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Hello! I’m Anjali. I’m a board certified health coach, author, wife, mom and food lover from the SF Bay area (now living in Seattle, WA!); with a passion for delicious food and a desire to make healthy eating easy, tasty and fun! Learn more about me here and stay for a while!

Anjali Shah

Layered Taco Casserole With Tortillas (Taco Bake)

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This layered taco casserole makes a quick and easy weeknight meal. Layers of corn tortillas, salsa, refried beans, and veggies transform this Mexican-inspired casserole into a hearty meal! Taste-tested and kid-approved! 

slice of easy healthy vegetarian layered taco casserole with tortillas, white baking dish in the background

Is it possible to create a lasagna that resembles a cheesy enchilada? That’s the question I asked myself last week when I created this recipe. And the answer was a resounding yes!

My crowd-pleasing layered taco casserole is naturally gluten-free and easy to make vegan! It’s super kid-friendly and an easy way to sneak in veggies if you have picky eaters. My kids devour this black bean taco casserole faster than you can say spinach!

Latest Recipe Video!

Busy nights just got easier. This easy taco lasagna recipe took 45 minutes to make, including baking time. And the portions were just the right size! Feel free to double it for a party or large gathering, just use a larger baking dish. Everyone loves a taco in casserole form, am I right!

👩‍🍳 Why This Recipe Works

  • Even kids love this cheesy taco bake!
  • Perfect for a busy weeknight
  • Easy way to sneak in spinach and veggies
  • Switch up taco night
  • The ultimate crowd pleaser
  • Naturally gluten-free
  • A huge hit at any gathering
  • A great recipe for the whole family!

🥘 Ingredients

This vegetarian taco casserole with tortillas requires simple ingredients found at your local grocery store! Find the full list of ingredients and nutrition facts at the bottom of this post within the recipe.

ingredients for easy healthy vegetarian layered taco casserole with tortillas
  • Red Onion: Onions sweeten and mellow as they cook. I prefer red onions for their purple color and sweet flavor, but yellow, white or sweet onions work too!
  • Frozen Corn: While canned corn works in a pinch, frozen corn tastes closer to fresh and is just as easy to prepare! I try to always have some in my freezer since it tastes great in nearly anything!
  • Red Bell Pepper: Red bell peppers add sweetness, and a healthy dose of Vitamin A and C. Green peppers work too. Throw some on top of the Mexican lasagna for a nice crunch!
  • Garlic: Garlic amps up the flavor of any dish! I like to buy a jar of pre-minced garlic to make things easy. An opened jar of garlic lasts for about three months in the refrigerator.
  • Taco Seasoning: A packet of taco seasoning is a quick way to add flavor. Be sure to buy one that’s labeled gluten-free if you can’t have gluten, or make your own seasoning with chili powder, cumin, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and oregano.
  • Chunky Salsa: Chunky salsa combines fresh tomatoes, jalapenos, lime juice, onions and garlic for an instant flavor boost. Chunky salsa is less watery than restaurant style which makes it perfect for this layered taco bake! Homemade salsa works great too!
  • Frozen Spinach: Frozen spinach has all the nutrients of fresh, but it doesn’t perish quickly! Fresh baby spinach can be used too.
  • Tomato Sauce: For lots of tomato flavor!
  • Corn Tortillas: Corn tortillas are my tortillas of choice! They’re healthier than flour tortillas and they last longer too.
  • Refried Black Beans: I prefer refried black beans, but regular refried beans are delicious too! If you’re gluten-free, be sure to buy a brand that’s labeled gluten-free.
  • Black Olives: For a salty bite! Leave them off if you don’t like them.
  • Tomato: Fresh, diced tomatoes add more flavor and texture as a topping.
  • Cheddar Cheese: Plenty of ooey-gooey cheese gets sprinkled on top. Feel free to add an entire cup of cheese if you like tons of cheese!

📖 Variations

Here are a few quick and easy ways to customize this taco casserole recipe!

  • Protein: If you’re not vegetarian, add cooked ground meat for extra protein! Ground turkey, ground beef, or shredded chicken are all great options. Layer the taco meat mixture on top of the beans. To prevent a greasy casserole, use leaner beef cuts like ground sirloin and drain the excess fat.
  • Favorite Taco Toppings: This family favorite tastes even better with all the toppings (my favorite part!). Green onions, crushed tortilla chips, sour cream, guacamole, pickled onions, pico de gallo, hot sauce, shredded lettuce, and pickled jalapenos are delicious! If you’re making this recipe for a crowd, serve the toppings in small bowls for easy access.
  • Sides: This taco layer bake is filling on its own, but delicious with rice! Use steam-in-bag rice, and it’s ready in less than 2 minutes. A side of chips and salsa con queso never hurt either! 😉
  • Spice: For more heat, stir a can of green chiles into the chunky salsa, or add a tablespoon of chipotle chili powder to the beans.

