Quinoa Enchilada Bake
Not Your Normal Enchilada
This Quinoa Enchilada Bake is full of black beans, corn, bell peppers and jalapeños. Mix in sautéd onions, garlic and a generous 2 cups of homemade enchiladas sauce. This dish will have people filling up for seconds and topping it with your favorite cheese, cream cheese, green onions, avocado, salsa and fresh cilantro. Dip into this piled high goodness with your favorite corn chips or use as a nacho topper or stuffed burrito, burrito bowl or tacos. It is very versatile and wonderful to bring to gatherings. At about 2 dollars a serving this main or side dish makes 8 to 10 portions.
Why Use Quinoa For Quinoa Enchilada Bake
I love using organic quinoa for a lot of dishes and for many reasons. Two main reasons are that it is a complete protein and gluten free. As a vegan I like to get my protein in and this Peruvian grain has a whopping 6g of protein per 1/4 cup. Being that it is a complete protein it does not have to be paired up with a bean or legume to make it complete with all the building blocks of amino acids to create a protein. The quinoa seed has it all built in one. It is also high in iron, fiber and phytonutrients that help reduce pain and inflammation which is another big plus.
I use the tricolor quinoa just because I like the looks of it after it is cooked. The white quinoa is the least bitter of the three colored varieties of quinoa. So I like the mildness and the mix of colors to get the most nutrients out of each variety together and less bitterness. Although, any quinoa grain will work for this recipe.
Quinoa has to be rinsed in water before cooking. There is a natural coating called saponin, which creates this bitter taste I was tell you about. It can taste either bitter or soapy so rinse your quinoa well. A really fine meshed strainer works very well because the quinoa doesn’t fall through the holes.
How To Make Quinoa Enchilada Bake
This is a step by step recipe. If you want it to be less labor then I recommend making the quinoa and enchilada sauce the day before. I always like making extra enchilada sauce to have extra on hand. It’s so good. Plus you can put the quinoa in a large plastic sealed container in the fridge and warm it up in the frying pan with all the ingredients before putting it in the oven. Just don’t add the cheese until it is ready to go into the 9×13 dish. That way the cheese doesn’t stick to the frying pan while warming up the quinoa with the other ingredients.
- The first thing I do when making Quinoa Enchilada Bake is to cook the quinoa first. That way it will be done. Make sure all the water has been steamed out of it before using. You don’t want extra water in this dish.
- Cut all of your peppers, onions, garlic, jalapeño and cilantro. Set them aside.
- Then make your homemade enchilada sauce. Truly a must do! It is so good freshly made.
- Now you can start creating the dish. Start by sautéing the onions, garlic and jalapeños in a large frying pan on medium heat. Cook them down for about 4 minutes.
- Add the peppers in with the sautéd onions, garlic and jalapeños. Cook for another 4 minutes.
- Add all the spices and desired salt and pepper. (Be mindful of the salt because this can get salty) Cook for one more minute.
- When you are done sautéing add the cooked quinoa, enchilada sauce, cilantro and vegan Mexican cheese and cilantro. Mix it all together well.
- Transfer to an 9×13 baking dish. Top with more vegan Mexican cheese and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
- While it is cooking chop up green onions, more cilantro, black olives, tomatoes, avocado and jalapeños for toppings. You can also add more vegan cheese and dollop salsa and vegan sour cream.
How To Serve Quinoa Enchilada Bake
This is a delicious dish and this is where you can decide how you want to serve it. You can serve it as a side dish to complement your main course or serve it as your main course. I recommend as a main course to serve it with corn chips or on top of a bed of corn chips like nachos. Burrito, burrito bowl and taco filling is very nice for this dish as well. I like it with a pile of grilled vegetables on the side as well or grilled corn on the cob. I am sure you will find what works for your desired taste or family likes.
We love this Quinoa Enchilada Bake and I have been thinking up some new ways to recreate it. I am not quite finished with that idea but you will be the first I will share it with. I hope you like this recipe as much as we do. Enjoy!
