Vegetable and black bean enchiladas

Sep 20, 2021
These vegetable and black bean enchiladas make for a great meat-free meal. Source: Getty Images

This vegetable and black bean enchilada dish is a great way to kick off the week. The food is hearty, with sautéed capsicum, broccoli, onion, spinach and black beans, not to mention the yummy spices. Oh, and the cheese!

It’s a bit fiddly, but totally worth it.

Serves 4.



  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 1 tbsp ground chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp salt, to taste
  • Pinch of cinnamon (optional)
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar or distilled white vinegar
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped red onion (about 1 small red onion)
  • 1 red capsicum, chopped
  • 1 bunch of broccoli or 1 small head of cauliflower, florets removed and sliced into small, bite-sized pieces
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 180g baby spinach
  • 400g can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup crumbled feta cheese, divided
  • 1/2 tsp salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  • 8 whole wheat tortillas


  1. Make the sauce: Measure flour, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, oregano, salt and optional cinnamon into a small bowl. In a medium-sized pot over medium heat, warm the oil until it’s hot enough that a light sprinkle of the flour/spice mixture sizzles on contact. When ready, pour in flour and spice mixture. Whisk constantly, cooking until fragrant and slightly deepened in colour, about 1 minute. Whisk the tomato paste into the mixture, then slowly pour in the broth while whisking constantly to remove any lumps.
  2. Raise heat to medium-high and bring mixture to a simmer, then reduce heat as necessary to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook, whisking often, for about 5-7 minutes, until the sauce has thickened. Remove from heat, then whisk in vinegar and season to taste with a generous amount of freshly ground black pepper. Add more salt, if necessary.
  3. Preheat oven to 200C with one rack in the middle of the oven and one in the upper third. Lightly grease a 23cm x 33cm pan with olive oil or cooking spray.
  4. In a large skillet over medium heat, warm olive oil until simmering. Add onions and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring often, until the onions are tender and translucent, about 5-7 minutes. Add broccoli and capsicum, stir, and reduce heat to medium-low. Cover the skillet. Stir occasionally, for about 8-9 minutes, or until the broccoli is brighter green and just starting to turn golden on the edges.
  5. Add cumin and cinnamon to the skillet and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add spinach, a few handfuls at a time, stirring until it has reduced in size. Repeat with remaining spinach and cook until all of the spinach has wilted.
  6. Transfer the contents of the pan to a medium mixing bowl. Add the drained beans, 1/4 cup cheese and 2 tablespoons of enchilada sauce. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and some freshly ground black pepper, to taste.
  7. To assemble: Pour 1/4 cup enchilada sauce into your prepared pan and tilt it from side to side until the bottom of the pan is evenly coated. Spread 1/2 cup filling mixture down the middle of a tortilla, then snugly wrap the left side over and then the right, to make a wrap. Place it seam side down against the edge of your pan. Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling.
  8. Drizzle remaining enchilada sauce evenly over the enchiladas, leaving the tips of the enchiladas bare. Sprinkle the remaining cheese evenly over the enchiladas.
  9. Bake, uncovered, on the middle rack for 20 minutes.
  10. Remove from oven and let the enchiladas rest for 10 minutes before serving.

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