Picky eaters are going to love this quick and easy dinner. Mom called it busy day casserole but our readers call is cheesy ground beed and rice casserole. 

This casserole is perfect for your busy day! ohsweetbasil.com

Alright, this recipe is definitely not my norm, but it is who I am and it happens to be a recipe that I get a crazy amount of emails about. A long time ago (and seriously, check out the picture and you’ll laugh your heart out at how little I knew about food photography) I posted a recipe called Busy Day Casserole and it has been one of my top recipes for years now. It never disappears from the most viewed recipes.

People love it and while it’s totally simple I know why. This quick and easy dinner idea rice casserole with ground beef and cheese is in fact the real recipe. The other was my adapted version because as a kid I hated ground beef so Mom would make a chicken version occasionally just to be good to me. But now that I have so many emails asking about the original for cheesy ground beef and rice casserole that I decided it was time to bust out the casserole from the 70’s.

cheesy ground beef casserole that even the kids love which is awesome! on ohsweetbasil

When you read through the recipe you’ll notice that I use my own mixture for the liquid instead of cream of mushroom soup. You can do either, we just don’t cook with cream of anything soup at our house, but it is what I grew up with. If you’d like to use the soup or a semi homemade version, don’t worry, we’ve listed all three versions in the recipe box.

cheesy ground beef and rice casserole! ohsweetbasil.com

I found this awesome mushroom gravy by Pacific foods that I love to use, but if you can’t find it and still want a more natural sauce just try this cream mixture from our Green Bean Casserole. It’s awesome and tastes just like canned soup only better.

The cheese is also a little different only because again, we don’t really buy medium cheddar cheese, we usually get Colby Jack and since they are so similar I don’t mind using it, either one will work though. This casserole is something that even as a food blogger I totally love to eat and the kids do too. It’s something really simple on their little palates and it has cheese which is always a good thing.

quick and easy ground beef and rice casserole ohsweetbasil.com

So, to my sweet momma who had to put up with my picky little self, thanks for this delicious recipe that is feeding people everywhere. I say you’re famous for it now. You didn’t know you’d end up famous did you?

Cheesy Ground Beef and Rice Casserole

4.5 from 18 reviews
Cheesy Ground Beef Casserole
Recipe type: main dish
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6 servings
An easy, picky eater pleasing casserole that takes minutes to prepare and then just cooks in the oven while you get things done!
Quick Recipe
  • 1 Can Cream of Mushroom Soup
  • 1 Cup Long Grain White Rice
  • 2 Cups Water
  • 1 Cup Carrots, sliced
  • ½-1 lb Ground Beef, cooked
  • Cheddar or colby jack cheese, sliced about 9 pieces
Semi Homemade
  • 1 Cup Uncooked Rice
  • 2 Cups Water
  • ½ to 1 lb (depending on preference) ground beef, cooked
  • 1 cup carrots, sliced
  • Pacific Foods Mushroom gravy 13.9 ounces
  • ½ cup milk
  • Colby Jack or Medium Cheddar Cheese for topping
From Scratch
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup onion, minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • ½ cup minced white button mushroom
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • ½ cup cream
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • salt to taste
  • 2 Cups Water
  • ½-1 lb Ground Beef, cooked
  • 1 Cup Carrots, sliced
  • Cheddar or colby Jack Cheese, sliced- about 9 slices
  • 1 Cup Long Grain White Rice
Quick Recipe
  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees and spray an 8x9" baking dish with nonstick spray.
  2. Stir together the soup,rice, water, carrots, and beef. Place in the baking dish and bake for 90 minutes. Top with cheese slices and bake a few more minutes or until melted.
Semi Homemade
  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8x9" baking dish.
  2. Whisk together the water, mushroom gravy, and milk.
  3. Add the mushroom mix, rice, cooked beef and carrots to a bowl and stir to combine. Dump into an 8x9" baking dish and bake, uncovered for 90 minutes. Add slices of cheese and return to the oven for another couple of minutes or until the cheese is melted.
From Scratch
  1. In a medium pan over medium heat, add the butter and melt. Whisk in the onion, garlic and mushrooms. Add the flour, whisking continually and cook for 30-60 seconds. Add the cream and broth and cook until thick. Season and remove from heat.
  2. Heat the oven to 350 and spray an 8x9" baking dish with nonstick spray.
  3. Place the cream mixture, rice, water, beef and carrots into the dish and stir to combine. Bake for 90 minutes, add the cheese and bake for a few more minutes or until melted.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 scoop



Cheesy Chicken and Rice Casserole- Busy Day Casserole

As a kid I didn’t like ground beef so Mom switched it to chicken for this quick and easy casserole.
Quick and Easy Chicken and Rice Casserole ohsweetbasil.com

Teriyaki Chicken Casserole

I’m not going to lie, I’ve got a thing for casseroles lately and this Teriyaki Chicken Casserole is one of my favorites.
teriyaki chicken casserole was a total accident and now total favorite in our house! Love this recipe! ohsweetbasil_edited-1

Cheesy ham and potato bacon casserole

Mom’s holiday casserole, and my little (not so little anymore) brother’s favorite dinner is this potato and ham casserole but I added bacon!

cheesy ham and potato bacon casserole to use up all of those holiday leftovers ohsweetbasil.com_edited-1


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