Saturday, November 27, 2010

Julie's Noodle Casserole

I don't know who Julie is but we sure love her recipe! Perfect for Presto Pasta Nights.....Mmmmmmm......pasta...

This recipe is one I have passed over when flipping through the pages of Family Circle magazine. Passed over not once but twice….it looked a bit bland.

So, sitting and waiting for something the other day, this already read magazine my only option for entertainment (because I stupidly left my book at home) I flip to the casserole recipe again.
My son loves spinach, we all love beef and I like cottage cheese (any cheese…well, most cheeses) so I thought, why not. Its cooler temperatures and this looks like 1950’s comfort food.

Oooey, gooey with spinach and cheeses...........

NOT bland. NOT Difficult. Not expensive! What more could you ask for?

DE-lish-ous! I recommend this one. It’s fast, cheap and we all ended up going after seconds…….definitely is making the short list on meal rotations!


8 to 12 ounces wide noodles
1 pound ground beef
1 container (16 ounces) marinara sauce
1 (16 oz.) tub of cottage cheese
1 package (10 oz,) frozen chopped spinach (thawed and rained)
2 cups shredded cheddar
1 large egg
3 chopped scallions
Salt and pepper to taste

NOTE: I modified….we only had a handful of flat noodles so I also added bow tie pasta. Ground beef – yeah, I used a pound and half.
Marinara, I used my emergency jar of pasta sauce.


Step 1. Heat oven to 350 F (175 C) and prepare a casserole dish.

The recipe states to use a 2 quart deep casserole. I used extra meat but I can tell you now, even if I used the quantity stated NO WAY was this fitting into a 2 quart dish. I used a cast iron Lodge 5 quart. Doug’s idea. He’s brilliant – you should taste one of his Bloody Marys...Mmmmmm

Step 2 Bring a large pot of water to boil and cook your noodles for 5 minutes. Drain. No matter what the cooking time is on your box of noodles, just boil them for 5 minutes!

Step 3 Cook your beef and drain off fat. Remove from heat and add marinara sauce.

Step 4 In large bowl combine cooked noodles, spinach, cottage cheese, 1 cup cheddar cheese, egg scallion, salt and pepper.

Last Step! Transfer noodle mixture to prepared cooking dish (in my case, the Lodge cast iron). Top with beef and sprinkle on remaining cheese. Bake at 350 F (175 C) for 30 minutes uncovered.

Here it is in the Before photo.....notice my little cream shiba looking up, hoping I will drop some cheese!

Think of all the variations you could make here. Next time we are using a mixture of pork and hamburger. You could swap out the cheddar cheese and use mozzarella or Swiss or whatever you fancy. Want to be healthy? Use ground turkey instead of beef. Endless possibilities!

I will be sending this to the lovely Ivonne at Cream Puffs in Venice for her Magazine Monday series and I am sending this to Beth Ann at Seventh Level of Boredom who is the host of Presto Pasta Nights this week.

Try this – you won’t regret….it’s comfort food at its best.




  1. Yum! Pasta with anything warm and thick and comforting - like a deconstructed lasagna ... indeed delicious!

    I made a shepherd's pie for friends who came last week and made the topping with mixed root mash and the bottom with Keema saag (minced lamb and spinach curry) - god it was good, even Simon forgot his aversion to spinach ;o)

    Mrs L

  2. It looks like the perfect comfort meal. The addition of spinach makes it more interesting than the ordinary pasta Bolognese. Great choice Tina Marie.

  3. This is exactly what I am looking for; I just love this kind of casserole. Anything with spinach is bonus for me, so I printed this one out.
    Thank you!

  4. I've made this recipe before. It IS delicious! My aunt just gave me a year's worth of Food Network magazines, so I'll be cooking from those for awhile. :)

  5. ya know, the best recipes are often passed over.... but I see where this is coming from, I mean, where this is a nice blend of flavors and is very 'peasing to comfort... and you know, that is so much my kind of eating, thanks for going back and letting us know of this "50's" delite...

  6. A definite comfort food. Perfect for mid-week. Reminds me of hamburger helper only better.

  7. Oh yeah...kinda like a deconstructed lasagna, but easier. It does sound delicious with the spinach and cheese. Yum!

    Hope it was a wonderful Thanksgiving for you and the family!

  8. Mrs. L – That shepherds pie sounds VERY good! We like spinach althought sometimes it does need disguising (wink). You make such great dishes, I wish you’d blog again. Miss all the photos.

    Katerina – I planned the Bolognese sauce all along and then…lasagna came along in the plans! Thank you

    Rita – Great! Let me know if you make it and how everyone likes it.

    Janel – That sounds like a good score – a years worth of Food Network –wow! You ought to hook up for that Magazine Monday series.

    Drick – I agree and the oldies are sometimes the best. I have made your green bean casserole twice now, that is a simple favorite

    Velva – Yet better than hamburger helper, but just as easy!

    Kim – Thank you, I hope your Thanksgiving was excellent. I am waiting for you to start a Cooking With Kim blog

  9. Oh Tina - I know BUT life is just so damn hectic and ... BTW don't publish this comment makes me sound like a mingy moany old mare which generally when it's not snowing I'm not! ;o)

    6 1/2 fresh inches of snow overnight - school closed, bleugh and Simon having to walk into the local depot - can't drive down Bluebell Hill without a 4x4! It makes me want to runaway - to Jamaica or Barbados!!

  10. Yum, this looks delicious for winter :)

  11. Melissa, this is certainly a good mwal that hweats up the kitchen and your tummy :-)

  12. Well, whoever Julie is she obviously knows a things or two - this looks great - I love the idea of the spinach in there, and this is something I would definitely make.
    Sue :-)

  13. Comfort food to the max! This looks wonderful. Thanks for sharing with Presto Pasta Nights!

  14. I have saved this to give it a try. Sounds so much like my kind of food. One dish, good ingredients, and easy enough too.

  15. Thanks Sue - we love the addition of spinach in casseroles.

    Ty's Mommy - Thaks for hosting, it was a good roundup!

    Claudia - I sure like the one dish type meals :-)

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