How to make baked layered polenta casserole

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The baked layered polenta casserole in the following recipe is a lot like lasagna, but with a twist. That makes it absolutely perfect for those times you're craving the flavors of lasagna but just need something a little bit different too. It doesn't take very long to pull together. And for those interested in make-ahead meals, it freezes beautifully.
Rolls of pre-made polenta are sliced into rounds and laid on the bottom of a casserole dish. Spaghetti sauce can be splashed around on the bottom of the pan first if you choose, but leaving it out will give those bottom pieces a bit of texture, which is always nice with polenta. Then ground beef, mozzarella cheese and spaghetti sauce are piled on top before the layers start all over again. Call it a lasagna or call it a casserole. Whatever name you give it, everyone around your table will be calling it delicious!
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Cooktop Cove
Baked Layered Polenta Casserole
8
10 minutes
40 minutes
50 minutes
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 onion, small dice
2 pounds lean ground beef
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon dried Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 pre-made roll polenta, sliced into 1/2-inch rounds
2 cups mozzarella cheese
4 cups spaghetti sauce
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
Preheat oven to 350 F and grease a 9-by-13 casserole dish.
Heat olive oil in a large frying pan set over medium heat. When hot, add onion and cook for about 3 minutes, until soft and translucent.
Add ground beef, breaking it up as you do. Cook beef for about 8 minutes, until no longer pink.
Add garlic, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper to the pan. Stir and cook for one more minute.
Add polenta slices to the bottom of the pan, just enough to cover.
Spread 1/2 of the meat mixture over the polenta slices.
Sprinkle 1/3 of the mozzarella cheese over the meat mixture.
Spread 1/3 of the spaghetti sauce over the mozzarella cheese.
Repeat layers one time, ending with a last layer of polenta rounds.
Spread remaining spaghetti sauce over the top polenta rounds.
Sprinkle remaining mozzarella cheese over the polenta and top with Parmesan cheese.
Place in the preheated oven and cook for about 30 minutes, until cheese is fully melted and the casserole is bubbling throughout.
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