Quinoa Enchilada Bake
- 1 Extra Large Skillet, to mix everything in or if using a large bowl then use a large skillet
- 1 Medium pot with a lid
- 1 Small pot
- 1 Whisk
- 1 Cutting board
- 1 Sharp knife
- 1 Large mixing spoon
- 1 9×13 inch baking pan
- 1 cup Organic Quinoa, rinsed
- 2 cups Water
- 2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 Tbsp Organic All-Purpose Flour
- ¼ cup Chili Powder, American chili powder
- ½ tsp Garlic Powder
- ½ tsp Ground Cumin
- ½ tsp Dried Oregano
- 2 cups Vegetable Stock
- 1 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
- Sea Salt To Taste
Quinoa Enchilada Bake Filling
- 2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 med Yellow Onion, diced
- 4 cloves Fresh Garlic, minced
- 1 Jalapeño, seeded and ribs removed, diced
- 1 Organic Yellow Or Orange Bell Pepper, seeds removed, diced
- 1 Organic Red Bell Pepper, seeds removed, diced
- 1 cup Organic Canned Corn, drained
- Juice of 1½ Small Fresh Limes or 1 Large Lime
- 1½ tsp Ground Cumin
- 1 Tbsp Chili Powder, American chili powder
- ⅓ cup Fresh Chopped Cilantro
- 1 to 2 15oz Organic Can Black Beans, drained and rinsed (Can add 2 cans to this recipe.) Will make 2 to 3 more servings with 2 cans. The pictures in this recipe has 1 can.
- 2 cups Enchilada Sauce
- 2 cups Vegan Shredded Mexican or Cheddar Cheese, 1 cup for inside the mixture, 1 cup for on top of mixture before baking.
- Avocado, optional
- Cilantro, optional
- Green Onions, sliced, optional
- Black Olives, optional
- Salsa, optional
- Vegan Organic Shredded Mexican or Cheddar Cheese, optional
- Vegan Organic Sour Cream, optional
- Hot Sauce, optional
- Take 1 cup of quinoa and rinse it well under cool water in a fine mesh strainer. Make sure it is a fine mesh strainer or it will all go down the drain.
- Add the water and quinoa to a medium size pot with a lid on medium heat and bring to a boil. Boil for 5 minutes. Turn the heat down to low and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until all of the water is absorbed. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork. Cover with a lid and set aside.
- Heat olive oil in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Add flour and whisk, cook for about 1 minute. Constantly whisk. Add in the chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, oregano and apple cider vinegar and cook for 1 more minute, keep whisking constantly.
- Simmer: Slowly pour a little bit of vegetable stock in at a time, whisking constantly to combine until there are no lumps. Continue adding the vegetable stock this way. Have it come to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low as to not burn and remain in a simmer. Continue whisking, (the sauce should remain bubbling) It should take another 10 to 15 minutes until the sauce begins to thicken. Continue whisking.
- Season to desired seasoning with salt.
- Set aside until Quinoa Enchilada filling is ready.
Quinoa Enchilada Bake Filling
- Heat the oven to 350°
- On medium heat in an extra large skillet add the 2 Tbsp of Olive Oil and sauté the onions, garlic and jalapeños for 4 minutes. Do not burn.
- Add the chopped bell peppers and sauté for another 4 minutes.
- Add the spices and lime juice.
- Sauté and continue mixing and stirring for 1 minute.
- Add the cooked quinoa, corn and black beans. Mix together well. Try not to squish the black beans. (if you had made the quinoa the night before then warm it all up in the mixture before adding the cheese) After it is all mixed together add the cilantro and 1 cup of the vegan Mexican or vegan cheddar cheese. Try not to squish the black beans. Mix well. Then add the enchilada sauce and mix thoroughly.
- Transfer the quinoa enchilada mixture to a 9×13 inch un-greased baking dish. Top with the 2nd cup of vegan Mexican or vegan Cheddar cheese.
- Put in the pre-heated 350°oven and bake for 20 minutes.
- While cooking prepare and chop the desired toppings, corn chips or whatever you want to fill with the Quinoa Enchilada Bake.