When I was abstaining from dairy due to Ian’s intolerance, Josie was being terribly mean and posting a million cheesy recipes I wanted to try, including this one, which has been at the forefront of my mind ever since. As soon as things were evidently going well with re-introducing dairy, I made this casserole. Like, 5 minutes later, basically.
You probably don’t know this about me, but I like Mexican food. ;-) I love that this has all the flavors of enchiladas in a form that is a bit easier to throw together and is much healthier, too. Although there are a few components to the dish, most of them are pretty hands-off and can be done simultaneously (I actually combined the sautéing of the onions/jalapeno with the cooking of the quinoa, too). I love meals like that on Sundays, because the hands-off/cook time allows me to play with my kids, make Monday’s dinner, or do any one of the other bajillion things that need to be done. (On this particular day, it was necessary to play the longest game of Uno known to man between 23 loads of laundry.)
This dish is protein-packed, from the chicken to the beans to the quinoa. Ever since making this baked chicken & quinoa parmesan, I’ve been all about subbing quinoa in dishes where you might typically see rice or pasta. Might as well get a little extra nutrition where you can get it, right? If you’ve somehow managed to avoid quinoa up until this point, try it in an application like this. Believe me, you will not be disappointed.
Chicken Enchilada Quinoa Bake
Adapted from Pink Parsley
1 medium onion, diced
2 tsp. canola oil
1 jalapeño, minced
1 cup quinoa, rinsed well
2 cups water*
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup corn kernels
1 (15 oz. can) fire-roasted diced tomatoes
2 cups cooked and shredded chicken
1 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. chili powder
1 cup enchilada sauce (recipe follows)
2/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese, divided
2/3 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided
sliced scallions, diced avocado, cilantro, sour cream, or any other desired garnishes
Makes about 2.5 cups, from America’s Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook
1 tsp. canola oil
1 medium onion, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 Tbsp. chili powder
2 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. sugar
1 (15 oz. can) tomato sauce
1/2 cup water or broth
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic, chili powder, cumin, and sugar; cook, stirring until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the tomato sauce and water or broth, bringing to a simmer. Cook until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
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