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Macaroni and Cheese Casserole

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, plus more for baking dish
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
3 cups elbow macaroni
2 (12-ounce) cans evaporated milk
1/3 cup skim milk
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
2 (8-ounce) packages extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated
1 (8-ounce) package Monterey Jack cheese, grated
Paprika, for sprinkling


1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Generously butter a 13-by-9-inch glass baking dish; set aside. Bring a large pot of water to a boil; add salt and macaroni. Cook until al dente according to package directions. Drain, and return to pot. Add butter, and toss until pasta is coated and butter has melted; set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together evaporated milk, skim milk, and eggs. Add seasoned salt, garlic powder, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper; set aside. In another medium bowl, combine cheeses; set aside.
3. Place 1/3 macaroni in an even layer in the bottom of prepared baking dish; cover evenly with 1/3 cheese. Repeat with remaining macaroni and cheese mixture. Pour milk mixture evenly over contents of baking dish. Sprinkle with paprika. Bake until top layer is lightly browned, 35 to 45 minutes. Let stand 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

Green Bean Casserole


2 pounds fresh green beans, ends cut off
4 slices bacon, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 whole large onion, chopped
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 1/2 cups whole milk, plus extra for thinning if needed
1/2 cup half-and-half
Freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup grated sharp Cheddar
1 cup breadcrumbs


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Cut the green beans in half if you like the pieces to be a little smaller. Blanch the green beans: drop them into lightly salted boiling water and allow the green beans to cook for 3 to 4 minutes. Remove them from the boiling water with a slotted spoon and immediately plunge into a bowl of ice cold water to stop the cooking process. Drain the beans once they're cool and set aside.

Add the bacon pieces to a skillet over medium heat. Cook the bacon for 2 minutes, and then add the peppers, garlic and onions, and continue cooking until the bacon is done (but not crisp) and the onions are golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.

In a separate saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Sprinkle the flour into the pan and whisk immediately to evenly mix it into the butter. Cook for a minute or 2, and then pour in the milk and half-and-half. Continue cooking, whisking constantly, while the sauce thickens, about 2 minutes. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, some black pepper and the cayenne, and then add the grated cheese. Stir while the cheese melts. Turn off the heat.

Add the bacon/onion mixture and stir to combine. Add the green beans and stir gently to combine. Pour into a baking dish and top with the bread crumbs. Bake until the sauce is bubbly and the bread crumbs are golden, about 30 minutes.

Turkey Pot Pie
1 1/2 pounds turkey tenderloin steaks, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 large potato, peeled and cubed
2 medium-size carrots, sliced
1 medium-size yellow onion, halved and thinly sliced
1/2 cup water
1/4 teaspoon salt

1 can (12 ounces) evaporated skimmed milk
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon each salt and white or black pepper
1 store-bought or homemade pie crust
Low-fat (1% milkfat) milk

How to make it 1 hour, 30 minutes

Rinse turkey; drain and pat dry. In a large saucepan, place the turkey, potato, carrots, onion, water, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes or until the turkey is cooked through. Drain, reserving the cooking liquid.

2. Preheat the oven to 350°F. In the same saucepan, whisk together the evaporated skimmed milk, flour, thyme, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper. Stir in the reserved cooking liquid. Cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture starts to thicken. Cook and whisk for 2 minutes more or until thickened and bubbly. Stir in the turkey mixture.[/step-item]

3. Spoon the turkey mixture into a lightly greased 2-quart casserole. Place the pie crust on top of mixture in casserole (tip, below). Trim to 1 inch beyond edge of casserole. Fold under extra crust and crimp edge. Cut slits in crust. Brush with a little milk. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until pie crust is golden. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Makes 6 servings.

Bacon Baked Beans
1/2 c. ketchup
1/2 c. barbecue sauce
1/4 c. brown sugar
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
3 (15-oz.) cans navy beans, rinsed and drained
6 slices bacon, chopped

Preheat oven to 375º. In a large bowl, whisk together ketchup, barbecue sauce, brown sugar, Dijon, Worcestershire, and garlic and season with salt and pepper.
Add beans and toss until coated, then transfer to a large baking dish or Dutch oven. Top with bacon and bake until browned and crispy, about 1 hour.

