Now that you have your delicious leftovers from yesterday’s Mucho Gusto Black Beans and Corn, you can make this simple, hearty Tamale Pie. This idea is from Whole Grains Every Day, Every Way by Lorna Sass (her Masa-Harina Beef Casserole), but you’ll see that I have changed it quite a bit. At our house, we call it Tamale Pie. This recipe can easily be made larger or smaller, and is great to assemble partially ahead. Like most casseroles, it only gets better as it sits, so eat remember to reheat some for lunch!

Tamale Pie


1 tbsp olive oil, butter, or cooking fat

1 medium onion, coarsely chopped

1 medium bell pepper, seeded and coarsely chopped (optional – we don’t have any bell peppers right now, but it’s just fine without! You could also use an ancho chile pepper, or add 2 tsp of chipotle or paprika powder.)

2 cups cooked black beans (leftover from Mucho Gusto Black Beans and Corn)

1 cup salsa or 2 cloves minced garlic and 1 cup diced tomatoes

1 cup ground beef or sliced crimini mushrooms (optional)


1 cup cornmeal

1/2 cup cooked dent corn or fresh/frozen sweet corn kernels

1 1/2 tsp salt

2 tsp baking powder

1 egg

3/4 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup cheddar cheese (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Get out a 11×7 baking dish. To prepare the filling, heat the oil in a large cast iron pan. Saute the onion and pepper until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the black beans to the pan. If using, add the beef or mushrooms, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook until the meat is browned, add your salsa/tomatoes and simmer while you prepare your topping (about 5 minutes).

For the topping, stir together the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, beat the egg lightly, and stir in the buttermilk. Add the egg mixture to the cornmeal mixture, add the dent corn, and stir just until combined.

Pour the tomato-bean mixture into the baking dish, and smooth it out. Pour the cornmeal mixture on top, smoothing it as you go. Sprinkle the top with cheddar cheese if desired.

Place in the oven, with a baking sheet underneath to catch any bubble-overs. Bake until the top is golden brown, 40-45 minutes. Let sit 10 minutes before serving. Bon Appetit!