Mexican Quinoa Taco Bake

By Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Ugghhh we’re getting into bad food photography season.

Quinoa Taco Bake

I mean, I realize I don’t HAVE to post bad photos. And I also realize I sometimes do anyway. But fewer daylight hours make my life much more challenging when it comes to shooting recipes for the blog. You see, there is no substitute for natural light. Sure, there are light boxes and special bulbs… but nothing comes close to natural daylight.

And with it getting dark by 7pm lately, I barley have any time after work to shoot. So I have to do all my photography on weekends, which is hard, but doable. I can still cook for the blog during the week – I just can’t photography anything until I have some natural light. Unfortunately today you’re going to see my first (and hopefully last) terrible attempt at indoor photography of the season.

Quinoa Taco Bake

Okay – end rant. Moving on to today’s recipe! This Mexican Quinoa Taco Bake was deeeelicious. I can’t get enough of quinoa!

The ingredient list might look really long, but it is totally worth it. The flavour is amazing! It’s basically homemade taco mix.

Quinoa Taco Bake

A little hint that made this recipe a huge hit in our house – after baking, I let the casserole cool, and then portioned it into personal glass containers and froze them. We had half a dozen easy lunches to grab from the freezer on our way out the door in the mornings. It was great!

Also, can we talk about all that CHEESE and all the delicious TOPPINGS? I love toppings. So freakin’ good.

Taco Quinoa Bake

Serving Size: 6


  • 2 tbsps olive oil
  • 1 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tsps minced garlic
  • 2 red bell peppers, chopped
  • 2 jalapeños, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • Salt & pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 2 tbsps tomato paste
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1 can black beans (19 oz)
  • 3/4 cup corn kernels, thawed
  • 2 tbsps lime juice
  • 1 cup water
  • 1.5 cups shredded cheese (I used marble)
  • Suggested toppings:
  • Cilantro
  • Chopped tomato
  • Arugula or shredded lettuce
  • Avocado
  • Tortilla chips
  • Sour cream


  1. Heat a large frying pan with oil and sauté the onions, garlic, bell peppers and jalapeños. When softened, add the chili powder, cumin, paprika, oregano, pepper, salt and cayenne. Stir in the tomato paste, and stir. Then add quinoa, corn and black beans. Add the lime juice and water and simmer until no liquid remains. Transfer the mixture to a greased, large baking dish. Top with cheese and bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees. Broil to make the cheese bubbly and golden at the end. Serve with desired toppings.
  2. Adapted from Half Baked Harvest

Quinoa Taco Bake

  • Ihjaz Ahmad
    December 2, 2014

    Oh my goodness, this looks delicious! I’m definitely making this! thanks for sharing!
    A healthier option for a family favorite.

  • Sarah
    December 5, 2014

    Tried this today at the other Sarah’s encouragement…SOO good! Thanks for the recipe Julia! I added ground beef and more smoked paprika because it’s my fav spice. It should feed us for a couple of days. Amazing.

    • Julia Kent
      December 6, 2014

      eeee so glad you liked it too!! I will have to try it with beef – both Sarahs say it’s good!

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