Spinach Enchilada Casserole

22nd April, 2015

Enchilada is one dinner that makes its way into my monthly menu. Don’t jump to the conclusion that I am a very organized person and have monthly menus. Thinking about it, I hardly even know what is cooking that night. I was just trying to say that enchilada is something I make often and it could be as often as twice or thrice a month. It is one of those quick casseroles that are easy to assemble early and then bake just before dinner.

Cheese enchiladas are very simple and it needs not much of planning. I usually just use the store bought enchilada sauce and refried beans, but soon I am going to be working on a sauce that closely resembles the flavor we like. We really like Mole sauce and it is something that I have always have in the pantry. There are only a couple of brands that are entirely vegetarian, so when shopping makes sure you read the labels.

Spinach enchilada is a great option when eating out and this is usually what we order in a Mexican restaurant. I had some frozen spinach in the freezer and also had some frozen corn. I just combined them and made a quick filling for the enchilada, topped it with some store bought sauce and then some cheese and baked it.  I served the dinner with Spanish rice, salsa and refried beans.

Preparation time – 15 minutes
Cooking time – 20 minutes plus about 25 minutes to bake the casserole
Difficulty level – easy

Ingredients – Makes 8

  • Tortilla – 8 (medium size)
  • Enchilada sauce – 2 cups
  • Mexican blend cheese – 1 ½ cups
  • Spinach – 8 oz (thawed if frozen)
  • Onion – 1 medium (finely chopped)
  • Corn kernels – ½ cup (optional)
  • Jalapeno – 1 tsp (finely minced)
  • Cumin powder – 1 tsp
  • Taco seasoning – ½ tsp (optional)
  • Oil – 2 tsp
  • Salt – to taste
Procedure –

To make the spinach filling –

  • Heat oil in a pan and fry the onions until translucent. Add the corn, jalapeno and spinach and mix well.
  • Let the vegetables cook for 5 minutes and then add the salt and cumin powder. If you are not using jalapenos, add about ½ tsp of chili powder at this stage. Mix well and let it cook until the moisture is all dried up and the filling is dry.
  • Let it cool down a bit.
To assemble the Enchilada –
  • Prepare the enchilada sauce as per package instructions. Roughly divide the spinach filling into 8 parts. Grease a baking tray and keep it ready
  • Preheat the oven to 375 F.
  • Warm the tortillas in the microwave wrapped in slightly damp paper towels. This step enables the tortillas to get soft and this allows easy folding.
  • Working with one tortilla at a time, spread about a tablespoon of sauce over it.
  • Now add about 2 tbsp of cheese on one half of the tortilla. Add 1 part of the filling over the cheese.
  • Now roll the enchilada once over the filling. Fold over the two sides to form an envelope. Now roll the enchilada completely and place it seam side down on a greased baking tray. Refer to the pictorial below for folding technique.
  • Repeat the same with the rest of the tortillas and place them on the tray.
  • Pour the remaining sauce evenly over the prepared enchiladas to cover them completely.
  • Cover with a foil and bake in a preheated oven for 20 minutes.
  • Now spread a little (or more) cheese over the cooked enchiladas and then broil to brown the cheese for about 2 minutes. 
  • Remove from oven and let it rest for 5 minutes.
  • Serve with rice and beans.

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