20-Minute Taco Casserole

20-Minute Taco Casserole

Well, this is as easy as it gets – Taco Casserole! The simplicity of this recipe makes it a must try for Taco Night!! This is a ‘one pan meal’ that comes together in 20 minutes – thanks to a short list of handy ingredients and a little multi-tasking.

Here’s what you’ll need to have on hand ::

  • pre-steamed frozen rice
  • crushed tomatoes or salsa
  • taco seasoning
  • taco shells
  • ground hamburger
  • grated cheese
  • shredded lettuce
  • diced tomatoes
  • sour cream

The kids LOVED this meal — except for the fact that I tainted their tacos with lettuce and tomatoes (for picture taking purposes — life with a mom blogger, ha!). But talk about an easy way to serve tacos on taco night!

Every step utilizes the same pot — from prep to baking to serving! The only extra dish necessary is a bowl to hold the beef while layering in the rice. Because of this, the clean-up is so simple.

The trick to getting this casserole completed in 20 minutes is to use bags of microwaveable frozen rice and prepare them while browning the taco meat.

I love the versatility of this recipe too! Feel free to customize this Taco Casserole by layering in refried beans or Mexican beans, or even adding a layer of queso over the rice.

The best of taco night all in one pan – crispy, spicy beef tacos with all the toppings and a simple side of Mexi-rice! I think this is good enough to have every day of the week (not just on Taco Tuesday!)

20-Minute Taco Casserole

  • 2 10 oz bags pre-steamed frozen rice
  • 1 c crushed tomatoes or salsa
  • 2 T taco seasoning, I used my favorite Food for a Year seasoning blend
  • 10-12 taco shells
  • 2 lb ground hamburger
  • 8 oz grated cheese
  • 2-3 c shredded lettuce
  • 1/2 c diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 c sour cream
  • olives, avocado, jalapeño etc (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°.

In a large, deep skillet (approximately 12″ x 3″) brown ground meat and sprinkle in taco seasoning. Once meat is almost browned, add crushed tomatoes or salsa and stir to combine.

When meat is cooked through (no pink is visible), remove meat to a bowl and set aside. Add 2 bags of steamed rice (steamed according to package instructions) to the skillet. Don’t bother with cleaning the skillet, all the remnants from browning will just add a nice seasoning to the rice. Give the rice a stir and spread it to evenly cover the bottom of the skillet.

Fill taco shells with seasoned ground beef and neatly stand & arrange filled taco shells atop the rice. Sprinkle grated cheese over each taco and place into a 350° preheated oven. Bake for 10-15 minutes until cheese is melty and tacos and rice are heated through.

Top tacos with desired garnishes : lettuce, tomatoes, olives, sour cream etc. as desired. Serve.

Serves 4