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Slow Cooker Quinoa Enchilada Casserole


  • Author: Caitlin
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 3 hours
  • Total Time: 3 hours 10 mins
  • Yield: 8 1x

Ingredients

Scale
  • For the Casserole:
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
  • 4 cups quick homemade enchilada sauce (or 2 15-ounce jars storebought sauce)
  • 1/2 medium-large onion, diced
  • 2 bell peppers, diced (or 1.5 cups vegetables of choice)
  • 3 cups cooked black beans
  • 2 cups frozen spinach, thawed or frozen
  • 1 cup shredded or crumbled cheese (queso fresco, cheddar, Mexican blend, etc.)
  • For the Optional Quick Enchilada Sauce (double portion of the original recipe):
  • 1 medium onion
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 2 jalapeños
  • 28 ounces whole or diced tomatoes
  • 2 Tablespoons chili powder (not spicy)
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 12 cups water or stock (depending on how watery your canned tomatoes are)

Instructions

  1. For the Enchilada Sauce: Combine all ingredients except the water in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Add water until desired consistency is reached.
  2. For the Slow Cooker Casserole:Grease your slow cooker insert if you’re worried about it sticking. Then pour in the rinsed quinoa and the enchilada sauce. Stir well. Top with the onions and bell peppers, then the black beans, and finally the spinach. (You want the quinoa at the bottom so it is submerged in the liquid.) Place the spinach on top and cover. Cook on HIGH for 3 hours. (Or on LOW for about 6 hours).
  3. Remove the lid and add 1 teaspoon of salt, then stir well. Top with cheese if desired and cover for another 15-30 minutes to let the cheese melt. You can leave it on top or mix it in, your choice!
  4. Remove lid and add about 1 Tablespoon lime juice and serve. Top with your favorite toppings like fresh tomatoes, avocado, cilantro, greek yogurt/sour cream, more lime juice, etc.

Notes

I had about 1/2 cup leftover sauce, which we used to make awesome taco meat. In the future, I’d probably toss all the sauce in the slow cooker because I don’t think the extra sauce would cause an issues as it is quite thick.
Feel free to experiment with different additional seasonings or store-bought enchilada sauce. You can also use any kind of cheese, but I just happened to have queso fresco in my fridge.
You can also mix in about 1 pound of fully cooked ground beef. I’d stir it in with the beans before adding them to the slow cooker.

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