🔪 How To Make A Layered Taco Casserole

Here’s how to make this quick and easy taco casserole with black beans!

Sauté Veggies: Chop your veggies, and sauté the red onion, red pepper, garlic and crunchy corn kernels over medium-high heat until the onions are translucent.

veggies sauteeing in a pan

Season The Beans: In a large skillet heat up the refried beans. Add the taco seasoning to the beans until they’re as spicy as you like.

refried beans in a pot

Season The Veggies: Meanwhile, add taco seasoning to the veggies and stir in the spinach. Stir well until the spices and spinach is well dispersed. 

veggies sauteeing in a pan

Assemble Mexican Casserole: Start assembling your Mexican lasagna! In the bottom of your casserole dish, assemble the layers. Start with a layer of the tomato sauce, 1/3 of the salsa, and a layer of the corn tortillas.

tortillas layered in a baking dish

Start Second Layer: Top the corn tortillas with 1/2 of the refried beans, 1/2 of the veggie mixture, and a drizzle of tomato sauce and salsa. Use a spatula to spread each layer evenly on top of the next. If using a beef mixture, add half of the meat onto the refried beans.

refried beans and veggies in a baking dish

Start Third Layer: Continue to layer with more corn tortillas then top with the remaining refried beans, veggies, and a drizzle of tomato sauce and salsa.

tortillas and veggies layered in a baking dish

Finish Layering The Taco Pie: Top with the final tortilla layer, and then add the rest of the tomato sauce and salsa. Sprinkle the cheese, olives, and tomatoes on top, and it’s ready to go into the oven!

layered taco casserole with tortillas topped with cheese, salsa and olives

Bake Healthy Taco Casserole: Bake at 350 degrees until the cheesy layer is bubbly and the casserole is hot all the way through – about 15 minutes. Top with a dollop of sour cream and enjoy!

layered taco casserole with tortillas recipe baked out of the oven, top view

❓ Recipe FAQs

Can you make enchiladas with flour tortillas?

Yes, you could make this taco lasagna with flour tortillas. Instead of using white flour tortillas, opt for whole wheat tortillas. They’re full of fiber and nutrients from the whole grains. And make sure to toast your tortillas beforehand!

How do you make enchiladas not soggy?

The key to making enchiladas that aren’t soggy is to either fry the corn tortillas prior to layering them in this bake, use less sauce, or both. To achieve that fried texture without extra calories and fat, I recommend toasting the corn tortillas in a skillet with olive oil nonstick cooking spray. Or, you could simply use less sauce.

How should I store this layered tortilla casserole?

First, let the lasagna cool to room temperature. Then, cut the lasagna into individual squares so that it’s already pre-portioned, and transfer to an airtight, freezer safe container. You can either store this lasagna in the fridge for up to 4 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months! If storing in the fridge, simply cover it in plastic wrap!

What should I eat with this layered taco pie?

Taco Lasagna is a complete meal on its own, since it has loads of veggies, protein from the beans and cheese, and whole grain carbohydrates from the tortillas. But this dish pairs well with a simple salad, or a side of guacamole for some healthy fats.

Is this layered taco casserole with tortillas kid-friendly?

Yes, this easy weeknight meal is kid-friendly! My kids go crazy for it. If your kids are picky eaters, I recommend chopping up the veggies super tiny to hide them in the sauce, tortilla & cheese layers. You can also puree the veggies and add them to the sauce. Reduce the spice level if your kids are sensitive to heat.

vegetarian taco lasagna recipe, a piece cut and pictured on a white plate

💭 Expert Tips To Make The Best Layered Taco Casserole

  • Thaw frozen spinach overnight in the refrigerator or thaw in the microwave.
  • Squeeze the excess water out of the frozen spinach before adding it to the veggie mixture.
  • Feel free to swap out the veggies with what you have on hand. You can also use seasonal vegetables such as zucchini in the summer and butternut squash in the winter.
  • Add your favorite Mexican spices. If you don’t have taco seasoning use chili powder, paprika, cumin, and whatever you like to spice up your taco recipes.
  • If you don’t have corn tortillas you could use whole wheat flour tortillas. 
  • You can make this taco bake recipe ahead of time. Assemble and store, covered in the fridge. Bake when you are ready to serve it.
  • For a vegan option, omit the cheese or use a vegan-friendly cheese.
  • For more firm tortillas in your enchilada lasagna, try pan frying them with extra virgin olive oil cooking spray before layering.

