Vegan Enchiladas with Black Beans & Spinach

These vegan enchiladas are stuffed with a mix of spicy black beans, corn and spinach, smothered in sauce and baked to perfection. This delicious Mexican-inspired main dish is perfect for everything from busy weeknights to special occasions, and guaranteed to be a hit!

Plate of three Vegan Enchiladas with baking dish and bunch of cilantro in the background.

I always think of homemade enchiladas as being a lot of work, and unfortunately, because of that I tend to avoid them. Particularly on busy weeknights I’m more inclined to make my vegan enchilada casserole, which I always think of as being easier (and really, it’s delicious, so no complaints there!).

But legit vegan enchiladas really aren’t tough to make at all! These black bean and spinach enchiladas in particular come together in a flash. Make some filling, stuff it in tortillas, pour on the sauce and bake. Easy! You can even make the filling in advance.

And they’re worth the little bit of effort that goes into rolling (which is not that much effort at all). They’ll taste like they came from your favorite Mexican restaurant!

Jump to:

Ingredient’s You’ll Need

  • Olive oil. If you have another high-heat oil you’d prefer, you’re welcome to use it.
  • Onion.
  • Garlic.
  • Jalapeño pepper. This can be omitted if you’d like to keep your vegan enchiladas on the mild side.
  • Spices. You’ll need ground cumin and ancho chile powder, both of which are available in the spice aisle of most supermarkets.
  • Black beans. We’re using canned black beans to make life easy.
  • Water.
  • Spinach. The recipe calls for fresh spinach, but you can use two ounces of frozen spinach if you’d like. Make sure to thaw it, drain it and squeeze out as much excess water as you can before adding it to your enchilada filling.
  • Frozen corn. Fresh corn can be substituted when it’s in season.
  • Fresh cilantro. You can skip this if you’re not a fan.
  • Lime juice. Use freshly squeezed juice to give your enchiladas the best flavor.
  • Salt and pepper.
  • Corn tortillas. Please, please, please don’t use flour tortillas. Corn tortillas are the way to go for authentic tasting enchiladas.
  • Red enchilada sauce. You can use homemade vegan enchilada sauce (it’s easy!), or store-bought (no judgement here!). If you go with store-bought, La Victoria brand is my personal favorite.
  • Toppings. I like my enchiladas topped with vegan sour cream or cashew cream, sliced avocado, and chopped fresh cilantro. Feel free to swap these out with your favorites though. Salsa, hot sauce, and vegan cheese would all work well.

Tip: If you’d like to top your enchiladas with some shredded vegan cheese, I recommend sprinkling it on about halfway through baking so that it will have just enough time to melt.

How They’re Made

The following is a detailed photo tutorial on how to make this dish. Scroll all the way down if you’d like to skip right to the recipe!

Diced onion cooking in a skillet.

Start by heating your olive oil in a medium skillet. Add diced onion and cook it for about 5 minutes, until it starts to soften.

Onions, garlic, and spices cooking in a skillet.

Now add the garlic, jalapeño, and spices. Cook everything for just about a minute, stirring constantly to prevent anything from burning.

Water being poured into a skillet of black beans.

Stir in the black beans and water. Bring the water to a simmer and let everything cook for about 5 minutes. You can add a splash more water if the mixture gets too dry at any point.

Hand mashing black beans in a skillet with a potato masher.

Use a fork or potato masher to mash about half of the beans. This will give you some creaminess, while still retaining some texture from the beans that remain whole.

Skillet of black beans and spinach on a cook top.

Now stir in the spinach. You can add a bit at a time if it won’t all fit at once. Continue cooking the mixture for a couple minutes more, just until the spinach is completely wilted.

Skillet of black beans with corn and chopped cilantro on top.

Take the skillet off of heat and stir in the corn, fresh cilantro, and lime juice. Season the filling with salt and pepper to taste.

Tip: If you’d like your vegan enchiladas extra spicy, feel free to add your favorite hot sauce or some cayenne pepper to the filling at this point.

Unbaked Vegan Enchiladas in a baking dish.

Now ladle some sauce into a baking dish. Warm each tortilla individually by placing in briefly on a hot skillet, then spoon a few tablespoons of filling on the tortilla, roll it up, and place it in the baking dish. Cover the enchiladas with the remaining sauce as you add them to the dish.

Tip: Don’t skip the step of warming up your tortillas. This will make them more pliable, so they’re less likely to crack. Sometimes they do crack anyway, as you can see in the photo above, but it would have been a LOT worse if I’d been working with them cold.

