A balanced Fiesta [Vegan Enchilada Bake with Cauliflower Nacho Sauce]

Deliciously doughy tortillas layered with spicy enchilada sauce and topped with a creamy vegan nacho dip – a healthy fiesta for one.

As single-serving pizzas, quesadillas or wraps: Tortillas are one of those ingredients popular all over the healthy living blog world. Yet I had never taken part in the rolling, baking or grilling business because – like I mentioned – Germany has yet to fully jump on the tortilla train. There are no brown rice/ high fiber/ high protein/ low-carb/ you name it wraps over here. Not even whole wheat ones. The ‘bad’ and ‘unhealthy’ white tortilla? No way. Or not until my desire for tortillas was stronger than my fear of white grains. And stepping outside my comfort zone couldn’t have been more rewarding than this delicious pan of doughy tortilla goodness.

Tortilla bake 1

And about those ‘unhealthy’ labels? Like I said in my What I ate Wednesday post it’s about the big picture. Some good friends – kidney beans, corn and what I [falsely or not] dub Mexican spices – joined the torilla for a Mexican fiesta in a casserole dish making it a nutritious meal. Just in case anybody else is struggling with the ‘bad’ white grains I thought it’d be fun to deconstruct this dish.

  • Bell peppers: 1 cup boasts more than 150  % of our daily needs of Vitamin C and 16 % of the recommended amount of Vitamin A.*
  • Kidney beans are a good source of iron in a vegetarian/ vegan diet and add plenty of fiber to the dish.*
  • Cauliflower contains a significant amount of potassium, fiber and a multitude of other vitamins.*
  • One Tortilla wrap: 100 % of a meal’s need of deliciousness 😉

Because I can be a nutrition geek at times I logged the whole dish [why, yes, I had some free time] and it totalled at 405 % of the daily recommendation for Vitamin C, 78 % of Vitamin A, 38 % of our iron needs and contained around 17 g of [vegan] protein. In short: a perfectly balanced meal.

Tortilla Bake 3

While I’d have happily eaten the enchilada mix with the tortilla as is I decided to up the dish a notch. Taking a clue from Ashley  cauliflower stood in for the nacho ‘cheese’ topping. Trust me it’s good and if you end up eating it straight from the blender I won’t judge you. Much. Just leave some for this dish and we can still be friends.

Enchilada Bake with Cauliflower Nacho Sauce [for one]

1 flour tortilla, cut into six to eight triangles

Enchilada Sauce

  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1/2 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 4-5 mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup fresh spinach
  • 1/2 cup of kidney beans
  • 2 tbsps corn [or more but this was the remainder for me]
  • 3/4 cup tomato sauce
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • Pinch of dark cocoa

Cauliflower Nacho Sauce:

  • generous 3/4 cup cauliflower [around 80 g]
  • 1 tbsp salsa
  • 1-2 tbsps nutritional yeast [or more to taste]
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • Pinch of garlic powder
  • Pinch of smoked paprika [this is key!]

Start by preparing the nacho sauce:

  1. Boil the cauliflower florets until tender. Drain, reserving the cooking liquid.
  2. Blend with 2-3 tbsps liquid and the remaining ingredients until smooth. Set aside.

For the enchilada sauce:

  1. Sauté the onion and garlic for about four minutes.
  2. Sprinkle in the spices and toast for another minute.
  3. Add in the bell pepper and mushrooms and stir-fry until the mushrooms begin to brown.
  4. Add spinach and let wilt.
  5. Pour in the passata and stir. Mix in the kidney beans, corn and cocoa and let simmer for another few minutes until slightly thickened.
  6. To assemble pour half of the enchilada sauce into a greased casserole dish. Layer half of the tortilla triangles on top, letting them overlap.
  7. Add the other half of the sauce and the remaining tortilla. Cover with the nacho sauce and bake for about 20 minutes.
  8. Let sit for a few minutes before serving.

Tortilla Bake 4

Just because Cinco de Mayo is over doesn’t mean you can’t [or shouldn’t!] eat Mexican food anymore until next year. But I don’t really need to tell you how good it is, right?!

I’m joining Laura’s Strange but Good party, Kierston and Healthy Vegan Fridays so stop by any of those for more recipe inspiration – Mexican or not.


Happiness inducing today: The birds chirping outside my window in the morning.

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What’s your favourite way to use tortillas?

[How] did you celebrate Cinco de Mayo?

 Are you a nutrition geek? Usually I don’t look up the foods I eat because I trust in my intuition leading to an overall balance but every now and then it’s fun to see just how healthy delicious can be. (:

14 thoughts on “A balanced Fiesta [Vegan Enchilada Bake with Cauliflower Nacho Sauce]

  1. Emily says:

    Yet another reason you inspire me…
    I can’t remember the last time I put this much thought and effort into any of my meals. No joke. I never make anything that takes longer than 5-minutes to prepare. I really, really need to work on that.
    And, like you know, I’m so proud of you for incorporating white tortillas. The poor things are delicious…they’ve just been given a bad rap around here. (:

  2. Ashley says:

    I love using cauliflower in anything, but I never thought to make a nacho sauce out of it!

    And I’m seriously proud of you for trying white flour tortillas again. That’s one of my biggest struggles–I actually can’t even get myself to eat anything made with whole wheat because of the whole gluten free craze and convincing myself I can’t tolerate gluten. You’re inspiring me to just bite the bullet and buy a whole wheat product I’ve been fearing!

  3. Emma (@SweetToothRunnr) says:

    Um, can you please come and be my personal chef?! I HAVE to make this sometime…sounds incredible!! I had enchiladas for dinner this evening…although the microwavable Amy’s version haha! 😛

    Enjoy your weekend love! ❤

    • Miss Polkadot says:

      If we were able to get Amy’s over here I’d clearly keep those at hand for quick lazy days, too. Until then, it’s homemade and yes, I’ll be over because I’d actually planned on visiting London again sometime soon. Watch out, haha.

  4. simplicitywellness says:

    oooh yum! This looks amaaazing. I love making sauces from cauliflower! Can’t wait to try this. I don’t actually use tortilla’s that much (though I do love them). I’m a bit of a nutrition geek to be honest, but have to stop myself from looking up the details sometimes so I don’t get too obsessed!

    • Miss Polkadot says:

      Cauliflower’s versality is amazing, isn’t it?! And yes, getting too much into nutrition can become obsessive. That’s why I’m keeping it to those time when I want to feel extra virtuous ;).

  5. shashi @ http://runninsrilankan.com says:

    Love this bake -the enchilada sauce sounds amazing, the nacho sauce – wow! And loaded with as much nutrition, I simply could not pass on a plate of this!

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