in

Pizza Casserole

Pizza, the universally beloved comfort food, takes on a new and exciting twist in this Pizza Casserole recipe. Imagine all the classic flavors and ingredients of a traditional pizza but transformed into a hearty, family-friendly casserole that’s incredibly easy to prepare. Whether you’re a seasoned home cook or just starting your culinary journey, this recipe is sure to become a go-to favorite.

Let’s dive into the world of pizza magic, transformed into a casserole, with all the flavors and textures you adore. It’s a dish that will make you fall in love with pizza all over again.

Ingredients

For the Casserole:

  • 12 ounces rotini pasta (or any pasta of your choice)
  • 1 pound ground Italian sausage
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (24-ounce) jar of marinara sauce
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fresh basil leaves for garnish (optional)

For the Toppings:

  • Your favorite pizza toppings! (e.g., pepperoni slices, sliced black olives, sliced mushrooms, green or black olives, banana pepper rings, etc.)

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C) and grease a 9×13-inch baking dish.
  2. Cook the rotini pasta according to the package instructions until al dente. Drain and set it aside.
  3. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the Italian sausage until it’s browned and crumbled. Remove any excess grease.
  4. Add the chopped onion, green bell pepper, red bell pepper, and minced garlic to the skillet with the sausage. Sauté until the vegetables are tender.
  5. Stir in the marinara sauce and Italian seasoning. Simmer for about 10 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. In the greased baking dish, layer half of the cooked pasta followed by half of the meat and sauce mixture. Sprinkle a layer of mozzarella, cheddar, and Parmesan cheese.
  7. Repeat the layers with the remaining pasta, meat and sauce mixture, and another generous layer of cheese. This is where the magic happens.
  8. Now comes the fun part. Top your casserole with your favorite pizza toppings. Go wild with pepperoni slices, black olives, mushrooms, or any toppings your heart desires.
  9. Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes. This allows all the flavors to meld, and the cheese to become gooey and delicious.
  10. Uncover the casserole and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and lightly browned.
  11. Once your casserole is out of the oven, let it rest for a few minutes. This allows the layers to set, making it easier to serve.
  12. Garnish with fresh basil leaves for a touch of freshness and brightness. If you’re a fan of extra heat, you can also drizzle some hot sauce on top.
  13. Serve your Pizza Casserole with a side salad or some garlic bread for the complete pizza experience.

Cook’s Notes and Variations

  • Feel free to use any type of pasta you have on hand. Penne, ziti, or even spaghetti broken into smaller pieces can work beautifully.
  • Experiment with different cheeses. Ricotta, fontina, or provolone can add unique flavors to your casserole.
  • Customize the toppings to suit your preferences. If you’re a fan of spice, add some red pepper flakes or jalapeños.
  • For a vegetarian version, skip the Italian sausage and load up on your favorite veggies.

Keto and Low-Carb Versions

If you’re following a keto or low-carb diet, you can still enjoy the essence of this Pizza Casserole:

  • Replace pasta with cauliflower florets. Steam the cauliflower until it’s slightly tender and use it as a pasta substitute.
  • Use ground turkey or chicken in place of Italian sausage to cut down on the fat content.
  • Opt for a low-carb marinara sauce with no added sugars.

Pizza Casserole is more than just a meal; it’s a delightful twist on a classic favorite. It’s a dish that brings together all the elements of pizza you adore, but in a casserole format that’s perfect for feeding a crowd or simply enjoying leftovers for days.

This recipe is all about convenience without compromising on flavor. It’s the kind of dish that will have your family and friends asking for seconds and requesting the recipe. It’s a culinary journey that starts with a familiar love for pizza and takes you on an adventure

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The second this touched my tongue, I was hooked forever

Cheesy potato bread recipe