Mexican Quinoa Casserole
An easy + healthy quinoa casserole with all your favorite Mexican flavors. Meatless and high in protein, it’s a nutritional powerhouse! It’s naturally gluten free – and freezer friendly too.
Recently, I was browsing through the recipe archives (here!) I realized that there was a big discrepancy between the number of quinoa recipes (not that many!) and my love for the stuff in real life.
I don’t get crazy over quinoa the same way I do with, say, sweet potatoes fries, camembert or smoked salmon – let’s be real, it’s not that exciting! – but it’s a staple for me. I eat it every single week, in a variety of recipes because it’s versatile, filling, healthy and I find its slightly nutty taste delicious.
With that realization, I’ve decided to step up my quinoa game on Not Enough Cinnamon and start sharing more recipes! Did you catch the quinoa salad with spinach + pomegranate and the roasted cauliflower quinoa detox bowl with tahini sauce this month? They’re good ones!
Now because it’s January and we all crave recipes that are ideally both healthy and comforting (two words that aren’t always easy to combine!), I’ve made you this delicious Mexican quinoa casserole. It’s made with all your favorite Mexican ingredients like black beans, corn, cumin, chili powder… and it’s bursting with flavors!
Thanks to the quinoa, the black beans and the cheese, each serving is high in protein (despite being meatless) but only 365 calories for a big portion. And it freezes really well if you want to make some ahead or store the leftovers. Enjoy!
Mexican Quinoa Casserole
An easy + healthy quinoa casserole with all your favorite Mexican flavors. Meatless and high in protein, it's a nutritional powerhouse! It's naturally gluten free - and freezer friendly too.
- 1 cup quinoa, rinsed uncooked
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 onion chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 jalapeño seeds and ribs removed, chopped
- 1 red bell pepper chopped
- 1 orange or yellow bell pepper chopped
- 1 cup corn kernels
- Juice of 1 small lime
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1/3 cup chopped cilantro + more for serving
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 15 oz cans black beans drained and rinsed
- 2 cups enchilada sauce ideally without added sugar
- 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese divided
- Toppings: scallions, avocado cubes, jalapeno slices, sour cream optional
Preheat oven to 350F/180C. Prepare a large baking dish. Spray with cooking spray and set aside.
Cook the quinoa: In a medium saucepan, bring the quinoa and 2 cups of water to a boil with a generous pinch of salt. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer and cover for 15 minutes. Fluff with a fork, then set aside.
Prepare the veggies: Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add onion and garlic, and cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add bell peppers and jalapeño, and cook until they soften, about 5 minutes. Stir in lime juice and spices. Remove skillet from the heat and gradually stir in the cilantro, corn kernels, black beans, quinoa, enchilada sauce and one cup of cheese. The skillet will be crowded so stir delicately. Taste and adjust salt + pepper if needed.
Transfer the mixture to prepared baking dish, sprinkle remaining one cup of cheese on top and cover with foil (trying not to make the foil touch the cheese or it'll stick). Bake for 20 minutes then remove the foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until cheese is beautifully melted and golden brown, and casserole is bubbling. Remove from the oven and let rest for about 10 minutes. Garnish with your favorite toppings and serve.
Recipe adapted from Two Peas and Their Pods
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