Every-so-often I am looking for a good and healthy casserole to make. This gets tricky for a couple of reasons. 1 – Casseroles are usually not healthy. 2 – Casseroles usually use canned soup of which I am not the biggest fan. So, I get kind of picky when it comes to making casseroles. BUT, casseroles are so wonderful because they are great one-pan dishes that feed a crowd. So, I never stop searching for tasty and healthy casserole dishes.
This is my current favorite casserole dish! It’s loaded with traditional Mexican flavors and the texture is phenomenal thanks to the black beans and quinoa. It is really easy to make and takes little effort. The prep time takes about 20 minutes (that’s to chop up and sauté the veggies and cook the quinoa) and the bake time is 30 minutes. So, I essentially had dinner ready in 20 minutes, and used the 30 minute bake time to make a green salad AND wash the dishes so I wouldn’t have to do much after dinner. Pretty awesome!
I loved adding the fresh toppings to the cooked casserole. The green onions, fresh cilantro, and avocado were oh-so-perfect. It hyped up the freshness and intensified the Mexican flare.
This is also a meatless casserole. That being said, the addition of shredded, cooked chicken would work SO well here (and stretch the servings). I have NO doubt that I’ll be incorporating that on occasion to increase the protein content.
This is going to become a regular around our house! Please make it at yours . . . and then bring me a plate.
Adapted from Two Peas & Their Pod
1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
2 cups 99% fat free chicken broth
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 small onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeño, seeds and ribs removed,diced
1 red pepper, seeds removed, diced
1 orange pepper, seeds removed, diced
juice of 1 small lime
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
salt and pepper, to taste
2 (15 oz) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups red enchilada sauce
1 1/2 cups shredded reduced fat Mexican cheese
Toppings: Sliced green onions, avocado slices, sour – optional
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
Add quinoa and broth to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Boil for 5 minutes. Turn the heat to low and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until water is absorbed. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork. Cover quinoa and set aside.
In a large skillet, heat the tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, and jalapeño. Sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add in the peppers. Cook for about 3-4 minutes. Add the lime juice, cumin, chili powder, and cilantro. Stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
In a large bowl, add the cooked quinoa and black beans. Add the sautéed vegetable mixture and stir to combine. Add cheese and pour in the enchilada sauce and stir to combine.
Pour the black bean and quinoa mixture into the prepared baking dish. Top with remaining 1 cup shredded cheese. Cover the pan with foil. Bake for 20 minutes, then remove foil. Bake an additional 10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and edges are bubbling. Remove from the oven, and let cool for 10 minutes. Garnish with toppings, if desired. Serve warm.
Note-this recipe freezes well!
Nutritional Information (Per Serving)
Fat: 9g (2.6g = Sat.)