Mexican-Style Brown Rice Casserole

Original Recipe: Weight Watchers (but tweaked)

This is an easy throw-together dish since I always have all the ingredients on hand. And if I don't, it's still forgiving and substitutions are easy.

The family all ate their servings of this dish (except *J*'s share of spinach). We just dug in with normal utensils, but this could also be served dip-style (scooped with chips) or perhaps even as filling for burritos or tacos.

4 cups cooked brown rice
1 cup salsa
1 teaspoon cumin [optional]
1 teaspoon garlic powder [optional]
2 oz reduced-fat cream cheese, softened [optional]
1 (15 oz) can refried beans [I used vegetarian, fat-free]
1 (10 oz) package frozen corn [I used 16 oz Trader Joe's roasted corn], thawed
1 (4 oz) can diced green chili peppers
1 Tablespoon chili powder [or to taste]
1 (10 oz) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed & well drained
3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese

(1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 2-quart or 9x13" baking dish.
(2) In medium bowl, combine rice, salsa, cumin, garlic powder, and cream cheese. Evenly spread half of mixture on bottom of baking dish.
(3) In another bowl, combine beans, corn, peppers, and chili powder. Evenly spread over rice in dish.
(4) Layer spinach over bean mixture.
(5) Sprinkle cheese over spinach.
(6) Evenly spread remaining rice mixture on top.
(7) Cover; bake 20-30 minutes or until heated through and cheese is melted.

Kid Participation:
* Combine various mixtures
* Spread mixtures (perhaps not so evenly)
* Sprinkle cheese

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