Archive of ‘Casseroles’ category

“Old School” Tuna Cashew Casserole

When I was in High School (MANY years ago), I took a Gourmet Foods class. This recipe for “Old School” Tuna Cashew Casserole was one of the recipes we learned to prepare.  If you’re like me, you see the ridiculous humor in a simple tuna casserole being called “gourmet food”, but hey… back then, maybe it was?"Old School" Tuna Cashew Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
I’ve made this recipe many times over the years, but I still giggle to think it is anything even remotely compared to gourmet food.  Nowadays I like to think of it as a “fairly economical way to feed a family of 4” casserole (especially when it only takes one can of premium tuna as the main ingredient!). Completely simple, and so easy to prepare! The casserole can be served just as it is, straight from the oven, or it can be served on top of rice or noodles.  This time I made it… “as is”, so you can see from the photos what it is supposed to look like when done. Here’s how to make it:

Set aside 1/2 of the chow mein noodles before beginning (you will need them for crunchy topping later!).  Place the remaining ingredients (tuna *I used albacore*, celery, chow mein noodles, cashews, onion, seasonings, water, and cream of mushroom soup) in large bowl.

"Old School" Tuna Cashew Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Stir well until all ingredients have been combined (see how easy it is?).  Pour into a 2 quart baking dish that has been sprayed with non-stick spray.  Sprinkle the top of casserole with the reserved chow mein noodles.

"Old School" Tuna Cashew Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

"Old School" Tuna Cashew Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Bake, uncovered, at 325 degrees for 40 minutes. Casserole should be lightly browned and slightly bubbly around the edges when done.  Remove from oven. Let casserole cool for just a minute or two, then serve as is, or serve on top of rice or noodles.

"Old School" Tuna Cashew Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Here’s what it looks like right after placing it on a serving plate.  The recipe, as written, makes 4 servings, and is easily doubled.  The casserole has good flavor and crunch from the celery, cashews, and chow mein noodles.  I would classify this simple casserole as “comfort food”, rather than “gourmet food”, but am still glad to have kept this recipe since making it in High School.  When I cooked it this time, I made it to have around for a quick lunch, rather than as a main course meal, but either way, it’s a quick and easy way to get tasty food on the table!

"Old School" Tuna Cashew Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Have a good day!  Thank you for checking out this simple casserole recipe… a very OLD school recipe! Hope you enjoy it.

"Old School" Tuna Cashew Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Original recipe source: unknown (had recipe written on 3×5 card since High School)

"Old School" Tuna Cashew Casserole
 
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This Old School Tuna Cashew Casserole is a completely easy to prepare comfort food meal, featuring tuna, cashews, chow mein noodles, celery, onion, cream of mushroom soup, etc..
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Casserole
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 3 ounces chow mein noodles (dry, in can-found in Asian section of grocery store), divided
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • ½ cup cashews, chopped coarsely
  • 1 cup celery, finely diced
  • 6 Tablespoons water
  • 1 can (6 ounces) tuna (preferably albacore), drained
  • 4 Tablespoons onion, minced
  • Salt & pepper (to lightly season)
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Set aside ½ of the chow mein noodles (reserved for topping).
  3. Place remaining ingredients in large mixing bowl; gently stir until fully combined. Pour into a 2 quart casserole dish that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Evenly spread.
  4. Top casserole with reserved chow mein noodles.
  5. Bake casserole, uncovered, at 325 degrees for 40 minutes, until lightly browned and slightly bubbly around the edges.
  6. Remove from oven, let cool for a minute or two, then serve.

 

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Chicken Divan

Over 39 years ago, just before getting married, a friend gave me this recipe for Chicken Divan, and at this point in my life it would be incredibly difficult to count how many times I have made this fantastic casserole recipe over the years. It has been a family favorite!Chicken Divan / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
According to Wikipedia, Chicken Divan was named after the Divan Parisienne Restaurant in New York City where it was created for a contest their Chef entered. His recipe for a chicken casserole, with broccoli, in a creamy Mornay sauce won the contest and became the restaurant’s signature dish!

I was given the recipe by my friend Elnora when I was getting married so MANY years ago. I worked for Elnora’s husband in the Music Department at the church I attended, and that is how we met.  I am so grateful she gifted me with her recipe, because we truly LOVE this dish.  The recipe makes a phenomenal tasting casserole that serves 8-10 people, and is VERY easy to prepare!

Here’s how you make this: (by the way… when I took these photos I only made HALF the recipe, which is reflected in the photos).

Before assembling the casserole, cook boneless chicken breasts in boiling water (can add onion, celery, and carrots to water for additional flavoring if desired) until done. Remove and let cool. Once chicken is cool, cut it into bite-size pieces, and set aside.

Spray a 9×13 baking pan with non-stick spray. Arrange thawed broccoli across bottom of baking pan. Sprinkle generously with grated Parmesan cheese.

Chicken Divan / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Arrange the chicken cubes on top of the broccoli.  Sprinkle again with Parmesan cheese.

