A Note From Kristin: There’s nothing like a warm casserole in the fall/winter, even in hot Florida! Last year Renee shared a delicious Italian Spinach and Chicken Casserole on Live Simply. Many of you have expressed your love for that particular casserole, so when Renee asked me if the Live Simply readers would like a new casserole recipe, I immediately responded, YES!!! While I’m enjoying some quality time with my family on vacation, Renee is stopping by today to share this filling, seasonal meal with you. Thank you, Renee!
Contributor post written by Renee from Raising Generation Nourished
My friends, we have officially entered casserole season!
It’s ok if you don’t live somewhere with cold weather; a casserole still works as a quick weeknight meal that the whole family always loves, no matter where you live! Obviously, growing up in the Midwest, Casserole sort of ends up being everyone’s middle name.
Quite a few years back, I was able to nail down the perfect real food swap for those little red cans of cream of chicken soup that are the staple ingredient in most casserole recipes. Having a real food cream of chicken soup that was just as convenient and quick to use was a huge game changer for me, and allowed me to still serve a casserole to my family without the junky ingredients.
We have a lot of favorite casseroles in our home, including: Chicken and Broccoli Casserole and Italian Spinach and Chicken Casserole (which I posted here on Live Simply). Kristin mentioned to me how popular the Italian Spinach and Chicken Casserole was over the last year, so we decided to bring another real food casserole recipe your way!
Now I’m going to be honest with you: kale is just not my favorite vegetable! I know, send in the trendy real food police. But kale is a pretty nutrient and mineral-rich vegetable that we could all use a little bit more of in our life. When you drown kale in delicious, nourishing fats like real cheese and cream, well, I promise you won’t even know it’s there!
This is a great family-friendly meal that looks fancy, but it’s really easy to make. The Scalloped Potato, Kale, and Beef Casserole recipe makes a small baking dish that feeds my family of 5 for one meal – sometimes we might have a leftover serving (leftovers pack-up in a school thermos very well!). If you have a larger family, are feeding a larger crowd, or just want more leftovers, you can double this recipe to fit in a 9×13 baking dish just as easily!
- ½ lb grass-fed ground beef
- 1 tablespoon butter + more for greasing the casserole pan
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- 2 handfuls of kale, chopped (About 3-4 cups. I get the big bags of coarsely chopped kale at Costco, take 2 handfuls out, and then run my knife through the leaves.)
- 1 tsp dried thyme + extra to sprinkle on top
- ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
- sea salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- 1¼ cup shredded cheese + extra to sprinkle on top
- 1½ cups condensed cream of chicken soup (I keep this quick homemade version in my freezer for quick casseroles!)
- ½ cup whole milk sour cream
- 3-4 medium potatoes, sliced thin on the round (A mandolin would be nice for this step.)
- chopped fresh parsley to garnish (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Brown the beef in a pan. While the beef cooks, sprinkle it with salt and pepper. Use a slotted spoon to set the beef aside, leaving the grease behind to cook in.
- Add the butter to the beef fat in the pan. To the butter and fat, add the: onion, garlic, kale, thyme, and red pepper flakes. Saute the veggies in the pan for about 5 minutes, until the kale wilts. Add the browned beef to the veggies, stirring to combine. Add the sea salt and pepper to the mixture according to your taste.
- Put the cheese, cream of chicken soup, and sour cream in a small mixing bowl and combine the ingredients with a spoon.
- Cover the bottom of a small buttered baking dish with a layer of overlapping sliced potatoes.
- Spread half the cheese mixture over the potatoes, then all of the beef/kale mixture, and then the rest of the cheese mixture over the top of the beef/kale mixture.
- Place a final overlapping layer of potatoes on the top, cover the baking dish with foil, and bake for 1 hour.
- Take the foil off and bake for another 20 minutes. Then take the dish out, sprinkle the extra grated cheese and a small amount of dried thyme over the top. Bake for 10 more minutes to melt the cheese. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley.
- Serve warm.
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