My family loves nachos. Simple chips and cheese are a common weekend lunch around my house. And we love making meals that are easy—especially casseroles.
This recipe combines the flavor of nachos with the ease of a casserole. Layers of tortilla chips surround ground beef, tomatoes, and cheese.
The best thing about this recipe is that it’s great just as it is. But it’s endlessly changeable based on whatever your family likes to eat. This has all the flavors you want for a hearty dinner that the whole family will enjoy.
Healthy Mexican Casserole
While Mexican casserole is tasty, it’s also in the category of guilty pleasures. Normally, we try to eat healthier meals and to serve more vegetables for our families. Fortunately, you can change up this recipe so that it’s healthier and still has the ease of a casserole and that delicious nacho flavor.
The best way to make Mexican casserole even healthier is to change the meat you use. Although lean ground beef is low-fat, ground turkey is even leaner. You could also use diced or shredded chicken instead of ground meat.
You also want to increase the veggie content if you’re trying to give Mexican casserole a healthy makeover. Some vegetables that go well in this yummy casserole include diced onions, green peppers, corn, zucchini, and even jalapenos.
Change the tortilla chips to corn tortillas instead and you’ll cut out even more fat. We love the flavor of tortilla chips. But using corn tortillas instead is a healthy swap you won’t even notice because the rest of the dish has so much zesty flavor.
You can also make this recipe healthier by using low-fat cheese. Several companies make 2 percent shredded Mexican blend or cheddar cheeses. When it’s this good for you, there’s no guilt in having seconds… or serving it with some margaritas for the grown-ups.
Easy Mexican Casserole
The best thing about this recipe is how easy it is to make. You can come home from work or being out all day and whip this up in a matter of minutes. After browning the meat, you just have to layer the other ingredients and put it in the oven.
If you add a can of black beans to this dish, it adds more fiber and bulk. You can use plain black beans or seasoned chili beans; either would add a great flavor to complement the rest of the ingredients.
You can also make this recipe even easier by making it in a slow cooker. Brown the meat first and then put all the ingredients in your crockpot. We recommend cooking it on low for about 4 or 5 hours. You don’t want to cook it at too high of a temperature or the tortilla chip layers might get soggy.
Another way that we might change this recipe is to put an extra layer of cheese on the top. It’s not as health-conscious, but you can’t go wrong with more cheese! When you bake a layer of cheese on top, it becomes like a crunchy crust. Serve with a dollop of sour cream on each serving and it will cool down any spiciness from the meal. Garnish with sliced black olives or sliced green onions.
This meal is so easy to make and just as easy to clean up. That’s a win for any busy family if you ask us!
Make This Recipe With Your Kids
There's nothing better than making memories with your kids. There are so many ways to do that. Taking special trips, making crafts, playing games, and, of course, cooking! Many parents see cooking as an adults-only task.
While it's true that an adult should always be present and involved, there's nothing wrong with getting the kids involved too! They'll love being able to spend time helping mom or dad make something delicious. Plus, they'll have a greater appreciation for the dinner they're going to eat, since they helped make it themselves.
Make sure that safety is always prioritized. Very young children should be kept out of the cooking process; it's best for slightly older children. Give your kids tasks that feel rewarding, but that aren't too challenging. For example, kids will love being able to crush up the chips.
So, with this recipe in hand, have your kids join you for a bit of fun in the kitchen. Who knows; maybe having your children to help will make the whole process go by a lot faster! We hope you and your whole family enjoy this recipe.Print
- 1 (13 ounce) bag tortilla chips, divided
- 2 pounds lean ground beef
- 1 (10 ounce) can Mexican stewed tomatoes
- 1 (8 ounce) package shredded Mexican 4-cheese blend
1. Partially crush ½ bag of chips and place in bottom of a buttered 9 x 13-inch baking dish.
2. Brown ground beef; drain.
3. Add stewed tomatoes and the cheese and mix well.
4. Sprinkle finely crushed chips over top of casserole.
5. Bake uncovered at 350°F for 40 minutes.
- Prep Time: 10 Minutes
- Cook Time: 40 Minutes
- Category: Main Course
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: Tex-Mex
Keywords: healthy mexican casserole, easy mexican casserole
The image featured at the top of this post is ©iStock.com/LCBallard.