When you hear “casserole” do you still think of the June Cleaver variety made from mystery meat, mushy veggies or noodles and condensed cream-of-something soup that’s topped with crushed crackers? Not exactly what we want on our tables these days. But we don’t want to discard casseroles completely! They’re easy, affordable meals that are equally ideal for weeknight family dinners as well as for parties, potlucks and picnics.
Let’s upgrade to a modern casserole: A beautiful centerpiece relying on a rainbow of fresh seasonal ingredients to help you create good health and great taste. Here’s a start with some of our favorites:
- Add extra veggies to this Broccoli, Rice and Cheese Casserole. Remember, the cheese can be substituted with a non-dairy alternative if desired.
- This Brown Rice and Vegetable Casserole is flavored with parsley, oregano and chives. For something different, substitute quinoa or wild rice in place of brown rice.
- I love this Green Apple and Butternut Squash Casserole. It’s made with mushrooms and pecans.
- Italian Baked Beans and Greens is a healthy delicious casserole made with veggies, beans and kale.
- This Baked Rice and Tempeh Casserole is flavored with garlic and shallots.
- Visit our Lasagna search page for a variety of mouthwatering casseroles.
- Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Tempeh is a hearty casserole spiced with ginger and cinnamon.
- Our warming Harvest Vegetable Shepherd’s Pie is made with mashed yams, sage and tempeh.
- Here are a few modern takes on an old favorite: Panko-Crusted Green Bean Casserole and New and Improved Green Bean Casserole.
Casseroles are also perfect for getting creative with leftovers, so that nothing goes to waste. One of my favorites is an enchilada casserole made from corn tortillas layered with leftover beans, salsa fresca, feta cheese (a personal favorite), and sliced zucchini. It’s great with a dollop of guacamole!
Here’s a list of ingredients you might like to use the next time you build a casserole:
- Whole grains
- Brown or wild rice
- Buckwheat, millet or amaranth
- Whole wheat, spelt or sprouted whole grain pasta
- Cracked wheat, whole wheat couscous or spelt
- Pinto, black, and navy beans
- Lima and butter beans
- Split peas, lentils, adzuki beans and black eyed peas
- Fresh veggies
- Onions, tomatoes and mushrooms
- Kale, collards, and chard
- Carrots, colorful bell peppers and butternut squash
- Chives, leeks and shallots
- Fresh herbs and seasonings
- Basil, thyme oregano
- Marjoram, parsley, rosemary
- Turmeric, curry, cumin and coriander
Are you king or queen of the casseroles? Got a favorite? Let me know.