Layered Taco Casserole With Tortillas (Taco Bake)

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This layered taco casserole makes a quick and easy weeknight meal. Layers of corn tortillas, salsa, refried beans, and veggies transform this Mexican-inspired casserole into a hearty meal! Taste-tested and kid-approved! 

Is it possible to create a lasagna that resembles a cheesy enchilada? That’s the question I asked myself last week when I created this recipe. And the answer was a resounding yes!

My crowd-pleasing layered taco casserole is naturally gluten-free and easy to make vegan! It’s super kid-friendly and an easy way to sneak in veggies if you have picky eaters. My kids devour this black bean taco casserole faster than you can say spinach!

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Busy nights just got easier. This easy taco lasagna recipe took 45 minutes to make, including baking time. And the portions were just the right size! Feel free to double it for a party or large gathering, just use a larger baking dish. Everyone loves a taco in casserole form, am I right!

👩‍🍳 Why This Recipe Works

  • Even kids love this cheesy taco bake!
  • Perfect for a busy weeknight
  • Easy way to sneak in spinach and veggies
  • Switch up taco night
  • The ultimate crowd pleaser
  • Naturally gluten-free
  • A huge hit at any gathering
  • A great recipe for the whole family!

🥘 Ingredients

This vegetarian taco casserole with tortillas requires simple ingredients found at your local grocery store! Find the full list of ingredients and nutrition facts at the bottom of this post within the recipe.

ingredients for easy healthy vegetarian layered taco casserole with tortillas

  • Red Onion: Onions sweeten and mellow as they cook. I prefer red onions for their purple color and sweet flavor, but yellow, white or sweet onions work too!
  • Frozen Corn: While canned corn works in a pinch, frozen corn tastes closer to fresh and is just as easy to prepare! I try to always have some in my freezer since it tastes great in nearly anything!
  • Red Bell Pepper: Red bell peppers add sweetness, and a healthy dose of Vitamin A and C. Green peppers work too. Throw some on top of the Mexican lasagna for a nice crunch!
  • Garlic: Garlic amps up the flavor of any dish! I like to buy a jar of pre-minced garlic to make things easy. An opened jar of garlic lasts for about three months in the refrigerator.
  • Taco Seasoning: A packet of taco seasoning is a quick way to add flavor. Be sure to buy one that’s labeled gluten-free if you can’t have gluten, or make your own seasoning with chili powder, cumin, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and oregano.
  • Chunky Salsa: Chunky salsa combines fresh tomatoes, jalapenos, lime juice, onions and garlic for an instant flavor boost. Chunky salsa is less watery than restaurant style which makes it perfect for this layered taco bake! Homemade salsa works great too!
  • Frozen Spinach: Frozen spinach has all the nutrients of fresh, but it doesn’t perish quickly! Fresh baby spinach can be used too.
  • Tomato Sauce: For lots of tomato flavor!
  • Corn Tortillas: Corn tortillas are my tortillas of choice! They’re healthier than flour tortillas and they last longer too.
  • Refried Black Beans: I prefer refried black beans, but regular refried beans are delicious too! If you’re gluten-free, be sure to buy a brand that’s labeled gluten-free.
  • Black Olives: For a salty bite! Leave them off if you don’t like them.
  • Tomato: Fresh, diced tomatoes add more flavor and texture as a topping.
  • Cheddar Cheese: Plenty of ooey-gooey cheese gets sprinkled on top. Feel free to add an entire cup of cheese if you like tons of cheese!

📖 Variations

Here are a few quick and easy ways to customize this taco casserole recipe!