Chicken Divan / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

In a medium bowl, combine cream of mushroom soup, sour cream, mayonnaise, grated Cheddar cheese, lemon juice, curry powder, and salt and pepper. Mix until fully combined. The sauce will be fairly thick.

Chicken Divan / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Spoon or pour the sauce evenly over the top of the casserole, spreading it out, to cover.  Generously sprinkle with additional Parmesan cheese, then lightly sprinkle with paprika.

Chicken Divan / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Place several small pads of butter on the top of the casserole. Bake casserole, uncovered, in a 350 degree oven for 35-40 minutes, until golden in color, and the cheese sauce is bubbly around edges of pan.

Chicken Divan / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

When casserole is done, remove to a hot pad, and let it sit for 5-6 minutes. This will allow the casserole time to firm up a bit (the sauce is VERY hot!).

Chicken Divan / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

When ready, serve hot over fluffy rice, and ENJOY this delicious chicken casserole (you’ve got chicken, rice AND broccoli). The leftovers are wonderful, as well.

Chicken Divan / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

The chunks of chicken breast taste magnificent with the sauce and broccoli. The bed of rice that it lays on provides a great medium to soak up some of the delicious sauce! It’s SOOOO delicious!

Chicken Divan / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

While I know this is not the most “health-conscious” or calorie-conscious meal, I gotta tell ya… sometimes ya just gotta go for it and enjoy a wonderful meal! Everything in moderation, right? Sure hope you will try this recipe… it’s a definite KEEPER!

Chicken Divan / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Recipe Source: Elnora Hall

Chicken Divan
 
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Easy to prepare, delicious casserole, featuring chicken breast chunks and broccoli, baked in a creamy cheese sauce, and served on a bed of fluffy rice.
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Entree - Casserole
Serves: 8-10 servings
Ingredients
  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 small packages frozen broccoli spears
  • 2 cans cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 carton (8 ounces) sour cream
  • 1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Parmesan cheese (fresh grated OR can use "green shaker can")
  • Paprika (to sprinkle on top of casserole prior to baking)
  • Butter (enough for small pads of butter on top of casserole)
  • Rice, prepared according to instructions on package
Directions
  1. Cook chicken breasts in water (enough to cover); bring to a low boil, cook until chicken is done (about 25-30 mins.). See *NOTES. When done, remove chicken from water. Let cool, then cut into bite-sized cubes.
  2. Spray a 9x13 baking pan with non-stick spray. Place thawed broccoli evenly on bottom of baking pan. Sprinkle generously with Parmesan cheese. Evenly arrange the chicken pieces over the broccoli. Sprinkle again with Parmesan cheese.
  3. In a medium bowl, fully combine (with a spoon) cream of mushroom soup, sour cream, mayonnaise, grated cheddar cheese, lemon juice, curry powder, and salt and pepper (to taste). Pour or spoon sauce evenly over top of casserole. Spread out, to cover entire casserole. Generously sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, then lightly sprinkle with paprika. Dot the top of casserole with small pads of butter.
  4. Bake casserole, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes, until casserole is bubbling all around the edges and is golden brown in color. Remove casserole. Let it sit for 5-6 minutes to allow time to firm up just a bit.
  5. Serve casserole hot over a bed of fluffy rice... and ENJOY!
Notes
Original recipe says to cook chicken with onion, celery & carrots for flavor. I have never done this, but include it in case you wish to do so. The original recipe also said to cook the frozen broccoli, but I find that if I thaw it out completely, then pat it dry, there is no need to cook it.

 

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Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole

If you’re looking for an easy to prepare, yet hearty and flavorful main dish to make for those you love, this Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole might be just for YOU!Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
The casserole is very simple to prepare (in 3 easy steps!), and features the flavors of Italian sausage, green and red bell peppers, onions, and Italian seasoning. I stumbled upon it online recently, thought it sounded promising, and made it for my husband and I.  The recipe as written (below) serves 4. Note: My photos only reflect half of the total amount (I cut recipe in half since we were the only two to eat it!).

Here’s how easy it is to prepare: Oven is preheated to 400 degrees. While it is pre-heating, cook the Italian sausage pieces in 2 teaspoons olive oil, on medium heat, until cooked through (and no longer pink). Once cooked, drain the sausage on paper towel to absorb grease, then add to baking dish.

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Drain grease from skillet, then wipe pan with paper towel (do not wash).  Heat 2 Tablespoons olive oil in skillet, add potato slices, and cook until they are a light golden brown, and almost tender. You will need to turn the potatoes as they cook to ensure they brown lightly on both sides.  Once potatoes are finished cooking, place them on top of the Italian sausage in the baking dish.

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Using the same skillet, cook the red pepper, green pepper, and onion slices until they have softened (a few minutes).

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Add the cooked veggies on top of the potatoes in the baking dish. Pour chicken stock over veggies, potatoes and sausage.

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Sprinkle with Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Stir gently to combine.  Cover dish with aluminum foil; bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes.

