Mexican Lasagna with Whipped Guacamole

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While most food bloggers posted their delicious Cinco de Mayo recipes and over the top margaritas earlier last week  - I am finally here only tres days late.

 

Even if its Ocho de Mayo, I will still share Mexican Lasagna with you because it's perfect for every occasion. Not only in May but I would make this in mid-December. For birthday's..Anniversaries. On busy weeknights. Even for Mother's Day - your madre will be proud of you.
Make this your go-to potluck recipe..Its straight up easy, delicious, and super versatile like I told you..I can't stress enough - just make it.

This Mexican lasagna is like a blank canvass; perfect opportunity for you to layer soft corn tortillas, drizzle spicy chipotle sauce, and tuck in your favorite meat or veggies, and sprinkle generous amounts of cheese of your choice. Then, bake it until sauce is bubbly hot and cheese is completely muy gooey.

I chose the Chicken & Black Bean route but I have made it before with sauteed veggies (squash, mushrooms, carrots) and black beans. It's equally delicious and very satisfying. Feel free to add your choice of meat, beans and veggies. And if you want to veganize it - stick with your choice of veggies, forgo the cheese or use non-dairy cheese or crumble some tofu. I haven't personally tried it with tofu but from what I have heard it makes a good substitute for cheese in recipes like these.

While meat, veggies, cheeses can be substituted/replaced/doubled - do whatever you feel like but pairing the lasagna with fluffy guacamole (recipe below) is a MUST- even though this is not your purist guac with chunky texture, its smooth texture will swoon you completely. You will want this melt-in-your- mouth guac on everything!

Mexican Lasagna with Chicken & Black Beans
Makes 4 slices or 2 generous servings
Ingredients
5 corn tortillas
4 oz ground chicken
1/3 cup black beans, canned, rinsed
1/2 onion, chopped
1/2 bell pepper chopped
1 jalapenos (use less if you prefer less hot)
1 cup chipotle enchilada sauce, divided
1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded ( I used reduced fat)
2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoon red chili powder (skip if you prefer less hot)
1/2 heaping tablespoon taco seasoning
2 teaspoon cumin powder
1 tablespoon oil (canola or olive)
cilantro, chopped (for garnish)
salt and pepper to taste
Directions
- Preheat oven to 375F
- Over medium heat, add oil on a skillet. When heated, brown ground chicken for few minutes.
- Add onions and bell pepper. Let them sweat for couple minutes and add black beans, jalapeno and stir them together. Continue this for 2-3 minutes.
- Add all the spices and 1/4 cup enchilada sauce. Allow it to cook for few minutes then remove from heat. Let it cool for few minutes or leave it in the refrigerator for quick chill.
- In a baking dish, pour about 2-3 tablespoon enchilada sauce then one tortilla. Spread 1 tablespoon of sauce over the tortilla then spoon chicken-bean mixture followed by 1 tablespoon of cheese or more if you like.
- Layer it likewise with the remaining tortillas. Just make sure the tortillas are well covered in sauce otherwise it will be very dry.
- Top the last tortilla with remaining sauce and cheese.
- Bake it covered for 10-12 minutes or until the sauce bubbles and cheese is melted completely.
Whipped Guacamole
Makes about 1.5 ramekin dish
2 avocado, seeded and peeled
1 tomato, chopped
juice from 1 lemon
4-5 cilantro  leaves
salt and pepper
-In a food processor, add all the above ingredients and process until its extremely soft and fluffy.

Storing tips: - Lasagna can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator and reheated for later use. - If you have leftover guacamole (how is that even possible?) - squeeze additional 1 tablespoon lemon juice, stir it, and store it in a air tight container in the fridge to prevent browning. No body wants brown guac! Make sure you eat it within the next day.

Happy Ocho de Mayo amigos!