Happily Whole

Living well from the inside out

Sweet Potato & Black Bean Enchiladas


The complete package. That’s really what we’re all looking for right? Whether it’s the right kind of car, computer or companion, we want it all wrapped up in one package! Special features to top off the necessities and perhaps even some luxuries to bolster the basic model.

We always want one step more, we expect just a little bit better or think that one more enhancement will improve our experience.

It’s human nature, right?

I’m not so sure. I’m starting to think it has a lot more to do with the nature of culture than the culture of human character. But when we let that wanting, the distinct sense of dissatisfaction, seep under our skin it becomes a part of our own personal character.

The cultural poking and prodding of needing more sews itself to our human nature so firmly that we forget what it’s like to really feel content.

Then to make matters worse, we return home with the new car or computer, we examine our demands of a companion, and we realize the special features feel superficial. It’s the base model we really want! We never needed more and we want what’s underneath it all!

What truly satisfies is what we went looking for in the beginning: a humble, bare bones basic model that won’t break when all the extras are under pressure.

So, yeah, let’s return to giving thanks for what we’ve already got and rest in the simple blessings of base models. Let’s love simplicity so much that living simple becomes a part of our own human nature.

It’s this one-dish meal that got me thinking all about that! It’s all right there, in one package….well, one casserole dish! You need not want more, unless of course, you dare to dress this one up with special features. But, if I were you, I’d go with the contentment of serving up all your nutritional necessities in one delicious dish! 

Warm, comforting, filling and tastefully satisfying. That’s these! Even the meat-lover in you (or the one you feed) will love the savory flavor of this dish. Still seasonal with the sweet potatoes, this recipe offers a complete meal baked in one dish: beans, greens, sweet potatoes, sprouted grains, cheese and even tomato sauce. What more can you ask for when we’re talking nutrition? 


  • 2 teaspoons butter (yep, I always use the real stuff!)
  • 1 small onion, chopped (I used yellow but white will do, too)
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes, diced (about 2 ½ cups)*
  • 2 cups black beans (canned, drained and rinsed well, OR soaked and cooked)
  • 2 cups chopped dark greens, like spinach or kale
  • Sea salt or black pepper to taste
  • 2 cups homemade enchilada sauce, recipe below
  • 8 large whole grain (preferably sprouted grain) tortillas or 12 corn tortillas
  • 8 ounces plain yogurt (used as a sour cream substitute)
  • Cheese for sprinkling on top. If you prefer a lot of cheese, you may want more for the inside of the enchiladas.**
  • Enchilada Sauce Recipe:
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon flour (I just use any 100% whole grain flour I have on hand)
  • ¼ cup chili powder (yes, that much!)
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 10 ounce can tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Recipe Instructions

  • Heat butter in a large sauce pan and saute' the onion 5 to 10 minutes, or until softened. 
  • Add the sweet potatoes to the pan and stir well. Cover and cook for about 10 more minutes, until the potatoes can just be pierced with a fork. 
  • Stir in the black beans and greens and cook until the greens are wilted. Add a little water if necessary to prevent scorching.
  • Season with sea salt and pepper. 
  • Cover the bottom of a 9x13 pan with the prepared enchilada sauce (preparation instructions below) and preheat oven to 375 degrees. 
  • Place a tortilla on a flat surface and a scoop a line of the prepared filling across the center of the tortilla. Spoon a touch of the plain yogurt on top of the filling and (optional) sprinkle with cheese. 
  • Roll the tortilla around the filling and place, seam side down, in the pan. Repeat until all the filling has been used and enchiladas fill the pan. 
  • Cover enchiladas with remaining sauce and place pan in hot oven. Bake 20 minutes. 
  • Remove pan from oven, sprinkle cheese over the top and place pan back in the oven until cheese is melted.

Enchilada Sauce Recipe:

  • In a medium sauce pan, heat oil and add flour, stirring with wooden spoon until smooth. 
  • Add chili powder and cook for no more than a minute. Add stock, tomato paste, oregano and cumin. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and cook for 15 minutes. Sauce will thicken and smooth out. 


Recipe Notes

*After you've washed your sweet potatoes, you can peel them. But since the skin contains nutrients and fiber, I always just leave them on. 

**I use raw, sharp cheddar cheese made with grassfed cow's milk OR raw cheddar goat's milk cheese. You can choose whatever cheese you desire. 

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