Recently all I have been craving is Mexican food! I don’t know why really but I do know that I would love to have shrimp tacos, burritos, quesadillas, and guacamole every single day. I’m a pig, I know, but I can’t get enough of those Mexican flavors! So to fulfill my Mexican cravings, I came up with a quick and easy recipe that packs some serious flavor and is healthy!

I am ashamed to say that I have just recently fallen in love with the sweet potato. Don’t get me wrong, I have NEVER turned down sweet potato fries, but other than that I have not been a huge fan of the sweet potato. I cringe when thinking about covering this delicious vegetable in marshmallows… not my thing. But now I use this perfect tasty spud to carry a healthy and flavorful Mexican filling. You can really adapt this recipe any way you like. If you want more meat, cook up some steak! If you are a vegetarian throw in some pinto beans. If you want the filling to be healthier, use ground turkey! Seriously, this recipe is easy to make your own, and you can take all the credit for coming up with it. I won’t tell!

Now if you are crunched for time, you can always used a bagged vegetable mix and cook your sweet potato in the microwave. I usually have to plan ahead to make this because I prefer to cook my sweet potato in the oven, and all things that are yummy take time. Luckily the filling can be put together in a snap and you probably have all the ingredients in your fridge right now! If you choose to cook your sweet potato in the microwave poke it with a fork and microwave on high for about 8 minutes and let it rest for another 10 afterwards. Timing will vary depending on the size of your potato. Also if you are going to use a steamed bag vegetable I recommend using Birds Eye Southwestern Corn mixture, it has great flavor and cooks up quickly!

I cook my sweet potato for about an hour and fifteen minutes in a 425 degree oven. Both Chris and I really like it when the sweet potato is soft. When I cook my vegetables, I try to just sauté them so that I have different textures and consistencies. When I think of Mexican food I think of burritos, quesadillas, and queso… all of which use lots of cheese. The really awesome part about this meal is that it isn’t bad for you! You get all the yummy spicy flavors of Mexico without the guilt! All of the ingredients are healthy and you use lots of vegetables. Another great thing about this dish is that if you make extra filling or have some left over you can add it to an omelet or scrambled eggs and have huevos rancheros! Delicious! I really think you will enjoy all the flavors and textures to this dish. You have the crunch from the vegetables, spices from the ground beef, and creaminess from the black beans; it’s a home run meal. Plus easy clean up! So the next time you have a hankering for Mexican food, give this recipe a try and I think you will be impressed!

South of the Border Sweet Potato
Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium sized sweet potatoes
  • ½ lb of ground beef
  • ½ of a packet of taco seasoning
  • ½ tablespoon of chili powder (optional)
  • ½ Red pepper, chopped
  • ½ Green pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup of corn kernels
  • ½ of a red onion, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 cup of black beans
  • 4 mushrooms, sliced
  • Small handful of chopped cilantro
  • Fresh lime juice

Additional toppers:

  • Sour cream
  • Cheddar Cheese
  • Jalapeño slices
  • Salsa
  • Avocado

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425. Coat your sweet potatoes in olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Cook in the oven for 1 hour and 15 minutes to an hour and a half depending on how you like your potato. You can start to cook the filling 20 minutes before you take out your potatoes.
  2. Start off with browning the ground beef in a skillet. Drain the excess fat and return to pan. Add in the taco seasoning and chili powder. Add in your minced garlic, chopped onions, and sliced mushrooms to the beef mixture. Cook together until tender, about 8 minutes or so. Throw in your peppers, corn, and beans and cook for an additional 5 minutes or so. Turn your heat to low and check on your sweet potatoes.
  3. When you take your sweet potato of the oven be very careful, these puppies get hot! Once they are cooked to your liking take them out of the oven and place them onto a plate. Cut open each potato and squeeze to open. You can break apart the potato a bit with a fork and you might want to sprinkle a little salt and pepper in there before you smother it in yummy goodness. You could also squeeze a little lime juice in there for some extra flavor.
  4. Take the meat mixture and spoon it into your potato. Top with your favorite toppings and enjoy! I like to add some chopped cilantro to my sour cream and add some cheddar cheese to the sweet potato right when it comes out of the oven! Heaven!

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