This Mexican quinoa casserole is not only packed with veggies and black beans, but is bursting with traditional Mexican flavors that the whole family will love. Vegetarian and gluten-free.

I’m excited because I have quite the recipe to share with you today. It’s vegetarian, packed with protein (18 grams per serving) and gluten-free. I think you’re going to like it… I *know* you’re going to like it!

Plate with a cheesy Mexican quinoa casserole topped with jalapenos slices, avocado, and cilantro.

When you think of healthy food, Mexican food isn’t typically the first thing to pop in your head (at least not for me). But you can certainly make Mexican dishes that are healthy and the recipe I’m sharing today proves it. This casserole has a mixture of veggies, quinoa, beans and cheese. A delicious and nutritious Mexican feast!

Ingredients in Mexican Quinoa Casserole

  • quinoa
  • vegetables – sweet potato, red bell pepper, yellow onion, green onion, cilantro
  • taco seasoning – make your own or purchase a pre-made blend.
  • canned black beans
  • salsa – use whatever heat type you prefer! We love spice so I used a hot salsa. The creamy bites of avocado and Greek yogurt were the perfect contrast to the spicy bites. Having said that, if you don’t like that much heat, mild salsa is just as delicious!
  • Mexican cheese blend
  • toppings of choice – I love topping this casserole with Greek yogurt, avocado, green onion and cilantro.

Casserole dish of a Mexican Quinoa Casserole topped with lots of cheddar cheese, green onions, cilantro, and jalapeno slices.

Prepping Mexican Quinoa Casserole

This dish does take a little bit of prep work because you have to chop all the veggies and cook the quinoa. But it’s worth it! If necessary, you can save time by prepping the whole bake ahead of time and then just pop it in the oven right before dinner time.

Start by cooking the quinoa. While your quinoa cooks, get to chopping. Chop all of the veggies right away! Add your sweet potato, red pepper and onion to the bottom of a greased casserole dish. Sprinkle taco seasoning evenly over all of the vegetables. In a large bowl, combine the cooked quinoa, beans, cilantro, green onion and additional taco seasoning. Spread the quinoa mixture over the sweet potato and red pepper layer. Next, add a layer of salsa. Add the cheese on top, cover with aluminum foil (to make sure the cheese doesn’t burn!) and bake. It will come out of the oven piping hot with a perfectly gooey layer of cheese. Yum!

Plate and fork with a portion of a Mexican quinoa casserole topped with avocado and cilantro.

Isaac and I LOVED this dish. Each bite is full of flavor and texture — a fiesta in your mouth, if you will. All the veggies are cooked to perfection so they taste fresh instead of overcooked and mushy.

Wood serving spoon scooping up a serving of cheesy healthy Mexican quinoa casserole topped with avocado.

Want More Healthy Mexican Recipes? Try These:

If you make this Mexican quinoa casserole, please be sure to leave a comment and star rating below. Your feedback is super helpful for the EBF team and other readers who are thinking about making the recipe. 

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Mexican Quinoa Casserole


  • Author: Brittany Mullins
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6

Description

This vegetarian Mexican quinoa casserole is a dish the whole family will love. It’s packed with veggies, black beans and lots of cheesy goodness.


Ingredients

  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup dry quinoa
  • 3 cups sweet potato, diced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, diced
  • ½ small yellow onion, diced
  • 1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon McCormick Gluten-Free Taco Seasoning
  • One 14-oz can black soybeans or black beans, rinsed and drained
  • ¼ cup sliced green onion
  • ¼ cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1½ cups prepared salsa (mild, medium or hot)
  • 2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend
  • 2% Greek yogurt, avocado, extra green onion and cilantro (for topping)

Instructions

  1. Bring the water and quinoa to boil in a saucepan. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let the covered saucepan cool for 4-5 minutes. Remove the lid and fluff with a fork. Set aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350° F. Grease a 9″x 13″ dish and spread the sweet potato, bell pepper, and onion in the bottom. Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of the taco seasoning.
  3. In a bowl combine the beans, cooked quinoa, green onion, cilantro and 1 tablespoon of taco seasoning; mix well.
  4. Place the bean and quinoa mixture over the veggies in the baking dish. Spread salsa on top of the quinoa mixture. Top with cheese.
  5. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 40 minutes. Removed cover and bake for another 20 minutes or until cheese has melted, the sweet potatoes are cooked and everything is hot throughout.
  6. Serve immediately topped with greek yogurt, avocado slices, green onion and cilantro if desired.

