Friday, May 13, 2011

Breakfast for Dinner: Green Chilaquiles with Eggs

I've never been a big fan of the "breakfast for dinner" concept.  I know that other people get a huge kick out of eating a big plate of pancakes at 6pm.  But, not me.  I prefer my pancakes at 10 a.m., accompanied by a glass of orange juice and a strong cup of coffee.

But, I’m not completely unreasonable.  In fact, there are certain “breakfast-like” foods that I can be persuaded to eat in the afternoon and evening.

I can be coaxed, for example, into hauling out my trusty blue pyrex pie plate to whip up a quick and delicious vegetable quiche for dinner every now and again (that's quite a bit like eggs & toast, isn't it?).  And I've also been known to get a craving for latkes (probably close enough to pancakes) in the late afternoon on certain occasions.

And then there are chilaquiles... ah, how I love my chilaquiles.

Interestingly, chilaquiles claim to fame is often their magical ability to ease the symptoms of a hangover.  As the story goes, the eggs, which contain good quality protein, supposedly help restore the body’s strength.   And the spicy chiles in the sauce apparently possess a natural pain reliever, providing relief from the tell-tale headache left behind after an evening of excess.

But, I don’t need to have a hang-over to crave this dish. In fact, I will gladly scarf down a bowl of chilaquiles for breakfast, lunch, or dinner without hesitation.
Give me a bag of slightly dry corn tortillas… or a half-eaten bag of nice, thick-cut corn chips…  Then show me the rich stores of homemade roasted tomatillo sauce that I have languishing in the freezer downstairs… and I’m yours.

Chilaquiles are one of the easiest (and most delicious) dishes known to man.  The word chilaquiles is derived from a Nahuatl word meaning "in a salsa of chiles.” And the concept is really that simple.

They don’t require a recipe at all if you have a bit of salsa, tomatillo sauce, or mole on hand. Just heat 1 teaspoon vegetable oil in a skillet over medium heat. When hot add a cup or two of the sauce and cook for a minute or two, giving it a good stir.  When the sauce is heated, add a few handfuls of tortilla chips and toss to coat. Serve over refried beans or top with a fried egg or a bit of leftover pulled chicken. A garnish of cilantro, sour cream, and/or cotija cheese is also nice.
So, pull that tomatillo sauce out of the freezer and enjoy these chilaquiles -- for breakfast, brunch, OR dinner.

Quick Roasted Tomatillo Sauce

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  1. I firmly believe that chilaquiles should be an anytime food. Breakfast, lunch, midday snack...whatever. This version looks delicious! That tomatilla sauce must make them so tart tangy delicious!

  2. YUM! I don't think I have ever had this dish! Gonna have to fix that!

  3. That sounds so delicious. I have been making this yummy twist on chilaquiles recently without the chila part :) I fry up some sausage and onions and maybe some zucchini or whatever's around, maybe with some black beans. Then toss in some torn up corn tortilla and when that is hot I stir in one or two whisked eggs. It cooks into tortilla and goodie stuffed scrambled eggs in just a minute and I love to eat it with some salsa and sourcream. I think I'll see if I can find some good tomatillo sauce around and make a batch just like yours soon. Thanks!

  4. Yuuuuummmmmm! I just had chilaquiles for the first time when we were in Mexico a month ago, but I LOVED them and can't wait to try making them. This is a good place to start!

  5. I'm so glad I'm not the only one who doesn't "get" the whole breakfast for dinner appeal. I think too many breakfast foods are overrated.

    But a good egg dish isn't just a breakfast dish. I know this would be a great Friday casual meal that my husband would gobble up!

  6. A big favorite of my husband's! I too am not a huge breakfast for dinner fan but I do love a good poached egg on a lentil salad.

  7. Thank you for keeping an open mind. I'm happy to welcome you to the breakfast-for-dinner-club.

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  9. I love breakfast for dinner, but it's definitely due to a combination of nostalgia, and the joy my 3 year old takes in having such a SILLY dinner.

    I love chilaquiles... And firmly believe they are best enjoyed on a quiet beach first thing in the morning, sand between toes and all.


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