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

When done baking, remove foil, and dish it up while hot! That’s it! This “meat and potatoes” casserole tastes great with a side salad and/or a piece of garlic bread.

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

I hope you have the opportunity to make this delicious, simple casserole for those you love. Spending time together enjoying a meal is a gift!  Have a blessed day!

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Source: http://www.barbbrinker.blogspot.com/2011/01/sausage-potato-casserole.html

Italian Sausage & Potato Casserole
 
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Simple yet hearty casserole, featuring Italian sausage, potatoes, red peppers, green peppers, onions, and Italian spices!
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 pound Italian sausage (sweet OR hot), cut into 2 inch pieces
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 medium red potatoes, unpeeled (cut in half lengthwise, then into ½ inch slices (half moons)
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded, then roughly chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded, then roughly chopped
  • 1 large brown onion, sliced thin
  • ½ cup chicken stock
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a 9x13 baking dish with non-stick spray.
  2. Heat 2 Teaspoons olive oil on medium heat in a LARGE skillet. Add Italian sausage chunks; cook, stirring occasionally until sausages are cooked through and no longer pink (about 6-8 minutes). Remove sausage to a paper towel to absorb grease, then place in 9x13 baking dish. Drain grease from skillet (but do not wash-just wipe it down with a paper towel before cooking potatoes).
  3. Add 2 Tablespoons olive oil back into skillet. Turn heat to medium. Add potato slices. Cook potatoes until light golden brown (they will be "almost tender"). You will need to turn the potatoes occasionally as they cook to make sure both sides cook well. When done, remove the potatoes from skillet and place them on top of the sausage in the baking dish.
  4. In same skillet, cook the red and green peppers, and sliced onion until they soften up and lightly brown (about 3-5 minutes). When done, remove vegetables and place them on top of potatoes in baking dish.
  5. Pour the chicken stock over the sausage/potato/vegetables in baking dish, then sprinkle with Italian seasoning, salt and black pepper. Stir to combine ingredients. Cover baking dish with aluminum foil.
  6. Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes. Remove from oven, uncover, and dish it up while hot!
Notes
Because I was only cooking for two, I cut the recipe in half. I DID, however, leave the amount of chicken stock exactly the amount as written (1/2 cup). For all other ingredients I cut the quantity in half, and casserole was cooked in a smaller baking dish.

 

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Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake

Ever have one of those days when you can’t think of anything you want to fix for dinner? Well, that was my predicament recently… so I put my “thinking cap” on, grabbed some things from my refrigerator, and came up with this recipe for Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake!Cheesy Ham. Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

With a few ingredients and a little imagination, this meal actually turned out very well! Ham and veggies are cooked, a basic cheese sauce is made, elbow macaroni noodles are cooked, then it is all mixed together and baked, and BOOM… dinner is served (without too much work!). And guess what? It tasted great! Here’s what I did to make this dish:

In a large skillet, I sauteéd ham, fresh spinach, red pepper, green onions, and mushrooms in a bit of butter for 3-4 minutes. The spinach will reduce down quite nicely as it cooks. Set aside when done.

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

In separate pan, cook 2 cups of macaroni noodles according to package instructions, then drain. It saves some time if you cook the pasta while cooking the ham and veggies. (yippee for multi-tasking!)

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Make the cheese sauce by cooking butter and flour on medium low in large pan for a couple minutes until butter is melted, and flour is cooked (to reduce “pasty” taste).

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Add milk to flour/butter mixture, and whisk to combine. Continue cooking (and whisking) until mixture has thickened (approximately 3-4 minutes)

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Add cheddar cheese to sauce. Cook (and stir) until cheese is melted and fully incorporated into sauce.

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Add the sauteéd ham and veggie mixture to the sauce. Stir to combine.

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Add the macaroni noodles. Stir to combine.

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Pour the pasta, ham and veggie mixture into a buttered (or sprayed) casserole dish.

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Sprinkle the top of casserole with Panko crumbs (or bread crumbs); top with grated cheese.

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Cover pan with foil, then bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil from casserole, then bake an additional 10-15 minutes, until heated through and bubbly.

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Remove from oven, let cool for just a second, then dish it up onto individual dinner plates. Enjoy this simple, yet filling and tasty dish!

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Hope you enjoy this meal. It has a little bit of everything in it: Meat, Cheese, Pasta, and Veggies! We enjoyed the leftovers the next day for lunch, too (Yum!) Hope you will consider making this “comfort food” kind of dinner, and really hope you enjoy it like we did.

Have a great day!

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Source: My brain (once I put my “thinking cap” on).’