  • Protein: If you’re not vegetarian, add cooked ground meat for extra protein! Ground turkey, ground beef, or shredded chicken are all great options. Layer the taco meat mixture on top of the beans. To prevent a greasy casserole, use leaner beef cuts like ground sirloin and drain the excess fat.
  • Favorite Taco Toppings: This family favorite tastes even better with all the toppings (my favorite part!). Green onions, crushed tortilla chips, sour cream, guacamole, pickled onions, pico de gallo, hot sauce, shredded lettuce, and pickled jalapenos are delicious! If you’re making this recipe for a crowd, serve the toppings in small bowls for easy access.
  • Sides: This taco layer bake is filling on its own, but delicious with rice! Use steam-in-bag rice, and it’s ready in less than 2 minutes. A side of chips and salsa con queso never hurt either! 😉
  • Spice: For more heat, stir a can of green chiles into the chunky salsa, or add a tablespoon of chipotle chili powder to the beans.

🔪 How To Make A Layered Taco Casserole

Here’s how to make this quick and easy taco casserole with black beans!

Sauté Veggies: Chop your veggies, and sauté the red onion, red pepper, garlic and crunchy corn kernels over medium-high heat until the onions are translucent.

veggies sauteeing in a pan

Season The Beans: In a large skillet heat up the refried beans. Add the taco seasoning to the beans until they’re as spicy as you like.

refried beans in a pot

Season The Veggies: Meanwhile, add taco seasoning to the veggies and stir in the spinach. Stir well until the spices and spinach is well dispersed. 

veggies sauteeing in a pan

Assemble Mexican Casserole: Start assembling your Mexican lasagna! In the bottom of your casserole dish, assemble the layers. Start with a layer of the tomato sauce, 1/3 of the salsa, and a layer of the corn tortillas.

tortillas layered in a baking dish

Start Second Layer: Top the corn tortillas with 1/2 of the refried beans, 1/2 of the veggie mixture, and a drizzle of tomato sauce and salsa. Use a spatula to spread each layer evenly on top of the next. If using a beef mixture, add half of the meat onto the refried beans.

refried beans and veggies in a baking dish

Start Third Layer: Continue to layer with more corn tortillas then top with the remaining refried beans, veggies, and a drizzle of tomato sauce and salsa.

tortillas and veggies layered in a baking dish

Finish Layering The Taco Pie: Top with the final tortilla layer, and then add the rest of the tomato sauce and salsa. Sprinkle the cheese, olives, and tomatoes on top, and it’s ready to go into the oven!

layered taco casserole with tortillas topped with cheese, salsa and olives

Bake Healthy Taco Casserole: Bake at 350 degrees until the cheesy layer is bubbly and the casserole is hot all the way through – about 15 minutes. Top with a dollop of sour cream and enjoy!

layered taco casserole with tortillas recipe baked out of the oven, top view

❓ Recipe FAQs

Can you make enchiladas with flour tortillas?

Yes, you could make this taco lasagna with flour tortillas. Instead of using white flour tortillas, opt for whole wheat tortillas. They’re full of fiber and nutrients from the whole grains. And make sure to toast your tortillas beforehand!

How do you make enchiladas not soggy?

The key to making enchiladas that aren’t soggy is to either fry the corn tortillas prior to layering them in this bake, use less sauce, or both. To achieve that fried texture without extra calories and fat, I recommend toasting the corn tortillas in a skillet with olive oil nonstick cooking spray. Or, you could simply use less sauce.

How should I store this layered tortilla casserole?

First, let the lasagna cool to room temperature. Then, cut the lasagna into individual squares so that it’s already pre-portioned, and transfer to an airtight, freezer safe container. You can either store this lasagna in the fridge for up to 4 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months! If storing in the fridge, simply cover it in plastic wrap!

What should I eat with this layered taco pie?

Taco Lasagna is a complete meal on its own, since it has loads of veggies, protein from the beans and cheese, and whole grain carbohydrates from the tortillas. But this dish pairs well with a simple salad, or a side of guacamole for some healthy fats.

Is this layered taco casserole with tortillas kid-friendly?

