Bean and Cheese Vegetarian Enchiladas

Sweet bell peppers and 2 kinds of beans are the stars in this vegetarian dish. They're held together with melty Monterey jack cheese. Slideshow:  More Mexican Recipes 

Bean and Cheese Vegetarian Enchiladas
Photo: © Molly Yeh
Active Time:
40 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped

  • 2 bell peppers, chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and chopped

  • 1 tablespoon chili powder

  • 1 teaspoon cumin

  • Pinch of crushed red pepper

  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano

  • 1 teaspoon sugar

  • Kosher salt

  • Fresh ground black pepper

  • One 28-ounce can diced tomatoes

  • One 15-ounce can dark red kidney beans, rinsed

  • One 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed

  • 8 eight-inch corn or flour tortillas

  • 12 ounces shredded Monterey jack cheese (about 3 cups)


  1. Preheat oven to 350º. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil. Cook the onion and bell peppers over moderate heat until soft and translucent, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic, jalapeño, chili powder, cumin, crushed red pepper, paprika, oregano, sugar, salt and pepper and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in the tomatoes and remove from heat. Set aside 1 cup of the tomato mixture. Blend the remaining mixture in a food processor or blender until smooth. Return the tomato mixture to heat and simmer for 20 minutes.

  2. Place the reserved 1 cup of sauce in a large bowl. Stir in the 2 cans of beans and 2 cups of cheese.

  3. Wrap the tortillas in a damp paper towel and warm them in a microwave oven until soft and pliable, about 1 minute.

  4. Spread a thin layer of sauce on the bottom of a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish. Arrange the tortillas on a work surface. Spoon about 3/4 cup of the bean mixture onto each tortilla. Roll up the tortillas and arrange them in the baking dish. Top the tortillas evenly with the remaining sauce. Sprinkle the tops of the enchiladas with the remaining cup of cheese. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the enchiladas are hot and the cheese is melted.

  5. Serve warm with sour cream, jalapeños, lime wedges and minced green onions.

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