Mexican rice casserole is a savory dish from Mexican cuisine prepared with rice, and several other ingredients often consisting of beef, corn, onions, tomatoes, seasonings, and spices. The rice used in the casserole may vary from one recipe to the other, with brown rice and long grain white rice being the most popularly used ones. Other ingredients like bell peppers, beans, and cheese can also be used in rice based casserole.
Ingredients and Preparation
A popular Mexican rice casserole recipe suggests using ground beef, taco seasoning mix, tomato sauce, shredded cheddar cheese, cooked long grain white rice, salt, whole kernel corn, and Rotel tomatoes and green chilies as the ingredients. Beef is cooked, combined with cooked rice and all other ingredients in a baking dish, and baked in oven to prepare rice based casserole.
Mexican Rice Casserole Recipe Variations
A couple of popular variations of Mexican rice casserole have been discussed below:
- Bell peppers and rice based casserole- the recipe for this casserole suggests sautéing onions, jalapenos, green bell peppers, red bell peppers, and garlic in olive oil, followed by adding rice, tomatoes, chicken broth, salt, Southwest Essence (a mixture of salt, black pepper, oregano, ground cumin, chili powder, paprika, ground coriander, cayenne pepper, red pepper, and garlic powder), and saffron, and bringing the mixture to a boil. The entire mixture is then transferred into a casserole saucier, and baked until liquid gets absorbed and rice is cooked. The dish is served hot after stirring in cilantro and green onions.
- Black beans, brown rice, and beef based casserole- this Mexican rice casserole is prepared by combining together cooked beef mix (beef, garlic, and onions), black beans, cooked rice, tomato sauce, and cilantro, and placing the mix in a greased baking dish. The rice mixture is then topped with tomato slices and cheddar cheese, and baked in oven twice; first time covered with aluminum foil, and second time uncovered. The casserole is served hot after garnishing it with cilantro.
Rice is a food product which is low in saturated fat and is cholesterol free. Among white rice and brown rice, the latter is considered to be a healthier alternative as it is 100% wholegrain food product. Both brown rice and white rice are rich in B group vitamins, vitamin E, zinc, phosphorus, potassium, manganese, and magnesium. Further, rice is a good source of carbohydrates and protein. Due to several vital nutrients contained in rice, Mexican rice casserole, made with rice as the key ingredient, is regarded to be quite healthy with respect to maintaining adequate cholesterol level; keeping the heart, lungs, nervous system and brain functioning in an optimal way; and retaining appropriate health of skin and hair.