Hoping to make it a meatless Monday tonight? If so, OnSugar blog Cooking in Pajamas urges you to turn to a lightened-up Mexican pizza.
When I was growing up, I used to love Taco Bell! It was a major treat for me when my Dad took me there for dinner. I hate to admit it, but even well into adulthood, I enjoyed their tacos, and most especially, their Mexican pizza. I am not going to lecture you on nutritional content (540 calories, 30 grams of fat), or anything I learned from watching Food Inc. You know already know that. Needless to say, I haven't eaten at Taco Bell in a while. That doesn't mean I don't miss their Mexican pizza.
Find out how Taco Bell's Mexican pizza inspired her in the kitchen after the break.
There are dozens of "copycat" Mexican Pizza recipes on the internet, but I have found that either (1) — they require cooking the tortillas in Crisco; (2) — they are not even hearty enough for a small appetizer; or (3) — they don't taste very good. This version is the best one out there. Nothing is fried and I use whole wheat tortillas. This recipe makes two large, filling pizzas, and they are awesome! In addition, I snuck in veggie crumbles, instead of ground beef. This is the perfect recipe to try out veggie crumbles because they get well seasoned and layered in with other ingredients. I also substituted vegetarian refried beans because no one can ever tell the difference between the vegetarian version and the full fat version (seriously...do a blind taste test...you cannot tell the difference). I think this version is better than any restaurant Mexican pizza, Taco Bell included.
1/2 lb. ground beef, turkey, chicken or veggie crumbles
1 T. EVOO
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T. chili powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. each kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
1 (16oz) can vegetarian refried beans
4 (10 inch) whole wheat flour tortillas
1/2 c. salsa
2 1/2 c. Mexican blend shredded cheese
2 scallions, chopped
2 plum tomatoes, chopped
1 jalapenos, finely minced or sliced
1/4 c. light sour cream
Preheat oven to 350. Coat 2 pie pans with nonstick spray.
In a medium skillet, saute the onions in the EVOO over medium high heat for 5 - 7 minutes, until onions get soft. Add ground meat or veggie crumbles and cook until evenly cooked. Add garlic and cook for one more minute.
Season the meat with chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper.
Lay one tortilla in each pie plate and cover with a layer of the refried beans. Spread half of the seasoned meat over each one, then cover with a second tortilla. Bake for 10 minutes in preheated oven.
Remove pie plates from oven and let cool slightly. Spread half of the salsa over each tortilla. Then cover each pizza with half the cheese, half of the scallions and half of the jalapenos.
Return pizza to oven, and bake for 5 to 10 minutes until cheese is melted. Remove from oven and let cool slightly before slicing each on into 4 pieces. Serve with sour cream on the side.