Cheesy Ham, Spinach & Macaroni Bake
 
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A comforting casserole, filled with pasta, ham, cheese, spinach, mushrooms, and red bell peppers, in a light cheese sauce.
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup ham (cubed in bite sized pieces)
  • ¼ red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • 2 cups fresh spinach, chopped
  • 8-10 mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 heaping teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 cups elbow macaroni noodles, cooked and drained
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 2 heaping Tablespoons flour
  • 1½ cups milk
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • ⅓ cups Panko crumbs (or bread crumbs) for garnish
  • Additional grated cheddar cheese (for garnish)
Directions
  1. Melt 2 Tablespoons butter in large skillet. Add diced ham, red bell pepper, green onions, spinach and mushrooms. Cook for 4-5 minutes or until mixture (spinach) is dramatically reduced. Add minced garlic and cook for an additional minute (but do not burn garlic). Set skillet aside.
  2. While cooking ham and veggies, also cook elbow macaroni according to package instructions; drain, rinse, and set aside.
  3. In a separate large skillet, melt 2 Tablespoons butter. Add flour; stir to combine. Cook this mixture on low for 1-2 minutes (this helps the pasty taste of the flour to cook out). Add milk. Whisk to combine, and cook for 3-4 minutes on medium low, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens, and is heated through. Add 1 cup grated cheddar cheese; stir until cheese has melted into sauce.
  4. Add the ham and veggie mixture to the sauce, then add the macaroni noodles. Stir well, to fully combine ingredients.
  5. Place mixture into a greased or buttered casserole dish. Cover dish with aluminum foil.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. Remove foil and continue cooking for 10-15 additional minutes or until heated through and slightly bubbly.
  7. Remove from oven; let sit for a minute or two to solidify a bit, then cut and serve. Enjoy!

 

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Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Casserole

I recently created this Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Cheese Casserole “on the fly” for a quick and easy dinner. Boy, was it good!Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Do you ever have those days when you get so busy with projects or other activities that when it gets to be dinner time, you realize you didn’t remember to plan anything or lay anything out from the freezer? Where you wish the dinner “fairies” would magically appear and fix dinner (and clean up) for you? Yep. I did that about a week ago. I racked my brain for a few minutes, then ended up making this delicious dish!

I went on the prowl to see what leftovers we had hanging around our house, and came up with this idea for a quick pasta based casserole, and guess what? It actually tasted great! Hooray for last minute throw-together dinners!!!! Egg noodles and smokey flavored Gruyere cheese sauce is a great combo. Add to that some ham, a few peas, and a few more ingredients, and BAM! You’ve got yourself a quick casserole (like Mac n’ Cheese on steroids) that tastes so good! So I thought I would share this easy recipe on the ol’ blog today. Here’s what I did:

First things first. I cooked the egg noodles in boiling water per pkg. instructions until done, then drained them. Easy, right?

Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
While the noodles were cooking I made the cheese sauce. In a large saucepan, I melted butter, then added flour, garlic powder and onion powder. Whisked them together, then cooked for about a minute, then added cheese and milk. I cooked these on low until cheese had melted, and mixture had thickened. I then added some whipping cream, then seasoned with salt and pepper, to taste.

Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Then I added pieces of ham. “Leftover” Ham.

Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
I followed it up with frozen peas. Yep. Threw them in frozen.

Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
I added the cooked and drained egg noodles to the ham/cheese sauce and mixed gently to combine and fully coat the noodles with sauce.

Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
I sprayed an 8×8 baking dish with non-stick spray and poured the pasta and sauce in. I added some more grated Gruyere cheese to the top of casserole, then sprinkled the top with bread crumbs, covered the dish with aluminum foil, and into the 350 degree oven it went.

Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
When it came out of the oven 30 minutes later, it looked like this:

Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
I let it cool just a minute or two, to make it easier to dish up, then onto our plates it went! The pasta tasted fantastic (I credit the smokey taste of that Gruyere Cheese!). I served it with some of the green beans I canned last summer from our garden. (See, even the side dish was thrown together at the last minute… thank goodness for my canned goods pantry!) The leftover casserole for lunch the next day was wonderful, as well. This recipe makes 4 servings, but could easily be doubled.

Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Hope you will give this one a try. It’s so EASY and DELICIOUS!

Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Recipe Source: My brain, while hungry!

Pasta, Ham and Gruyere Casserole
 
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Easy to prepare pasta casserole, enhanced by the smokey flavors of a Gruyere cheese sauce, ham, and peas.
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 cups egg noodles (or any pasta you prefer)
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 2 Tablespoons all purpose flour
  • ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ⅛ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 cup cup grated Gruyere cheese
  • ⅓ cup whipping cream
  • salt and pepper (to taste)
  • 1 cup chopped ham
  • ⅓ cup peas (frozen are fine)
  • Additional ¼ cup grated Gruyere cheese (for garnish)
  • 2 Tablespoons bread crumbs (for garnish)
  • Non-stick spray (for baking dish)
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spray an 8x8 baking dish with non-stick spray. Set aside.
  3. Cook pasta according to pkg. instructions. Drain. Set aside.
  4. While pasta is cooking, prepare the cheese sauce. Melt butter in large pan (or skillet). Whisk in the flour, garlic powder and onion powder. Cook for about a minute.
  5. Add the milk. Stir until fully combined and sauce has thickened.
  6. Add a cup of grated cheese. Stir to combine. Cook on low until cheese has fully melted.
  7. Add whipping cream. Stir to fully combine. Continue cooking on LOW, but do not let mixture come to a boil.
  8. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  9. Add ham pieces. Add peas. Stir gently to combine.
  10. Add cooked and drained pasta. Stir gently until pasta is coated with sauce. Pour pasta and sauce into prepared 8x8 baking dish.
  11. Cover the top of casserole with additional grated cheese, then sprinkle with bread crumbs.
  12. Cover baking dish with aluminum foil. Cut a tiny hole in top of foil to vent, then bake casserole in 350 degree oven for 30 minutes. When done, and cheese is bubbly, remove to a wire rack for a minute or two to slightly cool, then serve. Enjoy!

