After making the Mexican Beef Casserole, I was reminded of this classic that I have made over and over again since 2003 when “Quick Cooking” originally published the recipe. It was published again in “Taste of Home’s Most Requested Recipes”. I can see why! This is a pretty fast and easy dish that is great for a crowd. If I make this for my family – like many 9×13 casseroles – I split it between two 9″ rounds or two 8×8 pans, then I freeze the second one.
yields about 12 servings
1 lb. ground beef
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1/2 cup chopped onion
2/3 cup water
1 envelope of taco seasoning (or substitute favorite)
1 – 15 oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 – 14.5 oz. can Mexican diced tomatoes, not drained
6 flour tortillas (burrito size, 8″)
1 – 16 oz. can refried beans
3 cups (12 oz.) shredded Mexican cheese or Cheddar cheese
optional: Garnish with pretty sliced scallions or chopped cilantro for a little color on top. Sometimes, I sprinkle paprika for a little red color on top. You could serve this with sour cream and/or salsa.
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Over medium heat in a large skillet, cook your beef, green pepper and onion.
2. Add in the water and seasoning. Boil and simmer for 2 minutes over medium-low. Kind of like regular taco meat.
3. Add in the beans and tomatoes. Simmer 10 minutes.
4. Spray a 9×13 pan with cooking spray, or line with non-stick foil. Layer 2 tortillas – overlapping in the middle of necessary. Sometimes if I have enough tortillas, I use 3.
5. Now spread 1/2 the beef mixture on top. Spread 1 cup of cheese. Add 2 or 3 more tortillas. Spread the rest of the beef mixture. Spread 1 more cup of cheese. Add 2-3 more tortillas and the remaining 1 cup of cheese.
6. Bake covered for 25 minutes.
Do you freeze the other casserole before or after baking? I have an enchilada casserole that I’ve frozen after baking and the tortillas seem to get a bit too wet and almost gummy/pasty when thawed…. Maybe I shouldn’t thaw and should go straight to oven.
Mary Ellen says
When putting casseroles together, I freeze them before baking. Baking releases juices and then freezing would cause more ruptures to the cell walls causing more sogginess. This is how we put casseroles together at Time for Dinner when I went a few times.
Straight to the oven could work, too! I know when I am lazy and get Stouffer’s Lasagna, they have you bake it frozen for 90 minutes or so.
Thanks so much! I really appreciate it.