This Cheesy Ground Beef and Rice Casserole is easy to make with pantry ingredients like cream of mushroom soup. Your family will LOVE this quick dinner recipe!
Cheesy Ground Beef and Rice Casserole
On occasion, I’ll make a recipe where I know that I need to freeze any leftovers right away to keep myself away from them. This, is one such recipe.
This beefy, cheesy rice casserole is the ultimate way to use up the ground beef you have tucked away in your fridge or freezer. The ingredients are super simple. You’ll likely already have them all on hand, and there are tons of substitution options.
You can make this beef casserole days ahead of time and it makes a great freezer meal. You are going to love having this in your rotation.
How to Make it
See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.
Brown the ground beef in a large pot over medium high heat.
Mix in salt, pepper, & Italian seasonings as the beef cooks. Drain any excess grease if needed. Set the beef aside and cover with foil.
Add butter to the pot along with diced onions, cook until softened. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute.
Add beef broth, butter, and rice. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cover tightly.
Simmer for 10 minutes. Add mushrooms and replace cover. Do not stir. Steam for 5-10 more minutes. (Refer to rice package for cooking time.)
Turn off heat, leave the cover on and let the rice stand for 10 minutes, any rice on the bottom of the pot will release.
Add the ground beef, cream of mushroom soup, sour cream, milk, and cheese.
Use a silicone spatula and gently stir to combine.
Don’t Use Minute Rice
I highly recommend you use regular long grain rice instead of minute rice:
- Long grain rice = creamier consistency. Short grain rice tends to be stickier.
- Regular rice has higher nutritional value and better flavor.
Make-Ahead Beef Method
- This casserole can be assembled ahead of time and refrigerated for up to 2 days prior to baking.
- You can also freeze the unbaked casserole for another day. To reheat, let it defrost in the fridge for 24 hours until thawed.
- Let it sit out for 30 minutes prior to baking, or bake it for an extra 10 minutes. Then cover and bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes.
- Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
- Freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months.
- Frozen leftovers can be microwaved for a quick lunch.
- You can defrost in the fridge overnight, cover and bake in a 350° oven until heated through, the amount of time depends on portion size.
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Cheesy Ground Beef and Rice Casserole
- 1 lb. ground beef, 85% lean
- 1.5 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 3 Tablespoons butter, divided
- ¾ cup onions, diced
- 1 Tablespoon garlic, minced
- 2 ½ cups beef broth
- 1 ¼ cups uncooked white long grain rice, (not instant rice)
- 8 oz. sliced button mushrooms, washed
- 10.5 oz. cream of mushroom soup
- ½ cup milk, any kind
- ½ cup sour cream
- 2 cups cheddar cheese, divided
- Note: This recipe is designed to allow you to prepare all of the casserole ingredients in one pot before transferring to a casserole dish for baking. Before you begin, refer to your rice package for the amount of liquid (beef broth) and cooking time. If preferred, cook the rice separately and skip the beef broth ingredient. You'll need 3 + 3/4 cups of cooked rice to combine with the other casserole ingredients.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Brown the ground beef in a large pot over medium-high heat. Mix in salt, pepper, and Italian seasonings as the beef cooks.
- Drain grease, transfer to a plate, and cover with foil.
- Melt 2 tbsp butter in the same pot. Add the diced onions and cook for 5 minutes, until softened. Add garlic and cook for 1 more minute.
- Add beef broth, butter, and rice. Stir to combine.
- Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer.
- Cover tightly and cook for 10 minutes.
- Add the mushrooms, replace the cover, and cook for 5-10 more minutes. (Refer to rice package for exact cooking time.) Do not stir the rice at any point.
- Turn heat off, leave the cover on, and let it stand for 10 minutes without stirring. Any rice on the bottom of the pot will release.
- Add the cooked ground beef back along with the cream of mushroom soup, milk, sour cream, and HALF of the cheese. Stir to combine.
- Transfer to a lightly greased 9 x 13 casserole dish. Top with remaining cheese.
- Cover and bake for 20 minutes. Serve!
• Instead of mushrooms, you may choose to use frozen peas, carrots, and/or corn.
• Leftovers freeze very well!
If you prefer to avoid condensed canned soup, you can make this with my homemade Cream of Chicken Soup!