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black beans


Quick Black Bean and Beef Enchiladas

February 26, 2014

Black Bean and Beef Enchiladas | E&C
I mentioned earlier this week that I made enchiladas for dinner. It’s a regular occurrence in our house, since a big pan of enchiladas makes a great dinner and plenty of yummy leftovers for weekday lunches. We take our lunches to work almost every single day. It is, in my opinion, one of the best ways to save money. 

Lately, making homemade flour tortillas is one of my favorite new kitchen skills. I had no idea it was SO easy to make homemade tortillas, did you? Maybe I’m late to the game, but when I saw a recipe for homemade tortillas on Pinterest, I just had to give them a try. If you’re looking for a great recipe, I highly suggest Table for Two Blog’s recipe.

You could, of course, be an overachiever and make homemade enchilada sauce, too, but for weeknight dinners I usually just stick to enchilada sauce from a can. I kept things super simple in the filling, using ground beef, spices, diced green chiles, black beans and cheese. However, I wouldn’t hesitate to toss in whatever veggies you have on hand, like green peppers or diced cooked sweet potatoes. Get as crazy as you want!

Black Bean and Beef Enchiladas 2 | E&C

Quick Black Bean and Beef Enchiladas
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 to 6
I love making a pan of enchiladas one night, then having lots of leftovers on hand for lunches throughout the week. When making enchiladas for a family like ours where there is one vegetarian and one meat eater, I like to separate out a small portion of black beans, green chiles and enchilada sauce to use as filling for a couple vegetarian enchiladas, then stuff the remaining with the beef, bean and green chile mixture.
  • 6 large flour tortillas (I strongly recommend you try making them at home. I'll never buy them again!)
  • ½ lb ground beef
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon coriander
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 can (4 oz) diced green chiles
  • 1 cup black beans
  • 1 can (14- to 15-ounces) enchilada sauce
  • 1½ cups shredded cheese
  1. Heat oven to 375°F. Spray 13x9-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In medium skillet, brown ground beef. Drain. Add in the cumin, coriander, salt and cayenne, along with the green chiles, black beans and ¾ of the enchilada sauce and stir until well combined.
  3. Spoon heaping ⅓ cupfuls of the meat mixture into the center of each tortilla. Roll tortillas up and place in the prepared pan. Drizzle remaining enchilada sauce on top of rolled enchiladas and sprinkle with cheese. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly and filling is hot. Serve immediately.

Black Bean Brownies

January 6, 2012

Three months ago I took a trip to the Wednesday Farmer’s Market in downtown Des Moines over our lunch hour. The day was beautiful and I was impressed with the selection of tasty lunch items the small farmer’s market had to offer. But what really drew me in was a small whole foods stand selling, among other things, black bean brownies. As you can probably imagine, I couldn’t resist trying a sample and hearing about what this black bean brownie thing was all about.

Turns out, the nutrition stats on the brownie were really impressive and I couldn’t even tell there were black beans in the brownie. It was just incredibly moist and gooey. Totally my kind of brownie.

Although it took me a while to get in my kitchen and replicate the black bean brownie in my own kitchen, I can report back to you that they are as easy and tasty as ever. Made with whole wheat flour, just a bit of sugar and black beans for protein, these are brownies that you can feel good about eating! In fact, each brownie contains just around 120 calories and 3 grams of protein. If you want to make them even healthier, I think you could probably cut back on the sugar even more, and perhaps sub some apple sauce for some of the oil.

Oh, and as a trial, when Joey got home I offered him a brownie and asked what he thought. He couldn’t even tell there was anything healthy about these brownies. When I asked him what he thought the secret ingredient was, he said whole wheat flour. And although that’s true, it wasn’t exactly the answer I was looking for. He couldn’t even tell there were black beans involved. I would call that a success!

