dinner gluten-free

Quinoa and Kale Taco Casserole

January 18, 2015

Quinoa and Kale Taco Casserole recipe for an easy and veggie-packed twist on a Mexican favourite. Dinner just got so much easier!

I grew up on casseroles but I have to be honest… I haven’t made many in the past few years! I don’t know if it was the mild California weather that never had me craving comfort food or what but I am back in business and allllll about the casserole… or should we say hot dish?! 

Casseroles are super convenient, you can pack them full of protein, vegetables and healthy carbs and they’re a great way to use up everything in your kitchen. You can basically combine everything but the kitchen sink into a casserole and it will taste good. Not that I recommend that but you get the gist. 

This quinoa and kale taco casserole is packed with nutritious ingredients and bold flavors. It’s so simple to make with barely any pre-prep. This is the perfect recipe to make in advance for a busy week ahead or to bring to a new mama or a family in need!

Here’s What You Need

  • Quinoa
  • Ground beef
  • Vegetables – red bell pepper, green onions, corn and kale.
  • Diced tomatoes
  • Canned black beans
  • Chicken stock
  • Grated cheese – I used cheddar and prefer hand grating my own but if you want a shortcut you can use pre-shredded cheese.
  • Olive oil
  • Seasonings and spices – chili powder, cumin, paprika, garlic powder, oregano, chili flakes, sea salt and pepper. 

Quinoa and Kale Taco Casserole recipe for an easy and veggie-packed twist on a Mexican favourite.

How to Make Quinoa Kale Taco Casserole

STEP 1: Brown ground beef in a large pan over medium heat with olive oil. Remove from the heat and set aside.

STEP 2: In a 9×13 casserole dish, add the dry quinoa and chicken stock. Stir to combine. This is the base layer of this layered casserole.

STEP 3: In a large bowl, combine the diced tomatoes and spices. Top the quinoa mixture with half of the tomato mixture. 

STEP 4: Top the quinoa and tomatoes with the ground beef, bell pepper, green onions, corn, black beans and kale. Top with the remaining half of diced tomatoes. Sprinkle cheese and chili flakes on top if using.

STEP 5: Cover the casserole dish with a top or tin foil and bake at 350ºF for 45 minutes. Remove the cover after 45 minutes and bake for an additional 15 minutes.

Quinoa and Kale Taco Casserole recipe for an easy and veggie-packed twist on a Mexican favourite.

How to Prep in Advance and Store

This recipe has a quick prep time but if you want to cut corners here’s what I would do:

  1. Brown the ground beef
  2. Chop the vegetables
  3. Set ingredients aside until you’re ready to assemble and bake.

The beauty of casseroles is that they hold up really well after cooking and cooling. If you want to meal prep this or make in advance for a family in need, I recommend making the entire casserole and then letting it cool. Once cooled to room temperature, cover and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. I haven’t tried freezing it but I assume it would freeze well! I recommend portioning the casserole out into airtight containers and storing in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Print

Quinoa and Kale Taco Casserole

Quinoa and Kale Taco Casserole recipe for an easy and veggie-packed twist on a Mexican favourite. Dinner just got so much easier!

  • Author: Davida Lederle
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 60 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: Mexican
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 28 ounce can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp chili power
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 green onions (white and light greens only), chopped
  • 1 cup cooked corn (I use frozen)
  • 1 cup cooked black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 cups chopped and stemmed kale
  • 1 cup grated cheese (I like cheddar)
  • 1/4 tsp chili flakes (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Heat a large pan over medium heat with olive oil.
  3. Top with ground beef and cook until browned (about 5 minutes). Remove.
  4. In a large casserole dish (9 x 13) add quinoa and chicken stock. Stir to combine.
  5. In a large bowl combine combine diced tomatoes and spices.
  6. Top quinoa-stock mixture with HALF of diced tomato mixture.
  7. Top with ground beef, bell pepper, green onions, corn, black beans and kale.
  8. Top with remaining half of diced tomatoes.
  9. Sprinkle cheese on top.
  10. Sprinkle with chili flakes if using.
  11. Cover casserole dish with top or with tin foil and bake for 45 minutes.
  12. Remove top or foil and bake for an additional 15 minutes.
  13. Serve warm topped with avocado if desired.

Keywords: quinoa casserole, quinoa bake, mexican casserole

Quinoa and Kale Taco Casserole recipe for an easy and veggie-packed twist on a Mexican favourite.

Like this recipe? Here are other casseroles you might enjoy:

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  • Reply
    Denise Anderson
    March 26, 2021 at 5:31 pm

    This is delicious. I use ground turkey, but other than that, I made it exactly as written. It makes a very generous serving and there is plenty of leftovers.

  • Reply
    Robyn Safran
    October 23, 2019 at 8:30 pm

    This recipe is a keeper. I have made it many time both with and without the ground beef. If I don’t add meat I just throw in extra beans and vegies. If you are not fond of kale I would encourage you to try it in this recipe. I chop my fairly well and it adds great texture and is not over powering. Truly if you ate it without knowing the ingredients you would love it! I am actually making four casserole for a church conference this weekend. I made it last year and everyone raved over how good it tasted. Thanks for sharing this great casserole!

  • Reply
    Anne
    March 6, 2019 at 12:42 am

    Excellent recipe. So flavorful and satisfying. This one is a definite keeper. Next time I may add a bit more quinoa. I also added Swiss chard with the kale. Love it, thanks!

  • Reply
    Anna
    December 23, 2016 at 2:28 pm

    I love this recipe with the kale/quinoa and unique spices. So many great recipes on your site. thanks,Anna

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