Simple yet packed with flavor this Ground Beef Casserole is an easy dinner recipe that’s budget friendly. Plus, kids love it! A yummy mixture of pasta, ground beef, marinara sauce, cheese and seasonings. Perfect for the freezer and making ahead of time.
Budget friendly meals don’t have to be boring! This yummy ground beef casserole is packed full of flavor and loaded with protein. Not to mention, it’s crazy easy to make. Noodles, cheese, and flavorful ground beef, a comfort food casserole that is to die for!
Quick and easy casseroles are one of our favorite ways to have dinner around our house. Everyone gets plenty of food in their bellies and we almost always seem to have leftovers! Cheeseburger casserole is just as easy as this beef noodle casserole, so you should try it out too. Get a rotation of easy casseroles going and have a really simple meal every week!
Why You’ll Love Ground Beef Casserole
- It only takes about a half hour to complete this simple casserole. Letting you get back to your evening much more quickly!
- This dish is made with simple, staple ingredients that you can keep in your pantry and fridge/freezer. Just pull them out whenever you need a quick meal and get to cooking!
- It’s perfect for meal prep! Freeze a whole casserole in bulk, or store leftover servings as lunch and dinner during the week.
Ingredients for Ground Beef Noodle Casserole
- Ground beef – Use lean ground beef for best results and the least amount of grease or fat to drain off.
- Italian seasoning – A little Italian seasoning will season this simple casserole perfectly.
- Salt and pepper – Season ground beef with a little salt and pepper or your favorite beef seasoning.
- Minced garlic – Freshly minced garlic adds a whole level of flavor to this tasty casserole. So yummy!
- Tomato sauce – The tang of tomato sauce pairs wonderfully with the deep flavors cheese, beef, and pasta in this casserole.
- Onion – I recommend using white onion or yellow onion. Their more mild flavor will pair well with all the other ingredients in this recipe!
- Marinara sauce – Using both tomato sauce and marinara will provide a yummy variety of flavor. Grab your favorite jar of marinara or make some homemade marinara sauce.
- Mozzarella cheese – Shred your own cheese for the most melty and gooey goodness!
- Penne pasta – Penne pasta is my favorite, but you can use any other tubular shaped pasta. Spiral noodles and bowtie pasta can be really fun too!
How to Make Ground Beef Casserole
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and spray a 9×13 inch baking dish with nonstick spray. Set the dish aside.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and then add the penne pasta. Cook pasta according to package instructions until al dente. Drain off the pasta water and then transfer to a large mixing bowl.
Heat a large skillet over medium heat with the ground beef and diced onion and then season with Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Cook the ground beef and onions until there is no pink left in the beef. It should take about 10 minutes.
Add the minced garlic and cook until fragrant. Then stir in the marinara and tomato sauce and transfer to the mixing bowl that has pasta.
Pour the mixture into the previously prepared baking dish. Then sprinkle the shredded mozzarella over the top.
Bake for about 15 minutes until the cheese is slightly golden brown and the casserole is bubbling.
Serve hot and enjoy!
How to Store Leftover Ground Beef Casserole
FRIDGE: Either transfer leftover casserole to an airtight container, or tightly cover the casserole dish in plastic wrap. Store in the fridge for up to 4 days.
FREEZER: There are couple different ways to freeze this dish! You can either freeze leftovers for 2 months, or freeze an unbaked casserole for about 3 months. To freeze leftovers, just transfer them to an airtight container and allow to fully cool before freezing. To freeze an unbaked casserole, assemble all the way up to the point you would bake it. Then wrap the dish very tightly in plastic wrap or foil and store!
How to Reheat Leftover Ground Beef Casserole
Reheat leftovers in the microwave or oven until warmed through. If you are baking an un-baked ground beef casserole from frozen, just add some time onto the bake time!
What to Serve with Ground Beef Noodle Casserole
Why are the noodles in my ground beef casserole mushy?
If you end up with noodles that are an unappealing and mushy texture, you likely boiled them too long. It is really important that they are cooked to al dente. The noodles will continue to cook in the oven with all of the other casserole ingredients. So, if you overcooked them on the stovetop, they’ll end up being a mushy mess after baked in the oven.
Can I use different meat in this recipe?
Sure! This recipe taste amazing with ground beef, but feel free to use ground turkey, ground chicken and even ground pork if you prefer.
- Want a darker golden brown color to the cheese topping? Turn the broiler on for one minute just before pulling this ground beef casserole with noodles out of the oven.
- Feel free to change things up in this recipe. For a version with a bit of kick, buy some spicy marinara sauce!
- Make this recipe gluten free by using gluten free penne pasta!
A tasty casserole that the whole family will love! This ground beef casserole is a go-to recipe with all the comfort food feelings.
More Ground Beef Casserole Recipes
- Make taco a little different with this amazing Taco Casserole recipe.
- A twist on a favorite classic meal, this Sloppy Joe Casserole is a crowd favorite.
- Pizza Casserole is the ground beef casserole that picky eaters won’t complain about for even a second!
- Meatball Sub Casserole is so fun to make and even more fun to eat!
- 16 ounces penne pasta
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 large onion diced
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 24 ounces marinara sauce store-bought or homemade
- 15 ounces tomato sauce
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray a 9×13 inch baking dish with nonstick spray and set aside.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add pasta and cook al dente according to package instructions. Drain and transfer to a large mixing bowl.
- In a large deep skillet over medium-high Add the ground beef and onions and season with Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Cook the ground beef and onions, breaking up the beef into smaller pieces with the back of a wooden spoon until browned, about 10 minutes.
- Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 more minute. Stir in the marinara and tomato sauce then transfer to the mixing bowl with pasta. Gently stir to combine.
- Pour pasta mixture into the prepared 9×13 inch baking dish.
- Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella cheese on top and bake in the preheated oven until the cheese is lightly golden, about 15 minutes.