The Best Casserole Dinner Recipe

Comforting and delicious, this Good Dinner casserole is the best recipe to keep on hand. It’ll be done in under an hour and guaranteed to fill you up! Layers of creamy cheese, rich tomato sauce and beef make this pasta dish one the whole family is going to love.

I tend to gravitate toward making food that I know will photograph well. Colorful food is pretty, and pretty photos are fun to gaze at. But what about food that doesn't necessarily look beautiful, yet tastes great? Well, I say all types of food deserve a chance to shine! This recipe (which comes from The Big Book of Easy Suppers, by the way) was titled well because it is good! And really, tasting good is all that matters, right? Well, unless all you want to do is look at pretty photos of food.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.

Cook 12 ounces (4 cups) of egg noodles according to package directions. Drain.

Meanwhile, in a skillet over medium heat, combine:

1 pound ground beef (I used venison to make it leaner, considering all the cheese that is about to come)

1 cup yellow onion, chopped

1 garlic clove, minced

Cook until meat is browned and vegetables are tender, about 6 to 7 minutes.

Stir in 1 can (15 ounces) of tomato sauce and simmer for several minutes.

In a medium bowl, combine:

8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

1 cup cottage cheese

1/2 cup sour cream (or plain nonfat yogurt for a healthier option)

1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped

Salt and pepper, to taste

Place the cooked egg noodles (or, um, elbow macaroni, if you happened to grab the wrong thing at the store) in a lightly sprayed 3- to 4-quart casserole dish and toss with 2 tablespoons of butter.

Spread the cream cheese mixture over the noodles in an even layer. 

Top that with the meat mixture from the skillet.

Top with 2 cups of grated cheddar cheese. 

Bake, covered, in the preheated oven until bubbly, about 35 minutes.

See? It's not beautiful. But it's totally yummy.

Good Casserole

The title says it all! (source: The Big Book of Easy Suppers by Maryana Vollstedt)

Contributed by Megan Porta from

Published May 1, 2011

Print Friendly and PDF

Serves: 6-8

Total time: 50 min



  • 12 ounces (4 cups) egg noodles, cooked according to package directions and drained
  • 2 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 cup cottage cheese
  • 1/2 cup sour cream or plain nonfat yogurt
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Vegetable oil, as needed
  • 1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 2 cups grated Cheddar cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place noodles while still warm in a lightly sprayed or oiled 3- to 4-quart casserole and toss with butter. In a medium bowl, mix together cream cheese, cottage cheese, sour cream, parsley, salt and pepper. Spread mixture over the noodles.
  2. In a medium skillet over medium heat, combine beef, onion and garlic and sauté, breaking up meat with a spoon, until meat is browned and vegetables are tender, 6 to 7 minutes. Add a little oil if needed. Stir in tomato sauce and simmer several minutes. Pour over the noodles and top with cheese; do not mix. Bake, covered, until bubbly, about 35 minutes.