BBQ Chicken Enchiladas

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Chunks of roasted chicken, sweet and tangy barbecue sauce, gooey cheese, and sweet onions combine in BBQ Chicken Enchiladas.

Served sliced on a plate or scooped up with tortilla chips, the whole family cheers when these enchiladas are on the table.

BBQ Chicken Enchiladas

Leftover BBQ Chicken

I made these BBQ Chicken Enchiladas for the first time almost 10 years ago when a craving for saucy Barbecue Chicken hit right about the same time my oldest son asked if we could make these Cheesy Chicken and White Bean Enchiladas again.

This recipe was the result of those two cravings meeting in the middle and using the ingredients on hand in my house at the time.

I make any number of recipes with Leftover BBQ Chicken. From BBQ Chicken Stuffed Potatoes to BBQ Chicken and Cheese Curd Fries and BBQ Chicken Nachos, there really isn’t a wrong way to use up leftover chicken.

This BBQ Chicken Salad with Sweet Potato Fries has become one of my favorite lunches over the past couple of years. This is a cold garden salad tossed with warm and saucy barbecue chicken then topped with crisp hot sweet potato fries and drizzled with ranch dressing.

That salad sounded just crazy enough when I initially imagined it, I had to try it and I am so glad I did!

Cheddar BBQ Chicken Oven Tacos and these Spicy BBQ Chicken Quesadillas are a couple more quick and easy meals that you’re sure to enjoy.

I laughed that night as we were eating because my whole family was impressed with the way I used what was on hand.

Trust me when I say that we’ve had some far less successful “throw the meal together with what’s on hand” kind of dinners. Fortunately, we all wound up really enjoying this meal.

I’ve made BBQ Chicken Enchiladas countless times since that first dinner. From the spicy sauce to the sweet onions and the tender chicken pieces covered in cheese, everything about these enchiladas makes me grin.

Enchiladas are the perfect way to use leftover BBQ chicken!

BBQ Chicken Enchiladas

If you’re lucky enough to have some leftover chicken in the house, you can have these enchiladas in the oven with minimal effort for dinner tonight.

  • leftover chicken
  • onion
  • sweet and spicy barbeque sauce
  • red or green chile enchilada sauce
  • shredded cheese
  • tortillas
Chicken Enchiladas made with leftover BBQ chicken are a winner!

 Tips For Making Enchiladas

When I’m making enchiladas casserole-style, I slice the tortillas into wedges before layering them into the dish.

This makes each serving easier to eat, with a great balance of flavors and textures in each bite, and it prevents any giant chunks of tortilla from making their way to your fork.

BBQ Chicken and Caramelized Onion Enchiladas recipe by Barefeet In The Kitchen

Kitchen Tip: I use this knife and this baking pan to make this recipe.

COOK’S NOTE: I typically use a homemade barbecue sauce or Sweet Baby Ray’s to make this recipe. One reader messaged to tell me that the sauce she used was way too strong for this dish.

Take care that the barbecue sauce you use when making this won’t be too strong if you get a really saucy bite.

If you don’t happen to have leftover BBQ chicken on hand, any pre-cooked chicken will work in this recipe. Just chop it up and toss it with a bit of bbq sauce. 

Leftover BBQ Chicken Enchiladas

If you’re looking for more great enchiladas to try, these Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas can be made in just 30 minutes.

These Cali Alfredo Enchiladas, Black Bean and Sweet Potato Enchiladas, and Turkey Avocado Enchiladas are all on my list to try soon.

If you’re lucky enough to have leftover pulled pork in the house, these Pulled Pork Red Chile Enchiladas are always a hit.

Tender chunks of chicken and vegetables are simmered together underneath a buttery, flaky biscuit topping to make this chicken pot pie casserole.

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BBQ Chicken Enchiladas

BBQ Chicken Enchiladas

4.84 from 6 votes
Chunks of roasted chicken, sweet and tangy barbecue sauce, gooey cheese, and sweet onions combine in BBQ Chicken Enchiladas.
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 10 -12 servings


  • 3 cups leftover BBQ chicken about 3 breasts or 4 thighs chopped into 1/2” pieces
  • ½ cup caramelized onions chopped small, or 1 large onion sautéed until translucent and lightly browned
  • cups favorite sweet and spicy barbeque sauce I used this homemade bbq sauce
  • cups red or green chile enchilada sauce I used green chile sauce
  • 16 ounces Monterey Jack cheese shredded, about 3-4 cups total
  • 6-8 white corn tortillas flour tortillas would work as well, sliced into wedges as pictured below.


