It’s time to turn up the heat with this delicious Beacon-friendly recipe: Instant Pot Mexican Casserole!

Today’s recipe of the week is brought to you by wellplated by Erin and is the perfect meal to cook for yourself, friends or family. The recipe makes a large portion, making it ideal to serve at gatherings or having it as part of your meal planning for the week.  Filled with rice, chicken, beans, spices and fresh veggies – yum!

Ingredients:

  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound 93% lean ground chicken or turkey
  • 1 small yellow onion — diced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 large red bell pepper — cut into wide strips (about 3/4 inch), halved if long
  • 1 large green bell pepper — cut into wide strips (about 3/4 inch), halved if long
  • 1 15-ounce can low-sodium black beans — drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup corn kernels — fresh, frozen and thawed, or drained from a can
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup water — plus additional if you have a newer Instant Pot (see recipe notes below)
  • 1 15-ounce can fire-roasted diced tomatoes in their juices
  • 2 cups of your favorite salsa — 1 (16-ounce) jar; I used a chunky medium salsa
  • 1 cup uncooked long grain brown rice*
  • 1 cup shredded Mexican blend cheese — divided
  • For serving: chopped fresh cilantro — diced avocado, chopped green onion, sour cream or plain Greek yogurt

Instructions:

  1. Turn the Instant Pot to SAUTE and add the oil. Once the oil is hot and shimmering, add the chicken, onion, and salt. Cook and stir, breaking up the chicken as you go, until the meat is no longer pink, about 7 minutes.
 Add the red bell pepper, green bell pepper and black beans, corn, chili powder, cumin, and garlic powder. Stir to combine.

  2. Splash in the water and scrape up all of the stuck on bits of food. Make sure to get every bit off so that you avoid a burn warning. Pour in the diced tomatoes in their juices and salsa. Do not stir. Rinse the brown rice and drain (this will help prevent a “burn” warning). Add the brown rice and once again do not stir (again, we are trying to avoid the burn warning here). With the back of a spoon or a spatula, gently push the rice down and spread it evenly so that it is submerged in liquid.

  3. Cover and seal the Instant Pot. Cook on high pressure (manual) for 20 minutes. Allow the pressure to release naturally for 20 minutes, and then vent to release any remaining pressure.
 Remove the lid and stir. At this point, the rice may still have a bit of liquid at the bottom, but it will continue to absorb as the casserole sits. Taste and adjust any seasonings as desired.
  4. Stir in 1/2 cup of the shredded cheese, then sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top. Set the lid back on the Instant Pot (no need to seal; just make sure it is resting on top). Let rest 10 additional minutes to allow the cheese to melt and more of the liquid to absorb. Serve hot with any desired toppings.

Make sure to check out the full recipe and instructions here.

Shine Bright!

Recipe and photo credit: www.wellplated.com