Do this (trust me, just do it): get out your slow cooker. Toss in the ingredients for the chipotle beef (this will take ten minutes, at most). Turn on the cooker, and go out and do something. Go to the park, go to work or worship, go visit your grandma, go to a football game. Let the meat do its thing while you do yours. When it's finished, shred it, and refrigerate it, or even freeze it. And then, sometime, tonight, or tomorrow, or later in the week, or next weekend, make a pan of really great chipotle beef enchiladas. So easy. You'll have a lot of the beef left over (and some of the chipotle barbecue sauce, too) and you can use it in sandwiches or quesadillas, or in a rice bowl, wrapped in a lettuce leaf, or tucked into a lunch box. If you follow this recipe, you'll have a very mildly spicy dish (my grandsons loved it, and they don't like spicy food), but of course you can kick it up by adding an additional chipotle chile pepper, or more of the adobo sauce from the can. And you know me... I would never discourage you from doing that. I use flat-cut beef brisket, because I love it, but you can make this with a chuck roast, too. Just do it. You'll thank me later.
Slow cooker chipotle beef enchiladas
From the pantry, you'll need: ketchup, light brown sugar, onion, cider vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, chipotle pepper in adobo, garlic, chili powder, ground cumin, black beans, kosher salt, fresh black pepper.
Makes 8 large enchiladas with leftover beef.
For the beef:
3 lbs flat-cut beef brisket, cut into 4 pieces
3/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup water
1 small onion, diced
1-1/2 Tbsp cider vinegar
1-1/2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 chipotle pepper in adobo, slightly smashed with a spoon (add a bit of extra sauce from the can if you want more spicy heat in the dish)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp fresh black pepper
For the enchiladas:
1 15-oz can mild enchilada sauce, homemade or canned
1/2 cup sour cream
1-1/2 cups cooked (or canned and drained) black beans
2 cups grated cheese, divided (I use storebought low-fat 4-cheese Mexican blend)
8 taco-size low-carb tortillas (white or whole wheat)
Optional toppings: sour cream, chopped avocado, chopped tomato, spicy salsa.
Place all of the ingredients for the beef into a 6-quart slow cooker. Cook on HIGH for 5 hours, or on LOW for 8 hours, turning the meat once or twice during the cook time.
When the meat is cooked and tender, remove it from the slow cooker to a large mixing bowl, leaving the sauce to come to a boil and reduce. While the sauce is reducing, shred the meat with two forks. Either reduce the sauce until there is just enough to moisten the shredded meat, OR thicken it with a mixture of 1 tablespoon of cornstarch mixed with 3 tablespoons of water. Pour the cornstarch solution directly into the boiling liquid in the slow cooker, and the sauce should thicken instantly.
Add the meat back into the slow cooker, and mix to combine with the sauce. Turn the cooker off, and transfer the meat to a large bowl to cool.
At this point, you can refrigerate or even freeze the meat. Or, you can continue on and make the enchiladas. (You will use only a couple of cups of the shredded meat for the enchiladas; store the rest in the refrigerator, or freeze it.)
Make the enchiladas:
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Prepare a straight-sided 9x13 casserole dish (or any other size dish that has straight sides), by spooning in a few tablespoons of the enchilada sauce, and spreading it to cover the bottom of the dish.
In a large mixing bowl, combine 2 cups of the shredded meat with the sour cream, black beans, and 1 cup of shredded cheese. Mix well.
On the countertop, set out the tortillas. Divide the meat and bean mixture evenly among them, placing the mixture at one end of the tortilla. Then, one at a time, roll each tortilla around the filling, and place it seam-side down in the prepared casserole dish. Pack the tortillas tightly together.
Pour the remaining enchilada sauce over the tortillas, and sprinkle on the remaining shredded cheese.
Bake, uncovered, for 25 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and browned.
Remove the enchiladas from the oven, and let sit for 5-10 minutes before serving with optional toppings.
More easy enchiladas:
Lighter chicken and black bean enchiladas, from The Perfect Pantry
Smoky pumpkin and brown rice enchiladas, from The Perfect Pantry
Creamy cheesy turkey enchiladas, from Simply Recipes
Roasted vegetable enchiladas, from Gimme Some Oven
Swiss chard, onion, and Monterey Jack-filled vegetarian enchiladas in a tomatillo salsa, from Herbivoracious
Disclosure: The Perfect Pantry earns a few pennies on purchases made through the Amazon.com links in this post. Thank you for supporting this site when you start your shopping here.