Amazon link provided).
- Just put half of the sauce into the food processor at a time, the liquid sauce can get a little messy if you fill it too high.
- Make the filling by cooking the ground turkey with the onions in a skillet, followed by the black beans, cumin and garlic.
- Divide the cooked turkey and beans into four equal sections to get ready to fill the enchiladas.
- Scoop the turkey and bean filling into the center of tortilla. Fold it over the long way first, on both sides. Then fold the top and bottom to close up the enchilada.
- I haven’t tried it yet, but I suspect these enchiladas might work with leftover roast turkey. You’d need less cooking time, just enough to heat the turkey and have flavors meld with the onions.
As I mentioned, making this recipe was motivated by having some Mexican wines to sample in advance of a virtual tasting we have coming up.
Earlier this fall, we gathered on a patio to sample a lineup of Mexican wines with Max and Kenya, founders of Tozi Imports. We were impressed with the quality of the wines and the good values they represent.
I immediately got to thinking about pairing the wines with enchiladas. Max, with his background as a sommelier, encouraged me to think more broadly about pairings for the wines. With that in mind, we’ve enjoyed their Mexican wines with our Butternut Squash Mushroom Soup and Pesto Crostini.
While it was good to branch out with the Mexican wine pairings, we tested two pairings that certainly make good pairings for our ground turkey enchiladas.
I would say I had a slight preference for the white wine we paired with the enchiladas — the 2018 Monte Xanic Chenin-Columbard ($20, 13.9% ABV), from the Valle de Guadulupe. The blend is 98% Chenin Blanc and 2% Columbard, which is a common combination in this Baja region.
I found I liked the way the Chenin blend cleansed the palate after the a bite of the enchiladas with spicy sauce. And with the filling being turkey, the white wine definitely worked in terms of body as well.
But one of the fun things about tasting pairings is you will always find different opinions! Jodi preferred the 2016 Musica Del Marqués Nebbiolo (12.5% ABV). The wine is a blend of 90% Nebbiolo and 10% Malbec.
Jodi liked the way the Nebbiolo had more heft to stand up to the hearty enchiladas, and thought there was enough in the flavor profile to work with the spices. By the way, this Mexican Nebbiolo is very good, but quite different from one you might have from Italy’s Piedmont region.
While I liked the Chenin a bit better for the turkey enchiladas, I’d definitely go for the red for our beef and bean enchiladas.
With the two of us gravitating toward a different pairing option for this recipe, I’d say you could pick either bottle depending on whether you’re in the mood for a white or a red wine.
Or maybe you might want to get both, and repeat our experiment!Print
Ground Turkey Enchiladas
Ground Turkey Enchiladas cooked with a delicious chipotle sauce, and topped with melted cheese. Using turkey for enchiladas is a healthy protein option, and also lets the spicy sauce shine. A delicious recipe, gets even better with Mexican wine! Note: sauce adapted from a Vegetarian Planet recipe.
- Prep Time: 15
- Cook Time: 50
- Total Time: 1 hr 5 mins
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- Category: Main
- Method: stove top + baking
- Cuisine: Mexican
For the sauce:
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 3 cups diced tomatoes
- ¼ cup dry red wine
- 1 tsp vinegar
- 1 ⅓ cup water
- 1 pinch cinnamon
- 1 chipotle chile pepper (from a can with adobo sauce)
- ¼ cup toasted pumpkin seeds
- ¼ tsp salt
For the filling
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ tsp cumin
- 14.5 oz can of black beans, rinsed and drained
- ½ cup diced tomatoes (optional)
- 4 large flour tortillas
- ½ cup of shredded cheese such as Monterey Jack
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Make the sauce: In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil on medium.Add the garlic, chili powder and cumin seeds. Stir frequently for about 1 minute, until the seeds begin to pop. Add the tomatoes, followed by the wine, vinegar and water. Simmer for 4 minutes. Add the cinnamon and chipotle, simmer for another 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove pan from heat and set aside to cool.
- Finish the sauce: Add the pumpkin seeds to a food processor. Pulse to chop the seeds. Then add half of the sauce from the pan, and puree with the pumpkin seeds. Pour that portion into a bowl, then pour the remaining sauce from the pan into the food processor. Puree, then pour that sauce into the bowl, where it is ready for making the enchiladas.
- Start making the filling: Heat a tbsp olive oil in large cast iron skillet or other frying pan. Add the onion. Cook until the onion softens, about 5 minutes.
- Cook the turkey: Add the turkey to the skillet along with the garlic, stirring occasionally. When the turkey has turned mostly white on the outside, after about 5 minutes, stir in the beans, cumin and tomato if using. Cook for another 7 to 10 minutes until the turkey has cooked through. Remove skillet from heat.
- Assemble enchiladas: Lay a tortilla shell on a work surface. Add ¼ of the filling to the center of the enchiladas, spreading the filling into a rectangular shape, leaving plenty of room around the edges. Fold the tortilla, first at the top, then the bottom. Then fold the tortilla the longer way, bringing the left, then the right edges over to close it up. Place the enchilada fold side down in a large baking dish. Repeat the process for the remaining 3 enchiladas.
- Add the sauce & cheese: Pour enough sauce over the enchiladas to completely cover them, and have the sauce about halfway up the sides of the enchiladas. You may have a bit of sauce left over. Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the enchiladas.
- Bake the enchiladas: Cover the baking dish, and bake for 20 minutes, covered. Remove the enchiladas from the oven. Serve and enjoy!
- Using a 28 oz can of diced tomatoes for the sauce– which calls for 3 cups — leaves you with about ½ cup of extra tomatoes. You can add that to the turkey if you like, but it isn’t an essential ingredient.
Keywords: enchiladas, turkey enchiladas, ground turkey recipes