This simple little casserole works out well with Ham, Chicken or Turkey. This is nothing fancy, just “down home” cooking, and it is a great “learner” dish for a child or teenager, and especially using the short cuts.
Casseroles like this have won their place in the hearts of American families – easy, fast and a great way to stretch a few ingredients. This one is certainly acceptable as is, and I’ve made versions of this as well as had many when I was growing up.
The downside of casseroles, though, we probably all know. Casseroles can be prone to iffy results, mushy, overcooked vegetables, and for those looking to avoid a lot of additives, many of the “short cuts” like canned soup and Bisquick are full of them.
Three relatively simple “improvements” can be made, the first, as far as taste and appearance, I think is most important. If you have trouble with casseroles, or are a new cook, these ideas can easily translate to other recipes:
- Lightly steam fresh vegetables rather than using a frozen product
- Substitute a cream sauce for the canned soup
- Use a simple home-made mixture instead of the Bisquick.
The directions for variations to the Easy One Dish Ham or Turkey Bake are below, in the notes. Just an fyi – my kids tend to like this dish just a bit cheesier and slightly soupier, so I often add a little extra cheese and about a half cup more of milk. This casserole, using fresh steamed vegetables and a home-made Bisquick crust was about $3.00 or so.
Easy One Dish Bake
- 2 16 ounce packages frozen broccoli or broccoli/cauliflower florets, thawed and drained or your choice of about 1 to 1 1/2 pounds of fresh vegetables, see note.
- 1 can cream of mushroom or cream of celery soup or a white sauce, see note.
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 cup of shredded cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 cup chopped cooked ham, chicken or turkey (about 5 ounces)
- 1 cup Bisquick baking mix or substitute, see note
- 3/4 cup milk (possibly a bit more)
In an ungreased baking dish (8 x 8 or similar size) mix broccoli, soup, cheese, the half cup of milk, choice of protein and onion powder.
For a better presentation, with a clean, damp dishcloth, wipe off any excess that has slopped onto the sides of a dish. Gently smooth the top of the vegetable sauce mixture with a spatula.
In a medium bowl, mix Bisquick (or substitute) and the remaining 3/4 cup of milk. Look for a thick but pourable consistency, and add a little extra milk if needed. Pour evenly over the mixture in the pan. Bake at 450 degrees for 27 to 30 minutes, until golden brown.
Let stand 5 minutes and serve, but be aware that the vegetables keep cooking under the biscuit crust – If leaving for any longer, cut the crust through into serving pieces so the steam can escape.
To steam fresh vegetables, bring about 1/2 inch of water to a boil in a saucepan, add the broccoli stems, then the rest of the vegetables. Cover, reduce to a simmer and pan steam several minutes but not until completely cooked, about five to six minutes. These vegetables will continue to cook in the casserole, but if not steamed first they will not turn out well. Note: because there is no excess water, less fresh vegetables are needed than if one is using the frozen vegetables.
To use a cream sauce instead of the canned soup and milk: Omit the soup, 1/2 cup of milk and onion powder. Instead: saute in 2 tablespoons butter, 1/2 cup each of diced onion and celery until just tender. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons flour. Whisk for a moment to cook flour. Stirring constantly, blend in 2 1/4 cups of milk, and cook, stirring until thickened, about 5 – 7 minutes. Use the spoon test: Dip a spoon in the mixture, then run your finger down the back of the spoon. If a distinct line stays, it is ready. Add salt and pepper to taste. Off heat, blend in grated cheese.
See my post on using a Bisquick Substitute. I often use the recipe for one cup, but I also put in 2 tablespoons of butter instead of the oil. It does make slightly more than one cup, so the milk may need to be increased just by a bit. Another option for a topping would be the Buttermilk Biscuit Topping for a Casserole Recipe.
Note on Frozen Vegetables: Thaw and drain before using or you’ll have a watery dish. The last broccoli I used was a pound, 10 ounces of broccoli and six ounces of water. The Bird’s Eye Steam Fresh I had planned on using here was 12 ounces, five ounces of vegetable, 7 ounces of water.
from the kitchen of http://www.frugalhausfrau.com
Let’s talk about how to save money/time on this recipe:
- Use a coupon matching site! One of my favorites in my area is Pocket Your Dollars, but every store has a group of enthusiastic Coupon Matchers. Do not discount the savings! I check their site every week, even if I don’t “need” to go to the store and often find bargains I can’t pass up.
- Follow my 12 Strategies – You’ll see them on the upper drop down menu of every page and how I apply them, below.
- Don’t get discouraged if your prices don’t match mine! Keep shopping at the best prices and your fridge/freezer and pantry will be stocked with sales priced ingredients.
- Read Strategies for additional tips as well as throughout the recipe, for saving time and managing food.
Per Serving : 276 Calories; 12g Fat (39.6% calories from fat); 13g Protein; 29g Carbohydrate; 3g Dietary Fiber; 35mg Cholesterol; 1086mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 1/2 Grain(Starch); 1 Lean Meat; 1 Vegetable; 1/2 Non-Fat Milk; 2 Fat.
Put your own spin on It:
- More cheese can be added to this recipe
- More milk can be added to this recipe, which will make it a bit on the soupy side; my kids love it that way and use it as a “sauce” to dip the topping into.
- This could be made with a variety of vegetables and cheeses.