Retro Recipe: American Heart Association’s 1984 Enchilada Bake (Vegetarian)

Fresh Tomatoes Make Great Food

I worked for the American Heart Assocation for nine years. But before that, I acquired one of their cookbooks — The American Heart Association Cookbook — originally published in 1973. I still treasure the small paperback (its fourth edition, which was “new, revised, and expanded” when it was printed) for sentimental reasons, but also because it brought a great dish to my life: Enchilada Bake (page 194).

This is a great winter dish. It’s savory but warmly sweet and makes for tasty leftovers. Don’t be concerned by the number of ingredients — it all comes together quickly.

My husband and many friends still work at the American Heart Association, doing their best to help fight heart disease and stroke. February is American Heart Month. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women, but it’s preventable and controllable. Give this healthy recipe a try, and let us know what you think!

Enchilada Bake


  • 2 cups canned beans (red kidneys are usually my choice)
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 6 mushrooms, sliced (optional)
  • 1 green pepper, chopped (optional)
  • 1-1/2 cups diced or crushed tomatoes
  • 1 T chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine
  • 8 tortillas (flour tortillas add sweetness, but corn tortillas work as well)
  • 1/4 cup grated low-fat mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup low-fat ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup low-fat yogurt
  • 6 black olives, sliced (optional)


  1. Saute onion, garlic, mushrooms, and green pepper until softened.
  2. Add beans, tomatoes, spices, and wine. Simmer for about 30 minutes.
  3. Mix ricotta cheese and yogurt together.
  4. Grease a 1-1/2 quart casserole.
  5. Layer tortillas, sauce, mozzarella, and the ricotta-yogurt mixture until all ingredients are used.
  6. End with a layer of sauce, topped with ricotta-yogurt mixture and black olives.
  7. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.

May we all live long, heart-healthy lives.

Image Credit: via flickr/CC

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About the Author

Hi all! I'm Mary Gerush - a recovering corporate worker bee turned good-farm-real-food advocate and writer who wants to help people understand what they're eating. I tend a tiny urban farm in Dallas, TX, and hope to scale up one day soon. Omnivore through-and-through, there's not much I love to eat more than a butter-basted grass fed steak fresh from a searing hot cast iron skillet. Follow me on , , and !
  • Julie

    Looks wonderful! I’ll make it this week. Thank you :)

  • Mary Gerush

    Let us know what you think! I haven’t made it in so long and need to give it a try again soon. Thanks for the note… :-)