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Chilaquiles are an essential member of the Mexican breakfast family. They start out with a base of freshly cooked, homemade tortilla chips that are then submerged in a flavorful tomato and dried chile salsa, which gives them a delicious, smoky flavor.
Chilaquiles come in an endless variety of flavors – red, green, and guajillo salsa, to name a few. The name roughly mean to “be smothered in chilies”, which is in reference to the fried tortillas that are smothered in the salsa that is made from various dried chiles popular throughout Mexico. For me, red chilaquiles are basically breakfast nachos, and I love them!
To make some authentic red chilaquiles, you need to fry your own homemade tortilla chips. That said, in practice, many people use store bought chips and that works too!
Without a doubt, red chilaquiles with chicken is one of the meals that reminds me the most of growing up in Mexico. My mama would always cut the tortillas into little triangles and fry them and then on queue, my big brother and I would sneak in, grab a couple of them, and hide while we ate them. This always seemed to annoy my mama and she would tell us to “stop eating all of the tortillas or the chilaquiles will never been ready to eat!” That usually was enough to convince us to return tortilla chips back because of course we wanted the delicious red chilaquiles, not just the chips!
To make the delicious red sauce that makes these red chilaquiles instead of green chilaquiles, you need to combine the tomatoes, along with the dried chiles that have been de-veined, and boiled in water like in my Barbacoa Tacos recipe, and blend them in a blender before adding some additional seasonings and cooking over medium heat. Once cooked through, you submerge the tortilla chips in the salsa until they are completed covered. You want to make sure that the red sauce is a little bit thick so that the chips don’t get too soggy. Of course that is up to you, as there are some people that like them that way. This red chilaquiles with chicken recipe is an ideal breakfast for days when you have leftover chicken to use – and they are especially tasty when freshly cooked.
Knowing that everyone that I have made red chilaquiles for has loved it, I am happy to share my mama’s recipe so that you can enjoy it as much as I do! Let me know in the comments if you like it!