This Mexican Vegetarian Tortilla Casserole recipe is a one-dish meal using many readily available ingredients. A bold chili and bean sauce infuses the mild-tasting tofu and absorbs the crumbled tortillas into a tasty casserole. The melted cheese provides an appealing topping to this healthy, family-friendly, and affordable meal.
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 2 medium-large onions, chopped about 1– 1/3 cup
- 4 large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 28–oz. can diced tomatoes
- 2 Tablespoons chili powder
- 1–1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 4 cups cooked small red beans or black beans or 2 14-oz cans rinsed, drained, and partially mashed
- 1 4–oz. can of green chilies, chopped
- 1 lb. firm tofu, crumbled or cut into bite-size cubes
- 12 corn tortillas toasted on an oven rack for 10 minutes at 350º or crumble 1/2 bag tortilla chips; Serve remaining chips with dinner
- 8–oz mild Cheddar cheese or Monterey Jack cheese, shredded (2 cups shredded), or use vegan cheese
- salsa for a side condiment to serve with remaining tortilla chips
- Prepare Tortillas – if using bagged ready-made tortillas, skip this step and move to number 2. If using whole corn tortillas, preheat oven to 350º and place 12 corn tortillas on the oven rack, and toast for 10 minutes. Move toasted tortillas to a sheet pan to cool and then crumble to bite size pieces. See the illustrations in the post above.
- Preheat the oven to 375º.
- Prepare Casserole – In a Dutch oven or medium saucepan, heat the oil, and cook the onions and garlic for about 3 minutes, stirring often. Add the chili powder, oregano, cumin, cayenne pepper, and toast spices for 1 minute to release the essential oils and allow the flavors to bloom. Add the tomatoes. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring often. Add beans, chilies, and tofu, mix well, and heat for about 2 minutes.
- Bake One casserole to serve 8 – Spread 1/3 of the bean-tomato sauce at the bottom of a 9X13 oven-safe dish. Spread 1/2 of the broken tortilla chips to cover the sauce in the pan. Continue with 1/3 of the sauce, followed by the remaining chips. Top with the remaining sauce. Sprinkle cheese over the casserole for the final layer. Cover the pan with foil and bake at 375º for 20 minutes.
- Bake One and Freeze One – follow the above steps but split the ingredients between two pie pans. Place foil on both pans and bake for 20 minutes. Freeze one after it has come to room temperature. Bake at 375º for 30 – 40 minutes to cook a frozen casserole.
Note: the nutritional panel is based on bagged, ready-made tortilla chips.
Serve with guacamole and remaining tortilla chips and salsa.
- Prep Time: 25
- Cook Time: 20
- Category: Meatless
- Method: Stovetop, Oven
- Cuisine: Southwest
Keywords: affordable meal, tofu, leftover corn tortillas, meatless Fridays dinner, lenten meal