Enchilada Casserole

This hearty casserole is easier to make than enchiladas since you don’t need to roll tortillas or make a separate sauce. Corn tortillas are added in with the beans and vegetables to thicken the casserole; a dish that everyone at the table will enjoy!

Enchilada Casserole from StraightUpFood.com

1 medium yellow onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped (about 1½ cups)
1 tablespoon freshly minced garlic (4 to 5 medium cloves)
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 can (15 ounces) diced tomatoes (1½ cups), not drained
1 can (15 ounces) black beans (1½ cups), drained and rinsed
1 medium zucchini, diced (about 1½ cups)
1 cup raw, frozen, or canned organic corn (drained)
5 cups roughly chopped chard leaves, (about 4 large leaves)
3 organic corn tortillas (6-inch) cut into 1-inch squares (to blend)
2 organic corn tortillas (6-inch) cut into 1-inch squares (to garnish top)

1. Preheat oven to 375. Chop and prepare all ingredients before starting. Place 2 tablespoons of water into a large skillet or soup pot on high heat. When the water begins to sputter, add the onion and bell pepper and sauté for 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and add the garlic, oregano, basil and chili powder, and cook stirring for 1 to 2 minutes, adding water as needed to keep things moving.

2. Stir in the diced tomatoes, beans, zucchini, corn, chard, and the 3 cut up tortillas, and cook covered for 5 more minutes, stirring halfway through. After 5 minutes, place 1 cup of this mixture into a blender and blend until smooth; add this sauce back into the pot and stir. Spoon into an 9-by-13-inch baking dish (you do not need to prepare the pan with any oil or parchment paper).

3. Scatter the remaining 2 cut-up tortillas across the top, and bake uncovered for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let sit for 5 minutes before serving.

Preparation: 25 minutes
Cooking: stove top, 12 minutes; baking, 15 minutes
Serves: 6 to 8


Chili powder: Most stores carry a standard “chili powder,” which is mild in flavor; this is what I have used in this recipe. If you like things on the “hot-n-spicy” side, feel free to use a hotter chili powder of your choice instead, or add a ½ teaspoon of red pepper flakes or a few chopped jalapeño peppers.

Corn and GMOs: In order to avoid GM (genetically modified) foods, including corn, only buy food labeled “100% organic.” By law, manufacturers may not label something “100% organic” if that food has been genetically modified. Also, just because something says “organic” on it does not mean that it does not contain GM ingredients; it can still contain up to 30%, so be sure the labels say “100% organic” if avoiding GM foods is important to you.

No corn? You may also leave the corn and tortillas out of this dish if you have chosen to avoid corn altogether; the casserole won’t be as thick, but it will still be filling and have great flavor.

No baking? The baking helps firm up the casserole, but you may also forego the baking step and just eat the vegetable-bean-tortilla mixture as a stew.

Before and after baking Enchilada Casserole

Above: Left, before baking and right, after baking. The tortilla pieces on top curl during baking, creating little corn chips.

Corn tortillas few ingredients

Above: When you shop for corn tortillas, look for an ingredient list with very few items, like the two above. Also look for “organic corn” (see Notes above). These do not contain preservatives and so will likely be found in the refrigerated section of the store.

Corn tortillas many ingredients

Above: Avoid corn tortillas with long ingredient lists, which often include ingredients to soften the texture and enhance the color. Corn tortillas may also contain wheat, salt and oil, so always read the labels on packaged foods before you buy.

Enchilada Casserole from StraightUpFood.com

This dish makes great leftovers, and is also a delicious and filling on-the-go meal, hot or cold.

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  1. says

    I’ve made this one several times from the McDougall newslettter using Food For Life brand corn tortillas and kale instead of chard. It’s fabulous!! :)

  2. says

    I’ve made several different variations of this recipe and it never disappoints! I really like the detailed and important information you include on your site. It’s been really helpful on my own plant-based journey. Thanks!
    Lauren at Edible Musings

  3. Nidhi Shah says

    Thank you for this recipe, I have recently made this and it came out great! I have been suggesting my friends your blog. I am gonna make more recipes from your blog

  4. Kathleen says

    Thank you, Cathy for this recipe and all your recipes! I enjoy your way of cooking very much. I made this recipe tonight. I had most of the ingredients but not all. I didn’t have chard or zucchini in the house today. I added a little spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, mushrooms and peas because I had them in the house and it was very yummy! Thank you! This will definitely be one of my “go-to” recipes as many of yours are for me! I appreciate you! Thank you!

  5. says

    I made this the other day and was very happy with the result! I added a jalapeno and lots of cumin for extra flavor. Thank you for the inspiration!

  6. Melba Wilson says

    Thank you, I have the Starch Solution book; so many wonderful receipes are in there, so happy with my results of eatning this way, lost 25 pounds. This is a good receipe I have made burgers etc by adding extra oatmeal for extra flavor relish to taste n bread crumbs, even dried it out by accident in microwave n mixed with rice looked like (hamburger n rice). Taste delicious. So excited Im now selling this book in my shop Mel’s Show Case, Bermuda. I’m telling everyone I meet, no more pills lest bills n saved so much money. Praise God. May God continue to bless Dr John Mcdougal his wife n team.

  7. JoAnne Zoller Wagner says

    Just a note that 8 X 11 could not be a square dish! :-) I’m looking forward to trying this. Thank you!

    • says

      Good catch! :) I just made this in a 9×13 dish and it worked just fine, so I changed it to that since it’s a more common size. Thanks!

  8. Rayanne says

    Wow! I spooned some over my baked potato and froze a few large slices for lunches. I heart casseroles! This one is so good.

  9. Rayanne says

    I just realized that the sauce from this recipe can be spooned over baked corn chips for “nachos.” Top with some sliced olives and jalapenos. Great versatile recipe – thank you!

  10. says

    What a yummy recipe! I didn’t have corn tortillas, so I added cooked brown rice instead and topped with tortilla chip pieces. The flavor is hearty without being overpowering. Great dish!

  11. Keri Snyder says

    I found this recipe through the Forks Over Knives app. I made it today for lunch and it was so great! I know a plant-based recipe is a keeper when my meat-eating boyfriend wants a second helping. I love how versatile this recipe is! I added a tsp of cumin, as well as a little salt to mine, and topped each serving with fresh cilantro and guacamole. Next time I’ll add sliced mushrooms to really “beef” it up! :) Thanks for the awesome recipe!

  12. Lynn Walcher says

    Thank for this recipe!

    I enjoyed it last night fresh and hot out of the oven. Today I ate it cold for lunch, and it was still very delicious!

    I drive for a living, so it is really great to have something as good and portable (and healthy) as this. This is one of those things that actually taste just as good, if not better, on the second day. Better than any fast-food place on the road!


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