This southwestern turkey rice casserole is a fantastic mix of spices, vegetables and lean protein. It all comes together in about 30 minutes for a healthy dinner. 267 calories and 5 Weight Watchers Freestyle SP
This is not the first turkey rice casserole I've made, and there's a very good reason for that. Each time I come up with a new version, I'm struck by how easy it is to throw in a different combination of spices and vegetables, and be rewarded with a new healthy dinner option. It doesn't hurt that my family always seems to love each turkey rice casserole. The Greek-style version got them hooked and the teriyaki version carried on the love fest.
Now a southwestern casserole is added to the mix.
The beauty of these turkey rice casserole recipes is that they all follow the same blueprint, making it very easy to vary the flavors depending on what's available in your kitchen. Start by cooking the ground turkey with some chopped onion, add herbs/spices and garlic, then mix in the veggies, a sauce of some sort to stop the casserole from drying out and any other extras that strike your fancy.
Scoop the whole concoction into a baking dish, top with some cheese if it fits with the flavors and bake for about 20 minutes to heat through. That's it.
I usually serve the casserole with some sort of vegetables on the side, either a salad, stir-fried veggies or steamed broccoli. It rounds out the meal perfectly.
Other healthy ground turkey recipes:
Cookin' Canuck's Baked Turkey, Quinoa & Zucchini Meatballs
Cookin' Canuck's Greek Turkey, Rice & Feta Casserole
Skinnytaste's Turkey Sante Fe Zucchini Boats
Primavera Kitchen's Ground Turkey Soup with Veggie Roots
The Garlic Diaries' Loaded 21 Day Fix Pizza
Southwestern Turkey Rice Casserole Recipe
- 2 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 pound lean ground turkey
- 1 onion chopped
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- ¾ teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground pepper
- 2 cups cooked brown rice
- 3 ounces canned diced green chiles
- 1 14 ounce can petite diced tomatoes
- 1 ½ cup salsa your favorite kind
- 1 cup canned reduced sodium black beans, drained and rinsed
- ¾ cup corn kernels
- ¼ cup minced cilantro
- ½ cup grated Monterey Jack cheese
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat an 11- by 7-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
- Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet set over medium high heat. Add the ground turkey and onions. Cook, breaking up the turkey, until the turkey is just cooked through.
- Add the garlic, cumin, chili powder, paprika, salt and pepper, and cook for 1 minute.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the rice, diced green chiles, diced tomatoes, salsa, black beans, corn and cilantro. Stir to combine.
- Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle the cheese over top. Cook until heated through, about 20 minutes. Serve.
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Pammela Denise Jackson
Deliciousness!!! Easy peasy (the work is in the prep so get all items organized). Tasted similar ( but better) to a burrito bowl from Chipotle!! Family loved it!!! Definitely a keeper & regular meal because the flavor was all that and more. And…I love having several veggies in casserole type meals. Sharing with family! Thx!
The whole family loves it! And it’s healthy.
This recipe has a lot of potential and since I cook like this anyways it felt flexible. I looking for something fun to do with the turkey meat. I have to say My 11x7 pan did not fit the portion size for 1 lb so I don't know how big yours is from the picture it's hard to tell. What I decided to do was omit the corn and actually layered in between the layers taco chips in a deeper casserole dish. I put the taco chips at bottom the meat mixture on top of that and I use chickpea southwestern rice on top of that then another layer of meat and rice and then I topped it with tortilla chips and cheddar covered it bake it for 15 minutes uncovered it baked it for 10 minutes sliced some fresh jalapeno dotted it around the top and put it under the boiler for your two to three minutes. It came out amazing! I also used red kidney beans instead of the recommended beans. Another good addition to this could also be Rotel but since I had kids eating this and the jalapenos were easy to pluck off I didn't use them I just used diced tomatoes and some canned hatch chili that isn't as spicy. You could even Sub in cooking bell pepper in with the turkey meat and onion mixture and the beginning and that way you get the pepper taste without the heat. There's lots of potential with this dish and lots of ways to take it.
This dish is excellent!! I only made a few changes based on what I had. I substituted all of the spices with a packet of taco seasoning, low sodium. My salsa had corn in it, so didn't include the corn. I may add another pound of turkey next time to give it more protein per serving. My husband and I both went back for a 2nd helping!
Amber Joy Diallo
The only dish I made with ground turkey was spagetti. But I said, "You know what?, lets start to think outside the box". Lets just say this dish was the BEST DECISION EVER. The portions were great for my family and so yummy. I will be making this dish again. Thanks for helping me get creative!
Was delicious. Made exact to the recipe as my husband is using my fitness pal and the calories were on here. Great recipe! I also used a 9x13 pan.
I really liked the dish as a whole. Flavors were there and its like a whole meal in itself. Only I don't waste time with these strange things like 3 ounces of this and an 11x7 what?!?! No I throw all the canned ingredients in and threw it together in a 9x13.
Enjoy this dish and thank you for this recipe 🙂
I'm glad you enjoyed it, Kelli!
Absolutely delicious. You won’t regret making it.
Thanks for such a great review, Patsy!
Haven't tried it yet, ut it looks good. However, whilst I know ads are valuable sources of income, I find there are so many that pop up and prevent me from actually reading the recipe, I often give up. I persevered with this one, but . . . .
Will let you know how it turns out. Thank you
We loved this recipe! The only think I did differently was add a box of frozen chopped spinach while I was boiling the rice. Served with sour cream and guacamole.
Delicious and healthy!
7x11 was not big enough. Had to use 9x13.
Really enjoyed this recipe. The flavors were delicious. We ate it as a casserole the first night. The second night, I put it in tortillas and heated them up in the air fryer. So good! Love your recipes.
Love the idea to use up the leftovers in tortillas!
Very good From my son and me. I made a few adjustments that worked for me because I’m not big into measuring and didn’t want a little cheese or corn to store.
Frozen seasoning blend from Walmart for the onions.
2lbs ground turkey, did not use olive oil to brown and drain, hint, I cook all my ground turkey and freeze it in portion size
Rice, Rice selects Royal blend made the night before
Chipotle chili pepper , love the added Smokey flavor
12oz bag frozen corn
12oz bag Mexican style shredded cheese
Unsalted black beans, drained and rinsed
Medium heat green chilies, drained
2 heaping teaspoons of jarred minced garlic
Most of a 24oz jar medium salsa I don’t like Too much hot and spicy but a this was just enough not to burn.
Did not add any salt , pepper or paprika at all.
Dumped all in a large bowl and tasted for cilantro salt and pepper.
Poured evenly into 2 square foil casserole pans from the dollar tree pre-sprayed with oil
Topped both with cheese and baked. Broiled for a few minutes in the end because who doesn’t like crunchy cheese?
Wrapped one with plastic wrap and foil and froze.
Everything else in the recipe was the same.
Side note... it could turn out a little liquidity, I would crush up some tortilla chips or add pinko if that happens to you.
This has become a staple recipe. Have shared the finished product with 2 friends who immediately requested the recipe. The only thing I do differently is cook the turkey separately, Remove it from the pan, and then continue, adding uncooked rice and 2 cups of chicken stock with the tomatoes so I can cook the rice right in the same pan (AND it absorbs all the yummy flavors).
Just tried this recipe for the first time. I had to substitute a few ingredients as we didn’t have the exact items on hand. I used leftover cooked turkey meat and chopped it into bite sized pieces., navy beans in lieu of navy beans, jalapeños instead of green chilies, and ground coriander instead of fresh cilantro. This was so tasty ! We will definitely do this again