Beef Enchilada Casserole

If you like beef enchiladas, then you will love this casserole. It has all of the flavors of beef enchiladas, but it’s so much easier to make. There is no rolling up the tortillas here, instead the zesty beef mix is layered between gooey cheese, corn tortillas and smothered in enchilada sauce.

Doesn’t that just make you want to dive right in?

This comforting, hearty casserole will make a welcome dinner for any night of the week.

This can also be made the night before. It can be frozen as well, which is always great if you have a busy week ahead and you want to have something on hand to just pop into the oven. So grab some tortillas and cheese and let’s get started.

Here’s what you need to make your own:

*corn tortillas; I like to use corn tortillas, but you can use flour if you prefer.

*1 large can enchilada sauce

*2 cups shredded cheese; I used a Monterey and Colby Jack blend

For The Beef Mixture:

*1 LB ground beef

*1 small onion chopped

*2 garlic cloves minced

*1 1/2 tsp. cumin or more to taste

*1 1/2 tsp. coriander or more to taste

*1 1/2 tsp. chili powder or more to taste

*1 tsp. dried oregano or more to taste

*salt and white pepper to taste

Heat a large skillet to medium high heat. Add the ground beef. Cook until almost browned, breaking up the meat as it cooks.

Add the onions and the garlic to the beef and continue cooking stirring frequently until all of the beef is cooked through; drain if needed.

Turn the heat down to medium and pour in 1/4 cup of the enchilada sauce and the rest of the ingredients for the beef mixture.

Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 350°.

Pour some of the enchilada sauce on the bottom of a medium baking dish; just enough to cover the bottom.

Line some of the corn tortillas on the bottom of the baking dish over the sauce. It’s ok if they overlap.

Spread the beef mixture over the tortillas.

Sprinkle half of the cheese over the beef mixture.

Line more of the tortillas over the beef and cheese mixture.

Pour the remaining enchilada sauce over the tortillas.

Top with the rest of the cheese.

Bake uncovered for 30 minutes.

Serve and Enjoy!

If you want to make ahead, simply assemble, cover tightly and place in the refrigerator.


If you don’t want the tortillas to become too soft from sitting in the enchilada sauce over night, toast them in a pan before assembling.

To Freeze:

Toast the tortillas in a pan if you want them a little firmer. They will become softer from sitting in the enchilada sauce.

Assemble and cover the unbaked casserole.

When ready to bake, partially unthaw in the refrigerator over night. Remove from the refrigerator for 30 minutes before baking.

Bake uncovered for 30 to 45 minutes or until heated through with in internal temperature of 165°.

Casserole can be frozen up to 3 months.

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Beef and Cheese Quesadillas

Don’t you just love warm, toasted quesadillas. They are so versatile. They can be made with beef, chicken, pork or even with some really good veggies. These beauties are stuffed with gooey cheese and seasoned beef so they are packed with flavor with each bite.

I like to make several at a time because they freeze so well and also, they make great leftovers the next day. Instead of heating a few of these at a time in a skillet, I started placing mine in the oven once they have been filled. It’s great for when you want to cook more than just a few. The key to making these in the oven instead of a skillet is to cool down the filling a bit before placing them into the tortillas.

Serve them with sour cream, Salsa or guacamole. You can even pair them with rice or refried beans to make a satisfying meal.

Here’s what you need:

For The Seasoned Beef:

*1 LB. ground beef

*1 onion, chopped

*2 garlic cloves, minced

*2 TBS. tomato paste

*1/4 cup water

*1/2 TBS. chili powder or more to taste

* 1 1/2 tsp. cumin, or more to taste

*2 tsp. coriander, or more to taste

*1 tsp. dried oregano, or more to taste

*cilantro, chopped

*salt and pepper to taste

*a splash of lime juice.

*flour tortillas; I like using a bigger size rather than the standard 8 inch size but it’s really your preference.

*shredded cheese: I used Monterey and Colby Jack blend

Preheat oven to 400°.

Heat a large skillet to medium high heat. Add the ground beef and cook, breaking it up as you go; drain if need then add back to the skillet. Add in the onions and garlic and cook for about 5 minutes or until the onions begin to get tender.

Add the tomato paste, water and all of the spices for the beef except for the lime juice.

stir to combine and simmer for 5 minutes.

squeeze in the lime juice, stir and continue to cook for 1 more minute.

Take the skillet off of the heat and let cool just until warm.

Spray a baking sheet with no stick spray.

Once the beef mixture has cooled down, place a tortilla on a flat surface and sprinkle with cheese.

Spoon some of the beef mixture over the cheese.

Then add more cheese on top of the beef mixture.

Fold in half and place on to the baking sheet; repeat with the remaining tortillas.

Bake for about 6 to 8 minutes, then turn them over and bake for another 5 to 6 minutes or until they start to turn a little brown and are toasted.

Serve while warm.

To freeze:

Place on a baking sheet in a single layer and freeze for about 1 to 2 hours or until they start to become firm. I like to wrap each one in waxed paper then place in a zip top freezer bag. These can be stored up to 2 months.

