I’ll admit, this is the most excited I’ve been about a recipe in a while. I haven’t had much time to spend experimenting in the kitchen lately, thanks to the craziness of the holidays, but now I’m back on the health train (and thus, back in the kitchen!). Last night I threw this cornbread taco casserole together after seeing a not-even-close-to-vegan version on Facebook, and my family loved it! I’m thinking this recipe will be added to our dinner rotation!
The great thing about most Mexican dishes is that they’re so versatile. You can use any kind of salsa, beans or lentils, hot peppers, etc., and this taco casserole will still be delicious!
Here are some possibilities . . .
Taco Casserole Topping Ideas:
- Black beans, pinto beans, lentils, chickpeas, or a blend!
- Any kind of salsa (I used mild 365 brand, but a little spice would be good too.)
- Black olives
- Pickled jalapeños
- Vegan queso
- Green onions
- Diced red onion
- Fresh cilantro
- Avocado or guacamole
- Vegan sour cream
- Diced fresh tomato
- Finely shredded romaine
- Diced mango
- Crumbled tortilla chips or Fritos
There are two ways to serve this taco casserole. If you’re serving it to a hungry family, I recommend layering all of the toppings on the cornbread while it’s still in the casserole dish, then cutting and serving. If it’s just one or two of you eating it and you want to eat the leftovers all week, I suggest placing a square of cornbread on each plate and spooning or sprinkling the toppings over it. Either way, extra vegan queso is a must in case your cornbread is a little dry.
- 1 package cornbread mix for 9x9 pan (I used Bob's Red Mill GF mix)
- 1 4-oz can diced green chilies or ½ cup corn
- Ingredients for one recipe of my vegan queso, omit Ro-tel
- 2 cans black beans, pinto beans, lentils, etc., partially drained
- 2 tsp. chili powder
- 2 tsp. garlic powder
- ½ tsp. cumin
- Salt to taste
- Squeeze fresh lime juice
- Toppings: salsa, corn kernels, green onion, sliced black olives, fresh cilantro (see post for more ideas!)
- Make cornbread according to package instructions, substituting flax eggs and Earth Balance for eggs and butter/oil (see note below). Stir in the diced green chilies or corn before pouring into the pan.
- While the cornbread is baking, make the vegan queso. Set aside, covered to keep warm.
- In a small saucepan over medium-low heat (or in a glass bowl in the microwave), heat up the beans and stir in the chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, salt, and lime juice. Taste for seasoning.
- Remove cornbread from oven, leaving oven on at 375 degrees F. If serving to 3+ people, top the cornbread with the seasoned beans, then the salsa, corn, olives, and queso. Return casserole to the oven to heat up the toppings, about 5 mins. Finally, sprinkle dish with the green onions and cilantro. Cut and serve, drizzling more queso over the squares while on the plate. If serving to 1-2 people, layer the toppings on the cornbread squares on each plate. This allows you to keep the leftovers longer by keeping the toppings separate.
- Serve with avocado and tomato slices, if desired. Enjoy!
This recipe is very versatile! The blog post contains a list of other possible toppings that would also be delicious, so check that out for more ideas.
I’m so glad I have leftovers to last me through the weekend! This dish is awesome. Really. My 2-year-old even ate a whole square herself!
I’m thinking this would make a fun dinner for the Super Bowl too!
Let me know if you have any other fun topping ideas — I’d love to hear them!