Every Tuesday, we have enchiladas. It's one of the highlights of the week because the meal is so delicious—but it's also such a relief to know what's for dinner without even thinking about it.
These enchiladas are a perfect family dinner, but here's why they are great for toddlers in particular:
- The filling is partially pureed, which means that it's an easy texture for toddlers of any age, whether they prefer to use utensils or to eat with their hands. In the recipe, I have you puree half of the beans with the veggies, and stir in the rest because I find that my daughter prefers to be able to see some beans so she knows what she's eating. You can adjust that for your toddler if they don't have a strong preference.
- There is a lot of flavor packed into these enchiladas, but they aren't overly spicy or hot.
- The filling is very versatile (and very forgiving) so you can customize them for the preferences of your family.
- The filling ingredients are all in the same color family, which means that there aren't bursts of green or brown to distract the kiddos.
- The bulk of the dish is made up of beans, whole grains, and vegetables, not cheese like you'd find if you ordered enchiladas at a restaurant. Which means that these are not only healthier, but they have a lot better flavor. (I mean I know cheese is delicious, but it's nice to taste something else in a meal too, right?)
We change up the type of beans—chickpeas, white beans, black beans, or pinto are in regular rotation—and the vegetables depending on what we have on hand. The sweet potato is almost always there though because it adds a nice undertone of sweetness that tastes particularly great alongside salsa. The root vegetable is also a great source of Vitamin A, which is a nice bonus!
You can also use quinoa, millet, or even couscous in place of the brown rice, so feel very free to experiment. And if you want to make this come together even faster, simply serve the ingredients as rice bowls and top with salsa. Done and done!
Veggie-Packed Enchiladas with White Beans
Before you start, roll a tortilla and make sure it will fit with your baking dish. I call for small ones, but they can vary a lot depending on whether you use flour or corn.
- 1 cup sweet potato, diced
- 1/2 cup onion, diced
- 1/2 cup carrot, diced
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 cup brown rice, cooked according to package directions
- 1 cup white beans, divided
- 1/2 cup mild salsa
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 8-ounce package enchilada sauce (we like green chile kind from Frontera)
- 8 small flour tortillas or 8 corn tortillas at room temperature*
- 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Place the sweet potato, onion, and carrot onto a rimmed baking sheet. Toss with olive oil and roast for 20-25 minutes or until tender. Lower the temperature to 350.
- Place the roasted vegetables into the bowl of a food processor. Add the brown rice, 1/2 cup of the beans, the salsa, and the salt. Roughly puree. Remove the blade and stir in the remaining beans.
- Pour a small amount of enchilada sauce to thinly coat the bottom of an 9x13-inch (or 3 quart) baking dish. Spoon about 1/3 cup filling into each tortilla, fold over and place seam down in the prepared baking dish. Continue until you run out of the filling, packing the rolled tortillas next to each other tightly. Top with the remaining enchilada sauce and the cheese and bake for 15-18 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the enchiladas are warmed through. Serve with sour cream or additional salsa, if desired.
*You may need to warm your tortillas very briefly to make them pliable enough, especially if you are using corn. Wrap them in foil and bake in a 350 degree F oven for 8-10 minutes.