A healthier and vegetarian version of traditional Mexican chilaquiles,Vegetarian Black Bean and Green Chile Chilaquiles are loaded with south-of-the-border flavor and promise to please any time of day! Top with an egg (any style), and garnish with cilantro, avocado, and cotija to "kick it up a notch!"
👩🏻🍳 Tamara Talks - Recipe Inspiration
Chilaquiles (pronounced chee-lah-kee-lays) are a traditional breakfast dish served throughout Mexico. At its most basic, tortilla chips are simmered in salsa or mole. Its a great way to use up stale tortillas, or even store-bought chips.
While chilaquiles are served for breakfast or brunch in many Mexican homes, you will find them on the menus of many hotels, restaurants, and even street vendors throughout Mexico. This Mexican comfort dish is a common "hangover cure" for those who over-indulged the night before.
🍳 Regional Variations
Chilaquiles recipes are myriad, somewhat regional, and include (but are not limited to!):
- Mexico City - tortillas are simmered in a tangy tomatillo or spicy tomato sauce
- Central Mexico - crispy chips are covered with sauce just prior to serving to keep them crisp
- Sinaloa - chilaquiles may feature a creamy white sauce rather than a red or green sauce
- Guadalajara - chilaquiles are often simmered in a cazuela until it is the consistency of polenta
Though eggs are not traditionally served with chilaquiles, you will find them served with eggs in Mexico. Given my love affair with eggs, especially for breakfast and brunch, I have included an egg (any style) with mine, but they're certainly optional. If you're following a vegan diet, omit the eggs and the crumbled cotija.
My first experience making chilaquiles was about 30 years ago when I only had 3 of my 4 boys. I loved the Moosewood Cookbooks, and made a vegetarian version of chilaquiles for the boys. They weren't really gung-ho about my vegetarian meals (and Moosewood meals in general), but they did like my chilaquiles. They've made an appearance on Saturday mornings ever since.
🌶️ What kind of green chile can I use?
- #1 choice Hatch green chile! After they're roasted, peel, seed, and chop. They range from mild to extremely hot.
- roasted poblano chiles - Char the skins, peel, and seed before chopping. They range from mild to medium heat.
- roasted Anaheim chiles - Anaheim chiles are related to Hatch chiles. Both were developed in New Mexico. However, they have little to no heat.
- fresh minced jalapeños - You can mince them fresh, and sauté with the onions and garlic.
📋 Ingredients You'll Need
Here is a quick look at the ingredients in the recipe – it’s handy to use at the grocery store or as a summary of what you need. Skip to the recipe for quantities.
- corn tortillas - This is a great way to use stale corn tortillas!
- black beans - You will start with cooked black beans. They can be rinsed and drained canned beans, or cooked from dried.
- green chile - This is one of my favorite ways to use Hatch green chile! See previous section for substitutions.
- ground cumin
- broth - Choose a good vegetable broth to keep it vegetarian.
- garnishes - I love a runny basted egg, sliced avocado, crumbled cotija, scallion, and cilantro.
Prepare the tortillas - I start with stale tortilla strips sprayed with cooking spray then baked in a 375° oven until brown and crispy.
Sauté the aromatics - While the tortilla strips bake, add the oil, onions, and garlic to a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Cook until onion is soft.
Add black beans and Hatch green chile to pan. Sauté an additional minute or two.
Finish the chilaquiles - Stir in the baked tortilla strips, and add broth a little at a time. Press strips into the liquid, and continue to add until tortillas are all moist (not soggy).
To serve - When the chilaquiles are done, pile them into ovenproof serving dishes (I love my individual cast iron) and place in a warm oven until ready to serve. While eggs are not typical or required, we love to top our chilaquiles with a runny egg! Cook your favorite style eggs, and top the chilaquiles with an egg and one or more of your favorite garnishes - avocado, cilantro, crumbled cotija, pickled or fresh jalapeños, chopped scallions, etc.
When you've had a package of corn tortillas in the fridge too long, make chilaquiles! This is an awesome way to use stale tortillas.
Baked tortilla strips reduce fats and calories. Chilaquiles are often made with tortilla chips, and they aren't the healthiest option.
If you make the recipe through adding liquid to the black bean, green chile, tortilla mixture? Yes. Store the chilaquiles in the refrigerator, cook a fresh egg, and garnish as desired.
Savory breakfast dishes are the standard at Andersen casa. If you're a fan, check out these savory vegetarian breakfast/brunch dishes - Green chile savory oatmeal, green chile polenta with baked eggs, Mediterranean chick pea and rice frittatas, savory pancakes, breakfast quinoa, and veggie filled Mexican crêpes.
I hope you'll give this healthy and flavorful dish a try... It's a favorite at Andersen casa!