Plant Based Enchilada Casserole

This vegan enchilada casserole is spicy, simple, and oh so delicious. And you won’t believe how easy this plant-based Mexican-inspired casserole is to make! The result will tantalize your taste buds with cheesy layers of flour tortilla, spiced and saucy vegan soy curl chicken, black beans, corn, green chilis, and enchilada sauce baked in the oven until melty.


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Enchiladas have always been one of my top go-to Mexican restaurant orders. (Luna Verde in Bradley Beach, NJ has some of the best vegan enchiladas I’ve ever had!). They’re so lovingly hand-rolled and packed with flavor. But when cooking at home, not everyone has the time to make those traditional enchiladas themselves.

While this enchilada casserole is no substitute for the traditional, hand-rolled version, it’s a great enchilada-inspired recipe for when you want that vibe but need to cook for a whole family or on busy weeknights when you find yourself with a limited amount of time.

So, when the idea of doing an easy vegan Enchilada Casserole came up in our content planning, I couldn’t help but shout a resounding yes! Combining two things I love – casseroles and Mexican-inspired recipes – into one tasty and work night friendly dish is always exciting for me.

This vegan enchilada casserole recipe may just be my favorite thing we made for our soy curl series. We used the soy curls to make this a chicken-style enchilada casserole, but feel free to sub your favorite browned vegan ground beef too. Or sub roasted fresh vegetables for a meatless enchilada casserole the entire family will love!

Why We Love This Vegan Enchiladas Recipe

  • It’s easy to make in just a few steps: Make the one-pot filling, layer in a casserole dish, and bake until melty and delicious! Weeknight dinners could scarcely be easier!
  • It has all the flavors and textures you love in classic chicken enchiladas with a faster method made for those work nights when you don’t have a ton of time to roll tortilla after tortilla!
  • Makes incredible leftovers. Leftovers might be the best part! Heat it up or eat it cold (don’t judge!), make this vegan casserole once and enjoy the leftovers all week!
Overhead photo of all the ingredients you need to make vegan enchiladas: tortillas, soy curls, vegan cheese, corn, enchilada sauce, green chiles, taco seasoning, black beans, vegan cheese sauce, bouillon powder

Ingredients in Soy Curl Enchiladas

You’ll need 9-10 budget-friendly plant-based ingredients for this soy curl enchilada casserole recipe!

For the filling, you’ll need:

  • Vegan condensed cheddar soup – You’ll want to make this at least a few hours (or up to 2 days) ahead of time to give it time to thicken properly. If you can’t wait for the vegan condensed soup to thicken, you can use the soup out of the blender (about 2 cups for this recipe – not the whole thing) and omit 1/3 cup of water. See next section for substitution options.
  • Vegan enchilada sauce – You can use store bought, or make your own enchilada sauce!
  • Roasted green chilies
  • Soy curls – Broken into small pieces. These are our favorite vegan chicken substitute. They come dehydrated and are a great plant-based protein that can be flavored to mimic a variety of meat dishes.
  • Black beans -From a can, rinsed and drained.
  • Frozen corn
  • Taco seasoning – Read the ingredients if you are choosing a brand unfamiliar to you.
  • Vegan chicken bouillon powder – We used our homemade vegan bouillon powder which adds the perfect chicken flavor to the soy curls!

For the dish, you’ll need:

  • Flour tortillas – We like the small 6-inch size for this recipe.
  • Vegan shredded cheese – Optional, for topping. Use any vegan pepper jack or Monterey Jack or shredded vegan cheddar.

Are flour tortillas good for enchiladas?

While corn tortillas are the traditional choice for enchiladas, flour tortillas work well too. We like to use flour tortillas in this recipe to assist in ease of slicing and because we love the way they plump with flavor.

Close up photo of a slice of vegan enchilada casserole on a round white plate

Substitution Options

If you need a substitution for one of the above ingredients, here are our best tips. Please keep in mind that substituting any of the ingredients may lead to a small or large difference in the final product. This difference may not always be a pleasant one! Let us know in the comments if you try any subs and how they work out for you.