Pop the baking dish into the oven and bake the enchiladas until the sauce is bubbling. Make sure to let them sit for a few minutes before dividing them onto plates and digging in.

White wooden surface set with plate of Vegan Enchiladas, baking dish, and bunch of fresh cilantro.

Leftovers & Storage

Leftover vegan enchiladas will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for about 4 days, or in the freezer for about 3 months.

More Vegan Mexican Recipes

Like this recipe? If so, please stop back and leave me a review and rating below if you try it! Also be sure to follow me on Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram, or subscribe to my newsletter for more recipes like this one!

Three Vegan Enchiladas on a dish with sour cream, fresh cilantro, and sliced avocado.

Vegan Enchiladas with Black Beans & Spinach

These vegan enchiladas are stuffed with a mix of spicy black beans, corn and spinach, smothered in sauce and baked to perfection. This delicious Mexican-inspired main dish is perfect for everything from busy weeknights to special occasions, and guaranteed to be a hit!

Ingredients

  • 1
    tablespoon
    olive oil
  • 1
    medium onion,
    diced
  • 3
    garlic cloves,
    minced
  • 1
    jalapeño pepper,
    seeded and finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 ½
    teaspoons
    ground cumin
  • ½
    teaspoon
    ancho chile powder
  • 1
    (15.5 ounce/439 gram) can
    black beans,
    drained and rinsed
  • ¼
    cup
    water
  • 2
    cups
    fresh spinach,
    finely chopped and lightly packed
  • ½
    cup
    frozen corn,
    thawed
  • 2
    tablespoons
    chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1
    tablespoon
    lime juice
  • ½
    teaspoon
    salt,
    or to taste
  • Black pepper,
    to taste
  • 12
    corn tortillas
  • 1 ½
    cups
    red enchilada sauce,
    store-bought or homemade

For Serving

  • Vegan sour cream or cashew cream
  • Fresh cilantro,
    chopped
  • Avocado,
    sliced

Instructions

  1. Coat the bottom of a medium skillet with olive oil and place it over medium heat. Give the oil a minute to heat up, then add the onion. Sweat the onion for about 5 minutes, until it begins to soften.

  2. Add the garlic, jalapeño, cumin and ancho chile powder. Sauté the mixture for about 1 minute, until it becomes very fragrant.

  3. Add the beans and water. Raise the heat and bring the liquid to a boil, then lower the heat and let the mixture simmer for about 5 minutes. Add more water if it dries up too much.

  4. Use a potato masher to mash about half of the beans. Stir in the spinach and continue cooking the mixture just until the spinach wilts, 1 to 2 minutes.

  5. Remove the skillet from heat and stir in the corn and lime juice. Season the mixture with salt and pepper.

  6. Preheat the oven to 400°.

  7. Spread about half of the enchilada sauce into the bottom of a 9 x 13 inch baking dish.

  8. Place a large skillet over medium heat. Place a tortilla into skillet to warm it up, allowing it to sit in skillet for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove the tortilla from the skillet and place on a work surface. Spoon 3 to 4 tablespoons of the bean mixture into the tortilla and roll it up.

  9. Place the rolled tortilla, seam side down, into the baking dish and spoon some of the enchilada sauce over it, spreading the sauce around to coat the entire outside of the enchilada. Repeat until all of the filling and tortillas have been used.

  10. Bake the enchiladas for 20 minutes, or until most of the sauce on top has dried out and the tortillas are brown around edges (Note 1). Remove the dish from the oven and allow it to sit for 5 minutes.

  11. Divide the enchiladas onto plates and top with vegan sour cream or cashew cream, avocado, and fresh cilantro. Serve.

Recipe Notes

  1. If you’d like to top your enchiladas with shredded some vegan cheese, sprinkle it on about halfway through baking.
  2. Nutrition information does not include toppings.

Nutrition Facts

Vegan Enchiladas with Black Beans & Spinach

Amount Per Serving (3 enchiladas)

Calories 425
Calories from Fat 63

% Daily Value*

Fat 7g11%

Saturated Fat 1g5%

Polyunsaturated Fat 2g

Monounsaturated Fat 3g

Sodium 1128mg47%

Potassium 760mg22%

Carbohydrates 78g26%

Fiber 18g72%

Sugar 8g9%

Protein 17g34%

Vitamin A 2140IU43%

Vitamin C 16mg19%

Calcium 128mg13%

Iron 5mg28%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.



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