  • Category: Lunch/Dinner
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: Mexican

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1/6 of recipe
  • Calories: 348
  • Sugar: 5g
  • Fat: 15g
  • Carbohydrates: 34g
  • Fiber: 7g
  • Protein: 18g

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    29 comments
  1. I made this using a mango peach salsa and only used a small even layer of a triple cheddar cheese. It came out perfect! Definitely one of my favorite dinner recipes!

    • Oh yay! I’m so glad that you enjoyed the sweet potato quinoa bake. I bet it was extra tasty with the mango peach salsa. And I so appreciate you coming back to leave a comment and star rating on the recipe too. It’s so helpful for other readers and means the world to me.

  2. I made this tonight and it was a huge hit! My husband, three year old, nine month old and I all loved it. My three year old kept saying, “Mmmmmm, this is so good!” We will definitely be adding this to our regular rotation of meals. I loved how easily it came together.

  3. I just made this recipe again for the millionth time and have to comment how much I love it! Even my meat loving husband requests this for dinner. Thanks so much!

  4. We really enjoyed this bake (we’ve made it twice) but I have to say… this bake time/cook temp is off. The first time I thought it was our fault because I forgot to put it in the oven covered… this time around, foil and all, 40 mins at 350… cheese not melted, lukewarm, hard potatoes, for the second time in a row. Upping the heat and sticking back in for another 20 minutes. And hungry 🙁 That note aside, definitely tasty.

    • Thank you so much for the feedback, Jessica! I really appreciate it. I made the recipe again today and you’re definitely right. It should be cooked covered for 40 minutes, then the top removed and cooked another 20 minutes. I’ll update the recipe.

  5. Hi Brittany,

    I couldn’t wait to share with you the exciting news about this recipe. So I made this last weekend and it turned out so yummy that I shared it with the girls at my work. One of the girls took it home to share with her Mom. Her Mom made it and took it into the next day’s meeting. Apparently they too found it to be so delicious that they were scraping the bowl from what was left. The nurses were all asking for the recipe. So that co-worker came back and raved to the girls in my office to the others of the positive results. So they all couldn’t wait to try it. I told them that I would make it again and bring it in to work on Friday. So here I am in my kitchen typing this to you and waiting for the dish to finish baking so I can take into work tomorrow! 🙂

    You have been one of my all time favorite recipes through and through for personal eats for my family to preparing dishes to pass at a work setting! Thank you, Brittany!! It means so much to that you continue to provide me success in my weight loss journey and continue in helping me make healthy foods for my family!! Warm Hugs!! Thank you, it just doesn’t seem enough to be said!!

  6. I made this a couple of nights ago and LOVED it. I had almost everything on-hand but just used homemade taco seasoning, regular black beans and Mexican blend cheese. I found that the veggies on the bottom layer came out still a bit crunchy (but not in a bad way) so maybe I should have left it in the oven a few minutes longer.

    Next time I may try cooking my quinoa with homemade chicken broth to add even more flavor depth and adding my onion so that it can soften just a bit before going into the casserole dish.

    Overall I loved this and like that I could get my Mexican fix in a healthy way!

  7. i made this for dinner monday night and it was so delicious! i featured it as the “recipe of the week” on my run club’s website (www.emmygrace02.wix.com/fcsrunclub). your apple crisp is in the oven as i type this! thanks for proving that healthy and delicious can both be in the same meal!
    emily

  8. I am so inspired by this post! I have been on such a Mexican kick lately, and this fits the bill in such a healthy way. Is the sweet potato the right level of cooked at the end? I feel like it might be a little firm… either way, I will fully be trying this recipe soon!

    xoxo
    Audrey

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