For the enchilada sauce: You can use taco sauce or ranchero sauce to replace red enchilada sauce. You can even blend up some of your favorite salsa to a less chunky consistency. Honestly, you can even open a can of plain tomato sauce and spice it up properly. I also like to switch things up and use a green enchilada sauce or salsa verde every now and again.

For the roasted green chiles: Canned green chili peppers are usually something milder and less intense in flavor like Anaheim, Pasilla or Poblano peppers. You can dice and use any of these, or even a mix. These are all lower on the Scoville scale with a heat rating of about 2 to a low 3. (Jalapenos have a heat rating of 5 and a bell pepper is at 0, to give you some idea of comparison.)

For the frozen corn: Drained canned corn will work, as will fresh corn. If you decide to use fresh corn, you would need to shuck the cooked kernels from the cob. (or shuck then cook.)

For the canned black beans: Well-cooked black beans will work. You can also sub pinto beans for a different vibe!

For the taco seasoning: Fajita seasoning, enchilada seasoning, or a mix of paprika, chili powder, garlic and onion powder and a little oregano can work for this dish!

For the bouillon powder: You can sub half as much vegan chicken bouillon paste or 1 bouillon cube.

Soy Curl Substitute

Outside the US, you can find a product similar to Butler soy curls labeled “TVP chunks” or “TVP strips”. They’re slightly different in texture, but either will work for this recipe! You can also opt to do a meatless enchilada casserole.

Vegan Cheddar Soup Options:

You might be able to use any homemade or store-bought vegan cheese sauce, vegan nacho cheese sauce, or queso. We have a quick vegan queso dip that might work also. But this could potentially change the texture of the casserole depending on the consistency.

You want to use something very thick, the closer to a spread than a sauce the better. If using something on the thinner side, reduce the amount of water you use.

Tortilla Options:

We like to use flour tortillas in this recipe to assist in ease of slicing and because we love the way they plump with flavor. I haven’t tried this recipe using gluten-free tortillas or corn tortillas, but I think they would work well too. We also haven’t used whole wheat flour tortillas, but I’m sure they would work as well. 

A grid of six photos walking you through the process of making plant based enchilada casserole

How to Make This Vegan Enchilada Recipe

This enchilada pie casserole is such an easy dinner recipe to make. You’ll want to make the vegan condensed soup ahead of time, but everything else is all dumping and layering.

You’ll start by preheating the oven to 375F.

Step 1: Make the filling.

In a large pot combine all the ingredients for the filling. Mix well and heat on medium heat, covered, 20 minutes or until soy curls are plumped.

Step 2: Layer and bake the casserole.

Cut the tortillas in half. In a large 9×13 baking dish place the first layer of tortillas on the bottom of the pan (see notes), then the filling mixture, then vegan cheese (optional). 

Repeat another two layers: a second layer of tortillas, filling, etc., until filling and cheese are gone. Make sure the top layer is filling / cheese. Bake until it is heated through and the cheese is melted and hot, about 30 minutes.

Tortilla Layering Tip: I like to line up the straight edge of the tortilla halves with the edges of the baking dish to get a nice (mostly) even layer.

How do you make flour tortillas not soggy for enchiladas?

T hates soggy tortillas. But he said the tortillas in this recipe seem to plump more than get soggy. He really enjoyed this enchilada casserole as it is. 

If you really feel you need to try and keep the tortillas crisper, I would suggest baking them on a sheet pan for a few minutes on each side at a low 200-250°F, before layering them into the casserole. I have not tried this, but in theory it should work.

Head on photo of a slice of layered vegan enchilada pie on a round white plate.

What to Serve with Enchilada Casserole

Let this casserole cool for 10 minutes before slicing and serving. 

This vegan chicken enchiladas casserole is perfect served all on its own or with:

  • Guacamole
  • Vegan sour cream 
  • Salsa or pico de gallo
  • Tortilla chips 
  • Vegan queso dip
  • Rice and beans
  • Refried beans
  • Roasted sweet potatoes

How to Store Leftover Vegan Chicken Enchilada Casserole

This vegetarian enchilada casserole makes amazing leftovers. In fact, it’s one of my Top 5 favorite casserole leftovers of all time! I love it so much, I’ll eat it hot or cold. 

