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Transform ground beef, pasta, cheese, and a few pantry staples into Beef Noodle Casserole. This easy Midwestern hot dish recipe is the ultimate comfort food dinner.

Beef noodle casserole in a white baking dish.

If a Midwesterner had the chance to revise the encyclopedia, chances are, we might see mention of a cozy casserole (or hot dish, depending on which part of the region you reside).

A classic casserole contains five components:

  • Protein
  • Starch
  • Vegetables
  • Sauce
  • Cheese

This easy Beef Noodle Casserole delivers all five in one 9- x -13-inch pan, with ultra craveable results. It takes just a few minutes to prepare the homemade casserole dinner, but (fair warning!) your dreams about it will live on until you make it again.

Table of Contents
  1. Recipe ingredients
  2. Ingredient notes
  3. Step by step instructions
  4. Recipe tips and variations
  5. Recipe FAQs
  6. Beef Noodle Casserole Recipe

Recipe ingredients

Labeled ingredients for beef noodle casserole.

At a Glance: Here is a quick snapshot of what ingredients are in this recipe.
Please see the recipe card below for specific quantities.

Ingredient notes

  • Egg noodles: Or any small- or medium-cut pasta, such as macaroni, farfalle, penne, fusilli, or mafaldine.
  • Ground beef: I suggest an 85% lean, 15% fat ground beef blend. If desired, swap in ground turkey, chicken, pork, or ground sausage.
  • Green bell pepper: Red, orange, or yellow will also do.

Step by step instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9-inch x 13-inch baking dish with nonstick spray. Bring 4 quarts water and 1 tablespoon salt to a boil in a large stock pot. Add egg noodles and cook according to package instructions, about 6 to 8 minutes. Drain well and set aside.
Cooked egg noodles in a colander.
  1. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat, cook beef and onion until the meat is browned, about 5 to 7 minutes, breaking up any clumps with a wooden spoon. Drain well and return to the pot.
Ground beef and onions in a silver skillet.
  1. Stir in 2 cups cheese, bell pepper, corn, tomato sauce, tomato paste, olives, garlic, salt, and noodles. Pour into prepared baking dish and sprinkle with remaining 2 cups cheese.
Beef noodle casserole in a white baking dish before being baked..
  1. Cover with foil and bake for 35 minutes. Remove foil, return to the oven, and bake an additional 10 minutes, or until cheese is light golden brown and bubbly. Garnish with parsley if desired and let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Beef noodle casserole in a white baking dish.

Recipe tips and variations

  • Yield: This Beef Noodle Casserole makes six generous 2-cup servings, ideal for a main dish. Just add a salad and dinner is done.
  • Storage: Store leftovers covered in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  • Make ahead: The entire casserole can be assembled up to one day in advance, covered in foil, and stored in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature for at least 30 minutes before baking as directed in the recipe (at 350 degrees, covered in foil for 35 minutes, then 10 minutes uncovered).
  • Freezer: The baked, cooled casserole can be wrapped in a double layer of plastic or foil and frozen for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating in a 350 degree oven until it’s 165 degrees in the center.
  • Punch up the flavor: To make this Beef Noodle Casserole recipe your own, fold in sliced green or black olives during Step 4, add crumbled crackers or potato chips when you remove the foil in Step 5, or garnish the hot dish with fresh parsley or basil.
A serving of beef noodle casserole on a white plate.

Recipe FAQs

Should I drain the fat from my ground beef before adding it to the casserole?

Similar to my method for The Best Sloppy Joes, Loose Meat Sandwiches (Maid-Rite Copycat), and Homemade Meat Sauce, this is totally up to you. I do call for draining off the fat in Step 3 because the consistency seems to be better without it, but feel free to leave it in if desired.

Why does this recipe call for tomato paste and tomato sauce.

Think of tomato paste like tomato concentrate. This richens the flavor and the texture, while tomato sauce helps bring everything together into one cozy casserole.

A serving of beef noodle casserole on a white plate.

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This Tuna Noodle Casserole is made from scratch with a simple mushroom cream sauce and a buttery cracker crust. It’s better than you remember and ready in under an hour.

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More cozy casseroles

Beef noodle casserole in a white baking dish.

Beef Noodle Casserole

Transform ground beef, pasta, cheese, and a few pantry staples into Beef Noodle Casserole. This easy Midwestern hot dish recipe is the ultimate comfort food dinner.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 5 mins
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Servings 6 servings (2 cups each)
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Calories 704

Ingredients 

  • 1 (12 ounce) package egg noodles uncooked
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 cup onion chopped
  • 4 cups cheddar cheese shredded, divided
  • 1 medium green bell pepper stemmed, seeded, and diced
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can corn drained
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9-inch x 13-inch baking dish with nonstick spray.
  • Bring 4 quarts water and 1 tablespoon salt to a boil in a large stock pot. Add egg noodles and cook according to package instructions, about 6 to 8 minutes. Drain well and set aside.
  • Meanwhile, in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat, cook beef and onion until the meat is browned, about 5 to 7 minutes, breaking up any clumps with a wooden spoon. Drain well and return to the pot.
  • Stir in 2 cups cheese, bell pepper, corn, tomato sauce, tomato paste, olives, garlic, salt, and noodles. Pour into prepared baking dish and sprinkle with remaining 2 cups cheese.
  • Cover with foil and bake for 35 minutes. Remove foil, return to the oven, and bake an additional 10 minutes, or until cheese is light golden brown and bubbly. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Recipe Video

Notes

  1. Egg noodles: Or any small- or medium-cut pasta, such as macaroni, farfalle, penne, fusilli, or mafaldine.
  2. Ground beef: I suggest an 85% lean, 15% fat ground beef blend. If desired, swap in ground turkey, chicken, pork, or ground sausage.
  3. Green bell pepper: Red, orange, or yellow will also do.
  4. Yield: This Beef Noodle Casserole makes six generous 2-cup servings, ideal for a main dish. Just add a salad and dinner is done.
  5. Storage: Store leftovers covered in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  6. Make ahead: The entire casserole can be assembled up to one day in advance, covered in foil, and stored in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature for at least 30 minutes before baking as directed in the recipe (at 350 degrees, covered in foil for 35 minutes, then 10 minutes uncovered).
  7. Freezer: The baked, cooled casserole can be wrapped in a double layer of plastic or foil and frozen for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating in a 350 degree oven until it’s 165 degrees in the center.

Nutrition

Serving: 2cupsCalories: 704kcalCarbohydrates: 5gProtein: 45gFat: 55gSaturated Fat: 28gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 20gTrans Fat: 2gCholesterol: 187mgSodium: 767mgPotassium: 561mgFiber: 1gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 832IUVitamin C: 18mgCalcium: 580mgIron: 4mg
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I’m the Executive Chef and head of the Culinary Hill Test Kitchen. Every recipe is developed, tested, and approved just for you.

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I’m the Executive Chef and head of the Culinary Hill Test Kitchen. Every recipe is developed, tested, and approved just for you.

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