As a Minnesotan who cooks a lot, what I am about to tell you is embarrassing.
I never make casseroles. Well in Minnesota, we call them hot dishes. Yes, you heard that right – hot dishes. Very traditionally topped with tater tots.
But I’m a Chicagoan now, so we’re calling this a casserole. And we’re being classy, very classy.
This particular casserole was inspired by a Pinch of Yum recipe. I adore Pinch of Yum for many reasons – they create innovative and delicious recipes, their food photography is something that I strive for, but most specifically they’re Minnesota and make things like hot dishes. Their recipe was vegetarian, but living with a meat-loving husband I opted for the next best thing – the addition of ground turkey. Lean, full of protein, and ready to take on whatever flavor you want.
Ground turkey + taco seasoning = perfect match.
This isn’t the first time I’ve used this equation. Remember I’m an engineer and math is kinda my thing, so trust me when I tell you this equation makes total sense.
Let’s talk about why you should make this casserole:
- Melt-y cheese.
- Turkey = lean protein.
- Veggies = Veggies. Duh.
- Melt-y cheese.
- It’s cold out and this dish is hot – it’s a hot dish, remember?
- Top it with whatever you like.
- Did I mention melt-y cheese?!
As always, if you make any of my recipes and post on social media, use the hashtag #imhungrybynature for a chance to be featured! And don’t forget to follow Hungry by Nature:
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Mexican Turkey Casserole with Roasted Vegetables
- Prep Time: 30 mins
- Cook Time: 25 mins
- Total Time: 55 mins
- Yield: 12 1x
- 3 bell peppers
- ½ red onion
- 2 cups frozen corn
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoon cumin
- salt to taste
- 3/4 pound ground turkey
- 1/2 packet taco seasoning (I love Trader Joe’s!)
- 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 12 corn tortillas
- 1 can refried beans
- 2 cups red enchilada sauce
- cilantro, guacamole, or Greek yogurt for topping
- Pan-roast the veggies: Dice the peppers and mince the onions. Heat a large skillet with a little bit of oil over high heat (I adore my 12 inch cast iron for this). Add the onion and peppers, sprinkle with chili and cumin, and stir. Let the veggies sit until they start to get a little char to them, then stir, and rest again. Remove and set aside. Repeat the roasting process with the corn, sprinkling with chili and cumin, removing from the heat when browned and roasted on the outside. Sprinkle the roasted veggies with a little bit of salt and toss to coat.
- Brown the turkey: Return pan to stove and heat a splash of oil over medium. Add in the ground turkey and taco seasoning. Stir to combine and cook until no longer pink, about 5-7 minutes.
- Prep the ingredients: Grease a 4 quart casserole dish (or a 9×13 inch baking pan) and preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Put the refried beans in a bowl and mix with a little bit of water to make them easier to spread.
- Assemble: Spread a little bit of sauce on the bottom of the pan. Layer in order: half of the tortillas (I ended up tearing some of the tortillas in half to create a full layer), all of the beans, half of the veggies, half of the ground turkey, half of the sauce, half of the cheese. Cover with the other half of the tortillas, veggies, turkey, sauce, and cheese.
- Bake: Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the sauce is bubbling and the cheese is melted. Serve with guacamole, fresh cilantro, Greek yogurt, or whatever toppings you prefer!
Maybe next time I’ll add tater tots.
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Totally agree on the turkey + taco seasoning!!! I don’t eat meat, but I do cook it for my husband. Turkey with taco seasoning *always* wins me megapoints. But I’ve never cooked it like this before, and I know he’d love it. Super.
You’ll have to let me know what he thinks! This is my absolute favorite way to season ground turkey. Also, your baked honey ricotta pancake looks divine!