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Stir together the enchilada sauce and the barbecue sauce and set aside. In the bottom of a 9×13 dish, place about ¼ cup of the sauce and then layer with tortillas.
  • Layer about half of the chicken over the tortillas and top with a couple tablespoons of the onions. Sprinkle with about ¼ of the cheese and layer again with tortillas. Pour about ⅓ of the sauce over the tortillas, just enough to flavor and coat them.
  • Repeat the layers again with the chicken, onions, cheese and tortillas. Pour the remaining sauce over the top of the dish and sprinkle with the rest of the cheese.
  • Cover with foil and bake for 20-30 minutes, until the layers are almost bubbling. Uncover and bake for another 10 minutes or so until the dish is bubbling. Let rest at least 10-15 minutes before serving.


If you don’t happen to have leftover BBQ chicken on hand, any pre-cooked chicken will work in this recipe. Just chop it up and toss it with a bit of bbq sauce. 


Calories: 389kcal · Carbohydrates: 28g · Protein: 23g · Fat: 20g · Saturated Fat: 10g · Cholesterol: 72mg · Sodium: 1033mg · Potassium: 271mg · Fiber: 2g · Sugar: 17g · Vitamin A: 720IU · Vitamin C: 1.8mg · Calcium: 373mg · Iron: 1.6mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @barefeetkitchen or tag #barefeetkitchen!

{originally published 6/7/12 – recipe notes and photos updated 7/18/22}

Cheesy BBQ Chicken Enchiladas

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Mary Younkin

Mary Younkin

Hi, I’m Mary. I’m the author, cook, photographer, and travel lover behind the scenes here at Barefeet In The Kitchen. I'm also the author of three cookbooks dedicated to making cooking from scratch as simple as possible.

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28 Comments Leave a comment or review

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  1. Jenn says

    Oh wow, that looks soooo good. I would love to have a big plate of that right now… I don't care that it's only 5:30 in the morning!

  2. Sue/the view from great island says

    I'm in love! This is kind of like an enchilada lasagna, and I love it because I always have trouble rolling my tortillas for enchiladas, they crack and fall apart on me. I also like this because it gives me another option for using homemade tortillas, which you inspired me to make. They are too small to roll, but would be perfect for this.

  3. Marry Jane says

    I love to eat caramelized onion with literally anything! Now that we have BBQ chicken with it, it’s just amazing!!5 stars

  4. Clbitt says

    Looked up a recipe to use my leftover bbq chicken and tried this one since I had all of the ingredient on hand. I was very pleased with how easy it was and delicious!5 stars

  5. Jules says

    I don’t know what I did wrong but we could not eat this. The BBQ sauce was so strong, it overpowered the dish! I would probably cut the bbq sauce down quite a bit.

    • Mary Younkin says

      Oh man, Jules, that’s such a bummer! I’m guessing the BBQ sauce really was too strong for the dish. Do you recall which sauce you used? I’ve only ever tried this with a homemade sauce or Sweet Baby Ray’s. I’ll make a note of that in the recipe. Sorry about that!

  6. Sharyn Campbell says

    I had a couple of cups of leftover BBQ sauce that was perfect for this recipe. I used 1.25 lb cooked chicken and shredded it myself (boiled the chicken with bouillon). I served the enchiladas with Rice-a-Roni Mexican rice. It’s just me and my husband, so what are your thoughts on freezing some leftovers, and do you have any advice on reheating? Thank you for this recipe; it was a creative way for me to use up BBQ sauce, and I had never made enchiladas before.5 stars

    • Mary Younkin says

      I typically freeze leftover enchiladas in individual containers and thaw in the refrigerator prior to reheating in the microwave, Sharyn.

  7. columbia93 says

    Made the Chicken Refried Beans Casserole tonight…pretty tasty.

    This looks good, especially since my family loves when I cook up a big batch of BBQ Chicken in the Instant Pot. I’m thinking of adding baked beans, since you had refried beans in the original. I’m giving it 4stars before making it based on the other casserole and because it’s quick and easy, great for summertime.4 stars