This cheesy chorizo and bean skillet recipe lets you dip into dinner

This week’s recipe, a cheesy chorizo bean skillet that can be ready in just under 30 minutes, is a great example of build-your-own dish that I have made again and again.

I was first inspired to make it by a choriqueso recipe in Danny Mena’s “Made in Mexico” cookbook. I tweaked a bit, adding home-cooked and canned whole beans for a more filling dish, but finally settling on canned refried as my favorite choice, because they make the skillet easier to serve. It’s actually dippable, if you have hardy chips or sturdy flatbreads.

You can use black or pinto beans. I’ve made it with cannellini, too.

The big flavor comes from the pan-fried fresh chorizo. You break it into pieces with a spoon and crisp it in an ovenproof skillet. Don’t forget to drain it well on a towel. Then, wipe out that same skillet and heat up the beans with onion, garlic and chili powders and a bit of cumin. (If you don’t eat meat, you can make or find meatless chorizo that delivers a lot of the same flavors.)

Add the chorizo back to the skillet of beans, stir, and top it all with grated mozzarella and Monterey Jack cheeses. Then just slide that skillet under a broiler until the cheeses bubble and turn brown in spots. Tuck a couple of serving spoons into that hot skillet and serve it family-style — on a trivet to protect your table.

Then, the fun part: All of the accompaniments. My preference is to spoon the mixture onto warm or charred corn tortillas, but flour ones work as well, as do a sturdy lettuce leaves, such as iceberg. I like to go all out with ways to dress up this dish, including avocado slices, pickled jalapeños, salsa or pico de gallo, sour cream, lime wedges and cilantro sprigs.

With that first cheese-pull-y spoonful, you’ll have smiles all around. Dig in.

Make Ahead: The chorizo and beans can be cooked up to 3 days in advance, and then warmed, topped with cheese, and broiled just before serving.

Storage Notes: Refrigerate for up to 3 days.

  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 4 ounces (about 1 large link) fresh chorizo, casings removed, if necessary
  • 4 ounces mozzarella cheese, coarsely grated
  • 8 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, coarsely grated
  • 1 (15-ounce) can fat-free refried pinto beans or black beans
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh cilantro leaves, plus sprigs for serving
  • 8 (6-inch) corn or flour tortillas
  • Sliced avocado, for serving (optional)
  • Pico de gallo or chunky salsa, for serving (optional)
  • Sour cream, crema or Greek yogurt for serving (optional)
  • Pickled jalapeños, thinly sliced (optional)
  • Lime wedges, for serving (optional)

Position an oven rack about 6 inches from the broiling element and preheat the broiler. If your broiler is on the bottom, preheat it.

Line a large plate with a towel and place it near the stove.

In an ovenproof, nonstick or well-seasoned 10-inch cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat, heat 1 teaspoon of the oil until shimmering. Add the chorizo and cook, stirring and breaking it up with a spoon, until browned, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the meat to the prepared plate and pat away as much grease as you can with another towel. Carefully pour off and discard the fat; lightly wipe the skillet.

While the meat is cooking, in a medium bowl, toss together the grated cheeses.

Return the skillet to medium heat and heat the remaining teaspoon of oil, the beans, onion powder, garlic powder, chili powder, cumin and minced cilantro and stir until well combined and warmed through, about 3 minutes. Add the chorizo and stir to combine.

Spread the beans as evenly as evenly as you can. Top with the grated cheese.

Place the skillet in the oven and broil for about 5 minutes, checking every 2 minutes, until the cheese is bubbly and golden brown in spots. (If your broiler is on the bottom, transfer the baking dish to the broiler drawer.)

Meanwhile, wrap the tortillas in a damp tea towel and microwave them on HIGH for 30 seconds. Transfer the still-wrapped tortillas to a plate.

Serve the skillet family-style, with the tortillas and your choice of garnishes, such as avocado, pico de gallo or salsa, sour cream, jalapeños, lime wedges and fresh cilantro sprigs on the side.

Per serving (scant 1 cup of bean mixture, 2 corn tortillas)

Calories: 443; Total Fat: 21 g; Saturated Fat: 5 g; Cholesterol: 88 mg; Sodium: 951 mg; Carbohydrates: 39 g; Dietary Fiber: 9 g; Sugar: 2 g; Protein: 27 g

This analysis is an estimate based on available ingredients and this preparation. It should not substitute for a dietitian’s or nutritionist’s advice.






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