This Cheesy Spanish Rice Casserole is super easy to make, and really delicious, this Mexican flavored rice casserole is a hit with my family. They have asked for it several times. And, I love how easy it is to make!
Recipes like my Broccoli Wild Rice Casserole and Zucchini Stuffing Casserole are great for when you want a family pleasing meal with minimal effort. I love a nice healthy main dish, and this is one of my Main Dish Recipes you’ll want in your recipe box!
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Please let me know if you have any questions about this recipe. I read all the comments myself and I try to help as soon as I can. I have readers from all levels of comfort and experience in the kitchen on my site, and I’ve tried to answer some of your questions already in the post. But if I’ve missed anything, please feel free to leave a comment and ask.
Quick and easy 30 minute meal
I had a box of the San Francisco treat Spanish rice mix in the cupboard one day and decided to gussy it up a bit for dinner. Making it a whole meal in one dish.
Well, besides being super easy to make, it was a big hit. Delicious, and yummy. With my husband even going back for seconds.
This Cheesy Spanish Rice Casserole is great as a quick and easy dinner or 30 minute meal.
It would also be great as a taco filling.
Heat up some tortillas with cheese, slice up some cabbage or lettuce, and add some guacamole. Maybe even add some enchilada sauce.
This casserole would be a perfect addition to a taco bar party. Take a look here for other suggestions and tips on how to host a great taco bar party!
Boxed Spanish rice mix
Any brand of boxed rice mix will work here. I know there are several. And, if the one you have is a little bigger (more ounces in the box) or a little smaller, that’s fine. They will all work. In a casserole like this, it’s so nice to have the flexibility to use what you have.
The box of Spanish rice mix that I had called for adding a can of diced tomatoes to the rice before cooking. I omitted that can of tomatoes because my family doesn’t care for diced tomatoes in their food. Feel free to add that to your casserole if your family is ok with that.
You could use a can of Ro-tel tomatoes and chiles in this casserole; that would be yummy.
I even saw a store brand Mexican blend boxed rice mix what would work well in this casserole.
There are many brands of these crumbles now, and they do have different names from some of the brands. I’ve seen them called everything from beefless crumbles to soy crumbles to meatless ground round.
Most of the brands are pretty good, and will work in this casserole.
I have found them in the frozen section of my grocery store, as well as in the meatless section of the store near the produce department.
If you buy the frozen ones, you don’t have to worry about defrosting them, as they are added to the hot cooked rice, and then popped in the oven, so they will be fully heated through.
Can I use something other than meatless crumbles?
If you can’t find meatless crumbles, or want to go with something else, drained and rinsed black beans would be delicious in this easy to make casserole.
Edited to add in Feb 2021 I made this casserole last night with 1 cup of drained and rinsed pinto beans instead of the crumbles, and it was delicious!
If you eat meat, cooked ground beef would be a natural substitute for the meatless crumbles.
Shredded chicken would also work well here.
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Cheesy Spanish Rice Casserole Recipe
Cheesy Spanish Rice Casserole
- Prepare boxed rice mix according to microwave package directions in a 2.5 liter microwavable casserole dish.
- While the rice cooks in the microwave, preheat the oven to 375° F.
- Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat, and cook the chopped bell pepper and corn until tender and some edges have browned, about 5-7 minutes.
- Once rice is cooked, stir in cooked bell pepper, corn, meatless crumbles, sour cream, and salsa. Sprinkle Jack cheese over the top.
- Bake, uncovered, 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted and browned on top. Top with queso fresco and sliced avocado.