When it comes to the weeknight dinner rotation, vegetarian enchiladas are a regular. They’re filling, satisfying, and full of flavor. Plus, it’s a great excuse to have a spicy margarita on a Wednesday night! Ya feel me?!
Really though, you’re gonna love that this version comes together quickly and easily, using simple ingredients. And while I’m hard-pressed to find an option more flavorful than my 10-minute red enchilada sauce, you can definitely use your favorite store-bought version, too.
What You’ll Need
I did mention simple ingredients, and I meant it! There are a couple of fresh options for added flavor and a couple of canned ingredients for EASE. As always, be sure to see the full recipe card below!
- Enchilada Sauce: if you’re planning on making enchiladas at home, I say why not go ahead and whip together this easy homemade enchilada sauce, too! There’s absolutely zero judgment in using store-bought though, so definitely go with what works best for you!
- Beans: for sure the best meatless enchilada filling…and double beans, at that! We’re using both black beans and refried beans for extra texture.
- Taco Seasoning: now, I always have a jar of no-salt taco seasoning in my pantry. If you do, great, use it! If not, see the notes on adding a little chili powder and cumin to both bean mixtures. It’s a little added flavor that goes a long way.
- Diced Green Chiles: a simple way to add flavor without effort; plus, you can get them as mild or as spicy as you’d like!
- Garlic: y’all know I’ve got to add fresh garlic. But if pressing a couple of cloves isn’t on your agenda, you can skip it – or add a sprinkle of garlic powder.
- Scallions: instead of using a yellow onion, green onions serve double duty. The white and light green parts go in the filling for a mild onion flavor, and the green tops make the perfect, fresh garnish!
- Tortillas: I often use flour tortillas in my enchiladas, but you can also use whole wheat tortillas or corn for gluten-free. Corn tortillas do tend to be drier and thus break more easily. Microwave them to warm, or lightly fry them in a little oil for 15 seconds a side for the best texture.
- Cheese! I can’t have enchiladas without cheese. A little bit goes in the filling, and the rest goes on top. Measure this one with your heart, please.
A note about salt: of course, I love a sprinkle of salt to bring out flavor, but when using quite a few canned ingredients, it’s important to take note of the salt content. If they are not low or no sodium options, you may not want to add additional salt to the filling.
How to Make Vegetarian Enchiladas
Making enchiladas at home might seem like a labor-intensive process, but it’s surprisingly easy once you get the hang of it. I recommend setting up the filling ingredients in an assembly-line fashion to make it run smoothly.
Prepare the Bean Filling
First things first is to prepare the bean filling. The black beans combine with green chiles, garlic, and scallions. Oh, and don’t forget the spices for a little added flavor!
Stir the remaining seasoning in with the refried beans. Trust me, this tiny bit of extra work is worth the added flavor in the beans!
Assemble the Enchiladas
Two routes for the sauce getting on the tortillas: dip or spread.
I used to be team dip-the-tortillas, so the sauce got every bit coated. And then somehow getting older meant I was ready to take a few more shortcuts to make the process run more smoothly.
If you’re going to dip the tortillas in sauce, I recommend preparing a square baking dish with the enchilada sauce. Dip the tortillas in the sauce, allowing the excess to drip off. Then, transfer to a cutting board to fill.
If you’re going with the spread method, simply spread 1-2 tablespoons of sauce across the tortilla.
Either way, then proceed with filling! In the middle of the tortilla, layer about 3 tablespoons of refried beans. top with a heaping 3 tablespoons of black bean mixture, and a sprinkle of cheese.
Roll the Tortillas
Lift one edge of the tortilla that’s parallel to the filling and roll it around until complete. Place the rolled tortilla in the baking dish, seam side down.
Continue the process until all the tortillas are filled and in the pan. Keep in mind that the number of tortillas used will depend on the size. Regular flour tortillas will yield 8 enchiladas. If using smaller corn tortillas, you’ll likely get around 12 enchiladas.
Finish with Sauce & Cheese
Before they head off to the oven to get hot, melty, and bubbly, you’ve got to top them! Spread the remaining enchilada sauce across the top of the enchiladas, being sure to cover all the tortilla bits. Then, it’s time for the cheese!
