Vegan Mexican Casserole

I follow most vegan diets, so - maybe there isn't one surprise - I eat lots of salads and bowls with grains, protein sources, and creative dressings or sauces. But, I won't lie. Sometimes I get tired of staring at the same ingredients and, usually around the same time, casserole desires set.

As the founder of Plants & Vine, I'm always trying to keep interesting plant foods and delicious vegetarian casseroles this is one of my favorite tricks for mixing things. This vegan Mexican casserole does the trick when I'm looking to switch to weekly food routines or cook food for a group of friends for a dinner party. This dish is also suitable for skeptics or new vegetarian or vegan menus. It takes a classic casserole dish and then turns into a healthy version with a large profile of the same flavor and consistently triggers the phrase, "Are you sure this is vegan?"


  • 2 red peppers
  • 2 green peppers
  • 1 jalapeno
  • 1 onion
  • head 3 fresh corn
  • 4 teaspoons of cumin, divided in half
  • 4 teaspoons of paprika smoked, divided in half
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne powder, divided in half
  • 1 teaspoon of powdered garlic, divided in half
  • 1 teaspoon of dried oregano, divided in half
  • enough salt (about 1 teaspoon)
  • vegan 3-4 cups of Mexican blend cheese
  • 15-20 corn tortillas
  • 1 can of refried black beans
  • enchilada sauce 2.5 cups red, divided in half
  • Coriander and guacamole for toppings


  1. Preheat a 400 degree F oven and 9 × 13 inch baking pan grease.
  2. Dice of peppers, jalapeno and onions. Add small amounts of cooking spray or oil to a large skillet over medium heat. Add peppers, jalapeno and onions, and sprinkle with half of cumin, smoked peppers, cayenne, garlic powder, and oregano. Stir to coat evenly, then cook for 3-5 minutes until the vegetables begin to soften. Remove and set aside. Repeat the process of baking with corn, splashing with the remaining half of cumin, smoked peppers, cayenne, garlic powder and oregano. Remove from heat after 3-5 minutes. Sprinkle all grilled vegetables with a little salt and throw them to coat.
  3. Cut thin tortillas. Add the fried beans in a bowl and stir with a little water to make them easier to spread.
  4. To make casseroles, spread a little sauce (about 1/2 cup) at the bottom of the pan. Start with a layer in this order: half of the tortilla strip, all refried black beans, half of vegetables (peppers, onions and corn), half of the sauce, half of cheese. Repeat by making a new layer with the remaining half of the tortilla strip, vegetables, sauce, and cheese.
  5. Cover with foil and bake for about 20 minutes until the sauce boils and the cheese melts. Serve with guacamole, fresh cilantro and additional chopped black olives.

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