When I started removing meat from our dinners, it didn’t always go over well. It wasn’t that my family wasn’t supportive, because they were, but finding 7 days of meatless meals (that everyone would like) seemed to be quite a task. There were days when I really went all out to make what I thought would be a great new dinner only to have my husband loving look at me at say “I’d be happy if you never make this again.” Obviously I had to learn how to not take it personally and just try again. Some nights we’d end up having cereal since dinner just didn’t turn out as planned.
HOWEVER, this recipe was a winner! In fact, this dish is requested by my fellow meat-lover friends. One of those friends has requested that I either save some for him any time I make it or just invite him over. And thats a “Win” in my books. Plus, its so easy to make and throw together. The only big thing to pay attention to is that the recipe calls for already cooked quinoa, so if you don’t have it made ahead of time, it will add about 10 minutes to prep time. You can gain that back if you have Spicy black beans in your pantry such as Amy’s Organic or Pacific Brand black beans and use that instead of making it yourself.
This recipe is really quite versatile. In addition to being able to make some substitutions like mentioned above, you can also serve it in various ways. For example, other than eating it as a casserole, my husband likes it on top of rice (he’s half Korean and would tell you that everything tastes good with rice), I enjoy it on a bed of greens with salsa, avocado & some more jalapeños, and my kids like it rolled into a corn tortilla or as a dip with chips. I’m even thinking that this would make a great filling in stuffed peppers, similar to these Vegan Tex-Mex Stuffed Peppers by A Mindfull Mom. All these options make it great when there are leftovers…..or I should say IF there are leftovers.
Hope you enjoy it as much as we do!
Mexican Quinoa Casserole
Southwest inspired quinoa casserole, full or flavor and perfect for family and friends. Allergy free and Vegan.
- 2 Large cloves garlic, minced
- 1 onion, minced
- 2 jalapeños, seeds removed, minced
- 1 TB. coconut oil
- 2 cans black beans, rinsed
- 1 1/4 C. vegetable broth
- 2 C. cooked quinoa
- 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1 1/2 tsp. chili powder
- 2 tsp. cumin
- 2-3 bell peppers, diced (I used red and yellow)
- 1 1/4 C. Vegan shredded cheese (Daiya Dairy free- cheddar or pepper jack)
- Sliced black olives
- diced green onions
- Preheat Oven to 375.
- Lightly spray a 9x13" baking dish and set aside.
- Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high. Add garlic, onion, and jalapeño then sauté approx. 4 minutes (until onion becomes translucent). Stir in broth and black beans. Bring to a boil and cook 5 minutes. Mash (or blend in food processor) to consistency like refried beans, but leave some texture (I mash half). Taste and season with salt.
- Spoon evenly the black bean mix into bottom of baking dish.
- In a dry non-stick skillet,heat to medium high and toss in the quinoa with cayenne, chili powder, cumin and salt for 1-2 min. Remove from heat and spread on top of black bean layer.
- Using the same skillet, add the diced peppers and allow them to brown and get roasted on the outside 2-3 minutes before stirring. Let them sit another minute before removing from heat and layer on top of quinoa.
- Add cheese and olives. Cover with foil and bake 20 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 10 minutes or until cheese is melted. Sprinkle with green onions and let cool 5-10 minutes. Serve with sour cream, avocado, corn tortilla chips, salsa, on tacos on a salad or as is!
You could also use an 8x8 baking dish if you prefer a thicker casserole.
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