‘The Pioneer Woman’: Ree Drummond’s Nacho Cheese Casserole Recipe Is a No Frills Dinner Idea Your Family Will Love

Ree Drummond makes an easy casserole recipe she admits isn’t “fancy” but is a total crowd-pleaser. According to The Pioneer Woman star, “there’s never a crumb left” when she makes the dish.

'The Pioneer Woman' star Ree Drummond wears a black top as she prepares a dish with late-night show host Stephen Colbert
Stephen Colbert and Ree Drummond | Scott Kowalchyk/CBS via Getty Images

Ree Drummond makes an easy weeknight dinner casserole recipe

Drummond made her easy casserole recipe on an episode of The Pioneer Woman. “If you’re looking for a weeknight dinner that everyone is going to love, you can’t get any better than nacho cheese casserole,” she said. “It’s one of those dinners that completely disappears — there’s never a crumb left.”

She added oil to a skillet, then whisked in flour and cooked the mixture until it was light golden brown. “I have to say, this casserole is so Middle America,” Drummond noted. “I don’t mean to make generalizations. By that I mean, there is nothing fancy about it. It’s just a good old Tex Mex casserole — meaty, cheesy. It’s got tortilla chips in it. How bad can that be?”

Drummond added chicken broth, canned enchilada sauce, and cumin, then heated the sauce to thicken it.

In another skillet, she browned ground beef with diced onions and minced garlic. “This casserole is great because you can eat it on its own after it’s baked and it’s delicious,” she said. “I like to serve it with a  whole bunch of fixings. The same fixings you’d use if you were making tacos, nachos, anything like that.”

Drummond added, “Tex Mex dishes and fixings — it’s kind of a religion in our house.”

‘The Pioneer Woman’ made a cheese mixture and assembled the casserole

Drummond finished up the final steps and assembled the casserole. She combined grated sharp cheddar and pepper jack cheese in a bowl. Then Drummond poured the sauce over the meat and stirred it to combine.

The Food Network host assembled two casseroles — one to cook for dinner and another to store in the freezer for a future meal. She added a layer of crushed nacho chips to the pans, topped them with the beef mixture, then the cheese, and repeated the layers.

To cook the casserole, Drummond covered the pan with foil and baked it in a 350 degree Fahrenheit oven for 25 minutes then removed the foil and baked it another 15 minutes. She topped the casserole with shredded romaine lettuce, diced roma tomatoes, sour cream, black olives, and green onions.

The full recipe is available on the Food Network website.

Drummond’s Tex Mex casserole earns great reviews

Drummond’s nacho cheese casserole earns a lot of glowing reviews on the Food Network site with some helpful suggestions to tweak the dish slightly.

“Loved this meal,” one reviewer wrote. “The only change I made was I used Mexican cheese instead of doing the pepper jack. I didn’t want it to get too spicy for my four and six-year-old.”

One person raved, “Tastes and eats like a gourmet taco salad!! Fabulous!”

Another reviewer shared, “This casserole is very interesting. I did make two — one for dinner and one for the freezer. The flavor is excellent! From previous experience and as some other reviewers suggested, I only put the chips on top … Overall, it was delicious and I will definitely make it again.”

Others shared their experience with leaving out the bottom layer of chips. “With changes, it was an instant hit with all family members, this rarely happens,” one person wrote.

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