10 delicious dinner ideas that prove casseroles are cool again


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Photo: Gimme Some Oven

Any meal where you can essentially throw a bunch of ingredients in one dish, cook for 40 minutes, and then get it on the table is a lifesaver for busy weeknights—especially when you have a whole fam (or even just a very hungry you!) to feed. That’s where the healthy casserole comes in. Not having to constantly watch the stove allows for more important evening activities, like watching Broad City. Plus, they make so many leftovers—the meal prepper’s dream.

Here’s the thing: Casseroles have long been a busy eater’s go-to, but the ones from your childhood probably weren’t that healthy…or very appetizing. (Here’s to everyone who involuntarily gags just hearing the words “tuna noodle casserole.”) Thankfully, it doesn’t have to be that way. Remember, we are living in a time where cauliflower can make a really good pizza crust and chickpeas can be pasta! To that end, check out these 10 healthy casseroles that are easy, nutritious, and blissfully tuna-free. Your mom would be proud.

Keep reading for 10 healthy casseroles to make on busy weekday nights.

vegan green bean casserole
Photo: Live Eat Learn

1. Vegan green bean casserole

Green bean casserole probably has a standing appointment on your Thanksgiving table, but green beans—rich in folate, potassium, and fiber—are so healthy that they deserve attention more than once a year. Especially when following Live Eat Learn blogger Sarah Bond’s recipe, which is healthier than smothering the vegetables in processed cream of mushroom soup. Her recipe provides an easy way to make your own sauce, using mushrooms, garlic, vegetable broth, and almond milk. And don’t worry—it’s still topped off with those crunchy fried onions. (You just DIY them—putting you in control of the sodium.)

healthy chicken enchilada casserole
Photo: Gimme Some Oven

2. Verde chicken enchilada casserole

The great thing about chicken enchilada casseroles is that they’re easy to really load up with protein, which is exactly what Gimme Some Oven blogger Ali Ebright does in her recipe. Besides chicken, she uses pinto beans to give the meal extra staying power. And there’s no need to whip up a veggie side either—including spinach and bell peppers in the dish make sure you get your produce fix.

kale and wild rice casserole
Photo: Half Baked Harvest

3. Kale and wild rice casserole

You may wax poetically about your love for kale, but if you’re cooking for a crew of not-so healthy eaters, they might need some convincing. Enter this dish from Half Baked Harvest, which combines the greens with rice, mushrooms, onions, and lots of spices. Pro tip: Use coconut milk in place of heavy cream to up the health factor and add a hint of sweetness.

creamy caprese casserole recipe
Photo: The Iron You

4. Creamy caprice cauliflower casserole

In case you haven’t heard, we’re living in a time of cauliflower 2.0. It’s the starring ingredient in this Mediterranean-style casserole from The Iron You, which also includes tomato, cheese, and fresh basil. It’s like your fave slice of pizza, in healthy casserole form.

healthy broccoli casserole
Photo: The Foodie Dietitian

5. Vintage broccoli cauliflower casserole

Another way to make good use of your cauli is pairing it with broccoli—another trending veggie—to make a healthier version of the classic cheesy broccoli casserole. While the OG recipe traditionally calls for Velveeta, margarine, and crackers, The Foodie Dietitian blogger Kara Lydon, RD, revamps it using Greek yogurt, cheddar cheese, milk, whole wheat bread crumbs, and the aforementioned starring veggies. It will still satisfy your creamy, cheesy craving, but with far more nutritious components.

swiss chard and egg casserole
Photo: Love and Lemons

6. Swiss chard and egg casserole

Not only is this casserole from Love and Lemons packed with fiber and protein, thanks to the eggs, it works just as well for breakfast as it does for dinner. The recipe also calls for dijon mustard and red chili flakes to add a spicy kick.

cheesy chickpea casserole
Photo: Emilie Eats

7. Cheesy chickpea, quinoa, and broccoli casserole

This vegan and gluten-free casserole from Emilie Eats is full of plant protein from chickpea and cashews (which are used to make the creamy “cheese”). Quinoa ups the nutrient density even more by giving the dish more fiber, iron, and magnesium.

fish casserole recipe
Photo: Pure Ella

8. Shredded carrot fish casserole

This recipe has a mere seven ingredients—including salt and pepper—but it’s super satisfying and flavorful. If the idea of fish casserole is triggering a tuna noodle PTSD, fear not; this dish from Pure Ella is totally different. Instead of tuna, it stars tilapia, and tomato paste is used instead of a cream sauce, which not only varies the taste but ups the potassium.

thai casserole recipe
Photo: The Healthy Maven

9. Thai quinoa casserole

Think outside the curry and pad Thai boxes with this recipe from The Healthy Maven, which introduces the Thai flavors to a classic casserole. Coconut milk and curry powder are combined with quinoa and broccoli, resulting in the perfect mashup. And the creamy peanut sauce will hit just the spot, fully satisfying your Thai food craving.

healthy potato casserole recipe
Photo: Blissfully Basil

10. Vegan creamy potato casserole

This casserole from Blissfully Basil serves up an indulgently creamy “cheese” sauce from cashews. It also still has the white potatoes you want in a classic casserole dish, but the recipe halves the serving by combining them with cauliflower (yep, that veggie again!). The result is a creamy, filling, and satisfying dinner.

For more dinner inspo, check out these 15-minute, dairy-free recipes and these Whole30-approved ones.

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