Nigella's Mexican Lasagne recipe

Wedge of Mexican lasagne with guacamole

Nigella’s Mexican Lasagne might sound like an odd recipe but it's basically beans, corn, cheese and tomato sauce sandwiched between layers of tortilla and topped with more cheese. I marvel over its weight every time I lift it into the oven and rejoice when it comes out as it feeds eight and we are a household of two. Leftovers reheat brilliantly and it makes a fantastic packed lunch.

I don't have a 26cm round ovenproof dish so I cook it in a 26cm springform cake tin and because of this I leave out the 400ml of water that goes into the sauce. I put the springform tin on a foil lined baking tray and the lasagne leaks every time but it really doesn't matter (well, it did when I made it for the first time and it leaked all over my oven).

The lasagne is a formidable main meal so I don't serve anything else with it apart from guacamole, salsa and yoghurt.


Serves: 8


  • 1 tbs light olive oil or rapeseed oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, chopped
  • 1 red pepper, chopped into small chunks
  • 2 bird's-eye chilis, finely chopped (seeds included)
  • 1 tsp sea salt flakes (or ½ tsp fine sea salt)
  • 2 tbs coriander stalks, chopped
  • 2 cans chopped tomatoes
  • 400ml water (swilled from the tomato cans, see intro)
  • 1 tbs Tomato ketchup


  • 2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed (800g total)
  • 2 cans sweetcorn (450g total when drained)
  • 250g Cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 pack tortillas (8 pieces)


  1. Preheat your oven to 200°C (180°C fan) and put a medium sized saucepan over a medium heat.
  2. Add the chopped onions to the saucepan and fry for a few minutes before adding the garlic, pepper, chillis and salt. Fry for around 15 minutes then add the chopped coriander stalks and give everything a good stir.
  3. Add the chopped tomatoes, the ketchup and the water swilled out from the tomato cans, stir, then leave to simmer for around 10 minutes.
  4. Mix the drained black beans, sweetcorn and the majority of the cheese in a large bowl, reserving some cheese to top the lasagne with later.
  5. Spoon around a third of the sauce evenly into the bottom of a round ovenproof dish.
  6. Place two tortillas over the sauce so that they are overlapping like a Venn diagram.
  7. Add around a third of the bean mixture on top of the tortillas then add a quarter of the sauce and spread everything out evenly.
  8. Add another two tortillas, this time in the opposite direction to the previous two tortillas.
  9. Add another third of the beans and more sauce then add two more tortillas changing their orientation once more.
  10. Add all of the remaining beans to the last layer, most of the sauce (reserve a little for the top) and the final two tortillas.
  11. Tip the rest of the sauce onto the tortillas and top with the grated cheese.
  12. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes until the cheese has browned. Remove from the oven and allow the lasagne to rest for 10-15 minutes before serving.

The remaining coriander leaves can be used in homemade salsa or guacamole.

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