This Easy Crock Pot Cowboy Casserole is another one of my favorite types of casseroles because it's a healthy, quick, and easy dump-and-go recipe. Loaded with delicious flavors from ground beef, rice, beans, tomatoes, and veggies, then smothered in melted cheese, it's the perfect comfort food for any time of the year! The best part is, you put everything in the slow cooker, walk away and let the crockpot do the cooking for you.
This recipe was inspired by my Shipwreck Casserole and my Slow Cooker Mexican Chicken. It pairs well with buns, breadsticks, salad or veggies on the side. It's popular any time of the year, but ideal in the summer when you don't want to heat up your house. It also makes a great Stampede dinner. And it's ideal to come home to after a busy day. This recipe is also weight watchers friendly at 7 ww points.
You’ll need the following ingredients for this recipe:
- 1 lb extra lean ground beef
- 3 cups rice (I use whole grain brown rice) - uncooked
- 12 oz can of whole kernel corn
- 19 oz can Navy beans
- 19 oz can red Kidney beans
- 3 cans Rotel (10 oz each)
- 1 ounce- package of taco seasoning
- 3 tsp garlic
- 3 tbsp jarred jalapenos (I used tamed)
- 1 whole diced onions
- ½ tsp cumin
- 2 tbsp fresh cilantro
- 4 cups sharp cheddar cheese * I use light
- Garnish: additional fresh cilantro, salsa, sour cream, black pepper (optional)
Prep: Spray the slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray
DO NOT DRAIN ANYTHING!!!!
Layer the bottom of the crockpot with extra lean raw ground beef.
Next add the rice.
Then add the rest of the ingredients (except cheese)
**DO NOT DRAIN ANYTHING
Gently stir, trying not to mix in the ground beef or rice (but it's okay if some of it gets mixed) . * If you are around, you can stir the whole thing ½ way through the cooking process.
Cooking time: Cook in crockpot on high heat for 3 hours or low heat for 6 hours, stirring halfway through (if you are around- this is not critical)
Melt cheddar cheese before serving. Garnish with cilantro and salsa, if desired.
📖Variations & Substitutions
- Rice - you can use white rice or brown rice, but do NOT use Instant rice (or minute rice). You need to use regular (short or long grain ) for this recipe
- Navy beans - you could substitute Pinto beans, black beans, Cannellini beans or Great Northern beans
- Kidney beans - you can use chili beans if you prefer
- Spicy - add chili pepper flakes, hot sauce or chili powder while cooking to imbue heat into the dish, or add additional jalapeno pepper
- Cilantro - you can use dried cilantro if you don't have fresh, but you'll only need half the amount
- Garlic - you can use jarred minced garlic or 1. 5 teaspoon of garlic powder, if you don't have fresh garlic
- Onions - if you don't have onions, you could substitute with 1 teaspoon of onion powder
- Rotel - is simply diced tomatoes with green chiles and some spices. If you can't find Rotel, you can use canned tomatoes and canned green chilies.
- Add-ins - you can add in a can of green beans or use fresh bell peppers as well
🥗 Side Dishes
Cowboy Casserole goes really well with:
Store this hearty casserole in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. It freezes well in an airtight container for up to 3 months.
👪 Serving Size
This slow cooker cowboy casserole recipe makes 12 servings @ 1.5 cups each. However, you can half, double or triple the recipe by clicking on the blue serving number and selecting the number of servings you'd like. The ingredient quantities will automatically adjust.
This recipe is Weight Watchers friendly @ 7 WW points for a 1.5 cup serving. You can further lighten this up to 6 ww points using fat-free ground turkey. If you also use fat-free cheddar cheese, you can bring it down to 5 weight watchers points.
- Cook ground beef to an internal minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove
- Never leave cooking food unattended
❔ Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, ground beef can be cooked in a crock pot, but it's best to use extra lean ground beef so that it's not greasy.
Cowboy casserole is a one pot meal that typically has some kind of meat (like ground beef or ground turkey), some kind of starch (rice, red potatoes, tater tots or hash browns) and vegetables and/or beans.
It is not necessary to preheat a slow cooker.
If you're looking for easy crockpot dishes, you'll love this Crockpot Cowboy Casserole! It's bound to become one of your family's favorite recipes.
📋 Crock Pot Cowboy Casserole recipe
- 1 lb extra lean ground beef
- 3 cups uncooked rice (I use whole grain brown rice) *do NOT use minute rice
- 12 oz can of corn
- 19 oz can of kidney beans
- 10 oz can of navy beans
- 3 Cans Rotel (10 oz each)
- 1 ounce - package of taco seasoning
- 3 teaspoon garlic
- 3 tablespoon jarred jalapenos (I used tamed)
- 1 whole onion, diced
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- 2 tablespoon fresh cilantro
- 4 cups cheddar cheese * I use light
- additional fresh cilantro
- sour cream
NOTE: The instruction images will NOT print by default. If you want them to print, you'll need to check the box beside "images" on the print page
- *DO NOT DRAIN ANYTHING!!!!!
- Layer the bottom of the crockpot with extra lean raw ground beef.
- Next add the rice.
- Then add everything else (except cheese) **DO NOT DRAIN ANYTHING!
- Gently stir, trying not to mix in the ground beef or rice (but it's okay if some of it gets mixed) . * If you are around, you can stir the whole thing ½ way through the cooking process as well, but it's not critical if you can't.m
- Cook in crockpot on high for 3 hours or low for 6 hours, stirring halfway through, if possible.
- Melt cheddar cheese before serving. Garnish with additional fresh cilantro, salsa and/or sour cream, if desired.