Southwest Frito Pie

Cover Recipe- Southwestern Frito Pie, Taste of Home: Spring 2013

Cover Recipe- Southwestern Frito Pie, Taste of Home: Spring 2013

Today’s cover recipe comes from one of Taste of Home‘s little checkout stand magazines from Spring 2013: Southwestern Frito Pie.  These smaller magazines are the ones that you spot as you’re at the checkout stand in the grocery store.  Taste of Home publishes this one full of recipe cards that are meant to cut-out and keep.  The focus here is on Tasty Meals that you can make in 30 Minutes or Less.  This is a very popular concept for busy families!  The write-up inside points out the convenience of picking up Fast Food.  But they also share that it’s possible (and better for your family) to make great meals in a short amount of time.  Skip the drive thru!

The magazine offers 78 quick and delicious recipes- all favorites send in from cooks across the country.  They’re meant to be family-friendly meals and treats.  Some of the quick dishes offer ingredients within the recipe that utilize canned goods, frozen products and instant rice.  It’s not my usual style of cooking, but I understand how folks need to go that route sometimes in order to get meals on the table in a timely fashion.  It’s also a better way to go than bringing home fast food.  Read my notes below to see what I thought of the recipe.

Southwestern Frito Pie

Print Print Recipe

Southwest Frito Pie

Yield: 6 servings

Prep Time: 30 min

Cook Time: 20 min


2 pounds lean ground beef (90% lean)
3 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
2 cups water
1 can (15-ounces) pinto beans, rinsed and drained
4 1/2 cups corn chips
2 cups shredded lettuce
1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
3/4 cup chopped tomatoes
6 tablespoons finely chopped onion
sour cream and minced fresh cilantro, optional


1. In a Dutch oven, cook beef over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Stir in the chili powder, flour, salt and garlic powder until blended; gradually stir in water.

2. Add the beans. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 12 to 15 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally.

3. To serve, divide chips among six serving bowls. Top with beef mixture, lettuce, cheese, tomatoes and onion; garnish with sour cream and cilantro, if desired.


*I used the 90% lean ground beef for this recipe, but I wouldn't recommend using any leaner than that. You definitely don't want your ground beef to be dry.
*My family does not like raw onion, so I cooked the onion along with the beef.
*I don't buy low-sodium beans because they tend to be pretty flavorless, so I recommend you don't either.
*I used Fritos.
*Iceberg lettuce isn't great in a salad, but it's nice in Mexican food because it has crunch to it.
*Sharp cheddar will give you the most flavor in your cheese.

*I added fresh avocado on top.

Source:  Taste of Home

The results:

I must admit that my family raved and raved about this recipe. This is the sort of food that they prefer (over my usual grilled chicken, veggies and rice in my never-ending attempt to serve healthy food), but they really did love this recipe for a change. Who doesn’t love a taco-style meal with added Fritos for crunch? It was good stuff.

Did this recipe deserve the cover spotlight?

I’d say, “Yes!” It’s definitely family-friendly, the meal came together very easily and it is the sort of meal that each family member can assemble on their own (adding their own desired fixings). Add avocado to make it even more appealing. Add additional lettuce to make it more salad-like.

Lori is the founder of She's a professional recipe developer and food writer, and she's the author of The Recipe Girl Cookbook (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt: April 2013). Beyond food, Lori enjoys traveling, being outdoors, running, and maybe even singing a little karaoke. The mountains near Lake Tahoe are home for Lori and her husband of 18 years. They have an 12 year-old son who blogs at

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16 Responses to “Deluxe Pumpkin Cheesecake”

  1. 1

    VeggieGirl — November 5, 2009 @ 6:02 am

    OOOOOH love the garnish the best :-D

  2. 2

    Jessica @ How Sweet It Is — November 5, 2009 @ 9:01 am

    This blog is such a fab idea, Lori! And this creation looks mouth-watering. :)

  3. 3

    BethieofVA — November 5, 2009 @ 9:10 am

    Yum, it looks very similar to one I made for Halloween that was delish.

  4. 4

    Laura — November 5, 2009 @ 10:13 am

    I am glad to see you made this. I have that mag and wondered about that recipe. I am not a fan of pumpkin pie, but can totally do pumpkin cheesecake.

  5. 5

    LilSis — November 5, 2009 @ 10:40 am

    I love the addition of the pumpkin and the gingersnap crust! This is one beautiful slice of cheesecake. I love it plated on top of the chocolate and the caramel sauce just puts this over the top!

    I really like the new blog!

  6. 6

    Jennifer — November 5, 2009 @ 11:39 am

    Yum! This dessert is a pumpkin fanatic’s dream come true.

  7. 7

    lisaiscooking — November 5, 2009 @ 12:29 pm

    I’m a big fan of pumpkin cheesecake, and the gingersnap crust with pecans sounds fantastic!

  8. 8

    Nancy — November 5, 2009 @ 6:32 pm

    Mmmmmm…pumpkin….cheesecake…Pumpkin Cheesecake! I think I’ll have to add this to the dessert list for this year.

  9. 9

    Bethany — November 5, 2009 @ 9:39 pm

    That looks delicious!!

  10. 10

    Margaret — November 5, 2009 @ 10:26 pm

    Love Pumpkin Cheescake. Will have to try this recipe. Sounds delicious.

  11. 11

    Elizabeth — November 5, 2009 @ 11:03 pm

    Mmm, I love pumpkin cheesecake, although I usually do a chocolate crust..this sounds great! I always do a water bath with cheesecakes, and yet they still crack, I wonder what is is I’m doing wrong? I’ve even done the cracking of the door and leaving it in the oven with it turned off for an hour thing, still cracks!

    Just one more thing: The funniest thing to me, about pumpkin cheesecake, is it’s something I ate the night before and morning I went into labour. I couldn’t keep my hands off it…maybe it has magical powers!

  12. 12

    Michelle {Brown Eyed Baker} — November 8, 2009 @ 6:45 pm

    Mmmm I too am a huge cheesecake fan and have never had pumpkin cheesecake. This post just pushed me over the edge!

  13. 13

    Debi — November 18, 2009 @ 3:53 pm

    I made this cheesecake when I got the issue. Saw the cover and just HAD to make it. My family absolutely LOVED it. I will be making it again for Thanksgiving instead of the old pumpkin pie that just doesn’t get ate. My family is tired of the same pie every year. You must try this. I thought it was a lot of work and I made a complete mess out of my kitchen but I am looking forward to sharing this when my family comes to Thanksgiving dinner this next Thursday. Thanks for the great recipe!

  14. 14

    Jeng — December 2, 2009 @ 10:51 pm

    This is a very good recipe. I kind of modified the base and the spices a little bit and it turned out really good. I made dried apple caramel sauce for this and it doesn’t really complement with the cheesecake. I tried apple sauce instead and found a perfect marriage for this cheesecake!
    Very Very Good!!!!!

  15. 15

    Deb — November 22, 2010 @ 6:07 pm

    I fixed this last year at Thanksgiving. It is delicious!
    Thank you for posting the recipe as I can’t find mine.

  16. 16

    Daniel — November 23, 2011 @ 8:40 pm

    When I first found this I took a picture with my camera phone so I could make it. It was a hit that Thanksgiving and has been ever since. A wonderful desert, thank you very much for posting it!

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