Spicy Garlic and Lime Black Bean Enchiladas

Vegetarian Black Bean Enchiladas

Everyone loves an enchilada or two.

Or three.

Sometimes four.

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Everyone doubly loves a plate of enchiladas with loud, boisterous flavor and straightforward ‘structions.

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These spicy enchiladas are both: simple to make and wild with cumin and cilantro, garlic and tart lime. I kept them vegetarian because any meat might have muted the sweet and spicy tomato sauce or tampered with that lovely bean meets rice texture. Vegetarian Black Bean Enchiladas

I recommend buying a block of pepper jack cheese and grating it by hand. The pre-shredded bags of white and orange and yellow work. But those conveniences have anti-caking agents added so that the shreds don’t melt easily and begin to clump. In theory, this makes sense, only those cheese strands won’t ever melt as silky smooth and creamy as the kind that’s fresh frayed. Vegetarian Black Bean Enchiladas

Make a pan of garlic and lime black bean enchiladas and freeze any leftovers for a lazy Wednesday. Then, while the rest sit warm and gooey, dollop them with sour cream, a few glugs of hot sauce, and a sprinkle of fresh cilantro. Vegetarian Black Bean Enchiladas

Spicy Garlic and Lime Black Bean Enchiladas


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter 
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 15 oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes, drained
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper, more or less depending on spice preference
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
  • 2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 10 small flour tortillas
  • 1 15 oz can red enchilada sauce
  • 1 cup freshly grated pepper jack cheese


  1. Heat olive oil and butter in a large saute pan over medium-high heat until melted, add onion and pepper and saute for 4 minutes, until beginning to soften.
  2. Add garlic and stir for 30 seconds, until fragrant.
  3. Stir in the fire roasted tomatoes, lime, sugar, cumin, cayenne, and cilantro. Let simmer for 10 minutes to allow flavors to blend.
  4. Stir in black beans and rice. Remove from heat.
  5. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spread half of the enchilada sauce across the bottom of a 13×9” greased baking dish.
  6. On a clean work surface, lay your tortillas in a single layer. Divide the vegetable and bean mixture among the tortillas, roll each into a long cylinder and place seam-side-down in the prepared baking dish. Fit each rolled enchilada snugly beside one another.
  7. Pour the remaining enchilada sauce across the rolled enchiladas. Sprinkle with cheese. Tent the pan loosely with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove foil and let the cheese bubble and brown for 5 additional minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool.


55 thoughts on “Spicy Garlic and Lime Black Bean Enchiladas

  1. Manda

    This looks really fantastic! I’m always looking for new enchilada recipes (I’m from Arizona and we love our enchiladas here) and also for new vegetarian options.

  2. Johnny

    The enchiladas look amazing! Thanks for the tip on the bagged cheese, never knew that.
    Have a blessed day everyone!! :)

  3. Claire

    Ooooh, my goodness. Mouth. Watering. Will be making this next week for my family. They’re still slightly suspicious of my vegetarianism, but we all share an enthusiasm for Mexican. This will blow their socks off.

  4. Lisa

    These look delicious! I’m glad you mentioned “small tortillas”. I bought the big ones and tried to make enchiladas. I don’t know how big I thought my pan was. Duh.

  5. SallyBR

    My beloved husband thinks that enchiladas without meat would be like dancing with his sister – but your recipe has a ton of good stuff in it, I bet even he would fall for them!

    Nice photos…

  6. Amy

    I (the token vegetarian in the household) might even be able to get my adorable omnivore’s to eat this one! They look delicious Andy :)

  7. Lu

    I was content with the stuffed shrimp. In heaven with the lasagna cups. On cloud nine with the vanilla cupcakes. But you’ve officially won me over with these enchiladas. As if I needed to stalk your blog any more. Love your haircut by the way. In a totally not creepy stalky way. Promise.

  8. Riss

    I just have to tell you how much I adore your pictures for this post… Especially fourth one of all the tortillas beautifully lined up across your counter–just as if they magically appeared!

  9. Misty

    thanks for the recipe! I made it for dinner… I had green enchilada sauce on hand, along with everything else, so i tried it… yum!

  10. Sarah

    This dish looks absolutely yummy. My kids love enchiladas especially with black beans. I agree with grating your own cheese. It works so much better.

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  12. Irene L.

    About a month ago I decided that my husband and I would be eating ONE vegetarian meal per week. My hubbie agreed, this is nothing short of amazing, considering his rule use to be “no meat = not a real meal”. Spicy Garlic and Lime Black Bean Enchiladas was our veggie meal for the week, and let me tell you Andie, it was DELISH! I am hoping to slowly add more meatless meals to our weekly dinners and its meals like this that convinces my hubby that he can be satisfied without meat. Your the best!

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  14. Kyle

    I just recently came across your blog via Pinterest. I found you weight loss journey to be fascinating, but what I really loved was your honesty about AFTER the weight loss. People don’t often talk about that. ANYWAYS, I made your enchiladas on Friday night and they were a HUGE hit! I will definitely have to cut back on the cayenne next time because I’m a spice wimp, but the recipe has been saved in my special folder.

    Thanks for inspiring me! :)

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  16. Bonnie Norman

    I made this tonight and OMG it was amazing! I cut the cayenne in half and used white rice instead of brown, but otherwise followed it exactly. Thanks for this recipe, I will be adding it to my regular rotation. :D

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  21. Rachel

    I made these tonight! Altered the recipe slightly as my brother hates tomatoes but loves meat so it was half vegetarian (for his wife) and half meat for us carnivores. They LOVED it.

  22. A Mexican

    Ugh I hate seeing recipes that call for enchiladas to be baked. This is not a Mexican dish. Enchiladas should be made one tortilla at a time being fried on the stove top. And they should be corn not flower tortillas. And you should probably make Mexican rice instead of brown rice for a more authentic flavor.

  23. Wen Kauffman

    I love these!!! I have made them on several occasions and everyone loves them. I use a a large tsp of pureed chipotle, as well as the cayenne. I strive to be vegan so I top the enchiladas with the layer of enchilada sauce or salsa, and instead of cheese I make the Post Punk Kitchen cashew queso and pour that on top. So good!

  24. Mark

    My wife and I gave up meat for lent, so I’ve been looking for vegetarian bean recipes that she and I would both like, being meat-at-every-meal type people. I just wanted to let you know that we loved this recipe and I’m looming forward to eating leftovers for lunch today. Disclaimer: I didn’t have enough cumin, so I substituted 1 tablespoon of chili powder with 1 tablespoon of cumin. Was still delicious!
    By the way Mr./Ms. “A Mexican”, neither the words “authentic” nor ” mexican” appears anywhere in the description.


  25. Ana

    I am not one to get excited over vegetarian dishes. However, I have to say that this one was excellent. I know I will make it again for sure.


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