Dirty Tater Casserole
It is a little on the spicy side, so if spicy is not your thing then you may want to substitute the dirty rice with maybe a regular brown grain rice.
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- 1 1/2 bag(s)
- tater tots, tater crowns, etc.
- 2 can(s)
- cream of mushroom soup
- 1 lb
- lean ground beef
- 1 box
- tony chachere's dirty rice
- 1 1/2 pkg
- colby/jack cheese
- (optional spices; garlic pepper, onion powder)
Usually I go ahead and get the tots out of the freezer and set them on the counter while preparing everything else. That way they can be thawing out a little before adding them to the casserole pan.
While the rice/meat is "breathing" (lol) I went ahead and tossed the cans of Cream of Mushroom soup in a pot along with about a 1/3 cup of water ... just enough to smooth it out a little. (cook and set aside after done)
I sprinkled a little more Garlic Pepper seasoning and some Onion Powder seasoning (both are optional) over the top of the tots. I also added about two handfuls of the Colby Jack cheese over the top of them.
The soup goes in next, poured evenly over the entire pan, then add in the dirty rice on top of that and smooth it out even. Take the remaining tots and cover as much of the top you can with them. Don't fret if you can't cover the entire top because there weren't enough (depending on how big the bag was).
Then take the rest of the cheese and sprinkle generously over the top of the casserole until completely covered.
(Note – since oven temps may vary just make sure to keep an eye on it from time to time.)
Take out and let cool for about 10 minutes before serving.
Sides – Mini ears of corn, French style green beans, black-eyed peas, mixed greens, Ranch style beans, or no sides. It’s that good by itself.
If a little spicy is not your thing, then you could substitute the dirty rice with brown rice or something similar in fashion and/or leave out the additional spices. Also, since my crew doesn’t like onions (and I do) the majority won out so I left those off the list of ingredients, but IF I had “control of the cards” they would have been finely chopped and sautéed then added to the dirty rice/meat pot and combined with the rest of the mix. Sneaky as I am and as you read above, I did sneak in a little of that onion powder.
But the main thing … they ate it up and loved it, which will always bring a big smile to the cook’s face!
It's a lot of fun to make and to eat. I think you will enjoy this recipe, especially when the weather is a little nippy outside!