One Skillet Cheesy Southwest Rice Bake. It is filled with Mexican inspired flavors. It’s cozy, delicious, and great for clean eating. This skillet meal is vegetarian, or you could add some cooked chicken or grass-fed ground beef. Totally versatile, so easy, made in only one pan, and ready in under an hour.
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil
- 1/2 large yellow onion, diced
- 2 large bell peppers, diced (I used yellow and orange)
- 3 Roma tomatoes, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 jalapeño, seeded and minced (optional)
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup uncooked white rice, rinsed
- 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth or bone broth
- 15 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup mild cheddar cheese, grated (separated)
- Optional: 2 cups of leftover shredded chicken or ground beef
- Cilantro, chopped
- Squeeze of lime
- Sour cream
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Heat avocado oil in a 10-inch cast-iron skillet over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add in the onion and bell peppers. Cook for about 5 minutes, then add in the tomatoes. Continue cooking until the vegetables just begin to soften, another 5 minutes. Then, add in the garlic and jalapeño. Cook for 1 minute, then add in the tomato paste, chili powder, ground cumin, smoked paprika, ground coriander, sea salt, and black pepper. Combine and cook for another minute until the spices become fragrant, then add in the rice. Mix in the rice well, coating the rice in all the seasonings. Let the rice toast for a couple of minutes, allowing it to soak up all the flavors. Then, pour in the broth. Mix the contents into the broth very well. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer and cover with a lid. Cook the rice for undisturbed for about 15 minutes, watching closely, until the rice has soaked up all the liquid. (See note) You can add more liquid a tablespoon at a time if it seems dry.
- Mix in the black beans and 1/2 cup of cheese. If you decided to add in some cooked shredded chicken or ground beef, right now would be the time to do that.
- Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top, then bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes. Broil during the last 2 minutes, if desired, watching closely, until the cheese is bubbly and starting to brown.
- Carefully remove from the oven (cast-iron gets extremely hot!) and let cool for about 10 minutes before serving. Add toppings right before digging in. Enjoy!!
Cast-iron holds heat very well. When cooking the rice, you’ll want to leave it undisturbed as much as possible. But if the bottom seems like it’s starting to burn, remove from the heat for a minute or two and mix well, putting the lid back on right away. Return to the heat and reduce the heat if needed.
You can do half cauliflower rice and half white rice if desired, just reduce the liquid by half.
I encourage everyone to opt for certified organic ingredients as much as possible to avoid toxic pesticides like glyphosate. I’ve linked to some of my favorite brands in the blog post above.
Keywords: one skillet, Mexican casserole, cheesy, southwest, dinner