 

 

 

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Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole

My husband and I hosted Easter brunch at our home this year. One of the dishes I made was this Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole. I wanted a “meatless” egg dish that our son and his girlfriend, who are vegetarians, could enjoy with the rest of us.Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!So… in addition to our Easter ham, roasted potatoes, fresh asparagus, fruit platter, scones and deviled eggs, I made this breakfast casserole. It tasted fantastic… which was a GOOD thing, since I tweaked my own recipe for Ham n’ Cheese Breakfast Soufflé, and substituted green chiles, broccoli, asparagus, green onions, and red pepper for the meat in the original recipe (and added pepper jack cheese).

The casserole needs to be prepared and refrigerated the night before you bake it, so the bread soaks up a lot of the egg mixture. Other than a little planning ahead, the rest of the casserole is a breeze to throw together… and it was wonderful to have it all assembled on Easter and ONLY have to put it in the oven. Here’s what I did:

I cut the crust off some french bread (any white bread will do), then cut it into cubes and placed it in a baking pan that had been sprayed with non-stick spray.

Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
I then spread green chiles over the bread cubes, followed by lightly steamed pieces of broccoli, asparagus, followed by green onions, and red peppers.

Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Then I added a layer of grated pepper jack cheese.

Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Next was a layer of cheddar cheese.

Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
I whisked together eggs, milk, half n’ half, salt and spices in a medium sized bowl.

Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
I poured the egg mixture evenly over the casserole.

Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Casserole was covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated over night. The next day I brought the casserole out of the refrigerator about half an hour before baking (to take the chill off).  I baked the casserole for one hour, then removed it to a wire rack to cool down just a bit before cutting into 12 pieces and serving.

Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
It really was delicious! The leftovers are easily reheated in the microwave and stay quite yummy! Hope you will give this egg, cheese & veggie casserole a try!

Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Egg, Cheese & Veggie Breakfast Casserole
 
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A delicious (and meatless) breakfast casserole filled with eggs, cheddar & pepper jack cheese, broccoli, asparagus, scallions, and red peppers.
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 12 servings
Ingredients
  • 10 slices white bread, crusts removed
  • 1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chiles, drained
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup grated pepper jack cheese
  • 1 cup chopped broccoli (chopped and lightly steamed)
  • 1 cup fresh asparagus (cut into 1 " pieces, and lightly steamed)
  • 2 green onion stalks (white and green sections), sliced
  • ¼ cup chopped red pepper
  • 6 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup half n' half
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¾ teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • 2 Tablespoons dried parsley flakes
Directions
  1. Spray a 9x13 pan with non-stick spray.
  2. Remove the crusts from the bread and discard. Cut remaining bread into cubes. Spread bread cubes in prepared baking dish. Add the following ingredients in layers, distributing evenly across the pan:
  3. Add diced green chiles.
  4. Add lightly steamed and chopped broccoli and asparagus. Next, add sliced green onions, and chopped red peppers.
  5. Add grated pepper jack cheese
  6. Add grated cheddar cheese.
  7. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, half n' half, salt, mustard powder, and dried parsley until fully combined. Pour this mixture evenly over the top of the casserole. Cover pan with plastic wrap; refrigerate overnight.
  8. On the day you are going to bake it, remove pan from refrigerator and let it sit for about 30-40 minutes, to take the chill off the pan. While it sits, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  9. When ready, remove plastic wrap from casserole; place casserole in oven.
  10. Bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees (or until the eggs are "set" in the middle of pan).**If you forget, and end up taking the dish straight from refrigerator to oven, remember to add another 25-30 minutes of baking time!
  11. When casserole is done baking, remove pan to wire rack. Let it cool for about 10 minutes, then cut into serving pieces. This dish is at it's very best when it has had a chance to cool down just a bit. Enjoy!
Notes
The prep time does not include the overnight refrigeration required for this dish...FYI.

 

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Quinoa Enchilada Casserole (Meatless!)

