Calabacitas Enchiladas (Corn, Squash and Green Chile)

Enchiladas made with squash, corn and green chile

Calabacitas is a traditional New Mexico early fall dish of summer squashes, corn, and green chile.  However, you’ll find several variation, some with tomatoes and others cheese. Frequently, you find Calabacitas as a fall special in New Mexican restaurants. The basic calabacitas recipe is SO easy and quite tasty.

A couple of weeks ago I had one medium sized yellow squash from the garden sitting all by itself in the crisper, a pot of green chile sauce sitting on the stove top, two dozen corn tortillas in the fridge, and a freezer packed with bags of fresh corn. Throw all that together with some cheese and what do you have – Calabacitas enchiladas. I decided to make them stacked or flat as opposed to rolled, because they are easier to assemble and much easier to get out of the pan.  Not only that, I do prefer flat enchiladas to rolled – don’t ask me why, but I do.


Calabacitas Enchiladas

Stacked Calabacitas Enchiladas


Stacked Calabacitas Enchiladas Recipe
45 mins
30 mins
Total Time
1 hr 15 mins

Stacked enchiladas with corn, summer squash and New Mexico green chile sauce. 

You can shorten the prep time by making the green chile ahead of time (up to 3 days) or using a store bought green chile sauce.

"*" See Kitchen Notes for more information or links to special ingredients.

Course: Main Course, Vegetarian
Cuisine: New Mexico, Southwestern
Yields: 6 servings
Recipe Author: MJ of MJ's Kitchen
  • 1 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped fine
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup corn
  • 1 yellow squash, grated (at least 2 cups)
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1 to 2 dozen corn tortillas or flour tortillas - See Assembly
  • 2 to 3 cups green chile sauce*
  • 3 cups grated cheese (mix of cheddar and Monterey Jack)
  1. Preheat oven to 350° F (177 °C)
  2. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  3. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for 5 minutes until soft.
  4. Add the corn and cook for 1 minute. Remove from heat.
  5. Add the squash and salt. Stir to combine all of the ingredients.
  6. Pour the chile sauce into a pie pan. (You're going to dip your tortillas in the chile sauce.)
  1. Depending on the size of the serving dish, you can make 2 to 3 layers, so make that decision ahead of time. My standard enchilada dish (8" x 12" casserole) works nicely with 3 slightly overlapping corn tortillas for each layer; therefore, I make a 3 layer enchilada casserole with this recipe. Starting and ending with a layer of corn tortillas, I use 15 tortillas. The vegetable mixture is divided into 3 parts and the cheese into 4.
  2. Spray a casserole dish with oil. Spread “a little” of chile sauce on the bottom of the dish. I do this to keep the tortillas from sticking to the bottom.
  3. Dip 3 corn tortillas (depending on size of pan) in the chile sauce and place, overlapping, across the bottom of the casserole dish. Top with about ½ cup of cheese, then 1/3 of the vegetable mixture, ending with about ½ cup green chile sauce.
  4. Dip another 3 tortillas in the chile sauce and make another layer with cheese, vegetables and chile sauce.
  5. Create a third layer of cheese, vegetables, and chile sauce. Top this layer with the last 3 tortillas, the remaining chile sauce (or as much as you want), and then the last of the cheese.
  6. Place in the oven and cook for 25 to 30 minutes, until cheese has browned and the sides are bubbling.
Kitchen Notes

Flour vs. Corn tortillas - Corn tortillas yield a lighter enchilada, but both are excellent! Dipping the tortillas in the sauce helps to incorporate the sauce throughout the dish and also prevents the tortillas from drying out during the cooking process.


Green Chile Sauce - You could use store bought Green chile enchilada sauce or make your own sauce from fresh, canned or frozen roasted green chiles. The amount of green chile sauce you use for each layer depends on how hot the chile sauce is and how hot you want the final dish. If the chile is really hot, I use about ½ cup of sauce for each layer and my chile sauce is usually pretty hot.


Calabacitas is Spanish for “little squashes”.  For my calabacitas I do try to find the smaller summer squashes, but for these calabacitas enchiladas, you can use one of the squashes that got hidden and a little too large for stirfry.

If you enjoy these calabacitas enchiladas the here are some other calabacitas recipes you might enjoy:

MJ’s Calabacitas

Calabacitas Chowder

Calabacitas Cornbread


NM Red and Green Chile

More on New Mexico Chiles

Chile or Chili?

Red or Green? and Christmas – Red and Green

NM Red Chile and Red Chile Recipes

NM Green Chile and Green Chile Recipes

Green Chile Burn Video and recipe for a Quick and Easy Green Chile Stew

NM Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas

NM Red Chile Enchiladas

NM Green Chile Stew

Recipes that use Green Chile

Recipes that use Red Chile

Sources for New Mexico Chile Products


Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

73 Responses to “Calabacitas Enchiladas (Corn, Squash and Green Chile)”

  1. Peggy September 2, 2016 at 5:09 am #

    Could you make this in the crockpot?

