If you are looking for a hearty, satisfying dinner that the whole family will love, then you have to try this bacon cheeseburger casserole!
I mean, I have run across some picky eaters before, but almost everyone can agree that burgers are delicious.
Not only is this dish family friendly, it’s also perfect for this time of year!
It’s a great fall dish since it uses spaghetti squash (I was so excited to see squash on sale this week).
It’s also a great winter dish to enjoy all of the “burger” taste without having to fire up the grill when it’s blistering cold.
And if those weren’t enough reasons to love this dish, then how about that it tastes awesome AND it is sure to fit your family’s dietary constraints!
Make sure you read below for ways to make this casserole fit any diet you might be following!
How to Cook the Spaghetti Squash
The directions for this recipe assume that the spaghetti squash is already cooked.
This allows you to decide if you want to slowly oven roast the squash or quickly cook it in an Instant Pot.
Oven Roasted Spaghetti Squash
If you would like to roast the spaghetti squash in the oven, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Wash off the squash and place it in the oven whole.
Bake the squash for 60 minutes or until a fork can easily pierce through the squash skin and flesh.
Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash
While oven roasting your squash results in a richer flavor and better texture, sometimes there just isn’t time to wait!
If you need dinner ready sooner, an Instant Pot is a great option to quickly cook up your squash!
For Instant Pot directions to either cook a spaghetti squash whole or in half, check out my post Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash.
How to Make Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole
One thing I LOVE about this casserole is that it is SO EASY to put together!
Since it comes together quickly, make sure you start by turning your oven on to 350 degrees.
Next grab a 9×13″ dish.
Please remember that the directions assume that you have already cooked the spaghetti squash (see options above)!
So take your cooked spaghetti squash and mix in the butter (if using) and 1 teaspoon of salt.
Now spread the squash mixture out over the bottom of the 9×13″ dish.
Next, cook the beef with the remaining 1 teaspoon salt, garlic, onion.
Note: to save time, you can cook the meat mixture while the spaghetti squash is cooking!
Once the meat has browned, add the tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, and water.
Cook the meat mixture until very hot and then layer on top of the spaghetti squash.
Finish by topping with the shredded cheddar cheese and bacon pieces (if using).
Bake for 30 minutes or until the cheese has melted.
Mmmm…look at that gooey, melted cheese!!!
Top with green onion and sliced tomatoes (if using) or any other cheeseburger topping that your family likes!
I mean, our family loves peanut butter cheeseburgers (don’t knock it until you have tried it), so you could even drizzle on peanut butter or something like that!
Now enjoy this awesome bacon cheeseburger casserole!
Also, if you are looking for a vegetable side, my go-to is salad since I would normally eat lettuce on my burger.
Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole Modifications
I love writing recipes that can be modified to fit almost any diet.
I myself have food allergies and eat keto/paleo, and I love finding recipes with modifications to fit my needs.
While this recipe is not suitable to modify for a vegan diet, it does fit many other diets quite well.
So whether you follow the keto, paleo, Whole30, or AIP diet, let’s talk about the recipe modifications you might want to make!
How to Make Keto Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole
This recipe is basically a perfect fit for the keto diet.
I do want to offer you a few recipe modifications that you could make if you want, although none are needed for this to be a keto dish.
For even lower carbs, omit the spaghetti squash.
Alternatively, you could change the carb amount by using cauli-rice or mashed cauliflower for the base instead of spaghetti squash.
Just make sure you include spaghetti squash or cauliflower to use that optional stick of butter!
You will also want to take advantage of the optional cheese and bacon toppings to increase the fat in this dish!
How to Make Paleo/Whole30 Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole
If you are an old time Whole30 pro, it is probably easy to pick out the optional ingredients that should be left out to make this casserole Whole30 approved.
If you are new to Whole30, I don’t want you guessing on what is or is not allowed on the diet.
Here are the recipe modifications you need to make – omit the optional butter and cheese.
I would note though that some paleo folks eat butter, so if that’s you, feel free to use it!
And for the cheese, use a dairy-free cheese sauce instead (make a half batch of the cheese sauce for this recipe).
All of the other optional toppings – bacon, tomato, and green onion – are all perfectly fine to add (if your family likes them).
How to Make AIP Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole
While the AIP diet requires a few extra modifications, you can still enjoy this dish!
Same as the paleo/Whole30 modifications, you will want to omit the butter and cheese.
But again, you can use the dairy-free cheese sauce to top the casserole instead!
Additionally, tomato and tomato products should not be used for the AIP diet.
So instead, make a nightshade-free tomato paste to use and just don’t add the optional sliced tomato on top!
Otherwise, feel free to add the bacon and green onion on top of the cheese sauce!
If you are looking for a hearty, satisfying dinner that the whole family will love, then look no further than this bacon cheeseburger casserole!
- 1 spaghetti squash (3-4 pounds), cooked (see above for cooking options)
- Optional: 1 stick butter (omit for paleo/Whole30/AIP)
- 2 teaspoons salt, divided
- 2 pounds grass-fed beef
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced (or ½ t. garlic powder)
- 1 small onion, chopped (or ½ t. onion powder)
- 2 Tablespoons coconut aminos or Worcestershire sauce
- 1, 6-ounce can tomato paste (use nightshade-free tomato paste for AIP)
- 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 pound bacon, cooked and crumbled
- 8 ounces raw, grass-fed cheddar cheese, shredded (use a dairy-free cheese sauce for paleo/Whole30/AIP)
- Sliced tomato (omit for AIP)
- finely chopped green onion
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- If you are using the optional butter, mix the butter and 1 teaspoon salt into the spaghetti squash while it is still hot. Layer the spaghetti squash into the bottom of a 9×13” pan.
- Cook the beef with the remaining 1 teaspoon salt, garlic, and onion. Once the meat has browned, add the tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, and water. Heat through and then layer on top of the spaghetti squash.
- Top with the shredded cheddar cheese and bacon pieces (if using).
- Bake for 30 minutes, or until cheese has melted.
- Top with green onion and sliced tomatoes (if using).
Storing: This casserole can be stored in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Freezing: This casserole is excellent for freezing. Store in a casserole dish or in smaller portions in airtight containers. Use within 6 months for best freshness (although it will be safe to eat indefinitely).