I am always on the lookout for a meatless entree I can serve when we have our Vegetarian son and his girlfriend over for dinner!  I found a recipe for Quinoa Enchilada Casserole (meatless) on Pinterest and decided to give it a “taste-test” before offering it up for a family get-together!Quinoa Enchilada Casserole (Meatless!) / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Our youngest son (the one who used to love huge steaks and hamburgers) became a vegetarian a few years ago. His girlfriend is also a vegetarian. That complicated things a bit by making dinners more challenging for our “family get-togethers”, soooo… I’m glad I tried this recipe (and only tweaked with it just a little)… it was delicious, and really easy to prepare! If you like a good enchilada, or enjoy a meatless meal occasionally like we do (one with loads of flavor), you will like this recipe… meat eater or not!

Here’s how you make it!

Prepare quinoa according to package directions. When done, place quinoa in large bowl with green chiles, corn, black beans, cilantro, green onion, cumin, garlic powder, and chili powder.

Quinoa Enchilada Casserole (Meatless!) / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Add the enchilada sauce, salt and pepper. Stir well, to combine.

Quinoa Enchilada Casserole (Meatless!) / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Stir in a half cup of cheddar cheese and a half cup of pepper jack cheese. Stir until fully combined.

Quinoa Enchilada Casserole (Meatless!) / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Pour the mixture into a lightly greased (or sprayed) 8×8 inch baking dish. Spread mixture evenly in dish. Sprinkle the remaining cheeses on top.

Quinoa Enchilada Casserole (Meatless!) / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Bake casserole for about 20-25 minutes at 375 degrees (or until cheese is bubbly and fully melted). Remove casserole to a wire rack. Garnish the top with chopped tomato and cilantro. Serve, and enjoy!

Quinoa Enchilada Casserole (Meatless!) / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Just a word… the texture of the casserole makes this one to be scooped out with a spoon, rather than cut into pieces with a knife. It tastes fantastic, though, and the flavors are totally that of eating a good enchilada, without the meat.  I refrigerated the leftovers and the next day was able to cut it into pieces (while chilled) and get this photo so you can see accurately what it looks like on the inside.

Hope you will consider trying this recipe… it is packed with flavor and tastes great!

Quinoa Enchilada Casserole (Meatless!) / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Quinoa Enchilada Casserole (Meatless!) / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Original Recipe (slightly adapted) from: http://damndelicious.net/2014/07/07/quinoa-enchilada-casserole/

Quinoa Enchilada Casserole (Meatless!)
 
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A great meatless recipe for enchilada casserole, featuring quinoa, black beans, corn, spices, and cheese! Delicious!
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Meatless Entree
Cuisine: Mexican
Serves: 6 servings
Ingredients
For Casserole:
  • 1 cup quinoa (uncooked)
  • 1 can (10 ounces) enchilada sauce
  • 1 can (4.5 ounce) chopped green chiles (drained)
  • ¾ cup corn kernels (frozen or canned...doesn't matter)
  • ¾ cup canned black beans (drained, rinsed)
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 green onion stalk (green/white parts, sliced)
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese (divided)
  • 1 cup pepper jack cheese (divided)
For Garnish:
  • 1 Roma tomato, (diced)
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray an 8x8 inch baking pan with non-stick spray.
  2. Cook quinoa in 2 cups of water (per package directions).
  3. In a large mixing bowl, place the cooked quinoa, green chiles, corn, black beans, cilantro, green onion, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder and cayenne pepper.
  4. Add enchilada sauce, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir to combine.
  5. Add ¾ cup of cheddar cheese and ¾ cup of pepper jack cheese. Mix well to combine.
  6. Pour quinoa mixture into prepared baking dish. Spread evenly in dish. Top the casserole with the rest of the cheddar and pepper jack cheeses.
  7. Bake casserole (uncovered) in a 375 degree oven for about 20-25 minutes. Cheese should be melted and very bubbly around edges of pan.
  8. Remove baking dish to a wire rack. Let it cool for a couple minutes. Garnish the top of casserole with diced tomatoes and chopped cilantro. Spoon the casserole out onto serving plates. Serve, and enjoy!
Notes
Another option: Original recipe used chopped ripe avocados as a garnish (instead of cilantro).

 

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Mom’s Tuna Noodle Casserole

Well, if Mom’s Tuna Noodle Casserole isn’t “Old School”, I don’t know what is!  I’ve been sick for a few days, so “comfort food” and EASY were on the menu for one of our dinners.Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
My Mom made this for our family as I was growing up… back in the 60’s when we were footloose and fancy free kids, without a care in the world (you know… back in the day where we played outside for hours on end with our neighborhood buddies, because we didn’t have computers or cell phones to stare at all day inside the house!). I think my Mom probably made this for us because it was a very economical and tasty way to feed our family of 5, but I’ve always enjoyed the “comfort food idea” of a good tuna noodle casserole. Nothing fancy… just GOOD (and the leftovers are great, also!)

When I made this the other night, my husband’s first words were “Wow… this brings back childhood memories. My Mom used to make tuna noodle casseroles, also!” Must have been what Moms across America cooked back then. This casserole is easy to prepare, feeds quite a few, is easy on the ol’ budget per serving, and it tastes great! Go figure! Hope you enjoy this simple blast from the past!

