Cheesy Ground Beef & Rice Casserole Recipe


Looking for a hearty and satisfying meal that the whole family will love? Look no further than this Cheesy Ground Beef & Rice Casserole recipe! Packed with flavor, easy to make, and sure to become a staple in your meal rotation, this dish combines the classic comfort of ground beef with the creamy goodness of cheese and the wholesome goodness of rice. Whether you’re cooking for a weeknight dinner or entertaining guests, this casserole is guaranteed to impress.


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup long-grain white rice
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • Fresh parsley, chopped (for garnish)


  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C) and grease a 9×13-inch baking dish.
  2. In a large skillet, cook the ground beef over medium heat until browned and no longer pink. Drain any excess grease.
  3. Add the diced onion and minced garlic to the skillet with the ground beef. Cook for 2-3 minutes until the onion is softened and translucent.
  4. Stir in the uncooked rice, beef broth, diced tomatoes, dried oregano, dried basil, salt, and pepper. Bring the mixture to a simmer, then reduce the heat to low. Cover and let it cook for 15-20 minutes, or until the rice is tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed.
  5. Once the rice is cooked, transfer the mixture to the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle the shredded cheddar cheese evenly over the top.
  6. Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  7. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes, or until the cheese is golden brown and the edges are slightly crispy.
  8. Remove the casserole from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes before serving. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley for a pop of color and freshness.
  9. Serve hot and enjoy the deliciousness of this cheesy ground beef and rice casserole!

Serving Tips:

  1. Serve the Cheesy Ground Beef & Rice Casserole hot, straight from the oven, for the best flavor and texture.
  2. Garnish each serving with a sprinkle of chopped fresh parsley for a pop of color and added freshness.
  3. Pair the casserole with a simple side salad or steamed vegetables to round out the meal with some extra nutrients and fiber.
  4. For a complete dinner experience, serve alongside some crusty bread or garlic bread to soak up the delicious juices.

Storage Tips:

  1. Store any leftover casserole in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
  2. To reheat, simply place individual portions in the microwave or oven until heated through.
  3. You can also freeze leftovers for longer-term storage. Transfer the cooled casserole to a freezer-safe container or resealable freezer bags. It will keep well in the freezer for up to 2-3 months.
  4. To thaw and reheat frozen casserole, let it thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating. Then, reheat in the oven at 350°F (175°C) until warmed through, covering with foil to prevent the cheese from over-browning.
  5. Keep in mind that the texture of the rice may change slightly upon reheating, but the flavors will still be delicious.

Variations of Cheesy Ground Beef & Rice Casserole:

  1. Tex-Mex Twist:
    • Substitute the diced tomatoes with a can of diced tomatoes and green chilies for a spicy kick.
    • Add a teaspoon of chili powder and a half teaspoon of cumin to the beef mixture for extra flavor.
    • Top the casserole with sliced jalapeños and a dollop of sour cream before serving for a Tex-Mex flair.
  2. Mediterranean Inspired:
    • Use ground lamb instead of ground beef for a richer flavor.
    • Replace the diced tomatoes with a can of diced tomatoes flavored with basil, garlic, and oregano.
    • Stir in some chopped Kalamata olives and crumbled feta cheese into the beef mixture before baking.
    • Garnish with fresh chopped parsley and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil before serving.
  3. Veggie-Packed Version:
    • Add diced bell peppers, zucchini, or mushrooms to the beef mixture for extra veggies.
    • Use vegetable broth instead of beef broth for a vegetarian option.
    • Mix in a cup of frozen peas or corn kernels for added sweetness and texture.
    • Sprinkle some grated Parmesan cheese on top along with the cheddar for an extra cheesy finish.
  4. Italian-Inspired:
    • Season the ground beef with Italian seasoning instead of oregano and basil.
    • Substitute the cheddar cheese with shredded mozzarella cheese for a more authentic Italian flavor.
    • Add a layer of marinara sauce on top of the beef and rice mixture before adding the cheese.
    • Garnish with fresh basil leaves and a sprinkle of grated Parmesan cheese before serving.
  5. Cheesy Bacon and Broccoli Variation:
    • Cook chopped bacon until crispy and stir it into the beef mixture before baking.
    • Add steamed broccoli florets to the beef and rice mixture for a boost of color and nutrition.
    • Mix in a cup of shredded sharp cheddar cheese into the beef mixture for extra cheesiness.
    • Top the casserole with a breadcrumb and Parmesan cheese mixture for a crunchy topping before baking.

