27 Comforting Casserole Main Dishes for Easy Family Dinners

Don’t know what to make for dinner? Try one of these cozy and comforting casserole main dishes.

27 Comforting Casserole Main Dishes for Easy Family Dinners

Simply Recipes

A hearty and warming casserole is like a tale as old as time. I most certainly grew up with them, loved them, and will continue to make them over and over again, and I hope you will too!

In its very simplest terms, a casserole is a dish that is baked slowly in an oven. This can include a full meal (breakfast or dinner), a side dish, or I’d even dare say a dessert (I’m looking at you Bread Pudding!) For this round-up, though, I wanted to stick to the type of casseroles that make a full meal. That means all of these casseroles have a meat and a vegetable included in it. If you’re looking for a fantastic selection of vegetarian casseroles, don’t fret. We’ve got you covered right here.

What really makes casseroles my personal go-to time and time again is just how easy they are to throw together. Prep a few things, toss them into a dish, and bake. It’s just that easy. While they’re baking, it leaves me time to clean up the kitchen so that when dinner is done, I not only have a delicious meal, but I also have the cleanest kitchen in town. What’s not to love about that?

Oh, and did I mention that they usually feed a crowd, so you know there’s going to be plenty to go around? If you’re not convinced that you need all the casseroles in your life, read through this round-up and there will most certainly be one that strikes your fancy!

I personally gravitate towards casseroles like Classic Tuna Noodle Casserole (no need to thaw meat!), or budget-friendly options like our Sausage, Pepper, and Potato Bake. We love breakfast for dinner (aka brinner!) so this Easy Breakfast Casserole is a regular on my menu rotation, and while writing this round-up Moussaka caught my eye. I’ve had it before, and loved it, and can’t wait to make it for my family!

Let’s dive into these casseroles and see which ones pique your interest.

  • Baked Spaghetti

    Easy Baked Spaghetti
    Elise Bauer

    If you’re a fan of lasagna, then adding this to your menu is a must. You can make this dish up to a day ahead, which can be a real time saver on those days when you need a reprieve from cooking dinner. Pro tip: If you’re wanting to add more veggies, finely shred some carrots and cook them with the sausage.

  • Beef Noodle Casserole

    Beef Noodle Casserole
    Elise Bauer

    Looking for a budget-friendly casserole that’ll feed a crowd? This is it! It has simple ingredients that you already have on hand. If you’d like to pack in a little more vegetable power, try adding in some zucchini or chopped spinach!

  • Chicken and Rice Casserole

    Chicken Rice Casserole
    Elise Bauer

    This classic combo is jam-packed with all the right fixings. Juicy chicken thighs ensure the casserole won’t be dry, the rice is cooked in rich chicken stock, and the creaminess comes from real sour cream, not any canned stuff. It’s a real winner of a dinner.

  • Chicken Noodle Casserole

    Creamy Chicken Noodle Casserole in a white baking dish with a silver spoon.
    Sally Vargas

    While this casserole is completely made from scratch, you can save time by using a rotisserie chicken. We also added a jar of pimentos for and added pinch of gusto!

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  • Classic Tuna Noodle Casserole

    Classic Tuna Noodle Casserole in cast iron skillet

    Simply Recipes / Ciara Kehoe

    While variations of this casserole have been in existence for over a century, our version is enriched with earthy mushroom flavor. Sprinkle the top with potato chips for maximum crunch power!

  • Tuna and Tomato Pasta Casserole

    Pasta with Tuna and Tomato Sauce
    Elise Bauer

    Tuna and ricotta seem like an unlikely combo, but they work magic in this casserole. If you’re not a tuna lover, you can easily substitute it for Italian sausage instead!

  • Mexican Lasagna

    Mexican Lasagna or taco lasagna recipe
    Elise Bauer

    This casserole is guaranteed to have your family running to the dinner table. Tailor the toppings such as guacamole, shredded lettuce, and sour cream to your liking, but the more the merrier.

  • Lasagna

    Side view of a piece of lasagna on a plate.
    Cambrea Bakes

    No casserole collection is complete unless traditional lasagna is involved! Bell peppers are one of our favorite additions to this recipe, and you could even squeeze in a few mushrooms as well. While you’re making one pan, you might as well make an extra one to freeze for later!

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  • Easy Shepherd’s Pie

    A slice of shepherd's pie on a plate with a fork.

    Simply Recipes / Cambrea Gordon

    The very best type of stick-to-you-ribs kind of comfort food is the kind that involves meat, veggies, and potatoes. Add to all that a little dash of Worcestershire sauce for a little zing, and life is good!

  • Sausage, Pepper, and Potato Bake

    Sausage, Pepper, and Potato Bake
    Marta Rivera

    Budget-friendly is the name of this casserole’s game, but don’t let that fool you into thinking it’s bland or boring. It most definitely is not thanks to a balsamic sauce that packs plenty of pizazz.

  • Tamale Pie

    A casserole dish with a tamale pie and a piece missing.
    Annika Panikker

    Love tamales? Here’s a rustic casserole that still gives you all the tamale flavor baked right into a skillet. If you have leftovers, you can freeze in smaller portions and reheat in the microwave for easy lunches too.

