Cinco de Mayo is just around the corner, but this Enchilada Casserole recipe is great any time of the year! You know a recipe is good when my husband says it’s one of the best, yet!
What’s fun about this plant-based enchilada casserole dish is that you can mix it up with whatever vegetables you love. For this, I choose cauliflower and since I was low on veggies, used some frozen peas I had on hand.
The cheese sauce is from the Chili Cheese Dip recipe and it takes the place of regular cheese for this recipe. It’s excellent on its own as a dip, too.
You can substitute the homemade enchilada sauce for store-bought if you prefer. Whole Foods 365 Brand has no oil and good ingredients. Some store-bought versions are better than others so choose wisely, but this is a quick version. The chipotle peppers are very spicy, so be careful. This cauliflower enchilada casserole does have some kick, but not so much that it burns.
Plant-based Mexican style recipes to try:
- Black Bean Tacos with Avocado Cream
- Stuffed Poblano Peppers With Pineapple Salsa
- Vegan Chiles Rellenos
- Mexican Rice Salad
I love that this plant-based Mexican lasagna is so versatile. The vegetables I chose for this bake make it a hearty, spicy meal.
How to Make this Vegan Enchilada Casserole
Gather your ingredients and start by mixing your taco seasoning together. Then, add the pieces of cauliflower to a baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes. In the meantime work on your plant-based cheese sauce and enchilada sauce.
Your cashews should soak for at least an hour. (see recipe card for measurements)
Add your ingredients to the blender:
- soaked cashews
- non-dairy milk
- nutritional yeast
- bell pepper
- chili powder
- salt (optional)
Add the taco seasoning and blend until smooth. Pour in a small dish and set aside.
- canned tomatoes
- ground cumin
- dried oregano
- canned chipotle chilies in adobo sauce
Saute onion in water until tender. Add garlic, cumin, and oregano for about a minute. Add this mix to your blender with the chipotle chilies with 2 tablespoons of the adobo sauce, and the canned tomatoes. Puree and add to saucepan. Simmer this enchilada sauce for a few minutes. Set aside.
Your layers are now ready to be assembled for this delicious vegetarian enchilada casserole:
- roasted cauliflower
- frozen peas
- “cheese” sauce
- enchilada sauce
Add 1/3 cup enchilada sauce to the bottom of the pan and spread evenly. Take four tortilla shells and cover the bottom. You can break the pieces up to get good coverage of the bottom of the pan.
Now, add 1/2 of the roasted cauliflower, 1/2 of the peas, and some olives. Take 1/2 of the cheese sauce and pour it over the veggies. Add another layer of tortilla shells. Repeat this layer again, topping with the final layer of shells. Pour over the remaining sauces.
Bake this casserole at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes until heated through.
Try a bit of vegan sour cream, avocado, and cilantro on top, and serve!
This homemade enchilada casserole has the flavor of Mexican food with the addition of vegetables. It is a great plant-based meal to serve to guests or as a family dinner. Be sure to add it to your weekly meal plan!
I’d love to hear your feedback in the comments below for this Enchilada Casserole recipe! If you have a photo, post it on my Facebook page, tag me using the hashtag #plantbasedcooking
- Measuring Cups and Spoons
- 1 head cauliflower broken into pieces about 1 1/2 inch
- 1/2 bag frozen peas
- 1 small can sliced black olives
- 12 count corn tortillas
- 1 cup raw cashews (Substitution: 1 can cannellini beans)
- 1 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk (or 1 cup homemade)
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 1 yellow or orange bell pepper seeded and rough chopped (a roasted pepper works, too)
- 1 lemon Juice
- 2 tsp prepared yellow mustard
- salt to taste
- 1/4 cup yellow onion minced
2 Tablespoons Taco Seasoning or make your own
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1/4 tsp dried oregano
- 1/4 tsp smokey paprika
- 1/4 tsp salt (optional)
- 1/4 tsp ground pepper
- 1/2 yellow onion chopped
- 1 28 oz can whole tomatoes
- 3 cloves garlic roughly chopped
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 2 chilies from a can of chipotle chilies in adobo sauce plus 2 Tbl sauce
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Soak cashew in boiling water for 15 minutes.
- Spread cauliflower onto a baking sheet sprayed with a little oil. Salt and pepper to taste.
- Bake for 20 minutes, then check and toss and put back into the oven for another 5 minutes or so until they are tender. Turn down the oven to 350 degrees. Set cauliflower aside.
- Place the soaked, drained cashews, non-dairy milk, nutritional yeast, bell pepper, chili powder, lemon juice, mustard, and taco seasoning in a blender and blend a few minutes until smooth. Set aside.
- Saute onion in a little water until tender, about 5-7 minutes.
- Add the garlic, cumin, oregano and saute until fragrant, about a minute.
- Puree the onions and garlic along with the chipotle chilies and tomatoes in a food processor and return to pan.
- Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, simmer for a few minutes and season with salt and pepper.
- Spray a 9 x 12" baking dish with a little oil or use parchment paper.
- Add about 1/3 cup enchilada sauce to the bottom and spread around.
- Top with 4 tortillas. You can break them up to fill the space and/or overlap.
- Add 1/2 of the roasted cauliflower and sprinkle on half of the peas and some of the olives.
- Top with 1/3 of the cheese sauce, then another layer of tortillas.
- Repeat one more time, enchilada sauce, cauliflower, peas, olives, cheese sauce and top with a final layer of tortillas, then enchilada sauce and cheese sauce.
- Bake in a 350 degree oven for 20-25 minutes until all is heated through.
- Top with vegan sour cream, avocado and a little cilantro.