Mexican Tater Tot Casserole
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Easy Mexican tater tot casserole recipe, homemade with simple ingredients in one pot in 30 minutes. Full of ground beef, beans, corn, red enchilada sauce, taco seasoning and cheese.
This is such a tasty, fast, easy dinner! You really can’t go wrong with this one. I love the mixture of tater tots with cheese and all the Mexican flavored trimmings. Casseroles are just a great weeknight dinner in general, so here are a few more good ones to use next time: Creamy Cauliflower Casserole (One Pot) and another Mexican inspired dish, Easy Frito Pie (Chili Pie).
How to make easy Mexican tater tot casserole recipe from scratch?
- Heat– Oil in a large, oven-safe nonstick pan over medium-high heat.
- Saute– Ground beef, garlic, and onions.
- Remove– From heat and drain grease.
- Mix in– Taco seasoning, salt, pepper, green chiles, black, beans, corn, red enchilada sauce, and half the Mexican cheese blend.
- Transfer– Mixture to a greased casserole dish.
- Arrange– Tater tots on top in an even layer.
- Bake– Uncovered at 375 degrees F for 30-35 minutes.
- Remove– From oven and sprinkle remaining cheese.
- Bake– Uncovered again to melt the cheese and enjoy!
What to serve with tater tot hotdish?
A casserole is a one-pot dinner in itself, but you can also add to it with a nice salad, such as Mexican Corn Salad (One Bowl), Tomato Avocado Salad (One Bowl), or Cherry Tomato Salad (One Bowl) You can also pair it with a vegetable, such as Mexican Corn on the Cob (One Pan), Sautéed Green Beans (One Pot), Oven Roasted Carrots (One Pan), or Oven Roasted Beets (One Pan) Of course, some dinner rolls are always great to have on the side as well.
Chicken tater tot casserole- Not a fan of beef or maybe you just want to use up that leftover Mexican Shredded Chicken? Try this variation by substituting beef for chicken. It can even be shredded rotisserie chicken you just purchased at the store as a last minute meal addition.
Cheeseburger tater tot casserole- Remove the Mexican flavors, such as Taco seasoning, jalepenos, green chilis, etc. and simply use regular cheddar cheese and seasoned beef. You can add in some ketchup for a saucy flavor, too. It will simplify the meal, using less ingredients and changing up the flavor. This means you now have two different casseroles you can make!
Vegetarian tater tot casserole without meat- Instead of beef, you can use mushrooms, tofu, lentils, nuts, and even add in some nutritional yeast for flavor. This way you still get a simple, easy casserole to fit your dietary needs.
Try other cheeses or cheese blends– There are many different options to choose from, such as cheddar, mozzarella, or even Provolone. But keep in mind that freshly shredded or grated cheese is best because the pre-shredded kind is grainy, chalky, and doesn’t melt as well.
Use an oven-safe skillet- For a truly one pot meal. Then you don’t have to transfer the beef mixture to a casserole dish; you can just top off the beef mixture with a single layer of tater-tots and stick it right in the oven. Easy peasy!
Try other beans- You can switch things up by using kidney beans, pinto beans, or even garbanzo beans.
Tips and techniques for cheesy casserole
Why are my tater tots soggy? How to fix it?- Be sure you are adding the tater tots on top of the beef mixture rather than mixing them together. It also helps if you let your beef mixture cook out some moisture before adding it to the pan so that the tater tots don’t soak up the extra liquid. Also, that last bit of broiling in the oven at the end helps to crispy them up.
How to thicken casserole filling?- There’s a few things you can do to help this. First, you can bake the casserole longer, allowing moisture to cook out. You can also cook the mixture on the stovetop longer so there is less liquid to begin with.
Why is my casserole dry? How to fix it?- You may have overcooked it or mis-measured the ingredients. Be sure to watch your cook time and measurements to help better ensure a good turnout.
Don’t add all cheese at once- Add half of the cheese during baking and the other half near the end on top of the casserole. You want that last bit of cheese to form that aesthetic appeal and yummy crispy layer.
Drain grease because– It makes your dish less fattening, less greasy, and more appetizing overall. You don’t need some extra moisture soaking into the tater tots and making them soggy, either.
Drain and rinse beans– Because they have added salt and water that you don’t want in your casserole. Rinsing them will help them look and taste better with a more pleasing texture as well.
Make a head instructions- You can make the beef mixture ahead of time and store it in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 2 days prior. Once you are ready, spread the beef mixture in a casserole dish, top with tater tots, bake as per instructions, adding the cheese at the end.
Fridge- Leftovers can be stored in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 2 days and reheated in the microwave.
Freezer- Not recommended, because the cheese will separate, the tater tots will be soggy, and you lose the overal crispiness and pleasing textures.
More one pot Casserole recipes
- Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole (One Pan)
- Green Bean Casserole (One Pot)
- Meatball Casserole (One Pot)
- Easy Sweet Potato Casserole (One Pan)
- Chicken Broccoli Rice Casserole (One Pot)
One Pot Mexican Tater Tot Casserole
- 1 tbsp Oil
- 1 pound Ground beef
- 2 cloves Garlic, Finely minced
- 1 cup Onions, Finely chopped
- 1 packet Taco seasoning, 1 oz. packet
- Salt, To taste
- Pepper, To taste
- 1 can Green chiles, 4 oz. can
- 1 can Black beans, 15 oz. can, Drained and Rinsed
- 1 cup Corn, Frozen
- 1 can Red enchilada sauce, 10 oz. can
- 3 cups Mexican cheese blend, Shredded
- 1 bag Frozen tatet tots, 32 oz. bag
- 1 tbsp Jalapenos, Deseeded, Finely chopped, For topping, Can be replaced with finely chopped cilantro or green onions
- Heat oil in a large, oven-safe nonstick pan or cast iron skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add ground beef, garlic, onions and saute for a few minutes until meat is browned.
- Remove from heat and drain grease.
- Add taco seasoning, salt, pepper, green chiles, black, beans, corn, red enchilada sauce and mix until combined.
- Also, mix in half the Mexican cheese blend.
- At this point, if you were using an oven-safe skillet or pan, top off the beef mixture with tater-tots. Spread them in a single even layer. If you were not using an oven-safe pan or skillet, transfer beef mixture to a greased casserole dish (Dimensions: 9×13). Arrange tater tots on top in an even layer. You may end up with some leftover tater tots.
- Bake uncovered at 375 degrees F for 30-35 minutes or until tater tots are crispy.
- Remove from oven and sprinkle remaining cheese.
- Bake uncovered again for 2-3 minutes until cheese is fully melted. Enjoy!
- Read all my tips above.
- Leftovers can be stored in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 2 days and reheated in the microwave.