Hamburger/Cheeseburger Casserole

Hamburger/cheeseburger casseroleI’m so excited to finally post this recipe!  We’ve made it about a dozen times in Cooking Club and I think we finally perfected it!  I also love that it’s a good demonstration of how you can take a recipe and use it as a starting point to really make it your own… whether you’re tweaking it for taste or specific nutritional concerns, etc.  This is actually adapted from a recipe on (one of my very favorite places to get recipes) which was in turn adapted from a recipe in Bobby Deen’s cookbook From Mama’s Table to Mine: Everybody’s Favorite Comfort Foods at 350 Calories or Less.

For Cooking Club, we wanted to focus on the protein and eliminate the pasta called for in the original recipe.  This is what we came up with.


1 tsp oil
1 cup chopped onion
1 heaping T of minced garlic
2 lb lean ground beef (96% lean) (you can also use ground turkey)
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 28 oz cans diced tomatoes
2 tbsp Dijon Mustard
1/4 cup chopped dill pickles or relish
1 bag broccoli slaw
8-10 ounces sliced baby bella mushrooms, sauteed
1 can black beans
1 can corn

Optional:  2 cups reduced fat grated cheddar cheese


In a large skillet (I actually use a Dutch Oven), heat oil over medium-low heat.  Saute the onions for about 5-7 minutes and add the garlic.

Brown beef or turkey with onions and garlic until fully browned with no pink showing; season with salt and pepper.

Stir in the tomato paste and add tomatoes, beans, corn and mustard. Let the mixture bubble until it is slightly thickened, about 2 minutes.  You may need to turn up the heat a bit and let it go longer to get it to your liking.  Mix in sauteed mushrooms and broccoli slaw.

At this point, you have a couple options:

1)  If you are using an oven proof skillet or Dutch Oven, you can add cheese on the top and bake the casserole at 350 until the cheese is melted, about 15 minutes.  When you take the casserole out, add the relish/chopped pickles.  This is great if you are serving the casserole right away (and everyone likes cheese!)

2)  I actually prefer to divvy up the portions and and add the cheese and pickles based on each person’s preference… especially if this is being prepped ahead and the food is just going to be microwaved at a later date anyway.  One time, we forgot to add the onions, so some people also sprinkled raw chopped onions on top and that was pretty delicious and added to the “hamburger-y-ness” of it as well.

For 1/8 of the recipe (withOUT cheese and using a mix of 90% and 96% lean ground beef):  265 calories, 5 grams of fat, 25 grams of carbs (7 g of fiber), 30 grams of protein.  Your specifics will change based on the meat you use and whether or not you use cheese.

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