Black Bean Enchiladas with Cashew Crema [v. gf.]

When I’m not eating chocolate chip cookies or chocolate microwave brownies for dinner, you can usually find me devouring a falafel sandwich from my latest favorite restaurant, Clover, or eating whatever food I happened to whip up the weekend before. When it comes to cooking in graduate school, I tend to lean on the side of easy and unpretentious recipes. These enchiladas, though they require a bit more work than the average stir fry, fall in this category.

These enchiladas are the perfect busy student food for a few reasons:

  1. They’re healthy, all plant-based, and packed with protein and good-for-you nutrients. Since the other half of my diet is chocolate chip cookies (only half kidding here), it’s important that what food I do make will power me through the day without putting me in a food coma.
  2. These enchiladas are super easy to make– if you can sauté black beans and roll a tortilla, you can make these enchiladas. The final outcome looks impressive but the actual recipe is really easy.
  3. They’re easy to store. There’s no way I’m not gonna finish this batch of enchiladas before they go bad (about a week), but if I were to start to worry, I could just throw them in the freezer and microwave them for a quick meal a week–or month–later. As much as I love my tabbouleh couscous salad, this isn’t something I could do with it.
  4. And most importantly, they taste amazing. The combination of chewy corn tortillas and savory beans with a bit of sweetness from the corn and sweet potatoes is a perfect combination in my book. Plus, lime cashew crema add the perfect amount of creaminess to the enchiladas and balances out any spiciness in the enchilada sauce. Paired with a glass of fruit juice (I don’t know- it just works) and a side salad, this is my definition of a perfect meal.

On a completely different tangent, earlier this morning I went to my very first post on Chomps of Life. I was 15 years old! A mere baby! I’m 22 years now, which means Chomps of Life has been around for almost 7 years! Granted, I only post every few months (wanting to change that!), but that’s nearly a third of my life! Super crazy.

Anyhow, without further ado, here’s the recipe for my black bean quinoa sweet potato enchiladas with lime cashew crema.

Black Bean Enchiladas with Cashew Crema

Black Bean Enchiladas

Cashew Crema

Cashew Crema

  1. Cover the cashew in room temperature water and set aside for at least 2 hours. Or, cover with hot water for at least 1 hour.
  2. In a high power blender, blend the soaked cashews (drained) with the water, lime juice, nutritional yeast, cilantro, and salt to taste. Once smooth, refrigerate the crema for later.

Black Bean Enchiladas

  1. Peel and cut the sweet potato into cubes. Place in a microwave-safe bowl, cover with 1 inch of water, and microwave for 4-8 minutes, or until tender, but not soft. Alternatively, toss in 1 tbs oil and bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes, flipping the cube halfway.
  2. Heat up the oil in a large saucepan, and add the onions, sautéing until translucent.
  3. Add the sweet potato, and continue cooking over medium high heat until the edges of the sweet potato begin to brown and caramelize.
  4. Add the can of black beans (including the liquid from the can), spices, the quinoa, and 1/2 cup of water.
  5. Bring the mixture to a simmer at medium low heat, and cook uncovered for 15 minutes, or until the quinoa is tender. The mixture should be thick and the beans very tender (beginning to fall apart).
  6. Fold in the cilantro, corn, and salt to taste. If the filling tastes too sweet (will depend on the sweetness of the corn and sweet potatoes), add 2 tbs salsa or enchilada sauce.
  7. Fill each of the corn tortillas with 1/12 of the black bean filling, rolling up the filled enchiladas and placing them in a greased baking dish.
  8. Pour 1 to 2 cups of enchilada sauce over enchiladas, and drizzle 1/4 cup of the cashew crema on top. Smooth with a spoon.
  9. Bake the enchiladas at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
  10. Top with extra enchilada sauce (warm) and cold cashew crema. Enjoy!

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