To reheat place frozen quesadillas in a skillet and heat on medium heat until warmed through. Turn them over during the reheating time. They can also be placed frozen in a 400° until warm.


Continuing On My Food Journey To


For this region’s dish I chose

When I first played around with the idea of starting a food journey, I found it as a challenge more to myself, to cook and learn about other country’s food and their culture. I kind of kept it on the back burner for a long time for several reasons. One thing that really changed my mind and gave me the push that I needed….ok three things… my hubby, my online family at and a little cooking competition show that featured Ethiopia as a food challenge. Through my naivety I mostly thought of Ethiopia as a poverty stricken country. But I soon discovered there is so much more, such as their food and how much they love to share it with one another.

The food is so exciting and unique with the rich, spicy stews and flavorful vegetables. Their dishes are not only prepared with diversity and strong spicy flavors, but Ethiopians are very centered on preserving their traditional heritage of eating together and savoring a meal. To them, cooking and sitting down to share a meal together with family and friends shows love and appreciation. Traditionally, a meal is eaten with the hands or Injera, which is like a spongy flatbread. I think for some of us living here in the US we might have a hard time thinking about eating with our hands, but I really like the concept. You truly are experiencing your food in a whole new way.

When I was reading about all of the different types of dishes, the one that really stood out for me was Tibs….maybe because I’m a girl who does love a good meaty meal. Tibs is a popular dish of sautéed meat with onions and spices. It’s like a cross between a stir fry and a stew. It is usually prepared by some as a sign of respect to someone or as a festive dish at special events or holidays, although you now can find it in restaurants or bars in the region.

It is really quick to prepare. The beef is cut into cubes and sautéed with onions, garlic, spices and tomatoes. It all comes together in a very rich, spicy sauce. You can control how spicy you want it so don’t be hesitant to try this if you’re not a fan of spicy foods. One spice in particular that is used in this dish and many others is Berbere. It is composed of chilis, garlic, cinnamon, allspice and several other warm spices. You can look up how to make your own, or like me you can find it online. I really suggest not leaving it out if you can because it really helps give this dish its depth of flavor. This dish really surprised me how layered in flavor it was…there is heat the from the spices, then you have the nice charred meat and onions with a slight tang from the tomatoes and lemon juice. It’s so delicious. There are several variations with venison and even some meatless ones, but this is pretty much the version that appealed to me….and you know I had to put a little of me into it as well. This dish is typically served with Injera or rice. I chose to serve mine with a side of rice.

Here’s what you need to make this delightful dish:

*1 lb beef cut into bite size pieces

*1 TBS canola oil or olive oil + 1 tsp.

*1/2 TBS Berbere spice +1 tsp.

*1 tsp salt or more to taste

*cracked pepper to taste

*1/2 red onion, roughly chopped

*2 cloves of garlic minced

*2 tsp. clarified butter or regular butter

*1/2 tsp cumin

*1/4 tsp. dried ginger or 1/2 tsp. minced fresh ginger

*1 tsp dried Rosemary or 2 tsp freshly chopped

*1/2 cup canned crushed tomatoes

*1/2 TBS lemon juice or more to taste

Set out the beef for about 30 minutes before cooking, dry with paper towels if needed.

Season the beef with 1/2 TBS of the Berber spice, salt and pepper.

Heat a cast iron pan to medium high heat and add 1 TBS. of canola oil. When the oil is hot, add the beef to the pan. Sear the beef for about 2 minutes on all sides.

Don’t over crowd the pan or the beef will not brown properly. If needed do this in batches.

Remove the beef from the pan; drain the left over juices except for 1 TBS and leave in the pan and add the 1 tsp. canola oil and the 2tsp. of the butter.

Once the butter is melted add in the onions and the garlic.

Cook for about 1 minute, stirring constantly; add in the cumin, ginger and Rosemary.

Continue cooking for about 2 more minutes or until the onions soften, stirring often.

Return the beef back to the pan and stir to combine the onion mixture with the beef.

Pour in the crushed tomatoes with the lemon juice and remaining 1 tsp. Berber.

Stir and turn the heat down to low and simmer for 2 minutes.

Remove and serve.

Creamy Cheesy Beef Skillet Pasta

This dish is total comfort food. I made this after a really long, stressful day at work and it is definitely a winner. The beefy tomato sauce and pasta make this a really hearty meal, while cream cheese gives it a nice creamy flavor. Then there is the cheese…. I mean, you can never have too much cheese. I had some nice Gruyere and aged cheddar that I grated and threw in some Monterrey jack, it really made this cheese loving girl happy. What’s even better is that it’s all cooked in one pan….yes even the pasta. Can I talk about the pasta for a minute? I found this Conchiglie pasta at one of my Fresh Market stores.

I had never even heard if this one before, but I thought it would hold up great in a beefy tomato sauce. They look like a cross between shells and elbow pasta.

What’s even better, is that all of that beefy sauce and cheese fill up the center of the pasta, then when you bite into it….it is heaven. This dish is definitely for a cheat day, but it’s worth it.

