I am fascinated by casseroles. Maybe it's because I grew up eating them. I'm pretty sure a good half of the recipes in my mom's dinner rotation were some form of casserole. There was Cheesy Beef Casserole, Potato Casserole, Green Bean Casserole, Shipwreck Casserole--and pretty much every casserole involved a can of soup, cheese, or sour cream. My favorites usually included cereal on top too. I always wonder where these recipes originated. Who came up with these ideas?! And why? If I ever went back to school, I think I'd write a dissertation about casseroles.
(This is probably why I shouldn't go back to school.)
I don't make casseroles a lot for us, but once in a while, usually in fall or winter, I'll find myself craving them. I pinned this Tortilla Pie from Everyday Food a few weeks ago and decided to give it a try, with a few tweaks. Instead of 3 cups of black beans, I used half of that and added zucchini to lighten things up a little bit. I planned to cut down on the cheese a little, but as I was assembling the layers, I realized sticking to the original recipe was probably best. Hey, it's a casserole! Why not?
When you bake this Tortilla Pie, the cheese gets all melty and the tortillas soften from the veggie-and-beer filling. It's a little bit of a mess when you slice it (casseroles are my least favorite thing to photograph for this reason!), but I think when it comes to casseroles, the messier the better.
This post was originally published on October 7, 2013.
- 4 10-inch flour tortillas
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion diced
- 2 jalapeño peppers seeded and diced
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- 1 large zucchini quartered lengthwise and sliced
- 1 ½ cups cooked black beans or one 15 ounce can, rinsed
- 1 10 ounce package frozen corn
- 1 12 ounce bottle beer (I used pilsner) or 1 ½ cups vegetable broth
- ⅓ cup sliced black olives
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 ½ cups shredded Mexican blend cheese
- Chopped cilantro green onions, lime wedges, salsa, and sour cream for serving
- Preheat oven to 400ºF.
- Trim the tortillas to fit a 9-inch springform pan. Discard the excess or save it to make tortilla strips for salads or soups.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, jalapeños, and garlic and cook until softened, 5-7 minutes. Stir in the cumin and chili powder and cook about one minute, until fragrant. Add the zucchini to the skillet and cook until just beginning to soften, about 3 minutes.
- Increase the heat to high and add the beans, corn, and beer. Once the mixture reaches a boil, reduce heat to medium and simmer for 10-15 minutes, until the beer has thickened and has almost evaporated. Stir in the olives and season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Place a tortilla on the bottom of the springform pan. Top it with ¼ of the veggie mixture, ½ cup of cheese, and another tortilla. Repeat with each tortilla; top the last layer with a cup of cheese. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and is just beginning to brown. Cut the pie into 6 wedges and serve with cilantro, green onions, lime wedges, salsa and/or sour cream.
I usually think of casseroles as the creamy, cheesy, soup-mix variety that you mentioned, which is probably why I never make them for myself (plus I didn't really grow up with them)! This tortilla pie is definitely something I could get on board with though - I like that it has a mix of beans, veggies, some cheese and even beer! I also like that it looks like a layered slice of pizza 🙂
As far as casseroles go, this one is definitely on the lighter side!
Jenn @TheRebelChick says
Wait, you think THAT looks messy? LOL! It looks so good! I think leaving the cheese as-is was a smart move, I think the cheese in these casseroles is what really binds the ingredients together!
Ha! Yeah, well, it looks messy compared to the photo on the Martha Stewart website. 🙂
Kelly @ Texas Type A Mom says
That looks awesome! So many of my favorite ingredients in one dish!
So I actually made this dish the other night and it was fabulous! I loved the idea of adding the zucchini to it. I didn't add as much broth - only 1 c. and cut down on the cheese to about 1 c. (I know, I love cheese too but really am trying to cut back on it!). I think next time - yes, there definitely will be a next time - I will add the salsa on a layer so it isn't cold at the end. I also put a pile of spinach on the top of my slice. It wasn't nearly as messy as you described. And the best part is that it was easy to assemble and fast! I love those kind of recipes. Thanks you!
I'm glad you enjoyed it--thanks for the feedback! 🙂
Megan @ Monroe Makeshift says
Made this for dinner tonight. It was awesome!
I'm glad you enjoyed it! 🙂
Oh wow. This is SO happening! I too grew up on casseroles. Ours also included cheese, sour cream, and always potatoes, it seemed. This looks like a much better (and healthier) version of one! I'll be making this soon 🙂
Yup, that is exactly the kind of casserole I grew up on too! Well, usually they also had a can of soup in them. 🙂
Looks delish! Thank you for all that you do!
Thanks for the pin!
This looks amazing! My mom made a lot of casseroles as well -- which is probably why I end up making so many! It's easy to throw together whatever's lying around and call it a casserole 🙂 Definitely pinning this for later!
It's nice to have a one-dish dinner, isn't it?! 🙂
I made this last night with a couple of changes: I added a grated carrot to the veg/bean mix as i didn't have enough corn. I used a less cheese and had one layer of feta. I took Sarah's tip and added the salsa to one of the layers. It was delicious, served with fat free greek yogurt and cilantro. I can't wait to have the leftovers!
The only (small) problem was that it took about 30 mins for the stock to reduce.
Kiersten Frase says
I'm glad you enjoyed it! That's really strange that it took so long for the stock to reduce though--I'm not sure why that would have happened!
This looks delicious! Can you use a regular casserole dish instead of the springform pan?
Kiersten Frase says
You can, but I think it might be a little bit messy. As long as you're okay with that. 🙂 Another possibility would be to make it in a small square baking dish and instead of keeping the tortillas whole, you can cut them into thick strips and layer them that way. I make a tortilla casserole like that!
Sara E. says
Suggestions for making this dairy-free?
Dana Raidt says
Hi Sara, you could just omit the cheese and sour cream, or use a store-bought vegan cheese like Daiya.
Rami @ Tasteaholics says
Such a beautiful mexican style recipe! I love anything tortilla so would love to give this a try
Angela Thredgold says
This is SO good!! It's my son's favorite vegetarian dish that I have made. I love this blog, so many ideas!
I'm so glad you enjoyed it! 🙂
This is one of my new favorites! Thanks!
I don't have a springform pan so I used a large pie plate (without trimming the tortillas) which worked great (the edges of the tortillas curled up and crisped which I loved) and like someone else said will probably use less liquid next time (I poured off the excess) but otherwise this came out awesome. I also left out the jalapeno and used stock for the liquid...yum!! Wasn't too sure about the zucchini but I loved it! An unusual but tasty twist 🙂
This recipe made it to my recipe file and I'll be making it a lot!
AhhMazing is all I can say! This was a hit with the family, thank you for the Great recipe!
This was so good. Me and my niece loved it!! Will definitely make it again!
Katie Trant says
Yay! Glad you and your niece loved this dish as much as we do, Loana!