Mexican food

Turkey Pumpkin Enchiladas

Gluten Free Turkey Pumpkin Enchiladas

I am so fortunate to have such amazing meal service clients! Recently on Facebook I asked my clients and friends to let me know what they would like to see on the menu next. One of my friends and clients suggested these enchiladas. They sounded so yummy but I had never heard of them before. So, I looked around and found a vegetarian recipe that I changed up a bit to taste really good. I love that this recipe uses homemade sauce and homemade seasoning! Only the best for my clients and my family! 

This is an amazing recipe where you can use up leftover turkey or chicken. It's a great "after Thanksgiving" dish when you are a bit tired of turkey but don't want to let it go to waste. My son loves these enchiladas, just without cheese. They taste great like that too! 


Turkey Pumpkin Enchiladas: 

2 1/2 cups cooked, shredded turkey (this may be leftover turkey or turkey that you cook ahead in the oven or in a crock pot, cool and shred) You may also use cooked, shredded chicken

10 corn tortillas

3/4 cup homemade enchilada sauce (recipe below)

3/4 cup canned pumpkin puree

1/2 an onion, finely chopped

1-2 cloves garlic, minced

olive oil for sauteing

2 1/2 teaspoons homemade taco seasoning mix (recipe below) 

1/2 cup shredded mozarella or Monterrey jack cheese

salt and pepper to taste

Chopped green onions for garnish

Preheat the oven to 400F. 

1. Make enchilada sauce (recipe below) 

2. In a medium frying pan over medium heat, heat olive oil. Then, saute the onion and garlic until they begin to brown. Transfer to a medium bowl. 

3. Into the medium bowl add the shredded turkey, pumpkin and taco seasoning. Add salt and pepper to taste and stir.  Set aside. 

4. Grease a small baking dish with butter, margarine or coconut oil. Heat the tortillas for about 30 seconds in the microwave so that they become pliable. 

5. Lay the tortillas out, one at a time on a clean plate. Spread enchilada sauce on each tortilla, fill with 1/4 cup of the turkey/pumpkin mixture. Roll up the tortillas and place into the pan, seam side down. 

6. When you are done rolling up the 10 enchiladas, pour the rest of the sauce on top and top with cheese. 

7. Bake the enchiladas in the oven for 8-10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the enchiladas are hot. Sprinkle with green onions. 


Homemade Enchilada Sauce: From: Gimme Some Oven

2 Tbsp. olive oil

2 Tbsp.  gluten-free flour mix

2-3 Tbsp. chili powder 

1/2 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. cumin

1/4 tsp. oregano

2 cups chicken or vegetable stock


1. Heat the olive oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat.

2. Stir in the gluten free flour mix flour and stir together over the heat for one minute.

3. Stir in the remaining seasonings (chili powder through oregano).

4. Slowly pour in the stock, whisking constantly to remove lumps.

5. Turn down the heat and simmer 10-15 minutes until thick.

Use immediately or refrigerate in an air-tight container for up to 3 days.


Homemade Taco Seasoning: From: Food Renegade

1 Tbsp. Chili Powder

1/4 tsp. Garlic Powder

1/4 tsp. Onion Powder

1/4 tsp. Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

1/4 tsp. Dried Oregano

1/2 tsp. Paprika

1 1/2 tsp. Ground Cumin

1 tsp. Sea Salt

1 tsp. Black Pepper (optional)

Mix together all of the ingredients and keep in a sealed bag or container for use in this recipe and other ones. 

Pumpkin, Tomato, Onion and Garlic Corn Empanadas

Pumpkin, Tomato, Onion and Garlic Corn Empanadas

These bright and cheery empanadas are the perfect cure for the dark, rainy days of fall like we are experiencing right now here in Oregon. I had a fun time making these empanadas, adding herbs and spices to make them just right. They may also be made with a meat or seafood filling, but they are a perfect snack, vegan main dish or a side dish to a larger meal. 

This version was a big hit with my husband and son as well. They loved the pumpkin/tomato/onion mixture and the crispness of the empanada lightly pan fried in coconut oil. 

Empananadas also make a perfect party snack or appetizer and since these have pumpkin in them, why not serve them at your Halloween or Fall Harvest party! 

I hope that you enjoy some of these soon for a flavor explosion!! 

Pumpkin Tomato, Onion and Garlic Corn Empanadas: 

Makes 10-11 empanadas (double the recipe for a large appetizer dish) 

Empanada dough: 

11 ounces  masa made from masa harina (follow the instructions on the masa bag (mix + water) and weigh. 

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon oregano, crushed

1 teaspoon chili powder

1/4 cup gluten free flour mix

salt to taste

coconut oil for pan frying


olive oil

1/2 onion, finely chopped

1 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 cup pumpkin puree

1 teaspoon oregano

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon chili powder


1. Mix together the masa, spices and herbs along with the gluten free flour mix. Add in a little extra water if the dough is dry. Set the masa aside. 

2. Heat a small frying pan and add in olive oil. Saute the onion and garlic on medium heat until the onion is translucent. Set aside to cool for 5-7 minutes. 