Black Bean Brownies
Adapted from

*3/4 cup black beans, rinsed and drained (canned is fine)
*1/2 cup light flavored olive oil or canola oil
*2 eggs or 1/2 cup Egg Beaters liquid egg replacement
*1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
*1/2 cup granulated sugar (could probably reduce to 1/3 cup if desired)
*1 tsp. instant coffee granules
*1 tsp. vanilla extract
*1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
*1/3 cup whole wheat flour
*1/2 tsp. baking powder
*1/4 tsp. salt
*Additional chocolate chips (optional)

*Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil. Set aside.
*In the bowl of a food processor or blender, combine the black beans, olive oil, eggs, cocoa powder and sugar. Blend until well combined and mixture is smooth, about 1 minute. Add in the coffee, vanilla, melted chocolate, flour, baking powder and salt. Blend until smooth, about 30 seconds.
*Pour batter into prepared baking dish and spread to distribute evenly. Top with additional chocolate chips, if desired. Bake in the middle rack of the preheated oven for 20 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to cool. Makes 16 brownies

Happy Baking!

Black Bean and Corn Salsa

March 25, 2010

 It’s a beautiful day here in Iowa. The kind of day that makes you forget winter ever existed and makes you fall in love with this crazy state all over again. Goodbye boots, heavy coats, scarves, and gloves. Hello sundresses, sandals, sunglasses and the like. Well, maybe I’m getting a bit ahead of myself since it’s only going to be sunny and 51* today – hardly flip flop and swim suit weather. But there’s no denying this weather has got me in a summer state of mind.

When it comes to summer foods, there’s something so simple and refreshing about chips and salsa. This less than traditional salsa is one of my favorites for its ease, versatility, and plain old deliciousness. Sure, it’s great for dipping chips into, but is also a heartier version than the tomato-based varieties, making it perfect for serving in fajitas, on tacos, or as another nacho topping. If you want a bit more heat, up the amount of chili powder, toss in a chopped jalapeño or a few dashes of hot sauce. This salsa saves well in the fridge for up to a week. However, add the avocado just before serving to avoid browning or discoloration.

 Black Bean and Corn Salsa
*1 (15-oz.) can black beans
*1 (15-oz.) can whole kernel corn
*1-2 avocados
*1/4 cup chopped cilantro
*Juice of 1 lime
*2 Tbsp. olive oil
*1/4 tsp. chili powder
*Salt and black pepper

*Wash and drain the black beans and corn in a strainer/colander. Place the strained beans and corn in a serving bowl.
*Peel and chop the avocado(s) and add to the corn mixture. Add in the cilantro, lime juice, olive oil, and chili powder. Toss to coat. Salt and pepper to taste.

Happy Cooking!


Spiced Black Bean and Turkey Soup

January 8, 2010

Winter is here in, in a BIG way, and based on the weather forecast for the rest of the country, chances are temperatures have been lingering well below average no mater where you are. It’s so terribly cold here that even making a trip to the grocery store (which for me is less than a half a mile) takes an extra kick in the pants, usually from my stomach growling ‘feed me!’

Not all too long ago, I used to be intimidated by the idea of making soup. Something about soup, in all its deliciousness, seemed intimidating. But truth be told, soup is one of the easiest meals to make. Of course I’m going to give you the recipe of this Spiced Black Bean and Turkey Soup, but don’t get frustrated thinking you need all the ingredients listed; make do with ingredients in your pantry.

This soup recipe makes enough for 4-6 people. Since there’s no way I will be able to eat that much soup before it goes bad, I’m freezing half in case friends drop by and I need a homemade meal quick. Anyone else out there have a great soup recipe or family favorite they go to when the temperatures drop?


*1 (32 oz.) container reduced-sodium chicken broth
*1 can white beans or butter beans
*1 cup milk
*1/2 tsp. ground marjoram or oregano
*1 tsp. salt
*1/2 tsp. cracked black pepper
*1/2 tsp. paprika
*1/2 tsp. rubbed sage
*1/2 tsp. dried thyme
*1 tsp. dried parsley
*1 lb. ground turkey or ground chicken, browned
*1 can black beans
*1/2 cup sliced black olives
Extra parsley and paprika for garnishing (optional)


*In a blender, combine half of the broth and the white beans. Blend until smooth. In large pot, combine broth/bean mixture, remaining broth, milk, and spices. Whisk until well-combined.
*Heat mixture over medium-high heat until hot but not boiling. Add in ground turkey, black beans, and olives.
*Garnish with additional parsley and paprika, if desired.



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