Cheddar Squash Casserole

tablespoons butter or margarine
medium sweet onion, chopped (1/2 cup)
yellow summer squash (1 1/4 lb), cut into 1/4-inch slices
cup half-and-half
1 1/4
cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (5 oz)
teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
teaspoon salt
teaspoon freshly ground pepper
cups cubed (1 inch) hearty white bread
Fresh thyme sprig, if desired


Heat oven to 375°F. Generously spray 8-inch square (2-quart) glass baking dish with cooking spray.
In 12-inch skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat. Cook onion in butter 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until almost tender. Add squash; cook 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until just tender and lightly browned. Remove from heat; cool 5 minutes.
In large bowl, beat eggs with whisk until blended. Stir in half-and-half, 3/4 cup of the cheese, the thyme leaves, salt and pepper. Gently stir in squash mixture and bread cubes. Spoon into baking dish.
Bake uncovered 20 minutes. Top with remaining 1/2 cup cheese; bake 10 minutes longer or until puffed and golden. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with thyme sprig.

Expert Tips

For a lighter casserole, use low-fat milk instead of half-and-half, and choose a reduced-fat sharp Cheddar. A rustic whole wheat loaf would be fine used in place of the white bread in this dish.

Potatoes Au Gratin

Butter to grease the baking dish
2-1/2 cups heavy cream
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 large Russet or Yukon Gold potatoes (about 2-1/4 pounds), peeled and sliced very thin
1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano


Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease an 8-inch (or 2-quart) baking dish with butter.
In a mixing bowl with a pouring spout (or large liquid measuring cup), whisk together the cream, salt and pepper.
Arrange some of the potato slices, edges overlapping, in a single layer on the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle 1/4 of the cheese over the potatoes and pour 1/4 of the cream mixture over top. Repeat with the remaining potatoes, cheese and cream, forming 4 layers. Pour any leftover cream over top.
Place in the oven and bake, uncovered, for about an hour, or until the potatoes are tender when pierced with a knife and golden brown on top. Let the dish settle and cool for about ten minutes before serving.

Broccoli & Cheese Casserole

1 pound broccoli, cut into pieces 1 (10.75 oz.) can cream of mushroom soup 2 large eggs, lightly beaten 1 cup mayonnaise 1 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar 1 stick (1/4 lb.) salted butter, cut into pieces Pepper 1 sleeve Ritz crackers, crushed (1/3 of a 12 oz. box)

How to Make It
Step 1

Preheat oven to 350°F. Mist a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
Step 2

Steam broccoli until crisp-tender, 7 minutes. Transfer to a bowl of ice water.
Step 3

Mix soup, eggs, mayonnaise, cheese, butter and pepper in a saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until melted and combined.
Step 4

Drain broccoli; spread evenly in baking dish. Pour cheese mixture on top. Sprinkle with crackers. Bake for 30 minutes.

Shepherd's Pie


2 pounds ground beef
1/2 onion, chopped
garlic powder and seasoning salt to taste
3/4 ounce package brown gravy mix
2 cans (10 3/4-ounce) cream of mushroom soup
2 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cup frozen sliced carrots, thawed
10 ounces package frozen peas, thawed
salt and pepper to taste
2 1/2 to 3 cups potatoes, peeled, cooked and mashed
paprika to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Brown beef and onion in a skillet; season to taste with garlic powder and seasoning salt. Drain; pour into a large bowl.

Stir in gravy mix, soup, water, carrots and peas; mix well.

Spoon into a greased 9 inch deep-dish pie plate; sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Spread mashed potatoes over top; bake at 350 degrees F for 45 minutes. Sprinkle with paprika.

Serves 4

Rice Bake Casserole
2 tablespoons butter, plus more for dish
1 small onion, minced
Pinch cayenne pepper
1 package frozen spinach, thawed, drained and chopped
1 cup milk
2 eggs
2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar, plus extra for top
4 cups cooked rice
1 teaspoon freshly chopped parsley leaves
1 teaspoon freshly chopped thyme leaves
1 teaspoon chopped basil leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a large casserole dish.

