If you are looking for a simple family dinner that everyone will love, look no further. This Simple Mexican Tater Tot Casserole is it. It takes about 15 minutes of hands-on time and simple to find ingredients. Your family and friends will love this.
Beauty In Simplicity
The beauty of this dish is just how simple it is! With only a few ingredients that you probably already have on hand, this dish will be ready in no time.
I love a fancy dinner as much as the next person, but comfort food for me is always simple. This dish feels like home for me and I think it will for you too.
Another great thing about this dish is it makes great leftovers. It reheats really well in the microwave and is perfect for a work lunch.
- Ground Beef- you could also sub this out for ground turkey or chicken if you wanted to go with something lighter.
- Black beans- I use a lot of them in this recipe as a filler. Beef is expensive right now, and the black beans help that stretch much further.
- Enchilada Sauce- I used the Old El Paso brand, but you use whatever you like!
- Minced Garlic- This is a must for flavor.
- Chili Powder- Mexene is my favorite brand of chili powder. This is not an afilliate thing, just a love for a good chili powder. Now that we don't live in Texas, I have to order it online.
- Cumin- This is a classic Mexican seasoning and I love it!
- Cayenne Pepper- We love everything a little spicy, you can adjust the seasoning depending on how hot you like.
- Black pepper
- Pepper Jack Cheese- This is for topping before the tater tot. I didn't add a lot, but it is really good.
- Tater tots- One of the best inventions known to man.
- Toppings- You can use whatever you like on top. I served out casserole with lettuce, tomatoes, red onions, olives, and avocados.
How To Make
Start by browning your meat. Once it is browned, drain the grease off. Next, add in the black beans, enchilada sauce, and seasonings. Mix well.
Pour this into your baking dish. Sprinkle the cheese on the top, then line with the tater tots.
Bake until the whole dish is cooked and hot.
Top with your toppings of choice and serve. Then prepare yourself for the praise you are going to hear for bringing this to the table!
Finishing The Casserole
Once your casserole is finished, top it as your like. You can see what I used below, but of course, you can top it with whatever you like!
You can add more grated cheese, or even a queso fresca or cotija. Salsas are also really good!
Roasted peppers or tomatoes are delicious as well. Just go for it!
A really great thing about this casserole is it is perfect for meal prep. You can easily make this dish ahead of time.
It holds well in the fridge for up to 4 days. Then cook when you are ready. You can also make this ahead of time and freeze. Then, bring to room temp and bake. If you are planning on freezing I would say don't add in the cheese. I think it bakes a little weird after being frozen.
Then once it is baked, it holds well in the fridge for up to a week. When you are ready, microwave or bake to reheat.
It is hard to mess this dish up, meaning it is perfect for someone who is new to the kitchen.
One of the things to be mindful of is food sanitation. Whenever I am working with raw meat I like to make sure I have Clorox wipes on hand. Clean any surface the meat has dripped on or touched.
Also, be mindful to wash your hands after touching the meat. You don't want to spread those germs to your spoon, then everywhere else.
You can hold it in the fridge for at least a week. It reheats really well.
You can. Just know when you reheat it that the cheese might melt kind of funny, but that is not a big deal.
Of course. You really can use any that you like. I have only tried it with black beans and pinto beans.
- Summertime Sangria would pair perfectly with this dish!
- Or even a Cherry Limeade!
- Lemonade is also a really good option.
- Another lemonade variation? How about a Blueberry Lemonade?
Simple Taco Tot Casserole
- 2 pounds ground beef
- 5 15 ounce cans black beans or about 6 cups cooked
- 1 15 ounce can red enchilada sauce
- 1 cup your favorite red salsa
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- ½-1 teaspoon cayenne pepper Depending on how spicy you like it
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- salt Measurement based on taste. This will depend on how salty your enchilada sauce is.
- 1 cup grated pepper jack cheese
- 4-6 cups tater tots of choice
- toppings of choice I used lettuce, red onions, olives, cilantro, tomatoes, avocados, and sour cream. This is a personal preference.
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.Cook ground beef in a good-sized skillet. Once it is cooked, add in your black beans, enchilada sauce, salsa, and seasonings. Add in ½ teaspoon salt. Continue to cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until it is hot. Taste for saltiness. Add more as needed. Pour mixture into a 9x13 pan. Top with your grated cheese, then line with your tater tots. Bake for 10-15 minutes. The tots should be golden brown and the mixture under bubbly. Remove from oven and top with toppings. Serve immediately.Now, if you are using this for meal prep. Cook your filling then allow to cool. Once it is cooled, wrap and place in the fridge for 4-6 days. Top with the tots before baking. Now, sit back and enjoy. You deserve it!