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Gaucho Casserole

"When our daughters graduated from college, my husband and I made recipe books for their closest friends," says Dianne Hennis of King George, Virginia. "This dish was a big hit."
  • Total Time
    Prep/Total Time: 30 min.
  • Makes
    8 servings


  • 1 pound lean ground beef (90% lean)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 small green pepper, chopped
  • 1 can (16 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 envelope reduced-sodium taco seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1-1/3 cups uncooked instant rice
  • 1 cup shredded reduced-fat Mexican cheese blend


  • Crumble the beef into an ungreased 2-1/2-qt. microwave-safe dish. Add onion and green pepper. Cover and microwave on high for 4-1/2 minutes or until meat is no longer pink, stirring every 2 minutes; drain.
  • Stir in the beans, tomatoes, tomato sauce, water, taco seasoning and chili powder. Cover and microwave on high for 3-1/2 to 4-1/2 minutes or until bubbly, stirring every 2 minutes. Stir in rice.
  • Transfer to a shallow 2-1/2-qt. microwave-safe dish coated with cooking spray. Cover and let stand for 6-8 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Sprinkle with cheese. Cover and microwave on high for another minute or until cheese is melted.
Nutrition Facts
1 cup: 304 calories, 9g fat (4g saturated fat), 31mg cholesterol, 670mg sodium, 49g carbohydrate (0 sugars, 7g fiber), 22g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 2 starch, 2 lean meat, 1 vegetable, 1/2 fat.

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Average Rating:
  • MarineMom_texas
    Mar 24, 2015

    I prepared this delicious casserole last night and we loved it. It is super simple (cooks entirely in the microwave) and is delicious. I used instant brown rice and pinto beans instead of kidney beans. Absolutely delicious. We will have this again. I highly recommend this recipe as a volunteer field editor for Taste of Home.

  • snwilliamson
    Dec 28, 2013

    Made this on the stove top instead of the microwave. Used black and pinto beans since that is what I had in the cupboard. Made it twice and the whole family loved it and asked for it again. They call it the homemade hamburger helper dish.

  • Viterbo
    Aug 30, 2013

    No comment left

  • mehalv
    Feb 17, 2013

    This was a solid recipe that my husband and I liked. I did all steps in a skillet on the stove top.

  • Fairy1004
    May 25, 2012

    It was tasty, but I had to use more H2O and then had to bake it for 30 mins to allow the rice to cook. I also used pinto beans instead of kidney beans.

  • sandcarp
    Feb 17, 2012

    Quick, Easy, Delicious

  • paroy22
    Jan 16, 2012

    No comment left

  • JOHNSB77
    Sep 17, 2010

    No comment left

  • Tinaschwab
    Sep 10, 2010

    Yes, I always substitute brown rice for instant or white rice in recipes.  You just have to adjust for more liquid to cook the rice.  I added some extra broth to cook the brown rice.  It really doesn't need too much extra liquid.  This is a yummy recipe, enjoy!

  • Tinaschwab
    Sep 9, 2010

    I substituted ground turkey for ground beef. It came out wonderful and my kids really loved it. My boys both said "this one is a keeper".