This easy Mexican casserole is so easy and versatile. Play around with different spices to satisfy your personal taste buds. If you like it spicy, add some jalapeno peppers to kick it up a notch! Serve with sour cream, guacamole, and additional picante sauce on the side.


Recipe Summary

30 mins
55 mins
10 mins
1 hr 35 mins
1 13x9-inch casserole


Original recipe yields 8 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

  • Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Saute onion and bell pepper in hot oil until softening, 2 to 3 minutes. Add garlic and continue to saute until fragrant, about 1 minute more.

  • Break ground beef into small chunks and add to the pot; cook, stirring frequently, until the beef is completely browned, 7 to 10 minutes. Drain grease from the pot and return to heat.

  • Stir pinto beans, tomato sauce, picante sauce, cumin, chili powder, cilantro, salt, red pepper flakes, and black pepper into the beef mixture; bring to a simmer, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook at a simmer until the flavors blend, about 15 minutes.

  • Spoon enough of the beef mixture into the bottom of a 13x9-inch baking dish to cover. Arrange 6 tortillas atop the beef mixture. Sprinkle 1 cup Monterey Jack cheese and 1/2 cup Cheddar cheese in a layer to cover the tortillas. Arrange remaining 6 tortillas atop the cheese layer; top with remaining meat mixture. Cover the dish tightly with aluminum foil.

  • Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes. Remove the aluminum foil and sprinkle the remaining Monterey Jack cheese and Cheddar cheese over the top. Continue baking until the cheese is melted, 5 to 10 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes before cutting; top with lettuce and tomato.

Cook's Note:

Substitute 1 tablespoon fresh chopped cilantro for dried, if preferred.

Nutrition Facts

475 calories; protein 27g 54% DV; carbohydrates 34.3g 11% DV; fat 26.4g 41% DV; cholesterol 78.7mg 26% DV; sodium 1105.9mg 44% DV. Full Nutrition

Reviews (6)

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Most helpful positive review

Rating: 4 stars
This was delicious--next time I will cook the ground beef separately--pain in the rear to drain--didn't have tomato sauce so I used enchilada sauce--will definitely make again Read More
7 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 5
  • 4 star values: 2
  • 3 star values: 0
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 4 stars
This was delicious--next time I will cook the ground beef separately--pain in the rear to drain--didn't have tomato sauce so I used enchilada sauce--will definitely make again Read More
Rating: 4 stars
Good flavor and texture. I might add half the mixture next time, then the tortillas and cheese, instead of just covering the bottom of the pan. To up the nutrition factors, I did add one very small sweet potato (diced), one cup of frozen corn, one can of petite diced tomatoes (not drained), and one can of black beans, rinsed and drained. I know that sounds like a lot, but worked for me. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
Loved this recipe! My husband raved about this dish. It was easy to make and even better the next day. I too cooked the hamburger first drained it set aside then added it back to the sautéed onions and garlic. (No peppers for me). So much easier. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
I cut back on the cheese but it was still really good. I didn’t have tomato sauce so I watered down some tomato paste. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
I left out the hot spices because my kiddo doesn't like anything even vaguely spicy. It was still really tasty. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
I added olives tomatoes and green onions once it came out of the oven and it was awesome. Read More