Monday, February 8, 2016

Mexican Layer Casserole

Happy Monday, y'all... We had another fun weekend, split between Austin and Dallas. We attended a truly lovely partnership celebration for E while the kiddos hung with J and T-Pop, making Valentines and chomping on pancakes. We spent Super Bowl Sunday reunited; we're not big pro football fans, so we took advantage of the empty streets and enjoyed a leisurely Mexican feast after a quick hair-cut for B, before returning home to check out the commercials.  I was pretty tickled by the Heinz wiener dogs and the sheep belting Queen.  We eschewed bedtime books for the halftime show, and both kids grooved throughout the whole performance. I was pulling for the Panthers but the Broncos' win seemed pretty serendipitous in marking Peyton Manning's 200th career win. Mostly it was fun to see two teams full of  {what seem like} nice guys competing.  

Yada yada yada weekend recap yada yada here's a recipe! 

Mexican Layer Casserole

Unenthused by my original meal plan of stuffed peppers, I charted my own territory and whipped up this casserole last week. It's packed with veggies and so flavorful and filling you won't even miss the meat!

- one box Spanish rice {I used Whole Foods' brand but I also enjoy Near East}
- 1 cup pea/corn/carrot veggie mix {I used a freeze dried mix by "Just Veggies," but the frozen mixed veggies would work perfectly}
- one 15oz can black beans {again, I really like Whole Foods' brand - specifically the spicy organic variety}, rinsed 
- 2 large bell peppers {orange, red, or yellow}, stems / veins / seeds removed and sliced into thin strips 
- 4 cups fresh chopped spinach 
- 1 tsp EVOO
- 1 package of red enchilada sauce {Frontera brand pouches win for taste by miles and miles}
- 1 cup extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded 
- 1/2 cup crushed blue corn tortilla chips

Preheat your oven to 350. Prepare rice according to package directions. I like to substitute chicken or veggie broth for the water, but you do you. Since I used a freeze dried veggie medley, I added the peas, carrots, and corn to the pot as I added the rice and spice packet. If you're using frozen veggies, just stir them into the prepared rice once it's finished cooking {no need to defrost}. Press rice mixture into a small casserole dish {9x9 or the equivalent}.  

While the rice is cooking, heat the EVOO in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the pepper strips and sauté for 10 minutes or so, stirring often and adjusting the heat if they start to char too much. You can also pop a top over these and turn the heat down a bit of you like your peppers with a tad less crunch. Once the peppers are nearly cooked to your liking, stir in the spinach. Cook for 1-2 minutes until partially wilted. 

Spread the black beans over the rice in the casserole dish, then layer the peppers and spinach on top. Next, drizzle on the enchilada sauce. Sprinkle the whole shebang with cheese and crushed tortilla chips. Bake for 30 minutes until the cheese is bubbling and beginning to brown.  


  1. Well this sounds (and looks!) delicious. I need to try the 365 spicy beans ASAP!

  2. BOOM - was looking for a meat free dinner for Ash Wednesday and now I've got it. THANK YOU :)

  3. My brisket loving husband inhaled this..thank you!


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