By Scott Koeneman / FighttheFatFoodie.com
I love Mexican food, but, between deep-fat frying and lots of cheese, lightening up some my favorites can be a challenge. Chimichangas was definitely one of them. Traditionally, this dish is made of meat and cheese-filled tortillas fried to a crispy brown. My version uses chicken breast, light cheese and I baked them instead of frying them. I topped them with light sour cream and a fresh tomato version of my chipotle salsa.
The fresh green chilies and spices I used, blended with the chicken and cheese and gave this dish a smooth and tender heat. The baked tortilla was wonderfully crisp. Each chimichanga is only 262 calories with 5 grams of fat and 4 of fiber.
Baked Chicken Chimichangas
Makes 4 to 8 servings
1 tablespoon canola oil, divided
1 medium onion, diced
4 fresh green chilies, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/2 tablespoons Smokey Southwest Spice Blend
1-1/2 pounds cooked chicken breast, shredded
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
8 10-inch whole wheat tortillas
1 cup shredded low-fat Mexican cheese blend
Light sour cream, salsa and cilantro for garnish
Heat one teaspoon oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and green chilies and sauté until just tender. Add garlic and spice blend and continue to cook for another minute. Add chicken, salt and pepper and cook until heated through. Remove from heat and let cool.
Preheat over to 350F.
Lightly warm tortillas, wrapped in a paper towel, in a microwave, about 30 seconds. Fill the center of each tortilla with 1/8 of the chicken mixture and top with 2 tablespoons cheese. Fold over edges and secure with toothpicks.
Using the remaining 2 teaspoons of oil, brush the entire exterior of each chimichanga lightly with oil and place on a baking sheet. Bake until light to medium brown.
Serve topped with light sour cream, salsa and cilantro sprigs.