I first had this recipe over 22 years ago at a party. I wasn't much into Mexican type food back then (Wow! Have times changed since moving to Arizona!) and this was something completely new to me. I didn't even ask for the recipe because I thought with all the layers that it must be really involved and I was a busy, working mom with 3 kids back then. I overheard one of the the other ladies ask for the recipe and she wrote it down and explained how to make it. Wow...it sounded pretty easy! I tried it and my family loved it. I was happy because it was easy to make and can be easily adapted to what type of meat, beans and tortillas you have available. Although, I am pretty sure this is not an "authentic" Mexican dish...we like it and all the fun Mexican flavors are captured in this sassy dish so we enjoy it. It is a recipe that I like to make for a crowd because it is easy, delicious and doesn't break the bank. Leftovers freeze well too and you can make it ahead and just re-heat it later in the week.
The only conversion that I needed to make for this Mexican dish to make it "gluten free" was to be sure that my Taco Seasoning was gluten free and verify that the corn tortillas were labeled gluten free (you need to read labels because some corn tortillas are made in a facility that uses wheat flour on the equipment!). You can also use gluten free flour tortillas if you prefer. They are a little more expensive but tasted just fine in this recipe. You can certainly make your tortillas from scratch if you prefer...I am not very good at it so I usually just purchase mine. You can purchase taco seasoning labeled gluten free or you can mix up your own batch from scratch (my recipe below).
Mexican Casserole Recipe:
(recipe is for 8x8 pan. You can double it for 9x13 pan)
- 3-4 gluten free tortillas (I used gluten free flour tortillas for today's batch. Corn tortillas also work well but they usually are smaller in size so you may need a couple extra if your corn tortillas are small)
- 1 pound meat (I used lean ground hamburger today but you can use ground turkey or chicken, sausage, chorizo, chicken breasts (or rotisserie chicken or leftover turkey from a holiday dinner), shredded pork or beef, shrimp or a mild white fish (like cod). If you are vegetarian then you can leave the meat out and add extra beans.
- 1 (15 oz.) can black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans or even refried beans. The choice is yours. If you don't like beans then you can certainly leave these out. If you are doing a vegetarian version then you can use an assortment of beans for extra protein, flavor and color!
- 1 (15 oz) can whole kernel corn, drained, optional
- 1 can (16 oz.) jar salsa (any type you like. It doesn't matter if it is chunky or smooth. It can be a traditional red salsa, chipotle salsa or verde salsa which is green. It doesn't matter as long as you like the flavor.
- 1 packet of gluten free taco seasoning (or use my gluten free recipe below)
- 1 1/2 - 2 cups of shredded cheese (you can use any type of cheese you want. I generally use the Mexican blend cheese but cheddar, pepper jack, chipotle cheddar, co-jack, plain cheddar, etc. will all work). I usually use almost 2 cups because I like mine real cheesy!
- 1 (3oz.) can black olives, sliced, optional
|I used ground beef today for my Mexican casserole. When it was almost done cooking, I drained the fat and stirred in the taco seasoning. Feel free to use ground turkey or chicken OR substitute any other meat that is pre-cooked.|
|I used black beans today in my Mexican Casserole. Feel free to use Kidney beans, pinto beans or re-fried beans.|
Gluten Free Taco Seasoning Blend:
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder (not garlic salt)
- 1 teaspoon onion powder (not onion salt)
- 1/4 teaspoon of crushed red chili pepper flakes, optional
- 1/4 teaspoon of ground cayenne pepper or chipotle pepper, optional
|Just removed mine from the microwave.|
|It is still hot from the microwave.|
|Look at all this lovely cheesy ingredients. Mmmmm!|
|This is another angle of the Mexican casserole. You can see the layers a little better.|
I hope you enjoy this super easy recipe that tastes like you spent a long time preparing it. It is simple, easy and affordable but looks like you spent hours in the kitchen preparing it. Simple enough for a quick, weeknight dinner but it is also perfect for entertaining a crowd.
Gluten Free Casually