Roasted Sweet Potato, Kale and Black Bean Enchiladas

February 3, 2015 | | | |

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sweet potato and black bean enchiladasLast week, my neck went out. I was attempting to pull a small child’s fairy costume over my head (more on that at a later date) when I heard a little pop, and that was it. I knew I was in for a world of hurt.

Don’t worry, friends, I usually throw my neck out twice a year, and I tend to bounce back pretty quickly. Plus, this is the second time I’ve done it this month (the first was due to some overly aggressive hair whipping), which means I will most likely be neck injury-free for the remainder of 2015. Hallelujah.

Despite the pain and disruption to my daily habits—it is impossible to watch Parks and Rec in the bath when one cannot turn her head—there were actually several silver linings to this recent injury. First, having a stiff neck makes everything hilariously dramatic. (My favorite activity is slowly swiveling in my desk chair when people enter the apartment.) Second, my roommate felt compelled to give me a 10 second massage, which is 8 seconds longer than his standard massage. And finally, the discomfort kept me up at night.

sweet potato and black bean enchiladasThe insomnia element was clutch, as it led to the delightful Roasted Sweet Potato, Kale and Black Bean Enchiladas you now see on your screen. In between adjusting the pillows under my neck and periodically rolling Logan to silence the death snores, I built these enchiladas in my head, flavor by flavor, from the pinch of cinnamon on the roasted sweet potatoes to the subtle spice of the radishes sprinkled on top. When the final product materialized in my mind’s eye, I was quite pleased and eventually fell asleep counting the cilantro leaves on my pretend casserole.

I couldn’t have been more excited when these enchiladas became a reality yesterday, and I’m thrilled to report that they were every bit as mind-blowing as I imagined…

sweet potato and black bean enchiladasSweet and savory with a subtle tang and kick of heat, the flavor profile for these babies is perfection. Just to give you the full run-down: Tender roasted sweet potatoes, earthy kale, and hearty black beans are mixed with fresh cilantro, creamy goat cheese and salsa verde, wrapped in soft tortillas, smothered in more salsa verde and Monterey Jack, and then baked to golden, bubbling perfection. There’s depth, and texture, and cheesy deliciousness, and DEAR GOD the smell!

sweet potato and black bean enchiladasI’m particularly pumped to inform you that despite the somewhat lengthy ingredient list, this sexy meal is 100% idiot-proof. I’m talking 30 minutes of hands-on time, and the only challenge is not eating the filling before you roll the enchiladas. (Don’t do that.) I opted for store-bought salsa verde to save significant time/effort, but if you’d like to go the scratch route (you go Glen Coco!), Rick’s recipe is a winner.

Oh, and you can easily prep the enchiladas in advance and then pop them in the fridge/freezer to be baked whenever. They’re excellent weeknight fare, especially if you’re on the Meatless Monday bandwagon, yet they’re still impressive enough for casual entertaining. Ladies, I’m pretty sure these would slay at your next Sex and The City Night. Just throwing that out there.

sweet potato and black bean enchiladasAs always, feel free to modify these enchiladas to suit your tastes and the ingredients you have on hand. Swap spinach for kale, pinto for black beans, or cheddar for Jack. If goat cheese isn’t your thing, try sour cream or Greek yogurt for a similar tang, or simply ditch it altogether. I’m really into the vegetarian nature of these nutrition-packed flavor bombs, but you can obviously get some meat involved if you must. I’m thinking chicken breast, chicken sausage, or some lean ground turkey are your best bets to keep things light/tight.

One potential recipe hiccup I want to quickly head off at the pass. I used whole grain tortillas because that’s what I had, and I actually dig a chewier/doughier enchilada. If you are gluten-free or simply don’t like flour tortillas, you should definitely sub corn tortillas, but please make sure to warm them for about 15 seconds in the microwave or on the stove before filling them. If you attempt to roll corn tortillas without warming them first, they WILL break, and you will be angry.

sweet potato and black bean enchiladasTo all the Dude Dieters out there, these bad boys are right up your alley, so please add them to the rotation stat. I served them to Logan last night, and not only did he not mention the lack of meat, he thanked me profusely and insisted on a congratulatory handshake. He has also called me “his little enchilada” three times in the past twelve hours. It’s not my favorite nickname, but it’s clearly a testament to the epic nature of this recipe, and I much prefer it to “my little chicken fingie.”

Happy Tuesday, peeps.

Roasted Sweet Potato, Kale and Black Bean Enchiladas: (Serves 4)

sweet potato and black bean enchiladasIngredients:
2 cups cubed sweet potatoes
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ Spanish onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 bunch lacinato kale, stems removed and finely chopped
1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
2-2½ cups salsa verde (depending on the size of your tortillas/baking dish)
8 whole grain tortillas OR corn tortillas (It’s your call, peeps.)
1¼ cups freshly grated Monterey Jack cheese
For garnish: (optional)
Fresh cilantro
Thinly sliced radishes
Thinly sliced jalapeño
Hot sauce

Preparing your Roasted Sweet Potato, Kale and Black Bean Enchiladas:

-Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment.

-Place the cubed sweet potatoes on the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with 2 teaspoons olive oil, and sprinkle with cinnamon and a pinch of salt. Toss to coat.

