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Throwback Thursday Beef Taco Noodle Bake

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Chilly winter days call out for comfort food! Some of my favorite things to make during the wintertime are hearty, cheesy casseroles! They’re always sure to please, and you can make them ahead of time, then just pop into the oven when it’s time for supper!

This is a VERY old casserole that I have updated over the years, and it’s one of my all-time favorites! A sort of “taco lasagna” kind of, loaded with flavors, and assembled into just 3 easy layers!

After spending a good two hours going through tons of old cookbooks though, I could not for the LIFE of me find the original recipe. I have no idea of where this originated. I even searched online and can’t find the origin.

But I can tell you this, it has stood the test of time for more than 25 years! Yep, it’s that kind of good! I’ve been making this since my early to mid 20’s, and it has traveled to countless parties, potlucks, Super Bowls, and has even made it to many kitchen tables of friends who asked for the recipe!

Over the years though, I began to up-it and got away from using taco seasoning packets. Homemade spice blends are so much better!

I also enjoy adding extra ingredients when I have them onhand such as black olives, or mushrooms, or add my own chopped blend of peppers. But since it’s wintertime, I’m sharing the recipe using a can of chopped green chilies for ease. 😉

 

 

taco noodle bake meat sc

 

 

The rich, spicy, beef mixture is also kicked-up using spicy diced tomatoes and tomato paste rather than the old version of just tomato sauce. The combination of diced tomatoes and tomato paste makes for a much richer sauce! 😀

 

 

taco noodle bake assmbly 1

 

 

The creamy cottage cheese mixture is perked up by using (Superior Touch) Better Than Bouillon Beef Base instead of beef bouillon granules. I really love their products because they’re made with real meat, and so much better than those dry little rocks. 😉 You can of course use whatever you like, but when I come across something good, I like to pass on that info! 😉

Mostly-cooked egg noodles get mixed into the sauce to create the first layer.

 

 

taco noodle bake assmbly 2

 

 

The casserole is then topped with the meat sauce and then a nice layer of cheese!

 

 

taco noodle bake layers

 

 

Here you can see that it does kind of resemble a lasagna of sorts! 😀

 

 

taco noodle bake

 

 

Then just pop it into the oven and bake!

 

 

taco casserole spoonful

 

 

It’s best to let this casserole rest for 15 minutes before serving, ….but we were hungry!!

And I couldn’t resist getting a pretty shot of all that gooey, yummy cheese!

 

 

taco noodle bake plated

 

 

You can keep it super simple, and just enjoy as is, or you can garnish the servings with whatever you’d like such as more black olives, sour cream, more green onions or chives, hot sauce, avocado slices or pickled jalapeño slices!

 

 

 

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This is definitely one to save for that blustery cold winter day, or even for a rainy day come this spring! It makes for a wonderful dish to take to someone’s house for a party, too, and you’ll come home with an empty pan every time! Be sure to take the recipe with you, as you’ll get asked for it a lot! 😉

Hope you enjoy and I’ll see you next week! ~ Kelly

 

 

Yield: 6-8 servings

Throwback Thursday Beef Taco Noodle Bake

Throwback Thursday Beef Taco Noodle Bake

Ingredients

For Beef Layer:

  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1/2 of a large onion, chopped
  • 1/8 tsp. course ground black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp. garlic salt
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced spicy red pepper tomatoes (undrained), I used Hunt's
  • 1 (6 oz.) can tomato paste
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 1 tsp. Better Than Bouillon Beef Base

Taco Seasoning:

  • 1 tsp. seasoning salt
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 2 tsp. chili powder
  • 2 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 Tbl. cornstarch
  • 1 Tbl. flour
  • 1/4 tsp sugar
  • Stir in: 24 (medium-sized) pitted black olives, sliced into thirds

For Sauce Layer:

  • 16 oz. low fat cottage cheese
  • 1/4 cup sour cream or Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 2 tsp. Better Than Bouillon Beef Base
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions, can sub 2 tsp. dried chives
  • 1 (4 ounce) can diced green chilies

Rest of Ingredients:

  • 8 oz. medium egg noodles, whole wheat or regular, cooked and drained
  • 2 - 2 1/2 cups shredded Mexican blend cheese, as much as you like

Instructions

  • In deep frying pan, cook ground beef, onion, garlic salt and pepper. Drain grease.
  • Stir in diced tomatoes and tomato paste, water, and Taco Seasoning. Simmer 15 minutes until nice and thick, stirring as needed to prevent sticking or scorching. Fold in sliced black olives. Set aside.
  • In bowl, combine sour cream and beef bouillon base until very well blended. Stir in flour. Stir in cottage cheese until well combined. Fold in green onion and green chilies well.
  • Fold in mostly-cooked noodles. (I cook mine one minute less than the lowest time suggested.)
  • Spoon noodle mixture into sprayed 13x9 baking dish. Smooth level.
  • Top with meat mixture, smooth level.
  • Top evenly with cheese. Bake in 350º oven for 25-30 minutes. Let stand 5-10 minutes.
  • Garnish servings as you like with optional toppings.
  • Serve with a tossed salad and my Apple Cornbread or Mexican Bolillos!

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    Didi

    Thursday 12th of February 2015

    Absolutely mouth watering my friend!! ♥ I wanted to reach right in!!

    Kelly

    Thursday 12th of February 2015

    Awww, thanks, Didi! It's one of my favorite, go-to wintertime casseroles! Spicy to warm ya up! :D

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