Thursday, July 29, 2010

Comfort Casserole

Recipe: Hungry Jack Casserole
Source: Recipes Shared book (courtesy of my Aunt Janet)
Ingredients: Kid friendly
Party in the Tummy Scale (1-10): 7 (depends on who in the family you ask)

Every family has a casserole dish that has been passed down and is made when a baby is born, a child comes back home to visit from college, someone is feeling under the weather or just needs cheering up.  This is my family's casserole.  My Aunt Janet obtained this recipe from who knows where, and in the early 70's it fit the bill for her four young and hungry kids.  My mom used to eat it at my aunt's house all of the time, and when my mom got married the recipe was given to her.  This was a staple dish, and a favorite of my brother and I growing up.

The meal is nothing fancy, and the ingredients are simple, but it fills you up and warms your belly.  It got its name because the original recipe called for Hungry Jack biscuits, but it works with any brand.  This was one of the first dishes I made for R when we got married and it was a hit with him as well.  The original recipe calls for ground beef.  I use ground turkey, which my dad thinks should be a crime punishable by law.  God forbid I use a healthier meat and mess with the recipe... shoot me now!  The BBQ sauce you use makes a big difference in flavor as well. 

I switched the recipe up a bit tonight... hence the note after the "Yummy in the Tummy" score.  I had the idea this afternoon of adding some cut up hot dogs into the ground turkey mix to see if the kids would actually eat the filling and not just the biscuit topping.  Worked like a charm!  R didn't like it as well though... "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" was his philosophy.  Verdict... hot dogs optional, depending on who you are feeding!

Hungry Jack Casserole

1 lb. ground beef
1  16 oz. can pork and beans
1 tsp. salt
1 T. dried minced onion
2 T. brown sugar
3/4 c. BBQ sauce
1 can biscuits
1 c. grated cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Brown beef in skillit and drain.  Add beef back to skillit and add next five ingredients; heat until bubbly.
Pour ingredients into a two quart casserole dish. 
Cut biscuits in half and place cut side down around the edge of the casserole dish. 
Sprinkle with cheese and bake for 20-30 minutes or until biscuits are golden brown.

Notes: This recipe freezes and travels well.  I like to use a stronger flavored BBQ sauce to enhance the flavor a bit more.


  1. I couldn't marry into this family without learning this recipe :) We have it all the time because the little one eats it. I actually mince up carrot and mushrooms in the food processor and hide them in the sauce since no body touches their veggies when hungry jack is on their plate!

  2. Oh yummy! Definitely trying this one.