Tomato 'n' Beef Casserole With Polenta Crust Recipe


This one-dish beef casserole will become one of your new favorite dishes. A cornmeal crust in the perfect base for the meat and vegetable mixture and shredded sharp cheddar creates a bubbly, cheesy finish. 

Ground Beef Recipes: Tomato ’n’ Beef Casserole With Polenta Crust
The ultimate comfort food mixture of ground beef and tomato sauce only gets better atop a hearty cornmeal crust. Photo: Photo: Beth Dreiling Hontzas
6 servings


  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1 cup plain yellow cornmeal

  • 1/2 teaspoon Montreal steak seasoning

  • 1 cup (4 oz.) shredded sharp Cheddar cheese, divided

  • 1 pound ground chuck

  • 1 cup chopped onion

  • 1 medium zucchini, cut in half lengthwise and sliced (about 2 cups)

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 2 (14 1/2-oz.) cans petite diced tomatoes, drained

  • 1 (6-oz.) can tomato paste

  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Bring 3 cups water and 1 tsp. salt to a boil in a 2-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat. Whisk in cornmeal; reduce heat to low, and simmer, whisking constantly, 3 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat, and stir in steak seasoning and 1/4 cup Cheddar cheese. Spread cornmeal mixture into a lightly greased 11- x 7-inch baking dish.

  2. Brown ground chuck in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, stirring often, 10 minutes or until meat crumbles and is no longer pink; drain and transfer to a bowl.

  3. Sauté onion and zucchini in hot oil in skillet over medium heat 5 minutes or until crisp-tender. Stir in beef, tomatoes, and tomato paste; simmer, stirring often, 10 minutes. Pour beef mixture over cornmeal crust. Sprinkle with remaining 3/4 cup cheese.

  4. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until bubbly. Sprinkle casserole with parsley just before serving.

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