Here’s how to prepare this dish: In a large bowl, combine the cream of mushroom soup, sour cream, milk, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and grated Parmesan cheese.

Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Add frozen peas, sliced mushrooms, tuna, and grated cheddar cheese. Fold these in gently.

Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
This is what it looks like once all ingredients are folded in. It’s not pretty, but that’s okay!

Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Cook the egg noodles for 7 minutes…

Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Drain the egg noodles, then add to the rest of the ingredients. Stir to combine.

Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Pour ingredients into a 2 qt. baking dish that is coated with non-stick spray. Spread evenly in pan.

Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Crush some Ritz crackers in a baggie.

Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Spread the crumbs evenly over the top of the casserole, then bake uncovered for 40 minutes.

Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
This is how it looks when it comes out of the oven. Let the casserole sit on a wire rack and cool for a few minutes before cutting into serving pieces.

Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
After casserole has “firmed” back up for a few minutes as it sits… slice with sharp knife into pieces, and use a spatula to place piece onto individual plates. Grab a fork, and enjoy this delicious, comfort food meal, just how good ol’ MOM used to make it!

Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Recipe Source: My Mom

Mom's Tuna Noodle Casserole
 
Prep time
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This tuna noodle casserole is good ol' comfort food... just like Mom used to make it!
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 8 servings
Ingredients
  • 6 cups dry egg noodles (9 ounces)
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • ¾ cup sour cream
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup frozen peas (un-thawed)
  • 1 can sliced mushrooms (7 ounces)
  • 1 can albacore tuna, drained (6 ounces)
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 10-12 Ritz crackers (or Saltines, if you prefer)
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the cream of mushroom soup, sour cream, milk, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and Parmesan cheese.
  3. Gently fold in the frozen peas, mushrooms, tuna, and cheddar cheese. Set aside.
  4. Cook egg noodles, according to pkg. instructions (add to boiling water, cook for 7 minutes). When done cooking, drain the noodles, and gently stir them into the rest of the ingredients until thoroughly combined.
  5. Spray a 2 quart baking dish with non-stick spray. Pour in the casserole ingredients, and spread evenly in pan.
  6. Finely crush the Ritz crackers into small crumbs. I put them in a baggie and use a rolling pin to crush them. Once crushed, sprinkle the crumbs over the top of the entire casserole.
  7. Bake casserole (uncovered) at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Remove pan to a wire rack. Let it cool for a few minutes before slicing (letting it cool just a bit will let you make better cuts, and make it easier to dish up!)
  8. Serve with a great salad on the side, and enjoy!

 

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Ham n’ Cheese Breakfast Soufflé

What do ya get when you morph the best of two breakfast casseroles into one dish? This delicious “all-in-one” Ham and Cheese Breakfast Soufflé that will get your morning started out just right.Ham n' Cheese Breakfast Souffle / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
A few days ago, one of my friends asked me if I had a good “breakfast casserole” that would feed quite a few people. She needed a recipe for a brunch she was going to be attending this coming weekend. I told her I did, and immediately thought of this recipe! It serves 12, is super easy to make, plus it is always a hit at a brunch or potluck. So here ya go, Sherry. This one is for YOU!

When I got married, I was given a recipe for a Cheese Soufflé from two friends. I’ve made that recipe many times over the past 37 years. I ended up blending that original recipe with parts of another recipe (source unknown), and came up with this delicious breakfast dish years ago. It really is an all-in-one breakfast dish, because it contains eggs, bread, milk, cheese, and ham. This dish takes only a few minutes of prep to get ready;  it chills in the fridge overnight, then is baked for one hour. That’s it! Easy… and delicious! The mixture puffs up during the cooking process, which is why it is has the word “soufflé” in the title.  From Wikipedia: “The word soufflé is the past participle of the French verb souffler which means “to blow up” or more loosely “puff up””. And there you have it!

Hope you will give this recipe a try. The leftovers are easily reheated, so this one can go the distance. I think you will enjoy it!

Ham n' Cheese Breakfast Souffle / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

First things first… cut the crusts off the bread…

Ham n' Cheese Breakfast Souffle / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

A layer of bread cubes goes into the pan first, followed by the ham cubes.

Ham n' Cheese Breakfast Souffle / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Next layer is the grated cheddar cheese,,,

Ham n' Cheese Breakfast Souffle / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Now the egg mixture is whisked together, then it is poured over the bread, ham, and cheese mixture.

Ham n' Cheese Breakfast Souffle / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Egg mixture has been poured into baking dish. Cover dish with plastic wrap, and let it just sit and soak overnight in the refrigerator.

Ham n' Cheese Breakfast Souffle / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Right out of the oven. See how it puffs up? Pretty! Let it cool a bit before slicing.

Ham n' Cheese Breakfast Souffle / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Here’s what a piece looks like after being cut and served… time to dig in! That one piece has bread, eggs, ham, and cheese in it! Add some fruit on the side, and you’ve got a great breakfast!

