Go Back
+ servings
ham casserole on a plate
Print

Ham Casserole

Smoky ham, tender noodles, and a super-rich, velvety cream sauce marry together in this winner of a meaty dinner, my sensational Ham Casserole!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword casserole recipes, ham recipes, noodle casseroles
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 805kcal
Author Kathleen

Ingredients

Topping:

  • 1 1/2 cups panko crumbs
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted

Casserole:

  • 12 ounces dried egg noodles
  • 1 1/2 pounds ham (about 4 1/2-5 cups cubed) cut into 1/2 cubes
  • 1/2 cup, plus 2 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1 cup yellow onion chopped
  • 1 cup celery chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 5 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves chopped
  • 2 teaspoons fresh sage leaves chopped
  • 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese shredded
  • 4 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 1 cup frozen petites peas thawed and drained

Garnish:

  • thyme leaves
  • sage leaves

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9 x 13-inch baking dish lightly with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Make Topping: In a small mixing bowl combine Panko crumbs (1 1/2 cups), and melted butter (6 tablespoons); set aside.
  • Make Casserole: Cook egg noodles (12 ounces) in salted water according to package instructions. Drain.
  • Meanwhile, in a high-sided large skillet, melt butter (2 tablespoons). Add onion (1 cup), celery (1 cup), and garlic (4 cloves), and saute over medium heat, until soft, about 8-10 minutes.
    How to make ham casserole, sauteing veggies
  • Add the remaining butter (1/2 cup) to the skillet with cooked vegetables and melt. When the butter begins to bubble, sprinkle the flour (1/2 cup) over the top of the vegetables and whisk over medium heat until evenly combined.
    How to make easy ham casserole with noodles, adding flour
  • Cook, stirring constantly, for 1-2 minutes.
    How to make cheesy ham casserole, whisking
  • Remove skillet from heat and slowly whisk in milk (5 1/2 cups).
    How to make ham and noodle casserole, adding milk
  • Return to medium heat and cook until the mixture begins to thicken, enough to coat the back of a spoon.
    How to make ham and cheese casserole, thicken the sauce
  • Reduce heat to low and stir in Worcestershire sauce (2 teaspoons), Tabasco (1/4 teaspoon), salt (1 1/2 teaspoons), pepper (1/2 teaspoon), fresh thyme leaves (1 tablespoon), fresh sage leaves (2 teaspoons), 2 cups cheddar cheese, cream cheese (4 ounces), and thawed peas (1 cup).
    How to make ham casserole with peas, add other ingredients
  • Add drain egg noodles back to the empty pot it was cooked in. And ham (1 1/2 pounds) and sauce to the egg noodles and stir to combine well. Pour into prepared baking dish. Bake in the preheated oven until heat through and bubbly, about 25-30 minutes.
    How to make ham and cheese breakfast casserole, transfer in a casserole dish
  • When the casserole is heated through, remove the pan from the oven and sprinkle topping evenly over the surface. Pop back in oven and broil (watching closely so it doesn't burn!) until topping is golden brown, about 3-5 minutes. Sprinkle top with fresh thyme and fresh sage leaves.
    How to make ham casserole, add toppings

Notes

  1. Pasta options: Let’s talk pasta, the unnamed second leading lady of this dish. So, the most important difference and the distinction between egg noodles and other dried pasta is that “egg noodles” must contain rich and nutritious eggs!
    • Whenever I make my own homemade pasta, I add eggs. That said very often commercially available pasta doesn’t contain eggs. I love egg noodles in this dish mainly because the twisty pasta ribbons just make me happy!
    • If you need to substitute for some reason, I’d suggest using fettuccine or linguine, or any “ribbon” shaped noodle.
  2. Milk: The key to making your homemade cream sauce is, you guessed it, milk! I use whole milk to get a really rich flavor, but you can use any type — skim or 1% for less fat, or even heavy cream to go really decadent!
  3. Cheese: My favorite cheese for this recipe is an extra sharp cheddar, but you can substitute a plain Monterey Jack, mozzarella, or even a pepper jack with awesome (and equally cheesy!) results.
    • Using pepper jack is another little spin I put on other ham pasta casserole recipes. Jack cheese has a lovely, creamy texture, especially when it’s melted, and the peppers bring a subtle heat that adds that little “something special” to the dish.
  4. Pea haters: Peas are optional. My family loves the, in fact my SIL, Doug asks for me to add more! Feel free to omit them, if you want. You can actually substitute some chopped broccoli (either blanched or frozen-then-thawed) as a nice, nutritious pop of color.

Nutrition

Serving: 1/8 of the recipe | Calories: 805kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 41g | Fat: 49g | Saturated Fat: 27g | Cholesterol: 176mg | Sodium: 1902mg | Potassium: 688mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 1207IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 494mg | Iron: 3mg