Yes, this easy weeknight meal is kid-friendly! My kids go crazy for it. If your kids are picky eaters, I recommend chopping up the veggies super tiny to hide them in the sauce, tortilla & cheese layers. You can also puree the veggies and add them to the sauce. Reduce the spice level if your kids are sensitive to heat.

vegetarian taco lasagna recipe, a piece cut and pictured on a white plate

💭 Expert Tips To Make The Best Layered Taco Casserole

  • Thaw frozen spinach overnight in the refrigerator or thaw in the microwave.
  • Squeeze the excess water out of the frozen spinach before adding it to the veggie mixture.
  • Feel free to swap out the veggies with what you have on hand. You can also use seasonal vegetables such as zucchini in the summer and butternut squash in the winter.
  • Add your favorite Mexican spices. If you don’t have taco seasoning use chili powder, paprika, cumin, and whatever you like to spice up your taco recipes.
  • If you don’t have corn tortillas you could use whole wheat flour tortillas. 
  • You can make this taco bake recipe ahead of time. Assemble and store, covered in the fridge. Bake when you are ready to serve it.
  • For a vegan option, omit the cheese or use a vegan-friendly cheese.
  • For more firm tortillas in your enchilada lasagna, try pan frying them with extra virgin olive oil cooking spray before layering.

🍲 More Mexican-Inspired Recipes!

Easy recipes are the best kind of recipes! Try one of these Mexican-inspired meals for your next taco Tuesday!

easy healthy vegetarian layered taco casserole with tortillas in a white baking dish

If you have tried this recipe, then please rate it and let me know how it turned out in the comments below!

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📋 Recipe Card

Layered Taco Casserole With Tortillas

This layered taco casserole makes a quick and easy weeknight meal. Layers of corn tortillas, salsa, refried beans, and veggies transform this Mexican-inspired casserole into a hearty meal! Taste-tested and kid-approved! 

Prep Time25 mins

Cook Time20 mins

Total Time45 mins

Course: Main Course

Cuisine: Italian, Mexican

Servings: 6 servings

Calories: 246kcal

  • Chop your veggies, and saute the red onion, red pepper, garlic and corn over medium heat until the onions are translucent.

  • Heat up the beans, and add a couple teaspoons of taco seasoning until the beans are as spicy as you like.

  • Meanwhile, add a couple teaspoons of taco seasoning to the veggies, and add in the spinach.

  • Start assembling your “lasagna”! In an 8×8 baking dish, start with a layer of the tomato sauce, ⅓ of the salsa, and a layer of the corn tortillas.

  • Top the corn tortillas with ½ the refried beans, ½ of the veggie mixture, and a drizzle of the tomato sauce + salsa.

  • More layering – top with the corn tortillas, the remaining ½ the refried beans, and the remaining ½ the veggie mixture, a drizzle of the tomato sauce + salsa.

  • Then top with the corn tortillas again, and the rest of the tomato sauce + salsa. Top that with the cheese, olives and tomatoes, and it’s ready to go into the oven!

  • Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 min, until the cheese is bubbly and melted.


Top tips For Making This Taco Lasagna Recipe

  • If using frozen spinach make sure you thaw the spinach overnight in the refrigerator prior to using OR thaw in the microwave.
  • Squeeze all the water out of the frozen spinach before adding it to the onion, corn, and red pepper mixture.
  • If you have different veggies in your fridge you can use those. Orange, yellow and green peppers are all great substitutions. You can also use seasonal vegetables such as zucchini and summer squash in the summer. Or butternut squash in the fall and winter. 
  • Add your favorite Mexican spices. If you don’t have taco seasoning use chili powder, paprika, cumin, and whatever you like to spice up your Mexican dishes.
  • If you don’t have corn tortillas you could use whole wheat flour tortillas. 
  • You can make the lasagna ahead of time. Assemble and store, covered in the fridge. Bake when you are ready to serve it.
  • For a vegan option, omit the cheese or use a vegan-friendly cheese.
  • For more firm tortillas in your enchilada lasagna, try pan frying them with extra virgin olive oil cooking spray before layering.

Calories: 246kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 9.3g | Saturated Fat: 1.7g | Cholesterol: 5.5mg | Sodium: 1089.5mg | Potassium: 560.9mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 8.7g

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