Tuesday, August 30, 2011


I don't think of Ladies' Home Journal as a foodie magazine and can't remember using any recipes from that source over the years. That said, their description of a tamale pie was a good springboard for a weeknight dinner. With quite a lot of tweaking, it will make its way into our rotation. With credit to LHJ for inspiration, here is my recipe for a one-dish dinner.

Serves 4
2 tsp canola oil
1 small onion, minced
1/2 small red pepper, chopped finely
1 lb ground beef
1 tsp chipotle chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 lb tomatoes, chopped
2 tbs cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup pitted olives (Kalamata or green), coarsely chopped
1/2 tsp each salt and pepper
1/2 can corn, drained
1/2 can black beans, drained
1 -  8 1/2 oz pkg corn muffin mix, prepared according to pkg instructions
3/4 cup shreddedd cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, and red pepper. Saute 3-4 minutes. Add ground beef, breaking it up with a fork. Add the chili powder and cumin and cook beef until browned. Add the chopped tomatoes, cilantro, olives, salt, pepper, corn, and black beans and stir to combine.

Prepare corn muffin mix according to package instructions.

Divide beef mixture among 4 casserole dishes and top with corn muffin mix. Divide cheese evenly among 4 dishes.

Place casserole dishes on a baking sheet and bake 15-17 minutes, until topping is cooked and mixture is bubbling. Serve with salsa and crema, if desired.
I am not a chili eater, but I loved this simple casserole. The original recipe had no seasonings, corn, or beans. These additions amped up the flavor and also made the portions generous without adding lots of extra calories. We loved the flavor and I froze the leftovers right in the crocks for a night when there's no time to cook. It just proves that there's inspiration everywhere if we pay attention.


  1. Arlene this sounds great my kids are going to love this when I make it for them!

  2. Speaking of inspiration everywhere...I mentioned you in a post I published today as a source of inspiration for the dish I prepared.

  3. My Mom used to make a tamale pie very similar to this and it was one of my favorites growing up. Of course I was all about the cornbread topping back in the day and now I love it all. Looks delicious!

  4. This looks so good, especially with your changes/additions, and I love how simple it is.

  5. This sounds good, I love masa dough so might try to do it with that instead of the muffin mix.


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