Every now and then I’ll look at a meal and wonder what else it could be.

Then it comes to me.

Tacos double as Fiesta Bowls, salads become Roasted Burgers and enchiladas turn into…

Veggie Enchilada Bake

…casseroles.

That’s how this Veggie Enchilada Bake came about.

I was looking at my jar of leftover enchilada sauce and thought: enchiladas don’t always have to be stuffed tortillas smothered in sauce (although, they are absolutely delicious that way)…they could be deconstructed, baked with pasta and smothered in sauce. Equally delicious!

The flavor and texture combination was right on. It had the same spicy, saucy-ness as traditional enchiladas, but with the comforting qualities of a casserole – which is perfect for this time of year, when you’re craving something healthy and hearty.

The filling is so simple: lots of fresh veggies, quinoa noodles, black beans, a few dried spices and my go-to enchilada sauce – which is warm, smoky and incredibly easy to make.

I topped it off with some tortilla chips for a slight crunch, green onion and a drizzle of cashew sour cream, but topping options are endless (think: guac, diced red onion, fresh cilantro, pumpkin seeds).

Veggie Enchilada Bake

VEGGIE ENCHILADA BAKE

Ingredients:

  • 1 8oz. package of gluten-free rotini pasta noodles, cooked according to package
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 yellow pepper, diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 zucchini, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon chipotle powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon onion granules
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 1 15oz can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups of homemade (or store-bought) enchilada sauce
  • A handful of tortilla strips (or chips, crushed)

Topping Ideas:

  • Mashed avocado or guacamole
  • Squeeze of fresh lime juice
  • Cashew Sour Cream
  • Your favorite salsa or hot sauce
  • Fresh cilantro

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350° and spread ½ cup enchilada sauce over the bottom of a 9×13 casserole dish.
  2. In a large skillet, heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat and sauté the onion, peppers, zucchini and garlic until tender, about 8 minutes.
  3. Stir in all of spices, the black beans and 1 cup of the enchilada sauce, cook for 5 minutes more.
  4. Then stir in the cooked pasta.
  5. Scoop the veggie and pasta mixture into the prepared casserole dish and spread out evenly. Pour the remaining enchilada sauce over top.
  6. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until heated through and then sprinkle with crushed tortilla chips.
  7. Serve with your favorite toppings.

I think you’re gonna love this dish! If you try it, be sure to let me know what you think in the comments below.

Enjoy!

xo

Vicki

P.S. Need more dinner ideas to get you through the week? Or the month? Check out my 28-day, done-for-you meal plan that solves your “What’s for dinner?” dilemma .

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