Black Bean & Tortilla Pie (masquerading as a casserole)

Tortilla and Black Bean Pie…hmmmm, that sounded like an interesting recipe to try. How cool to just layer the tortillas in a springform pan with the filling and cheese in between. Sounded fun. Reviews sounded yummy. Pictures looked appetizing. And we love Mexican food. So that was tonight’s new experiment.

I just love it when the experiments turn into keepers and new favorites. This one ranks up there, for sure. It’s quick, easy, uses ingredients we often have on hand, and best of all, tastes so delicious I filled my plate up for seconds and got to that overly-stuffed status, you know, the one that makes you feel guilty for overeating yet satisfied because  it tastes so good in the belly?

I had to make a few adjustments, though, which didn’t seem to affect the overall result. First of all, I wanted to use the small corn tortillas rather than the large flour tortillas, so there went the cool look of a layered round pie since the tortillas were too small for the springform pan. No worries, I just layered in a casserole dish instead.

Second, I didn’t have cilantro. I’ll have to wait until next time (and there will definitely be a next time) to see if that impacts the flavor much.

Third, I added a can of diced green chiles–my favorite go-to for adding a kick-in-the-pants flavor to Mexican dishes and various soups.

Fourth, I got preoccupied working on this blog (still new and figuring it out), so when the oven timer went off–right next to me, mind you, as I was working at the kitchen counter trying to understand how to navigate this blog site–I let the casserole bake 5 minutes longer. Well, sometimes when we err–or rather, don’t pay attention to baking times and buzzer signals–it actually results in pleasant surprises, for the extra baking time created a crunchy texture to the tortilla.

I was sorely tempted to add a can of diced tomatoes as this was cooking in the pan. It just didn’t feel complete without tomatoes. So glad I decided to follow the recipe basics because it was mouth-wateringly delish.

Although I didn’t add salsa on the final product, I did liberally spoon on sour cream–not to the point of drowning the casserole, though : )  Oh my, the creaminess of that sour cream so enhanced the crunchiness of the overbaked tortilla–heavenly!! Really, I think that is what drove me to seconds.

If we had avocados or guacamole on hand, I think that would have added another dimension of heavenly.

I highly recommend trying this recipe. One of the better recipes I’ve made, for sure!

And it made great leftovers for lunch the next day…yum!

Black Bean & Tortilla Casserole

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  • 4 (10-inch) flour tortillas for the “pie” version (I used ten 6-inch corn tortillas, layered in a 9X13 casserole dish)
  • 1 tbsp. canola oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 jalapeño chile, seeded and diced (here is a use for the jalapenos left over from the juice used for the burrito recipe posted in the previous entry)
  • 2-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (4-oz) can diced chiles
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 (15-oz) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can corn
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 2-4 scallions, thinly sliced, plus more for garnish
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, coarsely chopped, plus more for garnish
  • 8-16 oz. Mexican queso fresco cheese, shredded (or whatever type of cheese you have on hand)
  • salsa, sour cream, and/or avocados, for serving


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. If using springform pan to make tortilla pie version, use bottom of pan as guide to trim edges of tortilla so they fit into pan. If using 9X13 casserole dish, layer tortillas (I actually broke mine in half so I wouldn’t have too much overlapping).
  3. Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat. Saute onion and garlic until soft, 5-10 minutes. Add jalapeño, diced chiles, cumin, chile powder, salt, and pepper; cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  4. Add beans and broth to skillet; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until most of liquid has evaporated, 8-10 minutes.
  5. Mix in corn, scallions, and cilantro; remove from heat.
  6. Layer: tortillas, bean mixture, cheese. Repeat as needed (probably 3 layers for pie version; 2 for casserole version). Finish with beans and cheese on top.
  7. Bake until cheese is melted and the mixture is heated through, about 20-25 minutes (longer if you want crunchy texture).
  8. Remove from oven. Garnish with remaining scallions, cilantro, and serve with your choice of salsa, sour cream, and/or avocado.

SOURCE: adapted from Pink Parsley Catering, who adapted from Annie’s Eats, who originally adapted from Liz’s Cooking Blog

5 thoughts on “Black Bean & Tortilla Pie (masquerading as a casserole)

  1. Maria, it looks yummy! Can’t wait to see what’s to come. Your blog looks great so far. Now post some of your fabulous desserts!

  2. Oh, if you could post a recipe every night so I know what to cook for dinner. This pie masquerading as a casserole looks delicious. Thank you, Maria.

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