-Roast the sweet potatoes for 25 minutes, turning once halfway through the cooking time, until tender and lightly browned.

vegetarian-enchiladas-with-sweet-potato-black-bean-kale-step-3-Meanwhile, heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. When hot, add the onion and garlic. Cook for 3 minutes until the onions are translucent and the garlic is fragrant. Add the cumin and paprika and cook for one more minute until the spices are nice and toasty. Transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl and briefly set aside.

vegetarian-enchiladas-with-sweet-potato-black-bean-kale-step-2-In the same saucepan, heat the remaining tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. When hot, add the chopped kale and a pinch of salt and cook for 4-5 minutes until wilted and tender. Transfer to the bowl with the onions.

vegetarian-enchiladas-with-sweet-potato-black-bean-kale-step-4-Add the roasted sweet potatoes, black beans, goat cheese, cilantro and ½ cup salsa verde to the onions and kale. Stir to combine.

vegetarian-enchiladas-with-sweet-potato-black-bean-kale-step-5-Pour ½ cup salsa verde into a medium baking dish (make sure it’s big enough to hold 8 enchiladas). Spread it around so that the bottom of the dish is completely coated.

vegetarian-enchiladas-with-sweet-potato-black-bean-kale-step-6-Place about 1/3 cup filling in the center of each tortilla and roll up like a cigar. (If using corn tortillas, warm them for 15 seconds in the microwave to make them more pliable. If you skip this step, they WILL rip.) Place each enchilada side-by-side in the prepared baking dish, seam-side down.

vegetarian-enchiladas-with-sweet-potato-black-bean-kale-step-7-Pour the remaining salsa verde over the enchiladas and add the cheese in an even layer.

vegetarian-enchiladas-with-sweet-potato-black-bean-kale-step-8-Cover the baking dish with foil and bake for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 10-15 minutes until the cheese is bubbling

vegetarian-enchiladas-with-sweet-potato-black-bean-kale-step-9-Garnish enchiladas with extra cilantro, radishes, and hot sauce (or toppings of your choice) and serve warm.

sweet potato and black bean enchiladasCue festive mariachi music. (These bad boys deserve their own soundtrack.)

sweet potato and black bean enchiladas

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  1. Alison on July 8, 2020 at 5:44 am

    If you freeze this recipe, how do you recommend changing the cook time? (Or should I thaw it before putting it in the oven?)

    • Serena Wolf on July 8, 2020 at 5:45 am

      I’d add another 10 to 15 minutes to the foil-covered cook time, and you should be good to go!

  2. luneyriley on July 8, 2020 at 6:06 am

    As usual, NBC, another “healthy” recipe with no nutrition info at all, to back up the claim.

  3. Amber Salcedo on May 3, 2016 at 12:13 pm

    I just stumbled across this recipe and I made it last night. It was phenomenal! I ended up just layering everything instead of rolling them up like enchiladas because the tortillas kept ripping on me. I don’t think it had an effect on the overall taste though. My husband also loved them and said the spices were perfect. Thanks for a great recipe!

  4. nora on February 11, 2015 at 12:08 pm

    made these for a vegetarian girlfriend and she LOVED them/was very impressed. subbed spinach for kale because i had it in the fridge, but will definitely try kale next time! even the carnivore boyfriend crushed some leftovers. thanks!

  5. Kamille on February 10, 2015 at 11:42 pm

    Sorry if this is a simple question, but if I add in chicken breast, how much should I use and when which step would I add it into?

    • Serena_Wolf on February 11, 2015 at 8:28 am

      Excellent question! I’d use 1 cup cooked and shredded chicken breast. Add it to the bowl with the roasted sweet potatoes, kale, etc. and mix it all together. I’d also add another 1/2 cup salsa verde to keep things moist.

  6. Meredith Eng on February 9, 2015 at 12:45 pm

    I made these and they were so delicious! The only change I would suggest is to use a little more salsa verde–mine ended up just drying in the pan, but that’s an easy change for next time.

    • Serena_Wolf on February 9, 2015 at 2:11 pm

      Glad to hear these were still a success despite drying up in the pan! I’ll make a note in the recipe that you may need a little more salsa verde depending on pan/tortilla size. Thank you!!

      • Meredith Eng on August 3, 2015 at 2:00 pm

        I made these again and they were so much better this time (and last time they were really good)! I used Herdez salsa verde (to be honest last time I tried using a Rick Bayless Frontera enchilada sauce because there wasn’t any salsa verde at the store and that didn’t work that well, partially because the amount was small and partially because that’s not what I was supposed to be using) and also used small corn tortillas. I highly recommend using corn tortillas (even if you are not generally a corn tortilla person, which I am not) because I think the texture is so much better. I used whole wheat tortilla things last time and they were a little chewy–but these ones were so phenomenal!

  7. Dixya Bhattarai RD on February 3, 2015 at 11:25 pm

    sorry about your neck situation, hope you are feeling better. i love easy, weeknight friendly meals and this looks like I can certainly do that.

    • Serena_Wolf on February 4, 2015 at 9:54 am

      Thank you, Dixya! Not to worry, I’m fully recovered and very excited about making these enchiladas on the reg. xox

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