If you’re into cold casserole leftovers, you’ll love this. If you think that’s weird, pay attention to the reheating instructions below. 😉

To store in the fridge: Store leftover casserole in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to a week.

To store in the freezer: Allow the casserole to cool completely before storing in the freezer for up to 8 weeks. You can freeze the whole casserole in foil or a dish or freeze individual slices for easy reheating single portions.

Souper Cubes instructions: We love our Souper Cubes for storing and freezing, but you could technically also bake individual sized casseroles right in the 2-cup Souper Cubes thmeselves. The Souper Cube trays are oven-safe up to 415°F. If you’re just making the casserole in the full size casserole pan, place individual servings in there after they’ve cooled fully.

How to Reheat Leftover Casserole

How to reheat (from fridge or thawed): Reheat leftover casserole in the microwave at 80% or medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes or until warmed through. You can also reheat in a preheated 350°F oven for 10-15 minutes until warmed through.

Reheat from the freezer: It’s best to let the casserole defrost in the fridge fully before following the reheating instructions above. But if you’re in a hurry, reheat frozen pieces in the microwave at 50% for 5-7 minutes until thawed through. Then heat again at 80% for 2-3 minutes until hot. You can also reheat frozen casserole in a preheated 350°F oven for 30-45 minutes until defrosted and hot throughout.

Close up head on photo of a meatless layered enchilada casserole in a large white casserole dish

I hope this casserole jazzes up your dinnertime like it has mine. If I’m being honest, it’s jazzed up my dinner, breakfast, lunch, and midnight snack times, so it’s safe to say this one’s a keeper.

When you try the recipe, don’t forget to leave a rating and review on the recipe card below! This helps more people find our recipes, and we love hearing about your cooking experience.

Until next time, my cozy casserole loving friend. Enjoy!

Yield: 8 slices

Vegan Enchilada Casserole

Close up head on photo of a meatless layered enchilada casserole in a large white casserole dish

This vegan enchilada casserole is spicy, simple, and oh so delicious. And you won’t believe how easy this plant-based Mexican-inspired casserole is to make! The result will tantalize your taste buds with cheesy layers of flour tortilla, spiced and saucy vegan soy curl chicken, black beans, corn, green chilis, and enchilada sauce baked in the oven until melty.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour

Ingredients

For the filling:

For the dish:

  • 10 (6-inch) flour tortillas
  • 1-2 cups vegan shredded cheese (optional, for topping)

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F.
  2. In a large pot combine all the ingredients for the filling. Mix well and heat on medium heat, covered, 20 minutes or until soy curls are plumped.
  3. Cut the tortillas in half. In a large 9x13 baking dish layer tortillas (see notes), then the filling mixture, then vegan cheese (optional). Repeat another two layers, until filling and cheese are gone, making sure the top layer is filling / cheese. Bake until it is heated through and the cheese is melted and hot, about 30 minutes.
  4. Let cool for 10 minutes before slicing and serving on its own or with guacamole, vegan sour cream, salsa, and tortilla chips!

Notes

*Tortilla Layering Tip: I like to line up the straight edge of the tortilla halves with the edges of the baking dish to get a nice (mostly) even layer.

Vegan Cheddar Soup substitute: You might be able to use any homemade or store-bought vegan cheese sauce, vegan nacho cheese sauce, or queso. We have a silken tofu queso dip that might work also. But this could potentially change the texture of the casserole depending on the consistency. You want to use something very thick, the closer to a spread than a sauce the better. If using something on the thinner side, reduce the amount of water you use.

Soy Curl Substitute (especially for those outside the US): Outside the US, you can find a product similar to Butler soy curls labeled “TVP chunks” or “TVP strips”. They’re slightly different in texture, but either will work for this recipe! You can also opt to do a meatless enchilada casserole.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

1/8 the casserole

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 226Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 642mgCarbohydrates: 19gFiber: 3gSugar: 2gProtein: 11g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated and may not always be accurate.

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