HomeHealthy FoodZucchini Enchiladas with Chicken {Low Carb} – WellPlated.com

Zucchini Enchiladas with Chicken {Low Carb} – WellPlated.com


Cheesy, low carb Zucchini Enchiladas are an easy and healthy take on everyone’s favorite, ever-satisfying Mexican chicken enchiladas.

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It’s officially summer! That means our gardens, farmers markets, and local grocery stores are overflowing with fresh zucchini.

These healthy zucchini enchiladas are my new favorite way to incorporate zucchini into our weekly dinner routine (along with Zucchini Stir Fry).

Made without tortillas, these easy zucchini enchiladas use tender, thin slices of fresh zucchini for a low carb alternative.

Stuffed with seasoned chicken, corn, peppers, and plenty of melty cheese, this easy vegetable-wrapped enchilada recipe can be finished with your choice of either red or green enchilada sauce.

I especially love my homemade Red Enchilada Sauce for this recipe, or the green enchilada sauce in The Well Plated Cookbook.

A pile of zucchini on a white towel for healthy zucchini enchiladas with green sauce or red sauce

5 Star Review

“My husband said this was the best dish I’d ever made and I’d pretty much have to agree!”

— Karen —

How to Make Zucchini Enchiladas

A lean twist on classic enchiladas, these healthy zucchini enchiladas have no tortillas.

Instead, thinly sliced zucchini hugs the flavor filling for a gluten free, low-carb alternative.


The Ingredients

  • Zucchini. Loaded with fiber and nutrients, zucchinis are the best tortilla alternative for those following a low carb diet. (These Zucchini Pizza Boats are another great low carb zucchini recipe to try.)
  • Chicken. Based on my grammy’s famous Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas recipe, the filling is a mix of lean shredded chicken, fresh veggies, and Greek yogurt for creaminess.
  • Corn. Another summertime favorite that lends lovely flavor and texture to the filling (and to this Mexican Corn Dip). In the summer, I prefer to use sweet corn removed fresh from the cob, but you can also use thawed, frozen corn, or canned corn if that’s what you have accessible.
  • Onion + Garlic. Building blocks of flavor.
  • Peppers. A combination of bell peppers and zippy poblanos provides the filling with a perfect blend of sweetness and spice.

Market Swap

Poblano peppers are not spicy, but if you prefer enchiladas with the most mild taste possible, you can omit the poblanos and swap for extra bell peppers.

  • Enchilada Sauce. Whether you’re craving zucchini enchiladas with green sauce or red, this recipe is for you. I’ve made this recipe (and these Vegan Enchiladas) with both sauce styles, and they’re both delicious. You can’t go wrong.
  • Greek Yogurt. Adds body and creaminess to the filling—plus extra protein!
  • Cheese. If you ask me, the best enchilada recipe is one that contains plenty of cheese (like these Vegetarian Enchiladas)! Included in the filling and smothered on top, these cheesy zucchini enchiladas are sure to please.

Substitution Tip

My favorite cheese for this recipe is good old-fashioned sharp cheddar. It’s among one of the best melting cheeses for enchiladas. However, pepper jack, Monterey jack, chihuahua cheese, or a blend of cheese would all be fab.

  • Spices. A simple blend of cumin, chili powder, and a bit of salt gives the filling plenty of life.
  • Toppings. Use your favorite Mexican toppings to finish your plate of healthy zucchini enchiladas (or Blackened Zucchini Tacos). Plain Greek yogurt, cilantro, diced tomatoes, or slices of creamy avocado are some of our go-tos.
A casserole dish with delicious low carb Zucchini Enchiladas

The Directions

  1. Prepare the filling. Slice the zucchini into thin planks using a mandoline.

Tip!

No mandoline? You can use a sharp knife to cut the zucchini as thinly as possible. (You can also use it to make zoodles for this Zucchini Pasta.)

Rolling up corn zucchini enchiladas with chicken on a cutting board
  1. Arrange 3 overlapping strips of zucchini next to each other and place a heaping scoop of filling in the middle. Carefully roll up, then repeat with the remaining zucchini.
easy zucchini enchiladas in a casserole pan before baking with cheese
  1. Arrange in the baking dish and top with the remaining enchilada sauce and cheese. Bake until the sauce is bubbling and the cheese is melted.
  2. Serve hot, with any and all desired enchilada toppings. ENJOY!

Dietary Note

This easy zucchini enchiladas recipe is super versatile. Here are a few simple ways to adapt the recipe to accommodate other dietary restrictions and preferences:

  • Vegetarian Zucchini Enchiladas. Swap the chicken for 1 can of rinsed and drained low-sodium black beans.
  • Whole30 Zucchini Enchiladas. You can make these zucchini enchiladas without cheese and swap in a nondairy Greek yogurt to create a Whole30 zucchini enchiladas recipe that’s also dairy free and vegan (like my favorite Whole30 Meatballs with zucchini noodles recipe).

Need gluten free zucchini enchiladas? No changes are needed! As it is written, these zucchini enchiladas are gluten free. As always, check your labels if you are especially sensitive to gluten.

Storage Tips

  • To Store. Leftover zucchini enchiladas may be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
  • To Reheat. Warm leftover zucchini enchiladas in a preheated 350-degree F oven until heated through. You may also microwave them in a covered container until steaming.
  • To Freeze. I do not recommend freezing zucchini enchiladas once assembled or baked, as the zucchini becomes very soft and watery when thawed.

Meal Prep Tip

  • To Make 1 Day In Advance: Assemble the enchiladas through Step 7. Bake just before serving.
  • To Make More Than 1 Day In Advance: Prep the enchilada filling as directed through step 3 and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. When ready to finish the recipe, slice, fill, roll, and bake as directed before serving. 