    • mj September 2, 2016 at 12:35 pm #

      I wouldn’t. You could probably make the filling, the calabacitas, in the crockpot, then assemble and bake.

  2. Jodee Weiland August 4, 2014 at 6:53 pm #

    MJ, this looks so delicious! I love the combination of ingredients…what fabulous flavor this dish must have! I want to try this soon…looks so tasty…thanks for sharing!

    • mj August 4, 2014 at 9:49 pm #

      Thanks so much Jodee! It’s perfect for late summer and fall.

  3. Andhra Style Bhindi fry / okra fry August 18, 2013 at 8:21 am #

    WOW! Thank you for such a wonderful recipe
    you made, I’ve been surfing online more than 4 hours today, yet I never found any interesting recipe like yours. It is pretty worth enough for me. In my opinion, if all recipe bloggers made good recipes as you did, the food community will be much more useful than ever before. I love Recipes. Please check my recipe blog and your valuable comment more appreciable

    • mj August 18, 2013 at 1:53 pm #

      Thank you so much for your nice comments Andra! Hope you enjoy the calabacitas!

  4. cooking rookie February 5, 2013 at 10:15 pm #

    Amazing casserole! All these veggies sounds yummy, and I would also sneak in some meat.

    • mj February 20, 2013 at 9:22 am #

      Thanks Rookie! If you want to add meat, chicken or turkey would be excellent. Poultry and green chile is a fantastic combination of flavors!

  5. Tumbleweed Contessa September 26, 2012 at 8:15 pm #

    This looks lovely. I can’t wait to dig into your green chile series. Being a just across the border Texan I have a love for good chiles.

    • mj September 27, 2012 at 1:59 am #

      Thanks for dropping by! I hope you enjoy the series. living where you do, you should have plenty of access to these wonderful NM jewels!

  6. Amber @ The Cook's Sister August 14, 2012 at 12:01 pm #

    I’ve never tried Calabacitas, but they look amazing! Love all the fresh veggies in this dish! Would this typically be served as a main course or a side dish?

    • mj August 14, 2012 at 4:57 pm #

      Thanks Amber! Actually, this is a main dish. I serve it with chopped tomatoes and/or a side serving of pinto beans.

  7. April @ The 21st Century Housewife August 10, 2012 at 1:51 am #

    I hadn’t thought about making enchiladas flat – what a great idea! I had not heard of calabatcitas before – I’m so glad you shared this delicious seasonal recipe!

  8. Diane Balch August 7, 2012 at 2:20 pm #

    I don’t know this recipe at all. I am so excited to try it, great it uses squash. I pinned it. Thanks for sharing it on foodie friday.

  9. Mal @ The Chic Geek August 6, 2012 at 2:29 pm #

    This looks so delicious, enchiladas with green chile sauce are a fave of mine!

  10. Swathi June 18, 2012 at 5:19 pm #

    Delicious thanks for sharing with Hearth and Soul blog hop. Your recipe will be shout out at tomorrow’s Hearth and Soul blog hop at Zesty South Indian Kitchen

    • mj August 14, 2012 at 4:57 pm #

      Thanks Swathi!!

  11. Judy@Savoring Today June 15, 2012 at 10:02 pm #

    I’ve never had this type of enchilada before, but it sounds quite tasty–especially with all the squash I’ll have coming in from the garden soon. Thanks for sharing on Hearth & Soul. 🙂

  12. Bizzy March 20, 2012 at 9:20 pm #

    How delicious these look which is why they are being featured, this week, at bake with Bizzy.

    I am into layering wontons and egg roll wrapper so this appeals to me with its layers. I am wondering if I can adapt it. Trying to use up my packages of all kinds of odds and ends.

    • mj August 14, 2012 at 4:57 pm #

      Thanks Chaya!!!!

  13. Amy January 10, 2012 at 8:26 pm #

    wow!!So delicious & inviting…thanks a lot for linking with Midweek Fiesta,hope to see you on next week too…

  14. Baker Street November 8, 2011 at 11:12 am #

    What a gorgeous one pot meal! I would love some of this right now!

  15. Jenny @ Savour the Senses October 17, 2011 at 9:56 pm #

    I have never heard of calabacitas before but they sound delicious, plus I have a ton of squash growing in my yard. Perfect!

  16. Alta October 17, 2011 at 7:11 am #

    What a delicious-looking meal. I could really dig in with something like this!