🍲 More Mexican-Inspired Recipes!

Easy recipes are the best kind of recipes! Try one of these Mexican-inspired meals for your next taco Tuesday!

easy healthy vegetarian layered taco casserole with tortillas in a white baking dish

If you have tried this recipe, then please rate it and let me know how it turned out in the comments below!

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📋 Recipe Card

easy healthy vegetarian layered taco casserole with tortillas in a white baking dish
Print Recipe
4.93 from 13 votes

Layered Taco Casserole With Tortillas

This layered taco casserole makes a quick and easy weeknight meal. Layers of corn tortillas, salsa, refried beans, and veggies transform this Mexican-inspired casserole into a hearty meal! Taste-tested and kid-approved! 
Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian, Mexican
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 246kcal
Author: Anjali Shah

Ingredients

  • ½ red onion chopped
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • taco seasoning to taste
  • 1-1½ cups chunky salsa
  • cups frozen spinach
  • 15 oz tomato sauce 1 can
  • 10 corn tortillas cut into quarters
  • 1 15oz can refried black beans
  • 5 Jumbo black olives sliced
  • 1 roma tomato diced
  • cup shredded cheddar cheese or mexican cheese blend

Instructions

  • Chop your veggies, and saute the red onion, red pepper, garlic and corn over medium heat until the onions are translucent.
  • Heat up the beans, and add a couple teaspoons of taco seasoning until the beans are as spicy as you like.
  • Meanwhile, add a couple teaspoons of taco seasoning to the veggies, and add in the spinach.
  • Start assembling your “lasagna”! In an 8×8 baking dish, start with a layer of the tomato sauce, ⅓ of the salsa, and a layer of the corn tortillas.
  • Top the corn tortillas with ½ the refried beans, ½ of the veggie mixture, and a drizzle of the tomato sauce + salsa.
  • More layering – top with the corn tortillas, the remaining ½ the refried beans, and the remaining ½ the veggie mixture, a drizzle of the tomato sauce + salsa.
  • Then top with the corn tortillas again, and the rest of the tomato sauce + salsa. Top that with the cheese, olives and tomatoes, and it’s ready to go into the oven!
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 min, until the cheese is bubbly and melted.

Video

https://youtu.be/1QxH9Dit96g

Notes

Top tips For Making This Taco Lasagna Recipe
  • If using frozen spinach make sure you thaw the spinach overnight in the refrigerator prior to using OR thaw in the microwave.
  • Squeeze all the water out of the frozen spinach before adding it to the onion, corn, and red pepper mixture.
  • If you have different veggies in your fridge you can use those. Orange, yellow and green peppers are all great substitutions. You can also use seasonal vegetables such as zucchini and summer squash in the summer. Or butternut squash in the fall and winter. 
  • Add your favorite Mexican spices. If you don’t have taco seasoning use chili powder, paprika, cumin, and whatever you like to spice up your Mexican dishes.
  • If you don’t have corn tortillas you could use whole wheat flour tortillas. 
  • You can make the lasagna ahead of time. Assemble and store, covered in the fridge. Bake when you are ready to serve it.
  • For a vegan option, omit the cheese or use a vegan-friendly cheese.
  • For more firm tortillas in your enchilada lasagna, try pan frying them with extra virgin olive oil cooking spray before layering.

    Nutrition

    Calories: 246kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 9.3g | Saturated Fat: 1.7g | Cholesterol: 5.5mg | Sodium: 1089.5mg | Potassium: 560.9mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 8.7g

    Posted In…

    Mexican Recipes ·

    Mexican flavors are perfect for easy one-pot, kid-friendly dishes like my cheesy quinoa and black bean casserole. With smart swaps, you can create a healthy version of a Mexican favorite: “guacamole” with about half the calories and 3x the protein!

    Like Chipotle? You’ll love my ultimate sofritas and burrito bowls! These recipes are so easy to remix to add your own style (or use up some leftovers).