Leftover Ideas

Cut up leftovers into small bite-sized pieces and serve over a bed of steamed brown rice, cauliflower rice, or quinoa for a quick and easy zucchini enchiladas casserole.

What to Serve with Zucchini Enchiladas

Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe

  • Skillet. This affordable option has been a long-time favorite in my kitchen.
  • Mandoline. It’s not a tool I use every day, but when you need it, it’s hard to beat for effectiveness and ease.
  • Baking Dish. This 9×13 baking dish bakes evenly and comes in an array of fun colors.

The Best Mandoline Slicer

With three thickness settings (3mm, 6mm, and 9mm), and a durable metal frame construction, I’ve found many uses in my kitchen for this mandoline.

Easy Low Carb Zucchini Enchiladas with Green Sauce in a Casserole Dish

Did you make this recipe?

Let me know what you thought!

Leave a rating below in the comments and let me know how you liked the recipe.

healthy zucchini enchiladas gluten free and low carb topped with tomatoes and sour cream

How do you plan to use up all of your zucchini this season? I think these Zucchini Fritters are next on my list!

Frequently Asked Questions

How Can I Prevent My Zucchini Enchiladas From Being Watery?

Zucchini contains a lot of water, much of which is released while cooking. If you’re concerned about the enchiladas being too watery after cooking, you may lightly salt the zucchini once it is thinly sliced and arrange the slices on a layer of paper towel. Let the zucchini sit for 10 to 15 minutes. The salt will help extract water, and the paper towels will absorb the moisture.

How Many Zucchini Enchiladas Fit in a Pan?

In my experience, I can usually fit about 16 zucchini enchiladas into a 9×13-inch pan. However, this number may vary depending on the size of the zucchinis used and how full you stuff them. If necessary, you can bake extra enchiladas in an 8×8-inch pan or even a loaf pan.

How Do I Serve Zucchini Enchiladas Without Them Falling Apart?

I like to use an extra-wide spatula or pancake turner with a large head to lift the enchiladas cleanly from the baking dish for serving. If you struggle and end up with something resembling a zucchini enchiladas casserole on your plate, no worries, it will still taste delish!

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper diced
  • 1 medium poblano pepper or green bell pepper diced
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 cups cooked shredded chicken*
  • 1 cup corn either fresh cut from the cob, frozen and thawed, or canned
  • 1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese divided (about 4 ounces)
  • 1/3 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 can green or red enchilada sauce divided (15 ounces)
  • 4 large zucchini

For Serving:

  • Chopped fresh cilantro
  • Nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • Diced cherry tomatoes

  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly coat a 9×13-inch baking dish with nonstick spray.

  • In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, red bell pepper, poblano pepper, chili powder, cumin, and salt. Cook, frequently stirring, until the vegetables have softened and are beginning to brown, about 6 minutes, reducing the heat if the vegetables start to burn.

  • Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Add the chicken, corn, 1/4 cup cheese, Greek yogurt, and 1/3 cup enchilada sauce. Stir to combine. Set aside.

  • With a vegetable peeler or mandoline slicer, slice the zucchini lengthwise into thin strips about 1/8 inch thick. You want the zucchini to be thin enough to roll easily, but not so thin that it tears. Test the first few slices to ensure you are happy with how they are coming out. Discard any uneven and broken pieces. You will have about 48 slices total.

  • Spread 1/4 cup of the remaining enchilada sauce on the bottom of the dish.

  • On a large clean work surface, arrange 3 strips of the zucchini next to each other, overlapping the edges by about 1/4 inch (what you are doing here is making 1 big faux tortilla). Place a heaping 2 tablespoons of the chicken filling across the middle of the zucchini strips.

  • Starting at the short ends (not the sides), gently roll the zucchini strips around the filling like a sleeping bag. Carefully place the roll seam-side down in the prepared dish. Repeat with the remaining zucchini strips and filling. (You should have 16 enchiladas.) Top the zucchini rolls with the remaining enchilada sauce and 3/4 cup cheese.

  • Bake the enchiladas until the sauce is bubbling and the cheese is melted, 20 to 25 minutes. Serve hot, with any and all desired toppings.

  • *INGREDIENT NOTE: Use this stovetop method for how to cook shredded chicken, Baked Chicken Breast, Crock Pot Shredded Chicken, or my Instant Pot Chicken.
  • **BAKING TIP: If all of your zucchini enchiladas do not fit in a single baking dish, you can bake the extra in a smaller dish on the side.
  • TO MAKE AHEAD: To make ahead up to 1 day in advance, assemble the enchiladas through Step 7. Bake just before serving. If you wish to make ahead zucchini enchiladas more than 1 day in advance, prep the enchilada filling as directed through step 3 and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. When ready to prepare, slice, fill, roll, and bake as directed just before serving. 
  • TO STORE: Leftover zucchini enchiladas may be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
  • TO REHEAT: Warm leftover zucchini enchiladas in a preheated 350-degree F oven until heated through. You may also microwave them in a covered container until steaming.
  • TO FREEZE: I do not recommend freezing zucchini enchiladas once they are assembled or baked, as the zucchini becomes very soft and watery when thawed.
  • VEGETARIAN OPTION: Swap the chicken for 1 can of rinsed and drained low-sodium black beans.
  • WHOLE30 OPTION: You can make these zucchini enchiladas without cheese and swap in a nondairy Greek yogurt to create a Whole30 zucchini enchiladas recipe that’s also dairy free.

Serving: 1enchiladaCalories: 100kcalCarbohydrates: 7gProtein: 8gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 20mgPotassium: 333mgFiber: 2gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 603IUVitamin C: 31mgCalcium: 77mgIron: 1mg

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