Here’s what you need:

*1 LB ground beef

*1 small onion, chopped

*3 garlic cloves, minced

*olive oil

*14.5 oz. can of diced tomatoes, undrained

*28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes

*2 tsp. dried Basil, or more to taste

*2 tsp. dried oregano, or more to taste

*2 tsp. dried marjoram, or more to taste

*1 tsp. onion powder, or more to taste

*1 tsp. garlic powder, or more to taste

*1 tsp. chili powder, or more to taste

*1 tsp salt, or more to taste

*2/3 cup of chicken stock

*2 1/2 cups Conchiglie pasta or elbow pasta, uncooked

*4 oz. cream cheese

*2/3 cup shredded Gruyere cheese

*1/2 cup shredded aged Cheddar cheese

*1/2 cup shredded Monterrey Jack cheese

Heat a large deep skillet on medium high heat, add a few tablespoons of olive oil. When the pan starts getting hot, add the onions and the garlic.

Sauté until the onions just start to get tender, about 2 minutes. If the onions and garlic start to turn brown, reduce the heat to medium. Add the ground beef to the pan and turn the heat back up to medium high heat if you had to lower it.

Break up the beef while stirring the onions and garlic to combine. Cook until the beef is brown, about 5 to 8 minutes stirring frequently; drain if needed.

Add in the diced and crushed tomatoes.

Stir to combine the tomatoes with the onion beef mixture. Next, stir in all of the spices and herbs.

Lower the heat to medium low and simmer for 10 minutes; taste and add any more herbs or spices.

Dump in the pasta and the chicken stock.

Stir to combine. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the pasta is al dente.

Cut the cream cheese into cubes.

Add the cream cheese to the beef and pasta mixture.

Gently stir until the cream cheese starts to melt, then add in the shredded cheeses.

Stir carefully to melt and combine the cheese with the beef pasta mixture. Do not over mix or the pasta will start to break apart.

When the cheese is melted and heated thru, serve with some nice crusty bread.

Cheeseburger Biscuit Cups

These biscuit cups are a fun spin on your ordinary beefy sandwich. These are easy to put together and very tasty too I might add. You can top these with what you like on your cheeseburger. I added ketchup, mustard and a pickle on these, but you can make these your own.

Here’s what you need:

*1 lb. ground beef; I used one with an 85% to 15% fat ratio.

*1 can refrigerated biscuits; I used the larger kind.

*1/4 Cup ketchup

*1 TBS mustard

*2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

*1 1/2 tsp. onion powder

*1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder

*shredded or sliced cheese; I had shredded cheddar on hand so that is what I used, but any kind will work.

Preheat oven to 400°

Heat a large pan to medium high heat. Crumble and brown beef, drain if needed. Add ketchup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, onion and garlic powder.

Stir to combine. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Spray a muffin tin with no stick spray. Press each biscuit into the muffin tin, forming a cup.

Fill each cup with the beef mixture. Set aside any remaining beef.

Place in the oven and cook for 5 minutes. Take the tins out and with the back of a spoon, press the beef mixture gently down into the biscuit dough.

This keeps the dough from rising too much and also allows you to add more of the beef mixture. Spoon more of the beef into the cups.

Place back into the oven and continue cooking for about 10 to 12 minutes more or until golden brown.

Add the cheese on top of the beef and cook for another 5 minutes or until the cheese has melted.

Top with your favorite toppings and serve.

Slow Cooker Beer Braised Beef with Tomatoes and Onions

Slow cookers are great aren’t they? You put some love into preparing the ingredients, throw it all in and let the slow cooker do the rest of the work, then later you have a fabulous tasting dish. Well, ok, not of all the time. I have had a few dishes that didn’t turn out as well as I thought it would. This dish came out really well….. nice, tender pieces of beef flavored with herbs and spices all nestled in a savory sauce with onions and tomatoes.

Here’s how to make it:

Cut a chuck roast into large pieces.

In a large bowl, season beef with salt, pepper, dried thyme, sage, Italian seasoning, paprika, ( I used half sharp Hungarian style, but you can use sweet if you’d like) garlic powder and onion powder. I do not measure, I always add to taste. Mix to coat beef with the herb/spice mixture.

Add a few Tbs of flour to the beef as well and mix to coat all sides.

Add enough olive oil or any other oil you prefer, to coat the bottom of a larger skillet. Heat to med high and add beef to the pan. Do not over crowd the pan because this will not allow the meat to brown as well as it should. Working in batches, brown beef on all sides and place in the slow cooker.

Chop a medium size onion and place into the slow cooker. Add in 1/2 C of beef broth, a few splashes of Worcestershire sauce, 1 cup of ale or beer, 1 can of diced tomatoes and 1 bay leaf. Cook on low for 6 to 7 hours. Remove the bay leaf.

Remove the meat with a slotted spoon, leaving the liquid in the slow cooker. If you want the beef in smaller pieces, shred with a fork and set aside. Mix together 2 to 3 tsp of arrow root to 1 Tbs of water. Pour this into the slow cooker and stir. Continue cooking on high for 15 to 30 minutes, or until the sauce becomes as thick as you like.

Serve over rice or mashed potatoes.