Ham n' Cheese Breakfast Souffle / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Original Recipe adapted from: Dee Gustafson and Faye Johnson

Ham n' Cheese Breakfast Soufflé
 
Prep time
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A light, puffy, "all in one" breakfast souffle containing eggs, milk, ham, cheese and sourdough bread.
As Prepared By:
Cuisine: Breakfast
Serves: 12 servings
Ingredients
  • 10 slices white bread, crusts removed (I used 5 really large slices sourdough bread)
  • 2 cups chopped ham
  • 2 cups grated Cheddar cheese
  • 6 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup half n' half
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¾ teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • 2 Tablespoons dried parsley
Directions
  1. Spray a 9x13 pan with non-stick spray.
  2. Remove the crusts from the bread and discard. Cut the remaining bread into cubes. Spread in baking dish.
  3. Cut the ham into cubes. Layer on top of the bread cubes.
  4. Layer the grated cheese on top of the ham.
  5. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, half n' half, salt, mustard powder, and dried parsley, until fully combined. Pour this evenly over the top of the cheese in baking pan. Cover pan with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight.
  6. On the day you are going to bake it, remove the pan from refrigerator and let it sit for about 30-40 minutes, to take the chill off the pan. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  7. When ready, remove plastic wrap, and place in oven.
  8. Bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees (or until it is eggs are "set" in the middle of pan). **If you forget, and end up taking the dish straight from the refrigerator to the oven, remember to add another 25-30 minutes of baking time!
  9. When done baking, remove pan to wire rack. Let it cool for about 10 minutes, then cut it into pieces. This dish is at it's very best once it has cooled down a bit. Enjoy!
Notes
Prep time does NOT include overnight refrigeration time.
Any white bread will work in this recipe. this time I used 5 LARGE slices sourdough bread. Usually I just use regular old, cheap white bread.
If you would like a bit more flavor, try adding a small can of diced green chiles to this dish. Just mix the drained chiles in with the eggs, Really good!

 

 

 

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Layered Chicken Enchilada Casserole

I received this recipe for a Layered Chicken Enchilada Casserole from my Mom’s best friend over 35 years ago. It is a family favorite meal to this day.Layered Chicken Enchilada Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
It’s a recipe I have made countless times over the years, and during my 30+ years of heading to work every day, really appreciated how quickly it can be assembled, cooked, and enjoyed!

I love Mexican food, and typically eat enchiladas with the traditional red sauce. However, this recipe has a white sauce, with onions and green chiles, so the very first time I made it years ago, I wasn’t sure I would enjoy it. I was wrong.

This is a hearty casserole that can easily serve 8-10 people. It’s not too spicy, but has a wonderful flavor from the layers of chicken, corn tortillas, green chiles, onions, white sauce, and cheese. It is absolutely delicious (especially the second day, for leftovers!), and is a snap to prepare. Since the baking time is only 30 minutes, I find it easy to prepare early in the day, cover and refrigerate it until I am ready, then slam it (such a nice verbal picture, huh?) in the oven, and enjoy it a short time later.

Layered Chicken Enchilada Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Cooking the onions and green chiles to make the sauce…

Layered Chicken Enchilada Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Rest of sauce ingredients added, and sauce is cooking…

Layered Chicken Enchilada Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

3 layers of tortillas, chicken, sauce and cheddar cheese… ready to bake!

Layered Chicken Enchilada Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Ready to eat, with a small salad on the side.

Hope you will give it a try. It’s EASY and DELICIOUS. I think you will like it!

Layered Chicken Enchilada Casserole / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Original recipe source: Sandy Rohrbacher

Layered Chicken Enchilada Casserole
 
Prep time
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Total time
 
Delicious layered enchilada casserole, filled with chicken, corn tortillas, creamy sauce, onions, green chiles, and cheddar cheese.
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 8-10 servings
Ingredients
  • 4 chicken breasts, boiled and cubed (save the broth!)
  • 1 pkg. corn tortillas (12)
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 small can diced green chiles
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 small brown onion, chopped
  • 2 cups grated cheddar cheese
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
Directions
Make the sauce:
  1. Melt the tablespoon of butter in large skillet. Add the chopped onion and green chiles. Saute these for 3-4 minutes, or until onion is translucent and tender. Add the chicken broth and the contents of both cans of soup to the skillet. Mix well to combine. Simmer the sauce for 5 minutes.
Make the casserole:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Lightly grease a 9x13 baking dish. Layer the ingredients in this order: 1) 4 tortillas, torn into small pieces, 2) ⅓ of the chicken pieces, 3) ⅓ of the sauce, 4) ⅓ of the grated cheese.
  3. Repeat the layers 2 more times, ending with the grated cheese.
  4. Bake casserole, uncovered for 30 minutes or until heated all the way through.
  5. Remove casserole from oven. Let stand for approximately 5 minutes or so, to enable the cheese to firm up a bit (this will make cutting it and serving it up MUCH easier!)
  6. Enjoy!
Notes
A whole rotisserie chicken can also be used as a substitute for the cooked chicken breasts, if you're pinched for time. Easy!

 

 

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