I’ve been holding out on you with a super easy dinner recipe you’re going to want to add to your plans this week. I apologize for this blogging negligence, and offer you a taco lasagna peace offering. No more secrets here.
The first time I made this I had some friends coming over and it was a last minute wrangle of pantry ingredients that I was uncertain would turn into anything. As soon as we started eating it I knew we had a winner. Carl wondered why I hadn’t thought of this sooner, and it immediately became a regular in our meal rotation, and I set about figuring out a consistent recipe I could guarantee would work.
After making it at least a dozen times for various occasions, I’m declaring this one of my favourite meals for feeding a crowd, bringing to someone in need of a meal, or doubling so you can have one tonight and one in the freezer for another night. It comes together so easily, uses regular pantry ingredients, and doesn’t have tortillas. I love tortillas, but the thing that bothers me about taco casseroles is the use of tortillas for the layers. I find the tortillas always get a strange chewy texture that doesn’t appeal to me and they don’t cut easily with a fork. I love lasagna noodles, so this has all the same flavours with lasagna noodles in place of strangely chewy tortillas.
You can adjust this to make it as veggie packed or spicy as you like – we go minimal veggies and medium spice so the kids will eat it, but you can easily personalize this in the form of added onion, zucchini, corn, chili powder or some diced hot peppers if you want your eyes to water!
- 1 lb ground beef
- 125 g (1/2 a pkg) low fat cream cheese
- 2 Tbsp sour cream
- ¾ cup salsa
- ½ cup tomato sauce, + a separate ⅓ cup
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 3 green onions, chopped, + 1 for topping is desired
- 1 35 g package taco or fajita seasoning, or 3-4 Tbsp homemade
- 6 lasagna noodles
- 2 cups shredded cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly grease an 8x11" baking dish and set aside.
- Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, brown beef in large skillet until no pink remains. Drain fat. Stir in cream cheese until melted, then add sour cream, salsa, ½ cup tomato sauce, pepper, green onion, and taco seasoning. Simmer for 10 minutes, or until peppers are softened.
- In prepared 8x11" pan, spread a thin layer of the meat mixture to just barely cover the bottom of the pan. Top with 3 of the cooked lasagna noodles. Top noodles with all the remaining meat mixture, then another layer of noodles. Finish with the remaining ⅓ cup of tomato sauce and the shredded cheese.
- Bake for 20-30 minutes, until heated through and cheese is bubbling. Let stand 5-10 minutes before slicing.
If you like lasagna, you also need to try these:
Chelsea’s White Cheese and Chicken Lasagna
Would it be ok to leave the cream cheese out or will it affect the recipe too much? We have a lactose intolerant in our house…anything else I could substitute it with?
You could definitely leave it out, but you may want to add a bit more tomato sauce to make sure it is still saucy enough, or a can of tomato paste so the sauce thickens a little. You can also buy lactose free cream cheese, I know my sister substitutes it and can’t tell a difference :)
Sarah & Arkadi says
very comforting dish! yum!
wow, it looks so good and that beautiful color that she have makes you go deep on that recipe and taste it, i must say i like it and i will try it ;)
Yay for a re-design! That’s so exciting! And this lasagna looks delicious – we are big fans of lasagna in our house and I love the mexican flavors you have going on in here!
Michelle Englefield says
I would like to try this with uncooked noodles, because that’s my preference (too lazy) and so how would I adjust the liquid for that?
Hi Michelle – I have done it with the oven-ready noodles as well, you just need to really ensure they’re covered with sauce for them to cook right to the edges. I increased my sauce by only 1/2 cup to do it that way, but you could increase it by 1 full cup.