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Enchilada vs. Fajita: What's the Difference?

Edited by Aimie Carlson || By Janet White || Published on February 24, 2024
Enchiladas are rolled tortillas filled with meat and covered in sauce; fajitas are grilled meat served with a tortilla on the side.

Key Differences

Enchiladas are a traditional Mexican dish consisting of corn tortillas rolled around a filling, typically meat, and covered with a chili sauce. Fajitas, on the other hand, are a Tex-Mex creation featuring grilled meat served on a flour or corn tortilla, often with sautéed onions and bell peppers.
The key component of enchiladas is the sauce, which is rich and flavorful, often made from chili peppers. Fajitas, in contrast, focus on the flavor of the grilled meat, which can be beef, chicken, or shrimp, seasoned with spices and lime juice.
Enchiladas are usually baked in an oven, allowing the flavors of the sauce and fillings to meld together. Fajitas are typically cooked on a grill or a hot plate, emphasizing the charred and smoky flavor of the meat.
Enchiladas are served as a complete dish, often topped with cheese, sour cream, or guacamole, while fajitas are more interactive, allowing diners to assemble their tortillas with meat and various toppings like salsa, cheese, and guacamole.
Enchiladas are often enjoyed as a hearty, comforting meal, especially in colder months. Fajitas, with their sizzling presentation and fresh ingredients, are popular as a festive or social meal, especially in warmer weather.

Comparison Chart

Base Ingredient

Corn tortillas
Flour or corn tortillas


Rolled and baked
Grilled and served sizzling

Key Feature

Grilled meat with vegetables

Serving Style

As a complete dish
Interactive, assemble-your-own

Common Fillings

Meat, cheese, beans
Grilled meat, onions, bell peppers

Enchilada and Fajita Definitions


Enchiladas are often baked with a variety of meat and vegetable fillings.
We made beef and cheese enchiladas for our family gathering.


A fajita is a Tex-Mex dish of grilled meat served with a tortilla and toppings.
For dinner, I cooked chicken fajitas with peppers and onions.


An enchilada is a corn tortilla rolled around a filling and covered with chili sauce.
I had a delicious chicken enchilada smothered in red sauce for dinner.


Fajitas are typically served with sautéed onions, bell peppers, and various toppings.
I loaded my fajita with sour cream, cheese, and salsa.


Traditional enchiladas are topped with cheese, sour cream, or guacamole.
My favorite enchilada is topped with lots of melted cheese and guacamole.


Fajitas are often made with beef, chicken, or shrimp, seasoned and grilled.
We love making beef fajitas on our backyard grill during summer.


Enchiladas are a popular dish in Mexican cuisine.
We ordered a variety of enchiladas from a Mexican restaurant to try different flavors.


Fajitas offer a fun, interactive dining experience, allowing personal assembly.
At the party, everyone enjoyed making their own fajitas.


Enchiladas can be spicy or mild depending on the sauce used.
I prefer my enchiladas with a mild green sauce.


Fajitas are known for their sizzling presentation when served.
The sizzling sound of fajitas coming to the table always excites me.


A tortilla rolled and stuffed usually with a mixture containing meat or cheese and served with a sauce spiced with chili.


A dish consisting of strips of marinated meat or vegetables that are grilled over an open fire and served in a tortilla, usually with spicy condiments.


A Mexican dish made by wrapping a filling in a tortilla, then baking in a sauce.


A Tex-Mex dish of strips of spicy marinated meat and/or vegetables in a soft flour tortilla, often served with salad or a savoury filling.


Tortilla with meat filling baked in chili-seasoned tomato sauce


What is an enchilada?

An enchilada is a Mexican dish of a corn tortilla rolled around a filling and covered in sauce.

What makes a fajita unique?

Fajitas are characterized by grilled meat served with tortillas and toppings like onions and peppers.

Can enchiladas be vegetarian?

Yes, enchiladas can have vegetarian fillings like beans or cheese.

Are enchiladas spicy?

The spiciness of enchiladas depends on the sauce used.

What type of meat is best for fajitas?

Beef, chicken, or shrimp are popular choices for fajitas.

Is it easy to make enchiladas at home?

Yes, with the right ingredients, enchiladas can be easily made at home.

Do I need a special grill for fajitas?

No, fajitas can be cooked on any grill or hot plate.

Can I use flour tortillas for fajitas?

Yes, both flour and corn tortillas can be used for fajitas.

What are common toppings for enchiladas?

Common toppings include cheese, sour cream, and guacamole.

What's the difference between red and green enchilada sauce?

Red sauce is made from red chilies, while green sauce uses green chilies or tomatillos.

Are fajitas considered a healthy dish?

Fajitas can be healthy, depending on the ingredients and how they are cooked.

Can enchiladas be frozen for later use?

Yes,enchiladas can be frozen and reheated, though the texture might change slightly.

How are fajitas traditionally served?

Fajitas are traditionally served sizzling with tortillas and toppings on the side.

What kind of cheese is best for enchiladas?

Mexican cheeses like queso fresco or cheddar are popular choices.

Can I use pre-cooked meat for fajitas?

Yes, pre-cooked meat can be used for fajitas, but fresh grilled meat provides the best flavor.

Are enchiladas a main dish or a side dish?

Enchiladas are usually served as a main dish.

What beverages pair well with fajitas?

Cold beers, margaritas, or iced tea pair well with the flavors of fajitas.

Can I make fajitas in a regular frying pan?

Yes, fajitas can be cooked in a regular frying pan, though a grill or griddle is preferred for the smoky flavor.

What sides go well with fajitas?

Rice, beans, and salads are popular sides with fajitas.

How long does it take to cook enchiladas?

Enchiladas typically take about 20-30 minutes to bake in the oven.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

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