Spicy Tortilla Lasagna

September 30, 2012
Replace tortillas for noodles & salsa for sauce to create Spicy Tortilla Lasagna, a delicious alternative to tradtional lasagna.

Funny 1st grade story from this week ... One of our spelling words this past week was 'blog.'  Kind of a strange spelling word for 1st graders if you ask me, ... but ... no one asked me!  So, anyway, since none of my students had any idea what a blog is I decided to show them my blog as an example.  (It just so happened that Neapolitan Cupcakes were showing on the front page, which totally amazed and enthralled my students!  They want me to make some for them ... which I can't ... against school rules.) 

Anyway, as I was scrolling down the front page ... showing them what a blog post is, and how people write to me and I write back in comments, and so forth ... one of my little students hollered out, "Hey, who's that?" ... referring to my childhood picture in the right sidebar.  I said, "That's me when I was 4 years old."  To which he promptly replied, rather exuberantly, "You look like a boy!"

Tact is not the forte of six year olds. 

I don't think I look like a boy in that picture, do I?  Oh, wait.  On second thought, don't answer that.  'Cause if you do think I look like a boy, I don't think I really want to know.  

Well, since school is still C.R.A.Z.Y. busy, I've been turning to some of my super-easy-stand-by recipes for our dinners.  This Spicy Tortilla Lasagna is just one such recipe.  And it's not exactly a recipe, it's more just something I threw together one night and have stuck with it ever since.  I like that it comes together super quick, and it makes a big pan so there's always leftovers for another night.  (No cooking the next night - yay!)

Start this dish by spreading a small amount of salsa (this lasagna's sauce) in the bottom of a baking dish.  This keeps the bottom layer of tortillas from sticking to the bottom of the pan, and provides a tad of moisture for those tortillas to soak up.

Next, layer in two whole tortillas (I use whole wheat) and then tear small pieces from another tortilla to fill in the corners and any other big 'gaps.'

Then spoon in a layer of the lasagna filling ... a mixture of ground turkey (or beef), black beans, corn, and diced tomatoes ... and ...

... top with salsa and cheese.  Layer on up two more times, and you'll have ...

... a tasty tortilla treat!  It's a yummy alternative to traditional lasagna, especially if you're in the mood for a super easy spicy kick.  And now I'm going to go try to get over being called a boy.  Ha!

Spicy Tortilla Lasagna
  • 1 lb. ground turkey or ground beef
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 T. chili powder
  • dash of crushed red pepper or cayenne pepper
  • 1/8 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 (14.5 oz.) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/2 of a 10 oz. package frozen corn, thawed
  • 8 tortillas (I use whole wheat)
  • about 36 oz. salsa (mild, medium, hot, salsa verde, or a combination of any of these)
  • 2 c. shredded cheddar cheese
  1. Brown ground turkey or beef together with chopped onion; drain. Season with ground cumin, chili powder, crushed red pepper, salt, and black pepper. Add black beans, corn, and diced tomatoes. Stir to combine.
  2. Spray a 9"x13" baking dish lightly with non-stick cooking spray. Spread a small amount of salsa in the bottom of the dish. Top with two whole tortillas; tear pieces from a portion of another tortilla to fill the corners and any other gaps around the sides of the pan. Top the tortillas with 1/3 of the meat/black bean mixture, 1/3 of the salsa, and 1/3 of the shredded cheese.
  3. Repeat to make two more layers.
  4. Bake at 375 degrees for 30-35 minutes, until heated through and bubbly. Serve with a dollop of sour cream, if desired.
NOTE:  This is a very flexible recipe.  Adjust spices and other ingredients to fit your fancy!



  1. Ha - you gotta love kids, huh? This lasagna sounds fabulous!

  2. This looks so delicious! You have a wonderful blog!! I'm your newest follower from Stone Gable's blog hop - this is my blog if you wanted to follow back: godsgrowinggarden.com

  3. What a neat take on the traditional dish. This sounds really good, and easy. Thanks for the idea! (And I don't think you look like a boy in that picture, just for the record.)

  4. Thanks for the idea of using tortillas like this. Have a great week!

  5. LOL! You don't look like a boy in the picture! You're right, 6 year olds don't know tact, and that's one of the lovely things about them. :-) I'm going to try this recipe, it sounds delicious!

  6. This sounds delicious! And easy...I am all for easy these days with a little man! You DO NOT look like a boy! I can say this with confidence because I looked like a boy for quite a few years with the Dorthy Hamill haircut! You, on the other hand, are quite cute...and girlish! :)

  7. Love the recipe and your story. Kids do say what they think!

  8. I love your little kid stories from your day in the class room. I would really enjoy your Spicy Tortilla Lasagna this is our kind of dish. Enjoy your weekend and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  9. And when we were in first grade the word blog didn't exist. I am pinning this recipe. My teens will love it. Thanks for sharing it on foodie friday.

  10. This looks yummy. Thanks for a dinner idea this week!


  11. Do you think I would be able to use flour tortillas in this recipe? We have a very severe corn allergy and I could not find the wheat tortillas. I will omit the frozen corn, that shouldn't change the taste too much, I just wonder if the flour tortillas will turn to mush...

    1. Yes, I absolutely think you can use flour tortillas in this. While the flour tortillas may not 'hold' as long for leftovers (may get soggy after a while), I don't think they'll be mushy on the day (or even the day after) you make it. Let me know how they work!
      Enjoy, Alicia!

  12. This recipe looks amazing! We'll be sure to have it when our son will be home...he LOVES all Mexican food.

    Found you on Nifty Thrifty Sunday link up...new follower!

  13. I love the Mexican twist! And how fun to be able to show your blog to the kids. Thanks so much for linking up to Taste and Tell Thursdays!


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