Broccoli and Cheddar Casserole with Leeks
This classic is updated with deep-flavored cheddar and a crunchy topping of crumbled crackers and toasted almonds. You'll actually love eating your veggies once they're tossed with melted cheese and have a browned and bubbly crust.
Look for small, young, tender organic fennel bulbs.
Baked Polenta with Mushrooms
Vegetarian Casserole: In the time it takes to heat up frozen lasagna, you can make a from-scratch layered polenta dish that’s every bit as satisfying. It needs nothing more than a simple green salad as an accompaniment.
Monte Cristo Strata
Christmas Brunch Casserole: In this rich and hearty dish, bread, ham and cheese are baked in an eggy custard; grainy mustard and tarragon add a lovely, vibrant flavor.
Sweet Potato Casserole
Sweet potatoes grow in abundance in Alabama, where sculptor Sandi Stevens’ family eats them year-round. This casserole is a Stevens favorite: silky pureed sweet potatoes topped with a sweet and crunchy pecan-cornflake topping. If you don’t have pecans or cornflakes on hand, Stevens says the topping can be made with whatever nut or cereal is in the cupboard.
Crispy Baked Kale with Gruyère Cheese
Chef Sam Hayward usually tops these lush onion-sweetened greens with an excellent aged raw-milk cheese from Vermont called Tarentaise. He says Gruyère or any other Alpine-style cheese is a great substitute.
Baked Butternut Squash-and-Cheese Polenta
One of Anna Thomas’s latest dishes is this crusty baked polenta, swirled with mashed butternut squash and smoked Gouda cheese.
Butternut Squash Casserole with Leeks, Prosciutto and Thyme
This luscious squash-studded bread pudding is the ideal accompaniment to roasted meats and birds, or cut it into large squares and serve as a main course with a green salad on the side.
Polenta Gratin with Spinach and Wild Mushrooms
Commercial wild mushroom mixes (usually a combination of shiitake, cremini and oyster mushrooms) are a godsend: Some invisible helper has already cleaned, stemmed and sliced the mushrooms for you. In this recipe, they are mixed with spinach and cream, then baked in a luscious gratin under smooth rounds of precooked polenta until bubbling hot.
Turnip Casserole with Porcini Crumb Topping
We love the earthy porcini topping on this rich and creamy turnip gratin, but it would also be fantastic on mac and cheese or other root vegetable gratin.
Collard Cobbler with Cornmeal Biscuits
Cornmeal biscuits make a delicious crust for these smoky, spicy collard greens.
Creamy Shrimp Casserole with Buttery Crumbs
Southern Baked Chicken Casserole
This is a slightly modernized take on the very traditional Southern chicken casserole Jennifer Nettles’s mother likes to make. The recipe swaps out the usual canned cream of chicken soup in favor of a quick white sauce. A dash of hot sauce is the perfect finish.
Free-Form Sausage-and-Three-Cheese Lasagna
Holiday entertaining doesn’t get much more simple than this hearty lasagna. The style is called free-form because the pasta can be arranged in different ways—for instance, folded over the filling—instead of traditionally layered.
Macaroni and Many Cheeses
This Christmas casserole is ideal for entertaining because it makes use of leftover cheese. At the end of their wine-and-cheese parties, Helen Jane Hearn and Natalie Wassum gather any leftovers to make an incredible mac and cheese later in the week. The adaptation works beautifully with any semihard cheese but is particularly good with an international blend of French Mimolette, aged Dutch Gouda and American Vella dry Jack. A fine layer of Italian Parmigiano-Reggiano forms a crisp topping.
Chef Bryan Voltaggio loves this make-ahead dish: a classic baked bread-and-egg casserole with bites of pepperoni, mushrooms and gooey cheese. It's as good for dinner as it is for breakfast.
Corn Bread Casserole
Corn bread casseroles are a too-busy cook's dream. A handful of pantry staples--frozen and canned corn, corn muffin mix, butter, sour cream and an egg--are baked into something delicious and comforting. We jazz ours up with shredded cheddar and sliced scallions. You can keep it classic and skip the mix-ins, or you can add whatever you have on hand. Try diced ham and chopped bell pepper along with the cheese and scallions. Or make a spicier casserole with two seeded and diced jalapenos and 1/2 cup of chopped cilantro.
Mashed-Potato Casserole with Sage and Fontina
To take mashed potatoes up a few notches, cookbook author Melissa Clark mashes them with a creamy, tangy mix of creme fraiche, butter, parsley and sage, then tops them with cheesy breadcrumbs and bakes until crisp.
Green Beans with Cremini Mushroom Sauce
Broccoli and Wild Mushroom Casserole
Photographer and Alabamian Robert Rausch grew up eating vegetable casseroles--he and his mother are both vegetarians. The broccoli casserole his family ate is a step up from the standard church cookbook recipe, which calls for using canned mushroom soup: In place of that, he uses wild mushrooms. He still relies on Ritz crackers, though, for the crispy, buttery topping.
Crunchy Baked Fennel
Butternut Squash-Polenta Gratin
This squash gratin is a simple and fresh recipe that is perfect for fall.
Ombré Potato and Root Vegetable Gratin
TV chef Carla Hall layers red beets, sweet potatoes, Yukon Golds and turnips for her fantastic vegetarian gratin, which she top with a crispy Parmesan cheese crust.
Green Bean Casserole with Goat Cheese, Almonds and Smoked Paprika
Swiss Chard Casserole with Shiitake Mushrooms
Delicious and easy to make and serve, this frittata-like casserole is just the kind of dish that F&W's Justin Chapple likes to serve as a first course at dinner parties. He slices the baked casserole into bite-size squares and tops them with a dollop of creme fraiche to serve with cocktails.