These variations offer exciting twists on the classic Cheesy Ground Beef & Rice Casserole, allowing you to customize the dish to suit your taste preferences and dietary needs. Enjoy experimenting with different flavors and ingredients to create your own unique version of this comforting casserole!


With its simple ingredients and easy preparation, this Cheesy Ground Beef & Rice Casserole is a winning recipe for busy weeknights or leisurely weekends. The combination of savory ground beef, fluffy rice, and gooey cheese creates a dish that’s both comforting and satisfying. Plus, it’s versatile enough to customize with your favorite ingredients or leftovers. Give this recipe a try and prepare to be delighted by its deliciousness!


  • FAQ: Can I use brown rice instead of white rice in this recipe? Answer: Yes, you can substitute brown rice for white rice in this casserole recipe. Keep in mind that brown rice typically requires a longer cooking time and may absorb more liquid, so you may need to adjust the cooking time and amount of broth accordingly.
  • FAQ: Is it possible to make this casserole ahead of time and bake it later? Answer: Absolutely! You can prepare the casserole up to the point of baking, cover it tightly with foil or plastic wrap, and refrigerate it overnight. When you’re ready to bake, simply remove it from the refrigerator, let it come to room temperature, and then bake according to the recipe instructions.
  • FAQ: Can I use ground turkey or chicken instead of ground beef? Answer: Yes, you can substitute ground turkey or chicken for the ground beef in this recipe. Just keep in mind that ground turkey and chicken may have a slightly different flavor and texture compared to beef, but they will still work well in this casserole.
  • FAQ: Can I add other vegetables to this casserole? Answer: Absolutely! Feel free to customize this recipe by adding your favorite vegetables such as diced bell peppers, carrots, peas, or spinach. Just be sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly if using vegetables that require longer cooking.
  • FAQ: Can I make this casserole gluten-free? Answer: Yes, you can easily make this casserole gluten-free by using gluten-free beef broth and ensuring that all other ingredients are certified gluten-free. Additionally, make sure any canned ingredients, such as diced tomatoes, are labeled gluten-free.
  • FAQ: How can I make this casserole more creamy? Answer: To make the casserole more creamy, you can stir in a can of condensed cream of mushroom or cream of chicken soup along with the beef broth. This will add richness and creaminess to the dish.
  • FAQ: Can I freeze leftovers of this casserole? Answer: Yes, you can freeze leftovers of this casserole for future meals. Transfer the cooled casserole to a freezer-safe container or resealable freezer bags and freeze for up to 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
  • FAQ: What can I serve with this casserole? Answer: This casserole pairs well with a variety of side dishes such as a simple green salad, steamed vegetables, garlic bread, or crusty French bread. Choose your favorite sides to complement the flavors of the casserole.
  • FAQ: Can I make this casserole in a slow cooker? Answer: While this recipe is designed for baking in the oven, you can adapt it for the slow cooker. Simply brown the ground beef and onion in a skillet, then transfer it to a slow cooker along with the remaining ingredients (except cheese). Cook on low for 4-6 hours or until the rice is tender. Sprinkle with cheese during the last 30 minutes of cooking.
  • FAQ: How can I make this casserole spicier? Answer: If you prefer a spicier dish, you can add diced green chilies, chopped jalapeños, or a dash of hot sauce to the beef mixture before baking. You can also sprinkle red pepper flakes on top before serving for an extra kick of heat. Adjust the amount of spice according to your taste preferences.

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