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Runza Casserole

Unless you live near Nebraska, you may not be familiar with Runza casserole. Named after the Runza sandwich, it’s a hearty, flavorful, crowd-pleasing dish! 

It combines the classic flavors of seasoned ground beef, cabbage, and cheese, baked between two layers of flaky crescent roll crust. 

Slice missing of runza casserole in a white baking dish with spoon dipped in it.
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I love serving it for potlucks, family dinners, or any time I crave comfort food.

It’s a taste of Midwestern heritage that’ll transport you to the Heartland with every bite.

Why You’ll Love This Runza Casserole

Time Saver: You use refrigerated crescent rolls for the crust in this casserole. It cuts significantly down on preparation and cooking time. It’s perfect for busy weeknights.

Comfort Food: Runza casserole is the ultimate comfort dish, combining savory flavors and a warm, satisfying texture.

Easy Prep: The recipe has straightforward steps and requires common kitchen ingredients.

Nostalgic Flavors: For those who grew up enjoying classic Runza sandwiches, this casserole offers a delightful taste of nostalgia in every bite.

Ground pork and cabbage tossed in a stainless skillet with wooden ladle.

Ingredients

  • Lean Ground Beef: The hearty, rich base makes this casserole so filling. 
  • Refrigerated Crescent Rolls: They add buttery, flaky layers to the casserole, enveloping the filling in a comforting, golden crust. 
  • Shredded Cabbage: It adds a slight crunch and sweetness. It also balances the savory beef. 
  • Medium Onions: They offer a subtle sharpness and depth.
  • Seasonings: I use a mix of salt, black pepper, Worcestershire sauce, and garlic powder. Together, they add tang, spice, and a wonderful umami kick.
  • Shredded Cheddar Cheese: Add plenty of cheese for a gooey, creamy layer. It’s the rich, cheesy finish tying everything together. 
Runza casserole covered with crescent roll dough on a white baking dish.

How to Make Runza Casserole

You can whip up this hearty Runza casserole in fewer than ten steps!

1. Prepare. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish. 

2. Cook the beef mixture. Cook the ground beef and onions in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook until done, then drain any excess grease. 

3. Add the cabbage. Add the cabbage, Worcestershire sauce, and seasonings. Cook for another 5 minutes or until the cabbage is wilted. 

4. Bake. Unroll one can of crescent rolls and press them into the bottom of the baking dish. Bake for 5 minutes. 

5. Add the filling. Spread the beef and cabbage mixture evenly over the bottom crust. Then, sprinkle the cheddar on top. 

6. Bake again. Spread the second can of crescent roll dough on top of the cheese to form the top crust. Then, bake the casserole for 20 to 25 minutes or until the top is golden brown. 

7. Rest and serve. Let the casserole rest for 5 minutes. Then slice, serve, and enjoy! 

A slice of Runza casserole with ground beef, cabbage and melted cheese served on a white plate.

Tips for the Best Runza Casserole

Remember these tips when making your casserole: 

  • The leaner, the better. Look for a ratio of at least 85 lean to 15 fat. Using lean meat will reduce the amount of excess grease. Be sure to drain the skillet well 
  • Shred the cabbage finely. Try to make the shreds all of similar size. This will help ensure the cabbage cooks evenly and integrates with the beef and onions. 
  • Be nice and even. Spread the beef and cabbage mixture evenly over the pre-baked crust. This will give you consistent flavor in every bite.
  • Switch up the cheeses. I love cheddar; it’s a favorite of mine. However, you can use mozzarella, Colby Jack, or something else. 
  • Swap in some sauerkraut. Swap it out for the cabbage in equal measure. You can also add mushrooms to the filling to make it even heartier. 
Cheesy Runza casserole slice served on a white plate.

How to Store

Have leftover casserole? No problem! It tastes just as good warmed up. 

To Store: Refrigerate leftover Runza casserole for up to 5 days. If not consumed in that timeframe, discard what remains.

To Freeze: Allow the casserole to cool completely. Then, transfer it to an air-tight, freezer-safe container. Freeze it for up to 3 months. 

To Reheat: Let frozen Runza casserole thaw in the fridge overnight. Reheat chilled leftovers in the oven at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes. For smaller portions, reheat in the microwave in 30-second intervals.  

Runza Casserole

Course: Main CourseCuisine: American
Servings

8

servings
Prep time

15

minutes
Cooking time

30

minutes
Calories

510

kcal

This Runza casserole is a classic Nebraska treat! It’s packed with ground beef, cabbage, and cheese, a

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Ingredients

  • 2 pounds lean ground beef

  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped

  • 4 cups shredded cabbage

  • 2 teaspoons salt

  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 2(8-ounce) cans refrigerated crescent rolls

  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish.
  • In a large skillet over medium-high heat, cook the ground beef and onions until the beef is browned and the onions are softened. Drain excess grease.
  • Add the shredded cabbage, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, and garlic powder to the beef mixture. Cook until the cabbage is wilted, about 5 minutes.
  • Unroll one can of crescent rolls and press into the bottom of the prepared baking dish to form a crust. Bake for 5 minutes.
  • Spread the beef and cabbage mixture evenly over the baked crescent roll crust.
  • Sprinkle the shredded cheddar cheese on top of the beef mixture.
  • Unroll the second can of crescent rolls and place on top of the cheese to form the top crust.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the crescent roll top is golden brown.
  • Let stand for 5 minutes before cutting and serving.

Notes

  • For added flavor, brush the top crust with melted butter before baking.
  • You can substitute Swiss cheese for the cheddar if desired.
  • For a creamier filling, mix in a can of cream of mushroom soup with the beef and cabbage.

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author avatar
Kim - InsanelyGood
Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

2 thoughts on “Runza Casserole”

  1. This was delicious and quick and easy to make however, I added two cans of stewed tomatoes to add a little oomph to it.

    Reply

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