Who doesn’t love a good cheeseburger? And nice, crispy fries? So, The Goddess was thinking this might just work in a casserole. You know how she’s into these one-dish or skillet dinners. Many time when she thinks something will work, it doesn’t work as well as it does in her mind’s-eye. But, this turned out to be incredibly, almost indecently, tasty. Okay, it didn’t taste exactly like a “real” cheeseburger, but hot damn! It was good. It really was. The “fries” part of this were those little potato pillows that most of us tend to refer to as Tater Tots™, though that’s a real registered trademark, like Kleenex™ and Jell-O™. Regular French fries wouldn’t have worked as well, but I thought these would be just about perfect. Besides, The Spicy Honey enjoys them and I like to keep him, and his tummy, happy!
This was pretty simple to put together. Brown the ground beef, with the onions and mushrooms. And lean ground beef works perfectly here. Add the rice flour, Worcestershire sauce and beef broth (the broth keeps the mixture moist). Let the mixture set until it’s pretty cool. Stir in the dill pickle, mustard and ketchup and the shredded cheddar; stir just until combined. And you can make this early in the day and finish it just before dinner.
Pour the meat/cheese mixture into the prepared casserole dish. I sprinkled some raw onion slices over the meat. You can drizzle some additional ketchup over the onions; just squeeze it right on. Then, I just put the Tater Tots™ all over the top of the mixture. There shouldn’t be any space between them. I used a round container, but the potatoes will fit much better on a square casserole. Then, bake the casserole until it’s all hot and bubbly. The Tots should be browned. I slid them under the broiler for a couple of minutes, which crisped and browned them up a bit more.
I made a nice salad and this was dinner. Oh yes, do let it stand for at least 5 minutes, or you’ll permanently remove the roof of your mouth. That tends to make most foods much less enjoyable, so please don’t do that!
For full disclosure, I made half of the recipe. The full recipe will serve 5-6 amply.
Cheeseburger & Fries Casserole
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 3/4 cup finely chopped mushrooms (about 6 large)
- 2 teaspoons rice flour (or 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch)
- 2-3 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 3/4 cup beef broth
- 1/2 cup finely diced dill pickle (about 2 spears, patted dry)
- 2-3 teaspoons ball park mustard
- 1-2 tablespoons ketchup
- 2 handfuls cheddar cheese
- Slice onion, raw (we like lots of onion!)
- Ketchup (optional)
- Frozen Tater Tots™, unthawed
Oil a 9X9-inch casserole dish or pie plate; set aside. Preheat the oven to 425°F.
Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Crumble the ground beef in skillet. Sauté until it begins to brown. Add the finely chopped onion and mushrooms. Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat source. Sprinkle the rice flour over the meat. Stir to combine. Return the pan to the heat; stir in the broth and Worcestershire sauce. Simmer the mixture until it just begins to thicken. It shouldn’t be soupy, but should be moist. Remove the pan from the heat source; set aside to cool slightly. Stir in the dill pickle, mustard and ketchup; set aside. You can prepare up to this point, earlier in the day.
Sprinkle the cheese over the meat mixture; stir just until combined. Pour the mixture into the prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle the onion slices over; drizzle with additional ketchup, if using. Place the Tater Tots™ evenly over the top of the mixture. There shouldn’t be any space; they should touch. Slide into casserole into the oven. Bake for 20 minutes or until the mixture is hot and bubbly and the Tots are lightly browned. You may want to slide under the broiler to crisp up the Tots. Set aside for 10 minutes, before serving.
Cheeseburger & Fries Casserole Recipe©Marcia Lahens 2017. All rights reserved.
Yup, this was tasty…note the past tense there.