Fiesta Rice Casserole

If you like casseroles, this one is always a hit with my family.  It’s also a great make-ahead freezer meal!  It’s sure to fill you up; loaded with chicken, rice, and beans.  A tasty Mexican twist on chicken and rice casserole!

This casserole has quickly become a favorite amongst everyone in the family.  As you already know, we kind of like Mexican food, and this hits those flavors in one easy dump and stir casserole. I call it ‘rice’ casserole because my daughter knows she loves rice.  If I say the word ‘chicken’, when not pertaining to a nugget, she will say, I don’t like that.  So I do what I can here, people and I say rice instead of chicken.  I’ve also found a way to fool her!  In the past, I had always used leftover baked or grilled chicken or a shredded rotisserie chicken, but of course, my daughter can see that.  Then she picks around it and doesn’t eat the chicken.  But if I use ground chicken it’s harder to differentiate.  She thinks it’s all rice!! And she eats it!  And obviously likes it!  Joke’s on her!  She ate protein!  I win!  I cannot apologize for my excitement.  The struggle is real, friends.
  

I really love getting that little girl in the kitchen.  She loves to help out in anyway she can.  Who am I to stop her?  She helps dump the ingredients in the big bowl and stir.  And when she’s done with that, I have her fold the laundry and do the dishes.  I kid.  On a side note, if I hear one more person say that getting kids in the kitchen to help cook makes kids less picky because they will want to eat what they’ve helped to make… I may scream.  Lies.  It’s all lies.  They obviously do not have truly picky eaters they’re dealing with.  Do you see that girl?  She is not swayed by that logic.  But I still like when she helps, even if she decides not to eat it.  


Fiesta Rice CasseroleFiesta Rice Casserole

By Katie Olesen

This is a great make ahead meal!

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground chicken or 3 cups cubed or shredded cooked chicken
  • 2 cups instant rice
  • 1 packet taco seasoning*
  • 1 can ro-tel diced tomatoes & green chiles*
  • 1 can cream soup, chicken or celery
  • 1 – 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 – 10 oz can corn or mexicorn, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar-jack cheese
  • 1 cup milk
  • Taco Doritos, about 1/3 – 1/2 bag

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350°. Grease 2.5 qt casserole dish or 9×13 pan. (If using ground chicken, heat skillet with olive oil over medium-high heat. Add ground chicken and cook until browned, stirring and breaking up the chicken. Turn off heat and set aside.) In a large bowl, dump in all ingredients except for the Doritos. Stir to combine and spread into greased casserole dish. Crush up the Doritos and sprinkle on top of the casserole. Cover the dish and bake until heated through and bubbly, removing the cover during the last 15 min to brown the top. Baking time will vary depending on the depth of the dish used and whether the casserole came straight from the refrigerator, usually 30 min – 1 hr.
  2. Recipe Notes: 1. I use mild taco seasoning and mild ro-tel and the dish still has some heat to it. If you don’t like spicy or have kids that don’t, be sure to use mild for these two ingredients.
    2. Freezes well. Allow time to thaw before baking if you decide to freeze this casserole.

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