Kabocha Squash Enchiladas with Salsa Verde

  • Yield : 8 enchiladas
  • Servings : 2-4
  • Prep Time : 20m
  • Cook Time : 50m
  • Ready In : 1:30 h

Who doesn’t love enchiladas? These are made with the very delicious kabocha squash (most often seen in Japanese tempura). The salsa verde, made with poblano chiles and tomatillos, comes together easily, and is a great option anytime you need a green chile sauce. (I usually serve these with whole pinto beans.)


  • 2 poblano chiles, halved
  • 1/2 small yellow onion
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled
  • 1/4 pound tomatillos (around 2-3), husked, rinsed, and dried
  • 1 small jalapeno chile
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon neutral (vegetable, canola, grapeseed) oil
  • kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 kabocha sqaush, peeled, seeds removed, and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons neutral (vegetable, canola, grapeseed) oil
  • kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 8 corn tortillas, 6" in diameter
  • 1/4 red onion, finely chopped
  • a handful cilantro, chopped
  • finely chopped red onion, cliantro, and radish; hot sauce; and lime wedges


Step 1

FOR THE SALSA VERDE: preheat the broiler. Put the poblanos, onion, garlic, tomatillos, and jalapeno on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with the cumin, coriander, salt, and pepper. Drizzle the oil over the top. Put the sheet in the oven, 3-4 inches from the heat, and broil until peppers are blackened and soft, around 8-10 minutes. (If anything starts to burn or, in the case of the tomatillos, burst, remove them from the oven as necessary.) Alternately, you can blacken everything over a fire or the flame on a gas stove, but that takes kind of a long time, given that you have to do everything one at a time. Still, if you're so inclined, or if you have a fire going in your grill, go for it. Set the sheet aside to cool, and turn the oven to 400 degrees. When the salsa verde ingredients are cool (around 10 minutes), peel the poblano and jalapeno peppers, discard the seeds from the poblanos, and put everything into a blender or food processor. Puree until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

Step 2

FOR THE SQUASH: While the salsa verde ingredients are cooling, put the squash in medium bowl, and toss with the 1/2 teaspoon cumin, coriander, oil, salt and pepper. Place on a small baking sheet, and roast in the oven until caramelized and cooked through, around 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.

Step 3

TO ASSEMBLE THE ENCHILADAS: Smear a few tablespoons of salsa verde over the bottom of an 8" x 8" baking dish. Put 1/8 of the squash onto a tortilla, and top with a teaspoon of salsa verde, some of the chopped red onion, and some of the chopped cilantro. (If you're using good-quality tortillas, you won't have to heat them, but cheaper tortillas can benefit from a quick frying in hot oil to make them more pliable and less likely to break when rolled.) Roll the tortilla up, and put it in the baking dish, seam-side down. Repeat with the remaining tortillas. Pour the rest of the salsa verde over the top, and smooth it out with the back of a spoon. Bake for 20 minutes, remove from the oven, and let rest for 5-10 minutes to cool. Serve with additional onion, cilantro, radish, lime wedges, and hot sauce on the side.


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Comments (5)

  1. posted by Laura @bitemevegan on November 6, 2012

    These sound great! I love kabocha squash.

  2. posted by Toni on November 7, 2012

    These are so darn tasty! I love the spices, mixed with the fresh cilantro. Perfect!

  3. posted by Dana on August 5, 2013

    Loved them!! These are fantastic; I’ve been sharing the recipe with everyone who will listen. (Must confess I cheated and added some monterey jack cheese.)

  4. posted by Valeria on December 6, 2014

    Just wanted to tell you the ‘cheap’ tortillas are the authentic tortillas of just 3 ingredients corn, water, lime..
    The others have an additive guar gum, cellulose.. for shelf life and pliability, that to me, makes it gooey and hard to digest and not worth the convenience.. they do nothing for the taste and I resent you calling them cheap…because of Gringo preferences for convenience, I see many tortilla companies even from Mexico adding it, making it hard to find a true and in my estimation a superior tortilla.. you don’t need to fry them to make them pliable, just a little low heat, little oil cover a bit so moister traps.. the recipe otherwise looks great.. but think about the chain of custody of where your food comes from…

  5. posted by Anne Silk on April 26, 2017

    Yesterday I was at Trader Joes to buy tortillas… The 99-cent package of ‘authentic, organic corn tortillas’ has the 3 ingredients you defined above. The $2.39 package of ‘handmade corn tortillas’ has the same 3 ingredients. I don’t think the descriptor “cheap” used in the recipe is a judgement on the origins of Mexican culture or the paradigms of race. The word “cheap” is totally unrelated to the chain of custody (?) of food. Do you think sorghum is so widely grown and distributed in Africa because it’s “expensive”? Lying in wait to pounce on someone using a word you don’t like, and then vocabulary-shaming them, is not productive to the enlightenment you seek. How about offering a suggestion for a more ‘appropriate’ word that works better for the whole? You criticize, use a cultural slur yourself (“gringo”), and offer nothing. Is that helping? Is that being a part of the solution? Do you feel better about yourself and the state of the world by accusing someone of being a gringo? Maybe you are the party that needs a little cultural sensitivity training.


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