I grew up eating chilaquiles all the time! It was one of my favorite things my mom made us on the weekends. I still go to her house and request them. She’d serve them with chorizo scrambled eggs and black beans and some breakfast potatoes. Talk about heaven on earth. They always remind me of my childhood, and so because of this, they’ll always have a special place in my heart. I couldn’t just bring you basic chilaquiles though—because where is the fun in that?—and so here we have delicious Kimchi Chilaquiles. They’re slightly spicy and oh so hearty, making them the perfect brunch or breakfast dish to feed a crowd. Top them with fried eggs, avocado, cilantro, radish and scallions for that ultimate weekend dish. If you’re not familiar with kimchi, it’s this incredible Korean condiment that I could literally put on anything. It’s spicy fermented cabbage and I can’t get enough. They’re a great addition to an already amazing dish, and I think you should try it out!
Let’s start by sautéing, in a very large skillet, the shallot and jalapeño in a bit of olive oil in a large skillet until softened, about 1 to 2 minutes. Keep it moving so that the shallot doesn’t burn on you.
**Tip: Since the kimchi and the tomato sauce we’re using later on are both hot, you can decide to add or omit the jalapeño. I like things on the spicier side so I add a medium jalapeño to give it even more of a kick, but leaving it out would be okay too.**
Add in the chopped store-bought kimchi and cook for a minute longer. I like seeing large bits of kimchi in the dish, so I just give it a rough chop. Doesn’t have to be fine at all.
**Note: The kimchi I buy isn’t packed in so much liquid so I don’t drain it at all, because I like that added flavor, but if yours is packed in a lot of liquid, you might want to drain some of it off before adding to the skillet.**
Stir in the spicy tomato sauce and bring up to a simmer. Then lower the flame to low and cook until the sauce has reduced slightly. Again, keep stirring it so that it doesn’t stick to the bottom and burn.
**Tip: I like using spicy tomato sauce for this because it gives the dish a great kick along with the kimchi. If you’re not a fan of that much spice, then you can use plain tomato sauce instead. I use El Pato brand which comes in small yellow cans with a duck on it. It’s my all time favorite!**
Once the sauce has reduced slightly and thickened, add in the tortilla chips, a handful at a time, and gently stirring to evenly coat the chips in the sauce. Keep adding and stirring until all the chips have been incorporated.
**Tip: Most chilaquiles recipes have you make the chips from scratch by frying tortilla pieces, but I feel like that’s an added step you really don’t need. If your store carries great homemade style tortilla chips, then use that instead! It saves you a bunch of time and reduces the mess you have to clean up later.**
You can’t have chilaquiles without cheese, so I’m adding slices of Pepper Jack to the pan. I tuck the slices into the tortilla chips and allow the cheese to melt a bit before very gently stirring. Again, the Pepper Jack is slightly spicy, so if you’re averse to that, you can use Cheddar or Monterey Jack instead…or leave out the cheese all together. That would be blasphemous though.
Once the cheese melts, you’re done! Top the chilaquiles with fried eggs, avocado, radish slices, cilantro and scallions. If you want to add even more heat, you can add slices of fresh or pickled jalapeños!
The eggs are optional, but most chilaquiles are topped with fried eggs so maybe they’re not so optional. If you’re not a fried egg fan you can totally serve this with scrambled eggs are poached eggs and it might be slightly blasphemous but that doesn’t matter. All that matters is that you are happy.
This isn’t the type of dish you make ahead of time, so unfortunately you’d have to make them right before servings. Especially since you want the chips to not get too soggy and you want the cheese to still be melty.
If you’re not a fan of kimchi (some people just aren’t and I’m not judging) then feel free to just leave it out and you’ll have a great recipe for basic chilaquiles that are still just as delicious.
This is a great recipe to keep in mind the next time you’re looking for a crowd-pleasing brunch or breakfast dish. The weekend comes and sometimes it’s hard to figure out what to make for your family and friends. Believe me, I completely understand, and that’s why I got your back. It’s what friends do.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium shallot, diced
- 1 small jalapeño, chopped
- 1 (14-ounce) jar kimchi, chopped
- 3 (7.5-ounce) cans spicy tomato sauce
- 2 (4-ounce) bags tortilla chips
- ½ cup shredded or sliced Pepper Jack cheese
- 4 large eggs, fried
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro
- 1 medium avocado, diced
- 4 radishes, thinly sliced
- 2 scallions, sliced
- Set a large skillet over medium heat with the oil. Once hot, add in the shallot and jalapeño and cook until softened, about 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the kimchi, along with the juices, and cook for a minute longer. Add the tomato sauce and cook until slightly reduced, about 2 to 3 minutes.
- Carefully fold in the tortilla chips until they're completely coated in the sauce and kimchi. Lower the flame, and add the cheese, stirring gently until the chips have softened and the cheese has melted, about 5 to 8 minutes.
- Top the chilaquiles with the fried eggs, avocado, cilantro, radishes and scallions. Serve immediately and enjoy!