  17. Carolyn Jung October 15, 2011 at 5:15 pm #

    What a great dish for company or everyday eating. Perfect for the last of the summer squash, too.

  18. sally October 12, 2011 at 9:07 am #

    I love this take on enchiladas and especially love that they are easier to assemble than rolled enchiladas. I’ll have to give it a try.

  19. Lynne @ CookandBeMerry October 11, 2011 at 11:05 pm #

    That melted cheese has my mouth watering. What is it about melted cheese, anyway? I would use corn tortillas, because I love their flavor. Beautiful dish!

  20. Jaz October 11, 2011 at 11:12 am #

    Thanks for the kind words, I love sharing recipes. I’m looking forward to a new camera soon, so I can photograph the dishes better.

  21. Jaz October 11, 2011 at 9:27 am #

    This looks heavenly! I will definitely be giving this a try.

  22. mj October 10, 2011 at 8:22 pm #

    Thanks for all of the wonderful comments! Hope everyone is having a great evening!

  23. Jenn L @ Peas and Crayons October 10, 2011 at 7:55 pm #

    I’m insanely bummed that my local restaurants don’t serve anything like this even in the fall! ahhhh but thanks to you I can make it at home! <3 I pinned this beauty to pinterest for later! thanks love! =)

    ps: your comment made my night! i was having such a awful day today. you rock!

    • mj October 10, 2011 at 8:21 pm #

      Thanks Jenn! I’m glad I was able to improve your day! You just made my day! 🙂

  24. Jay October 10, 2011 at 6:22 pm #

    wow…sounds irresistable n hearty..
    lovely space you have..
    happy following u..;)
    do stop by mine sometime..
    Tasty Appetite

  25. Vicki Bensinger October 10, 2011 at 5:51 pm #

    This looks fantastic and with all those wonderful flavors combined I know it’s got to be a hit. Have you ever added chicken to it or is that not heard of with this dish?

    Thank you for sharing.

    • mj October 10, 2011 at 8:16 pm #

      Vicki – chicken would work great! My sister made it with chicken the other night and loved it! So go for it! Let me know how it turns out.

  26. Reem | Simply Reem October 10, 2011 at 4:19 pm #

    I will love to have a serving of this right now….
    Perfect symphony of flavors…
    I love layering in food as they bring such a awesome texture and flavors to each bite…
    Love the recipe and the way you explain it seems so easy.

  27. Spoon and Chopsticks October 10, 2011 at 1:48 pm #

    I’ve never tried this before. This dish looks yummy and I wanna dig in. I like your informative Kitchen Notes. Thanks for sharing.

    Spoon and Chopsticks

  28. Tes October 10, 2011 at 8:09 am #

    I especially love the color of this lasagna 🙂 It looks so elegant and delicious 🙂

  29. easyfoodsmith October 10, 2011 at 12:53 am #

    This dish is new to me but I love the way it looks…satisfying! Nice pics…Thanks for sharing.

  30. Dee at Deelicious Sweets October 9, 2011 at 7:24 pm #

    I love all of the ingredients in this recipe. It sounds perfect for fall!

  31. ginny lee October 9, 2011 at 7:59 am #

    ooh Sophie would love this. me too 🙂 I should be able to find green chiles here in Texas 🙂

  32. Katherine Martinelli October 9, 2011 at 2:04 am #

    This looks amazing!!! Hearty but not too heavy, and so flavorful. Will have to try this soon!

  33. Sawsan@chef in disguise October 9, 2011 at 12:50 am #

    I love mexican food and this looks and sounds amazing..
    one question husband doesn’t like hot spicy food,do you think it could work without the chili?

    • mj October 9, 2011 at 4:13 pm #

      Actually, I’ve been asked that question a lot lately. One of the things I’m going to be trying very soon is to make a green chile sauce with a mix of roasted green and red bell peppers. They have no heat, but the combination of their flavors should make a nice sauce. The enchiladas do need a sauce of some type, so maybe using bell peppers is a possibility. I really don’t see why it wouldn’t work. Thanks for your comments!

  34. Darkbyte October 8, 2011 at 9:06 pm #

    oh wow, that looks divine. I love this series, what a great idea!

  35. Nami | Just One Cookbook October 8, 2011 at 4:52 pm #

    If the spicy level is tone down for kids and me, we’d love this squash enchiladas! I’m sure it’s not the same without spice…but maybe mild one might be okay. Love the color of this enchiladas. Thanks for introducing new kind of enchiladas!

    • mj October 9, 2011 at 4:10 pm #

      Thanks Nami! A mild version would work just fine! It’s all in the flavor, not the heat. 🙂

  36. Liz October 8, 2011 at 11:02 am #

    I’ve never heard of Calabacitas, but if this dish is an example, I’m all for it! How wonderful this must taste~

  37. mj October 8, 2011 at 10:49 am #

    Thanks everyone for the nice feedback! Monica – thanks for linking! Have a wonderful weekend all!

