Saturday, September 3, 2016

Tex-Mex Beef and Rice Casserole ****

This one just blew our minds.  I mean, it obviously wasn't anything special, but the flavors just go together perfectly.  When I picked it, I assumed it would basically be another version of one of our favorites, Mexican Chicken.  In theory, it is, but they taste nothing alike.  It's still just as yummy, just in a different way.  Hubby is job-hunting at the moment, so he made this one while I was working late one day.  He said he thought it would be good with one of the flavored rices, but I just loved the white rice with it.  I think anything else would pull the attention away from the other flavor players.  The chips give you just enough of a little salty crunch with each bite.  Just a great recipe all around!

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~

1 lb. extra-lean ground beef
1 tub (8 oz.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese Spread
1 pkg.  (1 oz.) TACO BELL Taco Seasoning Mix
2 Tbsp. milk
1 can (14 oz.) fire-roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can (11 oz.) corn with red and green bell peppers, undrained
1/2 cup chopped onions
3 cups cooked long-grain white rice
1 cup KRAFT Shredded Colby and Monterey Jack Cheeses, divided
1 cup crushed tortilla chips
3 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro

Heat oven to 350*F.
Brown meat in large nonstick skillet. Meanwhile, mix cream cheese spread, seasoning mix and milk until blended.
Drain meat; return to skillet. Add cream cheese mixture, tomatoes, corn and onions; mix well.
Combine rice and 1/2 cup shredded cheese in 13x9-inch baking dish sprayed with cooking spray; spread to cover bottom of dish. Top with meat mixture and remaining shredded cheese; cover.
Bake 30 min. or until heated through. Top with crushed chips and cilantro.

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