You’ve tried our Vegetarian Black Bean Enchiladas, and there’s no doubt that you fell in love with our Gluten-Free Mango and Black Bean Tacos. Now it’s time to try something new: Skinny Black Bean Flautas. If you’ve never made flautas before, you’re in for a treat. This recipe only requires five ingredients that you probably already have on-hand in the pantry. They couldn’t be easier to make, and they’re perfect for feeding a crowd or as a quick-and-easy weeknight dinner for the family. All for only 241 calories per serving? Sign me up!
What is a Flauta?
Some people say flautas are similar to enchiladas, but they are actually more similar to taquitos. Enchiladas are rolled up like flautas, but they usually use corn tortillas and they’re always smothered in a sauce before being baked. Taquitos, on the other hand, also use corn tortillas, but they’re fried and served with sauce on the side. Flautas are also traditionally fried, but they’re made with flour tortillas.
The major difference between the two is the way they’re served. Flautas derive their name from the Spanish word for “flutes” because of their long, thin appearance. They’re usually served for dinner because they’re so large and filling. By contrast, taquitos are usually made with smaller tortillas and are intended as a snack.
Healthier Flautas are Baked, Not Fried
The first thing we did to skinny-up this recipe was to get rid of the frying step. Frying food in oil adds unnecessary fats, and we wanted to keep our Skinny Black Bean Flautas at only 5 grams of fat. We found great success by spraying each rolled tortilla with nonstick spray and positioning the flautas so they don’t touch in the pan. They turned out crispy and wonderful, all without the excess fat and calories!
The other things we did to make this traditional recipe healthier was to swap-in whole-wheat tortillas. This replaced the simple carbs of white flour tortillas with complex carbohydrates, which take longer to digest. That means you’ll feel fuller for longer and you’ll be less likely to overeat!
Other than that, we just let the ingredients speak for themselves. Savory black beans, spicy green chilies and homemade taco seasoning, melted cheddar cheese, and crispy whole-wheat flour tortillas come together to create a satisfying meal. We think you’ll be pleasantly surprised!
Skinny Black Bean Flautas
- 30 ounces black beans canned, drained
- 1 cup cheddar cheese reduced-fat, shredded
- 4 ounces green chiles canned, diced
- 2 teaspoons Skinny Ms. taco seasoning
- 10 8-inch whole wheat flour tortillas
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Add black beans, cheese, green chiles and spices to a medium mixing bowl. Use a fork and mash all ingredients together.
- Evenly divide mixture onto tortillas. Spread mixture over each tortilla, roll tightly, lightly spray each side with non-stick cooking spray or brush with olive oil, and place seam side down on parchment lined cookie sheet or non-stick baking dish. Don't allow flautas to touch so that they get crispy on all sides.
- Bake approximately 24-25 minutes, or until flautas are hot and crispy, turn over after 12 minutes of cooking time. If desired, top flautas with either fat-free Greek yogurt or reduced-fat sour cream.
Are you ready for something sweet? Don’t miss the opportunity to try the dessert version of this dish by making these Apple Pie Flautas! They compliment this recipe perfectly!
Aside from being delicious and easy to make, Southwest dishes also tend to be incredibly budget friendly! If you loved these Skinny Black Bean Flautas and want to keep costs low at dinner time, we think you’ll also want to try any or all of these tasty southwest-inspired recipes:
Publishers note: This post was originally published on October 27, 2012.