In a large pan over medium-high heat, saute onions with 2 tablespoons of butter and cayenne until translucent. Add the spinach and cook for 3 minutes. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together milk and eggs.

Add the cheese, rice, parsley, thyme, basil and spinach mixture and combine well. Season with salt and pepper.

Pour into prepared casserole dish and top with extra shredded cheese. Bake for 30 minutes and serve piping hot.

Hashbrown Casserole

1 (2-pound) bag Southern-style frozen hashbrown potatoes
2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, grated
¾ teaspoon salt
1 can 98% fat-free cream of celery soup
¼ teaspoon black pepper
1 ½ cups onion, chopped
¼ stick margarine, melted

Heat oven to 375 degrees.
Spray a casserole dish with cooking spray. Mix potatoes with remaining ingredients.
Spread in casserole dish and cover with foil. Bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes.
Remove foil and bake for 15 more minutes.

Chicken Pot Pie with Bacon-and-Cheddar Biscuits


1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 cups milk
1 1/2 teaspoons Creole seasoning
2 tablespoons butter
1 large sweet onion, diced
1 (8-oz.) package sliced fresh mushrooms
4 cups shredded cooked chicken
2 cups frozen cubed hash browns
1 cup matchstick carrots
1 cup frozen small sweet peas
1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cup cold butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 cups self-rising flour
3/4 cup (3 oz.) shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1/4 cup finely chopped cooked bacon
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons butter, melted

1. Prepare Filling: Preheat oven to 425°. Melt 1/3 cup butter in a large saucepan over medium heat; add all-purpose flour, and cook, whisking constantly, 1 minute. Gradually add chicken broth and milk, and cook, whisking constantly, 6 to 7 minutes or until thickened and bubbly. Remove from heat, and stir in Creole seasoning.
2. Melt 2 Tbsp. butter in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat; add onion and mushrooms, and sauté 10 minutes or until tender. Stir in chicken, next 4 ingredients, and sauce. Spoon filling into a lightly greased 13- x 9-inch baking dish.
3. Cut butter cubes into self-rising flour with a pastry blender or fork until crumbly and mixture resembles small peas. Add cheese, bacon, chives, and whipping cream, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead lightly 3 or 4 times. Roll or pat dough to 3/4-inch thickness; cut with a 2 1/2-inch round cutter to form 15 biscuits.
4. Bake Chicken Pie Filling at 425° for 15 minutes. Remove from oven, and arrange biscuits on top of hot chicken mixture. Bake 25 to 30 more minutes or until biscuits are golden brown and chicken mixture is bubbly. Remove from oven, and brush biscuits with 2 Tbsp. melted butter.

Ham and Cheese Omelet Bake
(10-oz.) box frozen broccoli & cheese flavored sauce
can (10.2 oz) Pillsbury refrigerated Original biscuits
1 1/2
cups milk
teaspoon dry ground mustard
Salt and pepper, if desired
cups diced cooked ham
cup chopped onion
oz. (1 cup) shredded Cheddar cheese
oz. (1 cup) shredded Swiss cheese
(4.5-oz.) jar sliced mushrooms, drained
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Heat oven to 350°F. Cut small slit in center of broccoli and cheese sauce pouch. Microwave on High for 3 to 4 minutes, rotating pouch 1/4 turn once halfway through microwaving. Set aside to cool slightly.
Meanwhile, spray bottom only of 13x9-inch (3-quart) glass baking dish with cooking spray. Separate dough into 5 biscuits. Cut each biscuit into 8 pieces; arrange evenly in sprayed dish.
In large bowl, beat eggs, milk, mustard, salt and pepper with wire whisk until well blended. Stir in ham, onion, both cheeses, mushrooms and cooked broccoli and cheese sauce. Pour mixture over biscuit pieces in dish. Press down with back of spoon, making sure all biscuit pieces are covered with egg mixture.

Bake at 350°F. for 40 to 50 minutes or until edges are deep golden brown and center is set. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Cut into squares.


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