Butternut Kale Tamale Bake

  • Yield: 4-6 servings 1x


As with all latin-inspired dishes, I love the tango between the spicy and sweet flavors. This bake does that well. The chipotle and unsweetened chocolate powder lend a mole-like flavor to the quick enchilada sauce too. Aside from the vegetable prep, this bake comes together easy. See notes for make-ahead prep.



  • Enchilada Sauce
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) Muir Glen Organic Diced Tomatoes
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • handful of cilantro, washed
  • 2 tbsp. lime juice
  • 1 tbsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. unsweetened chocolate powder
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • Filling
  • 2 c. butternut squash, peeled and diced into 1/2” cubes
  • 3 stalks of kale
  • 1 can (15 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tbsp. oil, separated
  • salt to taste
  • 1/4 c. shredded cheddar (omit if vegan)
  • Topping
  • 1 c. P.A.N. pre-cooked white or yellow corn meal (see note)
  • 1 1/4 c. warm water
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • Garnish
  • cotija
  • avocados
  • cilantro


  1. Make enchilada sauce. In a high-powered blender or food processor, add all enchilada ingredients. Blitz until smooth. Set aside.
  2. Make the filling. Chop the butternut squash into 1/2″ cubes. De-stem the kale and chop into small, edible pieces. Drain and rinse black beans. Preheat oven to 375°. Into a skillet warmed on medium heat, add 1 tablespoon of oil. Add in the butternut squash and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Salt to taste. Add in 1/3 cup of the enchilada sauce. Cover and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until just barely ready. Don’t cook it all the way through. Add in the kale, black beans, and additional tablespoon of oil. Cook for another 3 minutes. Salt to taste. Remove from heat. Stir in 2/3 cup more of enchilada sauce with 1/4 cup of cheese (more if you like things cheesy). Use the skillet as your baking pan, or place in an 8″ x 10″ pan (or something similar in size).
  3. Make the topping. Add the pre-cooked white or yellow corn meal to a bowl. Stir in the warm water a kosher salt. Crumble evenly over the pan and press out until flat. Top with remaining enchilada sauce. Sprinkle with cotija and bake for 25-30 minutes. Garnish with cilantro and avocados. Serve.


• It’s important to note that P.A.N. precooked corn meal is not the same as corn meal used for cornbread. It’s a special order from Amazon. Use the rest of it up with this arepa recipe.

• To make this in advance, prep the vegetables only and freeze in a container or bag. Thaw before assembling. Make the sauce and topping just before assembling. Of course, you can freeze the uncooked assembled bake, but I find that it takes much longer to bake though, so I prefer the previous method mentioned.

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