A hearty casserole with lots of gooey cheese is perfect for back to school and busy weeknights!
❤️ Why you'll love it
- Not only is this casserole easy to make, but it is packed with flavor!
- Easy clean up - you only need a couple of dishes to put this together.
- You can make this ground beef casserole in advance and easily freeze it into serving sizes making it the perfect meal-prep recipe!
Some foods just make us feel good, don't they? This simple John Wayne casserole is one of them!
Cheesy, beefy, and a little spicy - it's definitely family friendly comfort food. Be sure to try this ground beef Dorito casserole, too.
These are an overview of the instructions. You'll find the full instructions in the green recipe card at the bottom of the page.
- Brown ground beef in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the diced onions, bell peppers (you can use red bell pepper or green bell pepper), taco seasoning and ½ cup water.
- Blend together the sour cream, mayonnaise, shredded cheese and ranch seasoning to create the sour cream mixture.
- To create the biscuit layer combine the Bisquick with ¾ cup of water in a medium bowl. Stir the biscuit mix until combined.
- Pat dough into a 13-inch casserole dish to create the the biscuit base and bake for 5 minutes.
- Add the ground beef mixture, making sure to cover all edges of dough.
- Scoop on the sour cream and cheese mixture the top with the remaining cheese.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes.
- Serve up this beef and biscuit casserole for your whole family to enjoy!
You can store any leftover casserole in the fridge for up to 3 days in an airtight container or covered with plastic wrap. This can be reheated in the oven or microwave easily.
You can also store this easy casserole in the freezer for up to 3 months. Use an airtight container to prevent any freezer burn.
- If you don'y like red meat or prefer not to use it, you can easily replace the meat mixture with ground turkey.
- Hunters in the family? Ground venison works great!
- Make it gluten-free by using gluten-free baking mix.
- We love cheddar cheese in my house, but if you want an extra kick of spice you can swap it for pepper jack cheese!
- And if you're really looking to amp up the level of spice, you can add jalapeño peppers to the top of the meat layer.
- Cream cheese makes for a great alternative if you don't like (or don't have) sour cream.
- Looking to make this a bit healthier? Sneak in any fresh vegetables you like as an extra single layer in this casserole.
💭 Things to know
Expert Tip: Make sure to prepare your baking dish with non-stick cooking spray to get the most of your biscuit layer.
- If you have leftover taco meat, you can use that in place of the ground beef mixture.
- When you spread the biscuit dough in the bottom of the dish be sure to pat it out so that it goes to the edges and maybe a touch up the sides.
- Speed it up by using refrigerated biscuit dough or crescent roll sheets instead of the Bisquick.
- Don't have enough onions handy to make this great recipe? You can always add onion powder to make up for it!
Absolutely! Instead of making a biscuit layer as the base, you can use tater tots, or any other kind of shredded potatoes. Just make sure they are gluten free.
The famous actor contributed the original John Wayne casserole recipe to a cookbook of the stars put together by Cara Connery in the 70s.
You can easily assemble this delicious casserole a day in advance and cover in your fridge with aluminum foil to bake at a later time.
📚 Related recipes
- Chicken casserole with stovetop stuffing is one of my favorite weeknight dinner recipes.
- This low carb green chile chicken casserole recipe has a similar flavor but with a healthy twist.
- If you love this John Wayne casserole recipe, then my indulgent hamburger noodle casserole is perfect for you!
- This easy cornbread casserole is bound to hit the spot and become a family favorite.
- Crescent roll taco bake is quick and easy for busy weeknights. Takes your Tuesday Taco Night to the next level!
🍽️ Serve with...
- Crispy fried potatoes are a great side to round out a meal filled with comfort food!
- If you're looking to balance out this indulgent casserole with some veggies, then this green bean salad is exactly what you're looking for.
- My family also loves my sweet and spicy sweet potato dish to go alongside this cheesy casserole.
📞 The last word
My dad loved John Wayne - and I don't think he ever missed a movie when it was on tv. I can't tell you how many times I fell asleep on Dad's lap watching westerns and war movies!
This vintage casserole is a perfect example of what dinners were like - comforting, simple, and filling!
If you click on the number of servings in the recipe card you can adjust the measurements up or down for the exact number of servings you need. Don't forget that you can click on "add to collection" to save it to your own, private recipe box!
If you love this recipe please give it 5 stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
John Wayne CasserolePrint Pin Recipe Save Go to Collections
- 1 ½ pounds lean ground beef
- 2 cups onion, diced
- ½ cup bell pepper, diced
- 1 ounce taco seasoning , 1 packet
- 1-½ cups Cheddar cheese, divided use
- ½ cup sour cream
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons Ranch seasoning, dry
- 10 ounces Rotel diced tomatoes with green chilies
- 2 cups Bisquick, or favorite biscuit mix
- 1 ¼ cup water, divided
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Spray 13X9 baking pan with non-stick cooking spray.
- Brown ground beef in a large skillet; drain off any grease that accumulates.
- Add diced onion, bell pepper, taco seasoning and ½ cup of water to pan.
- Stir until well blended.
- Bring to a simmer and cover.
- Simmer 10 minutes or so - until onion & pepper are soft.
- In a medium mixing bowl combine sour cream, mayonnaise, ½ cup of the cheese, and Ranch seasoning.
- Whisk until smooth and blended. Set aside.
- Add Bisquick (or other biscuit mix) to a large bowl.
- Pour in ¾ cup of water and stir to make a soft dough. You may ned a little more water.
- Gently press dough into bottom of pan and bake 5 minutes - just until set.
- Remove from oven.
- Spread ground beef mixture over the biscuit layer.
- Spread the Rotel over that.
- Spoon the sour cream mixture over that and gently spread over the top.
- Finish with the remaining cheese.
- Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until biscuit layer is done and the casserole is heated through.
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First published December 14, 2021. Last updated July 8, 2022 for editorial improvements.