Sprinkle the cheese as generously as you’d like (remember, you can measure this with your heart!).
Place in the oven and bake, uncovered, for around 25 minutes until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbly!
Time to eat – the best part! Vegetarian enchiladas are such a great meal because they’re hearty and can stand alone, but you can also serve them with a variety of side dishes.
Before we talk sides, I recommend garnishing enchiladas with green scallions, chopped cilantro, jalapeno, or red onion, if desired, and a dollop of sour cream or avocado sauce (an easy alternative to guacamole). If you’re really feeling the cheese, why not a drizzle of homemade queso on top, too?!
A few of my favorite side dishes to serve with enchiladas:
- Cheesy Mexican-inspired Rice or a more simple cilantro lime rice are both excellent carbs to add.
- A fresh peach or pineapple salsa makes for a deliciously sweet addition to balance out the spice, or a fresh sweet corn salsa pairs nicely. Serve it will tortilla chips and you’re set! Of course, a bright pico de gallo is always a good option for both garnishing and enjoying.
- Elote corn dip doubles as a veggie side dish.
- A simple salad with honey-lime vinaigrette is a delicious, light serving idea, too!
Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Reheat in the microwave or oven until heated through.
I have also frozen leftover, baked, enchiladas. Place in a freezer-safe container and cover with plastic wrap pressed tightly to the top to prevent freezer burn. Thaw overnight in the fridge and then heat through to enjoy after frozen.
Did you make this recipe? Please leave a star rating and review in the form below. I appreciate your feedback, and it helps others, too!
Get the Recipe Easy Vegetarian Bean Enchiladas
- 2 cups red enchilada sauce
- 15 ounces black beans, drained and rinsed
- 4 ounces diced green chiles
- 1 Tablespoon taco seasoning*, divided
- OR 1 teaspoon chili powder and ½ teaspoon cumin, divided, see notes
- 1-2 garlic clove, pressed, optional
- 2 scallions, white and light green parts chopped, greens reserved
- ¼ tsp kosher salt*, or to taste
- 15 ounces vegetarian refried beans, mixed with ½ T no salt taco seasoning
- 8 flour tortillas, or approximately 12 corn tortillas
- 2 cups shredded cheese, cheddar and Monterey Jack are my favs!
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare red enchilada sauce if making homemade. Spread ½ cup enchilada sauce across the bottom of a 9×13 baking pan.
- In a mixing bowl, combine the black beans, diced green chiles, 1/2 tablespoon taco seasoning, minced garlic, and scallions. If desired, add a pinch of salt, but check your beans!15 ounces black beans, 4 ounces diced green chiles, 1 Tablespoon taco seasoning*, 1-2 garlic clove, 2 scallions, ¼ tsp kosher salt*
- Stir the refried beans with the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of taco seasoning.15 ounces vegetarian refried beans
- Create an assembly line with the enchilada sauce, black bean mixture, refried beans, shredded cheeses, and prepared baking dish.
- Spread approximately 1 tablespoon of enchilada sauce across a tortilla (or alternatively, dip the tortillas in enchilada sauce). Place about 3 tablespoons of refried beans in the center of the tortilla, topped with a heaping 3 tablespoons of the black bean mixture. Sprinkle 1-2 tablespoons of cheese. Use less filling for smaller tortillas. It’s important to not overstuff them.8 flour tortillas
- Roll the tortilla completely around the filling, then place it seam-side down in the pan.
- Continue the process until all the tortillas are filled. Then, spread the remaining enchilada sauce across the top of the enchiladas and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbly.
- Let rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. Garnish with the sliced green scallions, and cilantro as desired. Other topping ideas include avocados or guacamole, sour cream or crema, or diced red onion. Enjoy!
- Taco Seasoning: if you don’t have taco seasoning on hand, add 1/2 teaspoon chili powder and 1/4 teaspoon cumin to each bean mixture.
- Salt: if you use low-sodium beans or taco seasoning, you’ll likely want to add a pinch of salt to the black bean mixture. If using regular salted ingredients, you may need to add less, or none at all.