Let me just start by saying that growing up in California, Mexican lasagna was not a staple in my household. We just made burritos like the snoozefest boring people we were. It wasn’t until I went off to college and met people from the South and the Midwest that I realized that Mexican Lasagna was a thing you could make, and it is tasty and awesome and totally not authentic but definitely delicious. It’s basically just unrolled enchiladas and I am so here for it. Plus, it only has a few ingredients, so why not choose the best ones? Especially when this list right here gives you all the best ingredients to make the ultimate Mexican lasagna.
- Kraft Mexican Style Four Cheese Blend
They are called Kraft for a reason. It’s because those krafty, krafty cheese makers have discovered the recipe for a perfect, melty, sharp, salty, four-cheese Mexican blend. Am I mad about it? No sir. Do I wish I had been krafty enough to create this blend myself? Absolutely. This is a mix of Monterey Jack, cheddar, asadero, and queso quesadilla cheeses that not only “comes in incredibly fine shreds that melt beautifully (and instantly),” but also tastes rich and creamy and mild with a “salty tang that settles on the sides of your tongue.” This is THE Mexican lasagna cheese, don’t make the dish without it.
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- Trader Joe’s Traditional Style Fat Free Refried Beans
If the above cheese is the parmesan of the Mexican lasagna, the refried beans are the pasty ricotta layer. This is a big part of the structural integrity of the ‘sagna, and also a huge component of the flavor. This makes it very important to pick the right beans and, luckily for you, we did that for you. As managing editor Gwynedd Stuart put it, “These refried guys from Trader Joe’s had the most bean flavor of any can we cracked.” And believe me, we cracked a LOT of cans. These also happen to be unbelievably creamy. TJ’s really pulled through with this one, go get ‘em and layer ‘em into your Mexican lasagna.
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- La Banderita Yellow Corn Tortillas
These are obviously the noodles of the whole shebang (a real word I learned from infomercials growing up). A good Mexican lasagna requires corn tortillas that will absorb the flavors of the beans and the salsa, but also won’t disintegrate into mushy nothingness. These tortillas fit the bill. These have “great corn flavor and chewy texture” and taste like they were made by hand in a Mexican restaurant. Our tasters even went as far as to say that these tortillas will “inspire you,” and I for one can’t wait to cook up a positively ~inspired~ Mexican lasagna.
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- El Burrito Soyrizo
Now you could use ground beef and taco seasoning. And I respect that, there is certainly a time and place for that (let’s be real—most times and most places). But whether you are vegetarian or not, you have got to give Soyrizo a try. Senior writer Jordan Myrick called soyrizo “quite possibly the best type of meat substitute out there,” and I am right with them on that one. The sheer amount of flavor, texture, and caramelization capacity Soyrizo provides makes it a perfect meat substitute for a vegetarian Mexican lasagna.
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- Horizon Organic Cultured Sour Cream
Every Mexican lasagna needs sour cream. Is that even a question? Now this doesn’t have an exact 1:1 match in regular Italian lasagna but let’s just say it is the equivalent of topping your Italian lasagna with fresh, cold buratta and I do not know a single person who would object to that. Plus, Gwynedd called this sour cream “stunningly delicious.” What more do you need to hear?
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- Mateo’s Hot Gourmet Salsa
Obviously, the salsa is the sauce of the lasagna and a big component of the flavor. Never fear, our buddy Mateo knows how to make a sauce. Why do we love this salsa so much? Well, it is because it is “fresh and acidic,” and the “tomatoes and jalapeños are the stars in this salsa, but you get notes of garlic, cilantro, and habanero,” as well. It tastes simple and wholesome (because it truly is not made up of that many ingredients) and it is sure to make your Mexican lasagna “pop off,” as the kids are saying these days.
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The Sour Cream