Collard Green Enchiladas

Before I start getting hate mail telling me that these are NOT enchiladas… I know.  Just take a deep breath and work with me on this one.  I’m not trying to tell you these are the enchiladas you will find in any Mexican restaurant or the kind that your mother makes when you’re home from college.  They’re different and that’s ok.

Sometimes you need to try different things. Collard Green Enchiladas | Life Healthfully Lived

The reason I’m calling these enchiladas is that the process of making them, as well as the filling, is SIMILAR to traditional enchiladas.  Similar.  Not the same.  You still with me?

Good.

I’ve been working with a low-carb diet for a while now to help with some medical things I have going on and because a few members of my family are also doing it as well.  I like to try and make things my loved ones can enjoy because that makes me happy.  When you have people that have a restricted diet, it’s always nice to help them enjoy the foods they did before even if they are slightly different. Collard Green Enchiladas | Life Healthfully Lived

I like making enchiladas and have a recipe for Butternut & Black Bean Enchiladas and Green Enchiladas that are delicious.  And full of carbs which I’m trying to lower for now.  So into the kitchen I went to experiment with a lower-carb version.  I came away with sort of a cross between cabbage rolls and enchiladas and because I couldn’t find a cool combination name of those two dishes, I decided to lean towards enchiladas.  Mostly because the filling is more enchilada-y (seriously a word) and the sauce really takes it up a notch.

Also, yes.  There are pork cracklings in the filling and that is intentional.  One: they are delicious.  Two: they act as a bit of binder for the meat so things stay sort of together as they cook.  Three: they really are delicious.

Finally, if you aren’t doing the low-carb thing at the moment, go right ahead and use whatever tortilla shells you would like.  Siete Foods has some great paleo options and regular flour or corn shells would also work.  You can skip the step that preps the leaves and just warm the shells up in a dry pan before you roll them.  Simple!

Alright, let’s get to the enchiladas!

Collard Green Enchiladas with Creamy Salsa Verde Sauce- serves 4-6 Collard Green Enchiladas | Life Healthfully Lived

For the sauce: 

Calories: 64 Total Fat: 5.89 g Carbs: 2.11 g Fiber: .3 g Protein: .49 g

  • 1 can full-fat coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup salsa verde
  • 1 poblano pepper, roasted and skin removed
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup cilantro
  • juice of one lime
  1. Place all of the ingredients in the blender and combine until smooth.  Store in the fridge until you’re ready to make the enchiladas.

For the enchiladas: Collard Green Enchiladas | Life Healthfully Lived

1 roll no sauce- Calories: 106 Total Fat: 7.43 g Carbs: 1.31 g Fiber: .5 g Protein: 8.55 g     

  • 10-12 large collard green leaves (or regular tortilla shells), stems removed
  • 1/2 pound ground turkey
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • 1 cup pork cracklings/rinds (NOT broken up…yet)
  • 1 cup spinach (fresh or frozen and thawed)
  • 3 green onion stalks, tops only sliced
  • 1/2 cup cilantro
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tsp taco seasoning
  • 1/2 smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  1. Add the pork rinds/crackling to a food processor along with the cloves of garlic.  Pulse a few times until the rinds are crumbs and the garlic is mostly broken up.  Add the spinach, green onion tops, and cilantro.  Pulse until everything is well combined and the spinach is mostly chopped.  Set aside.
  2. Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil.  Meanwhile, heat a little olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the ground turkey and pork and brown until there is no pink left.  Add the taco seasoning, smoked paprika, and salt and stir to combine.  Add the spinach mixture and stir together so everything is mixed together.  Remove from heat and set aside.
  3. Preheat the oven to 375 and pour a little bit of the sauce in the bottom of a 9 x 13 casserole dish.  Take one collard green leaf and add it to the pot of boiling water.  Let it cook for 30 seconds until bright green and pliable and then move to a plate.  Continue with this until all the leaves are cooked.
  4. Once the leaves are cooked and cooled, spoon about 2 tablespoons of the filling into the middle of the leaf.  Roll the leaf up like regular enchiladas, making sure you secure the sides and place in the casserole dish, seam side down.  Continue until you’ve used all the filling and leaves.
  5. Pour the rest of the sauce over the top of the collard greens and then cover the dish with aluminum foil.  Bake for about 30 minutes and then remove from the oven and take off the foil.  Bake for another 5 minutes.  The sauce should be bubbling when you take it out.  Let it cool for a few minutes before you serve it up!