Pantry Beef Casserole

I took a trip today to Whole Foods to restock my gluten-free items. I have a bad habit of looking in other people’s carts in Whole Foods to see if they are also buying gluten-free. I always feel compelled to start a conversation about going gluten-free. I never do, but maybe I should? Hearing other people’s experiences and tips is always interesting to me. However, today I was the subject of stares in the Whole Foods. My newborn, Dan, was audibly purring in his Native Carrier, which earned us looks from everyone in my path. He loves being squished in this thing- I suppose it reminds him of the womb. I really need to get a picture of him in it before he begins to look less like a newborn. Speaking of growing up, my Jude got his first haircut this week. I hated to cut those blond curls off! It was time though. His Grandma cut it because I knew she wouldn’t cut it too short. The haircut was an all-day affair that included several bribes. With all of this going on it is hard to find time to make anything but fast meals. Tonight I made what I have dubbed “Pantry” Beef Casserole because it is easy to make and a crowd pleaser. It is a good way to get kids and husbands to eat vegetables, so if you have them put them in! I could only come up with mushrooms, onion, and green pepper tonight.

pantry beef casserole Pantry Beef Casserole


1 lb. gr. beef, gr. turkey, or soy crumbles

1 onion

1/2 green pepper

8 oz. sliced mushrooms

28 oz. can Muir Glen crushed tomatoes w/ basil

12 oz bag of Tinkyada rice penne

1/2 teaspoon of oregano

salt to taste

red pepper to taste

pinch of sugar

3 oz. mozzarella

5-6 oz. mild cheddar


Bring a pot of water to boil to cook the penne. Brown the gr. beef. Drain the excess fat. Add the vegetables and cook for about 8 minutes or until tender. Add the crushed tomatoes, salt, pepper, sugar, red pepper, and oregano. Simmer for 15 minutes. While the sauce is simmering, cook the penne and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Once the sauce and penne noodles are done, layer them in a 3 qt. casserole dish. Start with 1/2 the sauce, then all of the noodles, then a layer of cheddar cheese, then the rest of the sauce, and top with cheddar cheese and mozzarella. Bake for 30 minutes.

My husband is still sore that I did not post his BBQ chicken when he was cooking a lot after the baby was born! Armed with my wordpress password, he snuck this into my post so I am going to leave it! He made an amazing BBQ chicken using Bone Suckin’ sauce (a great gf sauce) and BBQ corn with a number of different butters.
bbq chicken and corn Pantry Beef Casserole

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18 Responses to “Pantry Beef Casserole”

  1. We totally look in other people’s carts for GF stuff, too! Once at Whole Foods, a woman had a TON of GF bread. Turns out her hubby is celiac, and they live up north (we’re in MI). No Whole Foods there, so she comes down near Detroit, buys out the store, and freezes it! We ended up having a great conversation, so I say go ahead and do it!
    And post a pic of that baby purring away :)

  2. Two great meals in one post! They both look delicious.

  3. I do that too! And I’ve had a couple of neat conversations that way too. I’ve also discovered a few things that way too. The casserole looks great!

  4. Oh and perhaps your DH would like to do a short guest blog on cooking for the post-partum celiac? Cause my DH is really short on the cooking skills (Amy’s rice crust pizza has been on the menu a lot here in this last month of pregnancy). He could use the tips and looks like your DH knows how to cook!

  5. That looks delicious! I love hearing how you coped with pregnancy and now with having 2 small children. I’m expecting my first in 2 weeks and am afraid that I will be overwhelmed. You seem so calm in your posts, and it is very encouraging to me. Thanks and keep posting!

  6. I love Bone Suckin’ sauce. That stuff rocks and is a great quickie!! Way to go hubbie!

    This quick pantry casserole looks really good, and cheesy. I love squeezing veggies in wherever I can, thanks for another great tip! :)

  7. Larc- Thanks for the comment! We are lucky to have Whole Foods so close. I am going to get a pic of the baby on the blog soon.

    Karen- Thanks! BTW, looking forward to cake month!

    Wavy Brains-
    I hope to have DH post something in the next week! Thanks for a great idea!

    Erika- I was surprised at how smoothly things have gone. I am much more relaxed this time around! I think it is easier now that the baby is here. The ninth (tenth?) month was harder for me.

    SM- Kids will eat anything with cheese….and maybe ketchup.

  8. This is such a great resource! I woke up this morning wondering what I could do what left over pasta from last nights dinner. My first thought, “Natalie will surely have something I can make.” And sure enough, your latest entry is perfect! Thanks and see you soon!

  9. Christina- Thanks! You made my day! =)

  10. I am so grateful for all your recipes Natalie. I have had so much trouble making things edible and you are so good at it. I am glad your post partum is going so well. I have recently joined a Celiacs on the Gulf support group in my area, I am going to my first meeting later this month. I will meniton your website and recipes to the group.

  11. Marsha- I appreciate it! You are sweet to do that!

  12. OMG, Looks so yummy. I must make this. Hope to see ya when we get back from the beach. We leave tommorrow. Talk to ya soon, Jen

  13. Jen-
    Thanks for the comment! I hope to see you when you get back. Maybe we can take the boys somewhere fun… I am envious you are going to the beach!

  14. [...] the Gluten Free Mommy baked up a Pantry Beef Casserole Recipe Mrs. G.F. simmered a dish of Mussels La Vinnie [...]

  15. [...] Tuesday: Pantry Beef Casserole [...]

  16. I agree with the others, this recipe looks great and easy enough for me to do.
    I love your website, I have been reading it for about 2 months now but I’ve never left a reply.
    Thanks for all the recipes and updates on the home front.

  17. Debbie- Thanks for commenting! This recipe is easy and delicious. Thanks for the compliment too :)

  18. I always look in other people’s carts! If I see someone else trying to decide on two different GF item’s that I’ve had before, I let them know which one I like better and why. It makes my shopping trip so much longer, but is always worth it. I typically get a new idea for my own pantry and feel good about sharing my hard earned knowledge with others!

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