3. Once the onion is cool, in a medium bowl combine all of the filling ingredients. Adjust seasonings to taste. 

4. Make 10-11 small balls out of the masa mixture. Press them in a tortilla press to make tortillas that are around 3-4 inches in diameter. Put 1-2 tablespoons of the filling into the center of each empanada. Fold over and pinch the edges to close. 

5. In an electric skillet set to 375F, heat the coconut oil (I heated around 2/3 cup to 1 cup coconut oil) When hot, place the empanadas into the hot oil. Brown on each side until golden and crispy on each side. Remove with a slotted spoon to cool slightly before serving. 

Serve with salsa & enjoy!! 




Spinach, Onion and Garlic Cheese Gorditas- A Great Vegetarian Dinner!

spinach onion and garlic cheese gorditas

These gorditas remind me of the evenings I spent as an exchange student in Mexico. In Mexico people usually eat a larger main meal around 2-3 in the afternoon. Then, around 7-8pm there is a bit of a snack. Sometimes it is just a simple sandwich or quesadilla at home, but then on a special night we would go out to get some street food. One of the foods I loved were some delicious gorditas. There would be lots of different fillings and it was fun to watch the ladies make them quickly and cook them on big griddles on the sidewalk. That was always a special snack to have at night. 

If you would like to learn about lots of amazing health benefits you can get from spinach, here is a great article to check out!

I have brought the gordita back here for dinner, lunch or a snack. I decided to make a yummy spinach filling as well. These may be made with mozarella cheese, a Mexican cheese or a dairy free cheese. 

Spinach, Onion and Garlic Cheese Gorditas: 

Makes about 8 gordita


2 cups dry masa flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/3 cups water

1. Mix thoroughly together the masa mix, salt and water until you form a soft, uniform dough. 

2. Form patties that are 3-4 inches wide. 

3. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the gorditas for about 4 minutes each side. Make sure each side is fully cooked and golden brown. 

4. Once all of the gorditas are cooked, take a knife and make a slit halfway through the gordita to form a kind of pocket for the spinach  & cheese filling. 


2 cups finely chopped spinach

1/2 onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

olive oil

salt/pepper to taste

Mozzarella cheese (1/2-3/4 cup, shredded) 

1. In a skillet over medium heat, heat the olive oil. 

2. Saute the onion and garlic until soft. Then, add in the spinach until cooked and soft. Season with salt and pepper. 

3. Into each gordita pocket, put 1-2 tablespoons or so of the spinach mixture in. Put in 1-2 tablespoons of cheese into the pocket as well. 

4. Place all of the filled gorditas on a plate, place them in the microwave and microwave for 30 seconds to 1 minute, until all of the cheese has melted. Serve immediately and enjoy! 

If you enjoyed this yummy gluten free-vegetarian entree recipe, pass it on to a vegetarian friend! 



Chilaquile Casserole- A Great Weeknight Dinner!


Chilaquile Casserole- A great, quick and easy weeknight meal! 

Oh my goodness! There are some nights like a Monday night where you are tired from starting a busy week again, yet you want a healthy, satisfying meal for dinner. This casserole fits the bill! 

I love Mexican food! I lived in Mexico as an exchange student when I was 16 years old and I learned about a great food called chilaquiles. It is a dish usually served for breakfast with eggs and uses up leftover tortillas which are fried in oil and tossed with yummy salsa or tomatoes and chiles. 

This casserole combines the flavors and ideas of chilachiles into a delicious, easy to fix meal. I love that it uses many of the ingredients I always have on hand, it is healthy, fast and a great hot meal! 

I hope you and your family enjoy it on a weeknight coming up! 

It also makes a great dish for a lunch or brunch potluck. 

Chilaquile Casserole: 

This makes 6 servings- a yummy big casserole!  You may halve the recipe to make 3-4 servings. 

12 corn tortillas (you may either use homemade tortillas (masa mix + water and salt) or store bought tortillas) 

olive oil

1-2 clove garlic, minced

1 onion, finely chopped

1 can mild green chiles

1 pound ground beef (grass-fed, organic), or ground turkey

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon chile powder

1 teaspoon cumin

2 cups stewed, chopped tomatoes

1 1/2 cups water

Salt to taste

1 cup shredded mozarella cheese

1  8 ounce can sliced olives

1. Cut the tortillas into 1 inch squares. Heat a skillet to medium-high heat. Add the olive oil to the pan and heat up. Add the tortilla squares to the pan and fry them until crispy on the outside. You will need to fry them in batches. Once a batch is fried, transfer them to a plate. 

2. In a large saucepan, heat olive oil. Add in the garlic and onion and saute until the onion is soft and translucent. Add in the mild green chiles. Add the meat and cook until meat is cooked through and tender, stirring frequently. Add the tomatoes, water and tortillas. Cook in the pan (simmer on low heat) for 30 minutes. Add salt to taste.

3. Transfer the mixture to a 13x9 baking dish. Top with cheese and olives and bake at 350F for 15 minutes. 

Take out of the oven and enjoy!! 

If you loved this quick & yummy weeknight dinner idea, pass it on to a friend!