Ground Beef Pepperoni Pizza Casserole is a hearty and delicious dish that is perfect for a family meal or a potluck. It is made with ground beef, pasta, pizza sauce, pepperoni, and mozzarella cheese, and it is baked in the oven until it is hot and bubbly. This casserole is easy to make, and it is sure to please everyone who tries it. Laura’s Lean sponsored today’s yummy recipe. All views expressed are that of our own.
Looking for a tasty and hearty meal for the colder weather? Now that it is winter time, I know comforting dishes like this are a must for our family–did I mention how much my kids love cheesy and beefy meal?
The savory and flavorful Laura’s Lean 96% Lean/4% Fat Ground Beef adds protein and flavor to the filling. We love using Laura’s Lean because it is high in protein, and lower in fat and calories. It is also the #1 natural beef brand in the country! We love that it doesn’t contain added hormones as well and pepperoni give the casserole lots of flavor. Plus, its super cheesy! My kids love cheese, and this casserole has plenty of it. Once baked, the mozzarella melts perfectly with the tender veggies, and crisp pepperoni.
The casserole is also comforting to my kiddos since they love pizza and pasta-based casserole dishes. It’s made with familiar ingredients like ground beef, pasta, and cheese. This makes it comforting and easy to enjoy. Additionally, the casserole is easy to eat. It’s baked in a single dish, so it’s easy for kids to serve themselves.
Finally, the casserole is made with love. The time and effort I put into making it, comes out in the flavors. I often use this recipe for meal trains and potlucks.
- Pasta – The base of the casserole. It provides the structure and helps to soak up the sauce. You can use any type of pasta you like, but egg noodles, shells, rotini, or ziti are all good options.
- Ground beef – The Laura’s Lean 92% Lean/8% Fat Ground Beef adds protein and flavor to the filling. We love using Laura’s Lean because it is high in protein, and lower in fat and calories. It is also the #1 natural beef brand in the country! We love that it doesn’t contain added hormones as well.
- Garlic – Adds flavor to the casserole. You can use fresh garlic cloves or pre-minced garlic.
- Onion – Adds flavor and sweetness to the casserole. You can use any type of onion you like, but yellow onion is a good all-purpose option.
- Black pepper – Adds a bit of heat to the casserole. You can adjust the amount of black pepper to your liking.
- Italian seasoning – Adds a blend of herbs and spices to the casserole. It helps to round out the flavors and give the casserole a more authentic Italian taste.
- Salt – Enhances the flavors of the other ingredients in the casserole. It is important to add salt to taste, as the amount of salt you need will vary depending on the other ingredients you are using.
- Garlic powder – Adds garlic flavor to the casserole without the need for fresh garlic cloves. It is a good option if you are short on time or don’t have fresh garlic on hand.
- Onion powder – Adds onion flavor to the casserole without the need for fresh onions. It is a good option if you are short on time or don’t have fresh onions on hand.
- Green pepper strips – Adds color and flavor to the casserole. They also add a bit of crunch.
- Black olive slices – Provides color and saltiness to the casserole. They also add a bit of visual interest.
- Marinara sauce – The base of the sauce for the casserole. It provides the bulk of the flavor and helps to bind the other ingredients together. You can use any type of marinara sauce you like, but a good quality jarred marinara sauce is a good option for convenience.
- Mozzarella cheese – Provides a cheesy topping for the casserole. It adds richness and creaminess. You can use shredded mozzarella cheese or a block of mozzarella cheese that you grate yourself.
- Pepperoni slices – Adds a traditional flavor and saltiness to the casserole.
Make this Casserole
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish.
Brown ground beef in a skillet. Add onion, half of green pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper. Cook until softened.
Cook pasta according to package directions; drain.
Add pasta, veggie beef mixture, and half of the cheese to the prepared baking dish. Mix.
Top with remaining cheese, pepperoni, black olives, and green peppers.
Bake for 30 minutes.
Let cool for 15 minutes before serving.
- To make this casserole lighter, you can use whole wheat pasta or low-fat cheese.
- If you want to add more flavor to the casserole, you can add some fresh herbs like basil, oregano, or thyme.
- To make this a bit leaner, consider using Laura’s Lean 96% Lean/4% Fat Ground Beef.
- Sausage, ham, mushrooms, pepper rings, or onion can be used as toppings for this casserole.
- For a spicier casserole, add a pinch of cayenne pepper to the marinara sauce.
- To make ahead, assemble the casserole up to the point of baking. Cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. When you’re ready to bake, remove the casserole from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before baking.
Can I make this casserole ahead of time?
Yes, you can make this casserole ahead of time and then bake it later. To do this, assemble the casserole up to the point of baking, cover it tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate it for up to 24 hours. When you’re ready to bake, remove the casserole from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before baking in a 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 minutes or until cheese is golden and bubbly.
Can I freeze this casserole?
Yes, you can freeze this casserole for up to 2 months. To freeze, assemble the casserole up to the point of baking, cover it tightly with plastic wrap, and then place it in a freezer-safe container. When you’re ready to bake, thaw the casserole overnight in the refrigerator and then bake it according to the instructions.
Can I add other toppings to this casserole?
Yes, you can add other toppings to this casserole. Some other good options include mushrooms, olives, or green peppers. You can also add your favorite vegetables.
Can I make this casserole gluten-free?
Yes, you can make this casserole gluten-free by using gluten-free pasta and gluten-free pizza sauce. You can also use gluten-free cheese if desired.
- Refrigerator – Once the casserole has cooled completely, you can store it in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. To prevent the cheese from drying out, cover the casserole tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil.
- Freezer – You can also freeze the casserole for up to 2 months. To do this, simply wrap the casserole tightly in plastic wrap and then place it in a freezer-safe container or bag. When you are ready to eat the casserole, thaw it overnight in the refrigerator and then bake it according to the instructions.
Here are some additional tips for storing casseroles:
- Avoid storing casseroles at room temperature. This can lead to bacteria growth and food poisoning.
- Label and date the casserole before storing it. This will help you keep track of how long it has been stored.
- When reheating the casserole, make sure it is heated to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. This will kill any harmful bacteria that may be present.
More Ground Beef Recipes to Try Today
Ground Beef Pepperoni Pizza Casserole
- 5-quart stockpot
- 9 x 13 casserole dish
- cutting board and knife
- oven adjusted to center rack position
- 16 ounces egg noodles pasta *can be shells, rotini, ziti, etc.
- 16 ounces Laura's Lean 92% Lean/8% Fat Ground Beef
- 3-4 cloves garlic pressed or minced
- 1 medium yellow onion diced
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- ½ cup green pepper strips sliced thinly
- 4 ounces black olive slices
- 46 ounces marinara sauce
- 16 ounces mozzarella cheese
- 2 ounces pepperoni slices
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish.
- In a large skillet, brown the Laura's Lean 92% Lean/8% Fat Ground Beef over medium heat. No excess grease draining needed with this brand*
- Add the onion, half the green bell peppers, garlic powder, onion powder, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper to the skillet. Cook until the vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes.
- Cook the pasta according to package directions; drain.
- In the bottom of a casserole dish add one jar of sauce.
- Add the pasta, and veggie beef mixture and half the shredded cheese; mix.
- Add the remaining cheese and top casserole with pepperoni, black olives, and green peppers.
- Place casserole in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
- Allow casserole to cool for 15 minutes before serving.