  38. Monica @ TheYummyLife October 8, 2011 at 7:15 am #

    LOVE this recipe! Another winner, MJ. I linked to this in my Yummy Chatter post today. 🙂

  39. Sanjeeta kk October 8, 2011 at 2:59 am #

    Such a filling one pot meal..I want to dig in!

  40. lavieenfribourg October 7, 2011 at 11:11 pm #

    So, so delicious and tempting!

  41. Jo@jocooks October 7, 2011 at 9:33 pm #

    What a great idea to stack them, I bet they were delicious. 🙂

  42. Christina @ This Woman Cooks! October 7, 2011 at 6:17 pm #

    What beautiful photos MJ. I’m in love with this dish.

  43. Food Jaunts October 7, 2011 at 4:25 pm #

    What about acorn squash? I’m experiencing a glut of them. Do you think if I roasted the squash itself first and then continue with the rest of the recipe?

    • mj October 7, 2011 at 4:45 pm #

      I don’t see why acorn squash wouldn’t work. In fact, roasted acorn squash might be quite interesting. You could under-roast it to make it a little easier to grate or chop up for the filling. If you try it, let me know how it turns out.

  44. Giulietta | Alterkitchen October 7, 2011 at 3:52 pm #

    They resemble a yellow/green lasagna from the outside.. but I bet the inside is spicier 😀

    • mj October 7, 2011 at 4:46 pm #

      Sylvia and Giulia – you’re right – it’s kind of lasagna like. And yes, because of the green chile sauce I made, it was quite spicy. 🙂

  45. Sylvia@peachesanddonuts October 7, 2011 at 2:44 pm #

    That’s like a mexican lasagna and it looks so delicious!!!! 🙂 Have a great weekend MJ!

  46. Shannon@JustAsDelish October 7, 2011 at 10:51 am #

    This looks really interesting, never tried this before. would like to try making this one day. with homemade green chilli sauce of course, i’ve never seen green chilli sauce in the supermarket here in Malaysia..

    • mj October 7, 2011 at 11:26 am #

      Homemade green chile is best anyway! 🙂 You can use a variety of chiles to make it – whatever the markets have and your favorites! Hope you get a chance to make these. They’re really good!


  1. Hearth and Soul Blog Hop # 105 6/19/2012 - Zesty South Indian Kitchen - June 19, 2016

    […] Mazaa Grilled Thai Chili Sesame Shrimp from Savoring Today  Topsy  Tuvy Cake from TrilogyediblesClabacitas Enchiladas from MJ’s Kitchen Chocolate_Cranberry LARA bars from  Tessadomestic Diva Follow   Hearth and soul blog hop at  […]

  2. Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas | MJ's Kitchen - September 10, 2015

    […] Calabacitas Enchiladas […]

  3. Calabacitas - A Traditional New Mexican Dish | MJ's Kitchen - November 29, 2014

    […] Calabacitas Enchiladas […]

  4. Hangover Food Recipes To Help Demolish Your Morning/Afternoon Hangover - January 21, 2014

    […] […]

  5. Easy Green Chile Stew | MJ's Kitchen - October 3, 2013

    […] NM Green Chile Enchiladas […]

  6. Calabacitas Chowder (Summer Squash, Corn, Green Chile) | MJ's Kitchen - July 21, 2013

    […] to believe that it was two years ago when I first talked about calabacitas and introduced you to my Calabacitas Enchiladas.  As much as I make calabacitas in one form or another, I’m surprised I don’t have […]

  7. New Mexico Green Chile | MJ's Kitchen - December 2, 2012

    […] Calabacitas Enchiladas […]

  8. Christmas Breakfast | MJ's Kitchen - November 26, 2012

    […] Part IV – NM Green Chile Enchiladas […]

  9. Green Chile Grilled Cheese Sandwich Recipe | MJ's Kitchen - November 23, 2012

    […] Calabacitas Enchiladas […]

  10. Hearth and Soul Hop with Premeditated Leftovers 6/18 | Premeditated Leftovers - June 19, 2012

    […] Calabacitas Enchiladas […]

  11. Calabacitas Enchiladas « Tasty Easy Healthy Green - October 16, 2011

    […] to stick to her recipe as much as possible, I think it is best to send you to MJ’s site for the calabacitas enchiladas and green chile sauce recipes.  Please check out all of her other great chile recipes while you […]

  12. Calabacitas Enchiladas | Food Frenzy - October 14, 2011

I love hearing from my visitors, so please leave a comment. Thanks for dropping by!