Reunion Pea Casserole Recipe

This welcoming, over-the-top casserole was designed to satisfy and delight a crowd, perhaps at a big family reunion or church supper. This type of grandma-approved casserole is especially popular at big gatherings because it's easy to make and accommodates large numbers of hungry guests. The sausage-and-cheese filling is a bit rich, but it sure is tasty. The recipe calls for black-eyed peas, the mainstay Southern legume. Over the years, black-eyed peas have become the most common and familiar type of field pea—you can always find cans of them on grocery store shelves. However, there are often other delicious choices on the same shelf or in the freezer case, such as purple hull, crowder peas, or peas with snaps. In the summer, look for less common peas with wonderful names like Whippoorwill, Lady Cream, and Pinkeye at your local farmers' market. Feel free to substitute any of them in this recipe. Like all good casseroles, this one is forgiving and accommodating. Refrigerated crescent roll dough gives this comforting casserole a golden, buttery crust with minimal effort. Add coleslaw or salad on the side, and you'll have an easy, homey supper that will feed the whole family—and then some.

Reunion Pea Casserole
Photo: Greg DuPree; Prop Styling: Mindi Shapiro Levine; Food Styling: Torie Cox
Active Time:
35 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 35 mins
12 serves


  • 1 pound mild Italian sausage, casings removed

  • 2 (16-oz.) cans black-eyed peas, drained

  • 1 (4-oz.) can chopped green chiles, drained

  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 2 cups sliced yellow squash (about 10 oz.)

  • 2 cups sliced zucchini (about 10 oz.)

  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion (about 1 small onion)

  • 4 large eggs, well beaten

  • 8 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded (about 2 cups)

  • 8 ounces Cheddar cheese, shredded (about 2 cups)

  • 2 (8-oz.) cans refrigerated crescent rolls


  1. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Cook sausage in a large skillet over medium, stirring to crumble, until browned, about 8 minutes. Drain sausage well, setting skillet aside. Transfer sausage to a large bowl, and stir in peas, chiles, garlic powder, cumin, oregano, pepper, and salt.

  2. Melt butter in reserved skillet over medium, and add squash, zucchini, and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 8 to 10 minutes; drain well. Cool 5 minutes. Stir together eggs and cheeses in a separate bowl; fold in squash mixture.

  3. Separate crescent roll dough into 2 long rectangles; pinch dough seams together. Place dough in a lightly greased 13- x 9-inch baking dish; press dough on bottom and up sides to form crust, using a knife to cut away excess dough. Bake in preheated oven until crust begins to set, about 10 minutes.

  4. Remove from oven, and layer sausage-pea mixture over crust; top with squash mixture. Return to oven, and bake until casserole is set, 25 to 30 minutes. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.

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