This vegetarian enchilada casserole is loaded with a savory tofu and black bean filling. Ready in under and hour using nutritious ingredients and pantry staples, this recipe makes a great fuss-free dinner option!
I've been on a roll lately with quick and easy dinner recipes, especially those with Mexican-inspired flavors. From quinoa black bean casserole to stove-top rice and beans and now this black bean enchilada casserole, I've got your dinner covered!
This recipe is similar to my black bean enchiladas recipe in that it is really easy to customize and is great for picky eaters.
This enchilada casserole is also packed with vegetarian protein -- tofu and black beans-- and uses inexpensive pantry staples.
Casseroles really are the best kind of meal!
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While some of these ingredients are required -- like enchilada sauce and corn tortillas -- don't count these ingredients as hard and fast rules.
Customize using whatever you have on hand or based on your flavor preferences.
Yellow onion: White or red onion also work.
Extra firm tofu: Crumble tofu directly into the pan. You don't even need to marinate or press the tofu!
Bell pepper: Red bell pepper lends a sweet flavor and pop of color, but any color of bell pepper will do.
Enchilada sauce: Choose mild, medium or hot based on your spice preferences.
Green chiles: These add a pop of spice and extra flavor.
Black beans: Choose "No salt added" black beans or cook your own from dry to control the sodium content. You can also use pinto, kidney or red beans.
Spices: Chili powder, cumin, garlic and salt are used to spice things up a bit.
Corn tortillas: Use white or yellow 6" corn tortillas. Store extra tortillas in the fridge to have on hand for tacos or quick quesadillas.
Mexican cheese blend: This usually includes cheddar, colby and Montery jack cheeses. You can also shred your own cheese, as you can see I did in step #4.
How to make
There are two main steps to making an enchilada casserole: making the filling and assembling the casserole layers.
Make the filling
Start by heating olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat (this is the skillet that I use).
Once hot, add diced yellow onion and bell pepper. Crumble tofu directly into the pan, as you would with a tofu scramble (image one). Saute until onion is softened, about 5 minutes.
Add black beans, 1 cup enchilada sauce, green chiles and spices. Simmer over medium-low for 5 minutes, or until enchilada sauce is heated through (image two).
Assemble casserole layers
Spread ½ cup enchilada sauce in a two quart baking dish (image one).
Layer three tortillas (6 half moons) so that the sauce is mostly covered (image two). Some gaps will remain and that is okay.
Cover with half (about 2 and ½ cups) of the black bean filling (image three). Sprinkle evenly with ⅔ cup cheese (image four).
Repeat steps 2-4 once more: tortillas, filling, cheese.
Top with 3-4 tortillas (6-8 pieces). It's okay if the gaps aren't completely covered but you can add more tortilla slices if you want.
Spread 1 cup enchilada sauce over the tortillas, then sprinkle with ⅔ cup shredded cheese.
Add spinach or kale-- a good source of iron for vegetarians-- when you add the black beans, enchilada sauce and green chiles.
Use up veggies like carrots or squash by sauteing with onion and bell pepper. The options are endless!
Can I freeze enchilada casserole?
Yes! This recipe works well frozen. I like to separate individual portions into freezer-safe containers for quick meals.
The best way to do this is by slicing the enchilada casserole once it is completely cooled. I usually do this when it is refrigerator temp for the tidiest slices.
Vegetarian Black Bean Enchilada Casserole
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup diced yellow onion
- 1 medium red bell pepper diced
- 14 ounces extra firm tofu
- 1 can (15 ounces) black beans drained and rinsed
- 2 and ½ cups red enchilada sauce (20 ounces)
- 4 ounces diced green chiles drained
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend
- 10 6 inch white corn tortillas sliced in half into half moons
- fresh cilantro, lime and avocado for serving
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add diced yellow onion and bell pepper. Crumble tofu directly into the pan, as you would with a tofu scramble. Saute until onion is softened, about 5 minutes.
- Add black beans, 1 cup enchilada sauce, green chiles, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder and salt. Simmer over medium-low for 5 minutes, or until enchilada sauce is heated through. Taste for seasonings.
- To assemble the casserole: Spread ½ cup enchilada sauce in a two quart baking dish. Layer three tortillas (6 half moons) so that the sauce is mostly covered. Cover with half of the black bean filling (about 2 and ½ cups). Sprinkle evenly with ⅔ cup cheese. Repeat once more: tortillas, filling, cheese. Top with 3-4 tortillas (6-8 pieces). It's okay if gaps aren't completely covered. Spread 1 cup enchilada sauce over tortillas. Sprinkle with ⅔ cup cheese.
- Place the casserole uncovered on the middle oven rack. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbling and golden.
- Remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy topped with chopped cilantro, avocado and Greek yogurt or sour cream.
- Mexican cheese blend: This is a combination of sharp cheddar, Colby and Monterrey jack cheese.
- Keeps refrigerated for 4-5 days.
- To freeze: Slice the enchilada casserole into individual servings once it is completely cooled. I usually do this when it is refrigerator temp for the tidiest slices. Store in freezer-safe containers for up to 3 months. Let thaw completely in the fridge before reheating in the microwave or oven.