Burrito Bisquick Bake wins over even casserole skeptics

Illustration for article titled Burrito Bisquick Bake wins over even casserole skeptics
Photo: Jimmy Hasse

In One-Pan Wonders, we look for easy and delicious weeknight dinners that can be cooked using a single pan. 


Everybody has a brand: Mine, apparently, is 1970s-style ground-beef casseroles. I was at my friend Julie’s recently when she pulled out one of those giant recipe scrapbooks. Back in the day, everybody had one to collect newspaper food clippings or beloved recipes written on notecards. Since Julie knew my penchant for both vintage recipes and casseroles, she thought I’d appreciate this collection from a relative, which included many contributions from someone named “Buggy.”

Julie was absolutely right, as I greedily took pictures of many recipes with my phone, hoping to make Derby Pie and banana pudding in the near future. But then one of those little cards caught my eye: Burrito Bisquick Bake. It had all of five ingredients (just one more than my beloved Crock-Pot garbage chicken) and boasted “burrito” in the title. Done. I set out to make it for an upcoming weeknight dinner.

My husband the gourmand protested, but I had faith in the Burrito Bisquick Bake. Basically, it is a deconstructed burrito, with a refried-beans-and-Bisquick crust, topped with ground beef, salsa, and cheese. I added some taco seasoning to the beef, which the original recipe did not call for (sorry Buggy) and baked the whole thing in a cast-iron skillet.

Unsurprisingly, I loved it. It took about all of 10 minutes to pull together (Hardest part: browning ground beef. Second hardest: combining Bisquick and refried beans.) and cost less than $10 total. The base isn’t really that crusty, but the Bisquick added solidity to it. We made it with elotes, a perfect side dish (naturally, my son mixed the whole thing together). It was the kind of thing I couldn’t stop eating, my ’70s roots clearly calling me home for dinner; even the gourmand called it “oddly compelling.” Right now he’s having the leftovers for breakfast.

Burrito Bisquick Bake may have reignited my ’70s casserole love (I hope Julie will let me take another look at that scrapbook). So give it to me, Takeout commentariat: What’s your favorite retro casserole? Please let me know in the comments!


Illustration for article titled Burrito Bisquick Bake wins over even casserole skeptics
Photo: Gwen Ihnat

Burrito Bisquick Bake

  • 1 cup Bisquick
  • 1 16 oz. can refried beans
  • 1/4 cup water
  • I lb. browned ground beef, drained
  • 1 Tbsp. taco seasoning
  • 1 15.5 oz. jar salsa
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Combine the Bisquick, beans, and water and add to a greased 10-inch pie plate or casserole dish. Brown the ground beef and add the taco seasoning with a little water to combine. Add to the casserole dish in another layer. Spread the salsa on top, and then top with shredded cheese. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes until cheese is completely melted.


Gwen Ihnat is the Editorial Coordinator for The A.V. Club.


As someone who slid into puberty watching The Brady Bunch, sold Avon door to door to subsidize tickets to Led Zeppelin, and put out Cheese Whiz stuffed celery as a “fancy” appetizer, I have seen my share of 70’s casseroles. For those of us that couldn’t get home in time to ooh and ah over Julia Child’s duck l’orangé or wish we had the skills to flambé an entire meal like the Galloping Gourmet, Bisquick’s line of Impossible Pies was a way to bake and slice our way to a complete meal in under an hour. The Impossible Chicken and Broccoli pie with sharp cheddar remains my savory favorite with the Impossible Coconut Pie my go to dessert. Back then Bisquick printed a mini pamphlet with enough everyday recipes to satisfy our families between holidays. I still have mine somewhere, likely stained and yellowed in all the flower power colors of the 70’s. Groovy.