Mexicali Casserole Recipe
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Mexicali Casserole Recipe

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If you like Mexican food but are watching your diet, try this tasty bake. It takes advantage of ground turkey and reduced-fat cheese without sacrificing flavor.—Mrs. Gertrudis C. Miller, Evansville, Indiana
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Bake: 55 min.
MAKES:6 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Bake: 55 min.
MAKES: 6 servings


  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 1 small green pepper, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 can (16 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 cup water
  • 2/3 cup uncooked long grain rice
  • 1/3 cup sliced ripe olives
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese

Nutritional Facts

1 serving: 348 calories, 10g fat (3g saturated fat), 66mg cholesterol, 508mg sodium, 41g carbohydrate (0 sugars, 9g fiber), 24g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 3 lean meat, 2 starch, 2 vegetable.


  1. Preheat oven to 375°. In a large skillet coated with cooking spray, cook turkey, onions and pepper over medium heat 6-8 minutes or until meat is no longer pink and vegetables are tender, breaking up turkey into crumbles. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Drain. Stir in beans, tomatoes, water, rice, olives, chili powder and salt.
  2. Transfer to an 11x7-in. baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake, covered, 50-55 minutes or until rice is tender. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake, uncovered, 5 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Yield: 6 servings.
Originally published as Mexicali Casserole in Country Woman January/February 2005, p36

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sdipiazza User ID: 2106899 241341
Reviewed Jan. 8, 2016

"This is a good recipe but the rice was cooked to mush after 50 minutes. Next time I make it I will make it as a skillet dish and cook on the stove."

jud--dee User ID: 7527327 225869
Reviewed May. 4, 2015

"I hate when people change up a recipe so much. I used 5 min. rice and did use water too. It was really great as is."

dianedrugas User ID: 2423188 225793
Reviewed May. 2, 2015

"Great recipe! I added a few chili cheese fritos on top and sliced avocado on the side to spice it up a bit

Will make it again!"

Desiree71 User ID: 8357037 225714
Reviewed May. 1, 2015

"I made this with diced rotisserie chicken from the local grocery store and added about half a packet of taco seasoning and the hubby loved it! The whole house smelled like a Mexican fiesta! Next time I think I will skip the rice altogether and add more vegie to get the calorie count even lower! There's so much you can do with this recipe! IT's awesome!"

Angel182009 User ID: 6228642 217632
Reviewed Jan. 11, 2015

"Overall this recipe was good and I will make it again but with a few changes. I think the rice could have been more moist and fluffy so I am going to try instant rice to see if that helps. I also thought it was a little dry. So I made try adding a cup or two of salsa to the mix. As far as this being a light and easy recipe to make, it was and that made it great for me to put together for a big family dinner."

Lowcalmama User ID: 7448511 216810
Reviewed Jan. 3, 2015

"Awesome dish! I cooked the rice first. I used diced tomatoes with green chili's. My husband and I loved it!"

Stellaca User ID: 6944940 145071
Reviewed Nov. 7, 2014

"Im concerned about the high sodium, 508 is way too much, with my diabetes and high blood pressure, I need to cut back, any ideas? I would appreciate. I know 1/2 tsp of salt shouldn't bring it up that high, I don't use any kind of salt anyways."

kgburgess User ID: 2727982 66880
Reviewed Jul. 7, 2012

"This was so yummy and easy to make! I made just a few changes based on other reviews. First, I used ground chicken that I got on sale instead of ground turkey. Because others said the rice didn't cook through, I used 1 bag of Success boil-in-the-bag brown rice and cooked it before adding it to the mixture in the skillet. Because I pre-cooked the rice, I omitted the cup of water entirely. I also added a little extra chili powder and some taco seasoning to taste before I put it in the oven. Because everything was pre-cooked, it wasn't necessary to bake it for a long time, only to melt the cheese, so I baked it uncovered in the oven for just 10 minutes. It was awesome! It was flavorful without being too spicy for kids, and that was great. I will definitely be making it again!"

amandakaye747 User ID: 5402044 57960
Reviewed Dec. 12, 2011

"This is a great base recipe - I substituted ground beef and black beans. Only thing I would suggest is it needs a bit more spice - perhaps more chili powder."

Peaches_77 User ID: 4311371 66807
Reviewed Aug. 29, 2011

"I love it! I've made this recipe a couple of times, but to speed up the process a bit, I do it all in a large pan on the stovetop and boil the rice separately. It seems to become tastier the longer it "rests" after cooking."

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