    58 responses to “Layered Taco Casserole With Tortillas (Taco Bake)”

    1. Delicious! I love the idea of combining Italian lasagna with Mexican flavors. I like recipes that hit the spice just right…enough flavor for the grownups but not so much the kids won’t eat it.5 stars

    2. This looks good but I don’t use taco mix, many over the counter mixes contain gluten. I make my own just to be on the safe side.
      Salsa is too watery, can I use home made enchilada sauce instead?4 stars

      • Hi Liz! Trader Joes has a great taco seasoning blend that has nothing else added – or making your own works just fine too! You can totally use enchilada sauce instead of the salsa! I hope you love this recipe when you try it!

    3. This looks delicious! I have made enchilada lasagna in the past, but I like that this one is a vegetatian version! I am saving this to give a try!

    4. Yum! As a kid I didn’t like enchiladas, but I have a much greater appreciation for them now! They are so versatile!

    5. This is such a delicious take on Lasagna! It’s looks really delicious. Thanks for sharing the recipe.5 stars

    6. This is such a great recipe combining Italian and Mexican flavors! The pics are absolutely stunning – would love to try it out.

    7. Hi Anjali! Our family loves this! (Including the 3 and 9 month old kids!). Just wondering if you could update with serving and calories? Thanks!

      • Hi Jamie! I’m so glad to hear it! I just updated the recipe with servings & calories (and other nutritional info). The short answer is – this makes 6 HUGE servings, and each serving has around 270 calories! Hope that helps!

    8. This turned out really well! I made this in two smaller round Pyrex dishes that were the same size as my corn tortillas so that made it even easier! I loved how quickly this came together and how healthy it is. I am looking forward to baking the other half of this for lunches this week.

      • Oh that’s so great! Love the idea of making it in two dishes – that way you can freshly bake the second half of it when you’re ready to eat it! Enjoy your lunches this week! 🙂

    9. Do you thaw and drain the frozen spinach before adding, or do you add it in frozen and allow it to thaw while it cooks in the sauce?

      • Hi Amy! I just added it in frozen and allowed it to thaw while cooking – it worked pretty well and didn’t make the sauce too watery at all (and it saved me time!) Hope that helps!

        • Thank you! I made this tonight and it’s wonderful! I just discovered your blog recently and have already tried a few of your recipes (and have several others planned for the next few weeks).

        • Yay!! Thanks Amy – I’m so happy to hear that 🙂 Keep me posted on the other recipes you end up trying and how they turn out. I’m sure you will love them!

    10. I’m on Weight Watchers and this recipe was amazing. I tweaked it only in the tiniest ways for point values and point values and I love it. This is definitely going in my recipe box. Thank you!!

    11. To give the lasagna a more solid shape (like a traditional Italian lasagna), this is what I suggest. Halve the corn tortillas. Then use the tortillas to make a layer of corn tortillas that is basically solid (like a lasagna noodle). I place the straight edge of the halved tortillas along the outside of the rectangular baking dish, usually 2-3 per side. Then rounded edges are then in the middle, usually leaving some gaps. I place a few more halved tortillas to cover the gaps. There’s some overlap, but I think it makes for a satisfying end product.

      • That is a great tip!! Thanks so much for sharing that Keith – you are right – that will totally give it the feel of a traditional lasagna. I’ll have to try that next time! 🙂

    12. I made this over the weekend, it turned out great! This might be my favorite recipe so far. Though I think next time I make it I will use tomato puree rather than tomato sauce in an effort to cut down on the sodium.

      • Woohoo!! I’m sooo glad to hear that Andy! 🙂 Great suggestion on using tomato puree, I’ll definitely do that next time!

    13. Thank you for the recipe!! I made this tonight and it was a hit! Just wanted to mention that you didn’t list shredded cheese in the ingredients list! 🙂 I already had some but just in case someone else prints it off and goes shopping like I did you might want to add it in!

      • Oh yay!! I’m so glad you liked the recipe – and omg – thanks for letting me know I left cheese off the ingredients list! I just added it back in 🙂 Good catch!

    14. Mmm… Looks good to me. Thanks for the recipe. I like the fact that it has many vegetables in it, and these are very nutritious. I will try this one soon for dinner.

    15. Ooo, what a great idea! I love this! I would throw some sour cream on top, because that’s what I do with mexican food, but other than that this is perfect!! Great creation!

      • Thanks so much!! Great idea about the sour cream – if you want an even healthier option try fat free sour cream, or 0% plain Greek Yogurt!

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