  • Healthy Shepherd’s Pie

    Easy healthy shepherd's pie recipe
    Alison Bickel

    There are a few swaps we made to make this dish as healthy as possible. One of those includes making the topping a blend of potatoes and cauliflower! It doesn’t sacrifice flavor at all, and your family is sure to love it just as much as the original.

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  • Turkey Black Bean Quinoa Bake

    Turkey Black Bean Quinoa Bake
    Elise Bauer

    You may just want to double this recipe because everyone will want seconds. If you don’t have any shredded turkey on hand, you can certainly use chicken or even ground turkey will do just fine!

  • Ham and Asparagus Strata

    Ham and Asparagus Strata
    Elise Bauer

    Talk about a showstopper! Rustic bread, melty cheese, ham, and asparagus all baked to golden perfection. If asparagus isn’t in season, try using peas or even broccoli!

  • Pastelon

    A slice of Pastelon Puerto Rican Plantain Lasagna on a plate
    Marta Diaz

    Think of this as the Puerto Rican version of lasagna. Instead of noodles, you’ll fry up some sweet plantains and layer them in between a beef mixture flavored with sazón, veggies, and cheese. Each cheesy bite will definitely win your taste buds over!

  • Cajun Turkey Pot Pie

    Cajun turkey pot pie in a ramekin.

    Simply Recipes / Sally Vargas

    Time to spice things up with some Cajun seasoning and some dark beer! This isn’t your average run-of-the-mill pot pie, so give it a whirl. Pro tip: If you’re strapped for time, use store bought pie crusts.

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  • Easy Breakfast Casserole with Prosciutto

    A slice of breakfast strata is on a white plate and spring salad is on the plate to the right. Sliced radish and chopped asparagus are visible in the salad. A fork is resting on the top of the plate. Cream linens are under the plate.
    Katie Morford

    Casseroles like this are so versatile because they can be used for breakfast or dinner. If you’re making this for breakfast, we suggest serving it with some fruit or roasted potatoes. If you’re serving it for dinner, try it with a side of tender greens!

  • Zucchini Breakfast Casserole

    Zucchini Breakfast Casserole
    Elise Bauer

    While this uses the best of garden fresh vegetables, the ingredients can be found anytime of the year at your local supermarket. The prep time is quick and easy, and then it just bakes until golden brown. It doesn’t get any easier than this!

  • Turkey Tetrazzini

    Old fashioned turkey tetrazzini recipe in a casserole dish.

    Simply Recipes / Cambrea Gordon

    This comfort-rich tetrazzini makes use of leftover turkey but using chicken will be just as tasty. Throw in some peas and mushrooms and bake with noodles in a creamy cheese sauce (that’s right—cheese sauce!) and this will have everyone licking their plates clean!

  • Easy Chicken Pot Pie

    Homemade Chicken Pot Pie with a golden crust has a serving removed and set on a white plate to the right.
    Marta Rivera

    This dish is actually quite simple to make from scratch, and it is the very definition of comfort food. You can save time by using frozen vegetables and you’ll get maximum flakiness from the crust when you use a puff pastry!

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  • Sweet Potato, Mushroom, Leftover Turkey Casserole

    Sweet Potato Mushroom Leftover Turkey Casserole
    Elise Bauer

    While this makes use of all those Thanksgiving leftovers, you’ll find it’s so tasty you’ll want to make it all year! This casserole is loaded to the max with all sorts of dreamy flavors and then topped with crushed Saltines and butter. It simply doesn’t get better than this.

  • Zucchini Lasagna with Ground Turkey

    No noodle zucchini lasagna on a plate along with a salad.

    Alison Bickel

    Roasted zucchini never looked better as it does layered between a hearty meat sauce and two kinds of cheese. Some recipes use raw zucchini, but we cooked it first so it would release its moisture. We’re going for hearty, not soupy!

  • Easy Breakfast Casserole

    Breakfast Casserole
    Elise Bauer

    Needing to clear out your fridge? This is the casserole to do it with! You can add it almost anything to the base. Have half a cup of corn? Add it in! Don’t know what to do with that leftover side of broccoli? Add it in! It’s really just that easy!

  • Potato, Spinach, and Sausage Casserole

    Potato Spinach Sausage Casserole
    Elise Bauer

    If you’ve never been a fan of spinach, then you haven’t tried it in this casserole! It blends in perfectly with the potatoes and sausage, so you won’t even know it’s there.

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  • Moussaka

    A piece of eggplant moussaka on a plate with a glass of wine and a salad behind it.
    Alison Bickel

    If you’ve never had the delightful pleasure of eating Moussaka, now is your chance. It’s a rich casserole that would be perfect for a Sunday dinner. Don’t be intimidated by how many steps there are. We break it down for you and make it as efficient as possible.

  • Cheesy Apple and Sausage Pie

    Apple Sausage Pie
    Elise Bauer

    Apples take a walk on the wild side in this pie! They pair wonderfully with the cheddar cheese and savory sausage. We suggest using tart green apples to really let all the flavors shine!

  • Sausage, Spinach, Ricotta Stuffed Pasta Shells

    Sausage Spinach Ricotta Stuffed Shells
    Elise Bauer

    This might just become your new favorite pasta dish. There’s just something about creamy ricotta in shells that is totally swoon-worthy. Pro-tip: Save time stuffing the shells by placing the filling in a Ziploc baggie, snipping off a corner, and piping the filling into the shells. Easy peasy!