15 Make-and-Freeze Casseroles for Time-Saving Dinners
When you want a warm and satisfying family meal, but you don't have time to actually make one, a freezer full of ready-to-bake casseroles is the answer. Try these recipes for 15 of our most popular make-and-freeze casseroles, and get tips for freezing, thawing, and baking them.
Tuna Noodle Casserole I
It's so easy to throw extra vegetables into this made-from-scratch casserole. Some reviewers doubled the tuna or doubled the sauce, depending on their preference. To add extra crunch, top this with potato chips or buttered bread crumbs before baking.
Pesto Chicken Penne Casserole
"This is good stuff! But it makes a LOT. I just put about 2/3 of the recipe in a 9x13 pan, and froze an 8x8 to have on hand during the hectic holidays." -- cecefltrn
Spinach Lasagna Roll Ups
"I've actually made this recipe twice on our newly adopted 'Meatless Monday'. I used fresh baby spinach the second time and just laid a single line down the middle over the cheese mixture. My children love it." -- JuiceBoxx10
Baked Ziti IV
If you're not feeding a big crowd, you can bake half of this recipe and freeze the other half for another meal.
Ham, Potato and Broccoli Casserole
This popular casserole calls for French fries, but many reviewers substituted frozen potato nuggets, hash browns, or thinly sliced potatoes with happy results. SURELEE says, "Put this dish in the freezer and bake whenever you're too lazy to cook!"
Hot Tamale Pie
This recipe freezes well, whether baked or unbaked. If you freeze it unbaked, cover it in foil while you bake it for an extra 30-40 minutes until cornbread is golden and casserole is heated through.
Spaghetti Pie II
Here's a great tip for making the cottage cheese in this recipe look more like ricotta. Baricat says she's a big fan of ricotta, but she likes the tang that the cottage cheese adds to this dish. Here's her solution: "Process the cottage cheese in the food processor for a minute before adding it to the recipe. This way, you'll get that intriguing, tasty result, and your plate won't be covered in unsightly curds."
Crunchy Eggplant Parmesan
Most casseroles can be baked before they're frozen. For this one, the recipe submitter suggests you assemble and freeze the casserole, and bake it later.
Turkey Cabbage Rolls
Tip: To make the cabbage leaves easier to remove, cut the core out of the head and simmer the whole head of cabbage in salted water for a few minutes. The leaves will float to the top as they become tender enough to roll.
Chicken Pot Pie VIII
The filling is made from scratch, but it's okay to use premade pie crusts to speed up production. You can freeze this easy pot pie baked or unbaked. Either way, you don't have to thaw it before baking. If the crust starts getting too dark before the filling is hot, just cover it with a sheet of foil -- the filling will continue to heat but the crust will stop browning.
Curried Chicken and Broccoli Casserole
"This chicken and broccoli casserole is my 13-year-old son's favorite dish and the one he requests for every one of his birthdays. It is very good and combines the creamy texture of the cheese sauce with the crunchy texture of the corn flakes. It is a standby meal and easy to make, freeze, and bake at a later date. You can freeze it for up to six months. If frozen, bake uncovered for one hour," Sean Greene says.
Cheesy Mexi-Rice Casserole
"A great way to use leftover rice. This is delicious and has a little bit of 'kick' to it. We like it as a side dish with grilled chicken breasts. If you have any left, it freezes well, too!" -- MAHooper
Chicken or Turkey Tetrazzini Deluxe
"Cooked chicken or turkey breast, pasta, veggies, sherry and broth with creamy and cheesy elements, all baked into a classic. This casserole is a great way to use leftover turkey or chicken. Delicious and freezes well too," says recipe creator DACLKG.
Debbie's Frito® Pie
"I love this recipe because it can be prepared ahead and frozen. Thaw time is minimal. A great dish for game day or surprise company. I really love this dish because it is so simple to make, yet it tastes fabulous," says recipe creator Debbie's Goodies. "When you have time on your hands, you can make a couple up and freeze them. Then, when you are harried or just plain tired, just pop it in the oven and have a wonderful meal."
Reviewer CAMPPJTPATTYL says, "After I assembled the casserole I froze it. I thawed it and topped it with shredded cheese before baking. It was delicious. I highly recommend this recipe if you want a casserole to freeze for later."