Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Cowboy Casserole (Freezer friendly!)

Okay, so this didn't photograph well but believe me it's a crowd pleaser. My kiddos and husband all loved this one. This is about as casserole as you can get I'm afraid. Tater tots, cream of mushroom and ground beef...all the elements of a perfect casserole, am I right? It's just the kind of casserole a sweet little old lady might bring your family for dinner in the 1980s and that's what makes it comfort food :)

But, it is a new twist to tater tot casserole...and the new twist is green chile! Because everything is better with green chilies! You can tweak how spicy you make it by adding less chile or using a milder chile. But my family likes it hot so there is a pretty good portion of it in the recipe below.

I found a recipe in a magazine for a casserole with this name but pretty much the only thing I kept the same was the tater tots and the can of corn. So I'm going to claim this as a neighborjulia original. Enjoy!

Cowboy Casserole
2 lbs. ground beef
1 can corn
2 cans cream of mushroom
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup diced green chile (I used frozen)
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 tsp. onion powder
salt and pepper (to taste)
1 bag frozen tater tots

1) Brown the ground beef in a medium saucepan until completely cooked
      2) beef with all remaining ingredients (except for tater tots).  Place beef mixture evenly in a 9x13 pan. 
3) Top with tater tots.   
4) bake in a 375 degree oven for 35-45 minutes or until sauce is heated through and tater tots are brown and crispy.

Freezer Meal Instructions:

Follow steps 1-3 above.  Cover pan with two layers of tinfoil and freeze. 

To heat after frozen: Tent foil cover over pan.  Bake at 375 for 1 hr. Remove foil and continue baking for 20-30 minutes or until casserole is heated through and tater tots are brown and crispy.

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