Turkey, Black Bean, and Rice Casserole

I've been so busy lately there hasn't been any time for cooking!  So when I had a day to get my grocery list checked off and my cleaning done, I decided it was time to squeeze in a new recipe.

This started out as a stuffed pepper recipe; I had 2 peppers in a sealed package in the fridge for a couple days I needed to use up.  So I decided to go for a Mexican themed dish instead of the standard Stuffed Bell Peppers recipe, adding in some beans, rice, and cheese to change up the original.  I got the meat and rice cooking, but when I went to cut open the green peppers they were obviously not fresh enough to eat, so I nixed the idea and just opted for a casserole!

I started out by browning a pound a ground turkey in a nonstick skillet.



Once it was fully cooked, I added in black beans, cooked rice, and salsa and stirred until it was combined.



I poured the turkey, rice, and bean mixture into a casserole and sprinkled cheddar cheese on top.  Then I put it in the oven at 350 degrees.



I knew it wouldn't take long since the meat and rice were already cooked, so I let it bake for 15 minutes, until the cheese was melted.



It's funny how you can start out planning to cook one meal, then end up making something totally different and awesome.  My husband really loved this dish and suggested layering in tortilla chips next time, which got me thinking that this would really be a great dip also.  I know this would have been great in the peppers, so I still plan on trying that variety when I get some more fresh peppers.  My biggest thought was that tossing in some jalapeños would be ahhhhh-mazing.  All in all this was a great meal today and I'm so glad I found some time to cook. Playing with recipes and coming up with new ones is half the fun of learning to cook, so this turned into a great experience!  Now I need to make my own salsa to make this with...

Turkey, Black Bean, and Rice Casserole Recipe

Ingredients:

1 pound ground turkey
1 cup salsa
1 cup rice, cooked
1 can black beans, 16 ounces
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Instructions:

Brown turkey in a large skillet until fully cooked.  Boil rice until cooked.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Once turkey is finished, stir in cooked rice, salsa, and black beans.  Move mixture to a baking casserole, then sprinkle cheese on the top.  Bake for 15 minutes, , until cheese is melted.  Serve as a stand alone meal or on tortillas.

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