Easy, cheesy, and budget-friendly, this Cheesy Cornbread Taco Pie will make the whole family happy. The hearty dish is beefed up with canned seasoned beans to stretch the meat and make it more plant-based.
I was compensated to manage this #CabotBudgetMeals Recipe Contest. As you will read, I happily support the Cabot farm families by purchasing Cabot cheese weekly!
With the births of each of my four children, my dear neighbor friend would bring over a big pan of Cheesy Cornbread Taco Pie. My husband would joke that he wasn’t sure which he was most excited for: the new baby or this dish.
I’ve adapted it over the years and make it often – always winging it – so now, as my oldest ‘baby’ starts her sophomore year of high school and is in charge of dinner a few times a month, it was time to write this recipe down.
Here are some of the adaptations I’ve made to make it extra-rich in nutrition, but still as hearty and yummy:
- Cut the amount of meat and add canned beans for more plant-based goodness
- Add as many veggies as can fit in the dish!
- Develop a homemade cornbread topping using cornmeal + 100% whole wheat – no all-purpose flour needed
- Removed the sour cream from the original recipe and subbed in Cabot Lowfat Plain Greek Yogurt
- Always, always use Cabot Seriously Sharp Cheddar Cheese – as this creamy, sharp cheese stands up to all the bold flavors in this casserole-pie
Over the years, I’ve been lucky enough to meet several of the Cabot family farmers who raise the cows that produce the delicious milk for Cabot cheese. They are some of the most dedicated, hard-working folks I know (would you like to wake up at 4:00 AM every morning to milk the cows?!) And each of them is so proud of the work they did. They told me they do it all for their kids, their cows, their land, and their communities. And it shows. They produce the best cheese and the finest dairy foods in the world, IMHO. Of course, I’m not the only one who thinks so, as they continue to win ‘World’s Best Cheese‘ awards year after year after year.
- Cabot is a cooperative owned by 800 farm families throughout New England & New York and 100% of profits go back to the farmers.
- All Cabot Cheddars are 100% Naturally Lactose-Free
- All Cabot Cheddars are Naturally Aged
- All Cabot Cheddars are Naturally Gluten-Free
- In addition to a full line of cheeses, Cabot makes Greek yogurt, sour cream, cottage cheese, butter and whey protein.
Recipe tips for Cheesy Cornbread Taco Pie
I packed in as many veggies as possible in this dish – so if you’re in the habit of adding extra vegetables (which is a wonderful aspiration) just don’t do it here. Otherwise, your pot may be too full to get to the oven without spilling.
Because the cornbread cooks on top of the warm meat-and-bean filling, it bakes fast! So don’t dilly-dally around: get the kids to set the table, and make a quick salad. Dinner will be done quickly!
I like a layer of cheese that’s melty on top. But if you don’t need that, just mix all the cheese into the Cheesy Cornbread dough.
If you don’t have whole wheat flour, use all-purpose but don’t add the extra 1/4 cup of milk.
Cheesy Cornbread Taco Pie
Easy and cheesy and packed with hearty meat, cheese, beans and taco veggies, this dish is budget-friendly and a family favorite. Make the homemade cornbread topping in no time – and be happy you did – it’s MUCH better than boxed!
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon table salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup Cabot Plain Lowfat Greek Yogurt
- 1/4 cup milk
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1/2 pound lean ground beef
- 1/2 medium onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
- 1 medium bell pepper, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
- 1 (15-ounce) can Southwestern-style pinto beans (such as Bush’s) don’t drain
- Half of a (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes (with half the juice)
- 1 cup frozen corn
- 4 ounces Cabot Seriously Sharp Cheddar Cheese, grated (half of an 8-ounce package)
Heat the oven to 400-degrees F.
For the cornbread topping, in a large bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt; set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, yogurt, milk, oil, honey. (Do not combine the wet and dry ingredients until ready to pour on hot meat mixture.)
In a large (11 1/2-in to 12-in) cast-iron skillet, brown the beef until no longer pink over medium heat, about 5-8 minutes. Remove the meat from the pan to a paper-towel-lined plate and drain the fat (don’t wipe clean.) Add the onion and bell pepper and cook for 5-8 minutes until tender. Add the beans WITH the can juices, tomatoes, the corn, and the reserved cooked meat. Heat, stirring, until hot, about 3-5 minutes.
While the meat and beans are heating, add the wet cornbread ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir 4-5 times and then add half of the grated cheese. Continue to stir until just combined. Level out the meat mixture in the skillet with a spatula and spoon the cornbread mixture over the top. Smooth so no (or only a few) spots of meat are peeking through. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove the skillet from the oven and top with the remaining cheese. Bake for 5 minutes more until the cheese is melted.
If you don’t need the cheese on top to be melty, just add all the cheese to the cornbread ingredients and bake as above, without the last 5 minutes.