This recipe for Ham and Noodle Casserole is a cheesy casserole bake that is a quick and easy weeknight dinner solution for a delicious meal the whole family will love. It is made with leftover ham, noodles, and a creamy, cheesy sauce.
Casseroles are one of the best ways to do an easy weeknight dinner. Everything is added to one dish and baked in the oven. They are also one of the best ways to repurpose leftovers. This ham casserole recipe is one of our favorite ways to use our leftover ham.
Casserole Recipes for a budget-friendly meal
With just two of us in the house, I hate having waste. So, whenever we do have a baked ham, I like to portion the leftovers out and set them aside for their designated meal. It is a great way to save money and still have delicious recipes.
I always cut most of the meat off the ham bone, but then, leave enough on it so I can make this Instant Pot Boiled Ham dinner. We also enjoy Scalloped Potatoes for Two, and Sweet Hot Ham and Cheese Sliders. Great recipes all made with leftover ham, including this Ham and Noodle Casserole.
What you need to make this recipe
Cream Sauce: Many people like to use cream of chicken or cream of mushroom soup. I on the other hand, like to make my own cream cause, which is really close to a cheese soup, only homemade! I promise, going homemade is more cost-effective and better for you than a can of soup.
Milk: You can use any type of milk you wish. I did use almond milk when I made this recipe. The only reason I went with almond milk is that it doesn't go bad as quickly as regular milk. I stopped buying regular milk unless it is for something specific because it goes bad on us before we actually will use it.
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Cheese: I used a yellow cheddar cheese that I bought as a brick and shred myself. It is less expensive to shred your own cheese and I just prefer to do it that way anyway. I am not crazy about the powdery substance on pre-shredded cheese.
Ham: I made this Cider Bourbon Glazed Ham over the holidays and portioned leftovers out to make other recipes. If you don't bake your own ham, you can always buy just slices of ham and dice it up to make this recipe.
Casserole dish: I love my glass casserole dishes and have them in a range of sizes. You will need a 9x13 casserole dish to make this recipe.
Tips for a quick and easy Ham and Noodle Casserole
My best tip for this recipe is to plan ahead. When you make a ham dinner, buy a large enough ham so you can have enough leftovers to make several different recipes with the leftovers. Divide the ham up in 1 or 2 cup portions and freeze any you will not be used within the next few days.
I like to use the same dish more than once. Rather than mix ingredients in different sized bowls and then combine them, I only use my measures for measuring and the same saucepan I cook the noodles in to make the sauce and toss the noodles back into the same saucepan to coat them before I put the mixture in a casserole. This saves time and dishes!
Make this casserole your way
There are several different things you can do to change this recipe and make it easier for you. Below are some ideas that may help.
- Use frozen veggies instead of fresh. Buy a green bean and carrot mixture, or peas and carrots and stir in 1 cup of the frozen veggies in step 5 before the cheese is added.
- Use your favorite cheese. Mozzarella, Colby, Swiss, or Monterey Jack are all good choices. Use a Pepperjack if you want to add a little heat.
- Sprinkle a little extra cheese on top with the panko for a little more cheesy flavor.
- Substitute seasoned bread crumbs or crushed buttery crackers for the panko crumbs.
- Omit the carrots and celery and replace them with 2 cups of sliced fresh mushrooms in step 2.
What to serve with Ham and Noodle Casserole
While this Ham and Noodle Casserole is a whole meal in one dish, you may want to have something else to serve alongside it. This is where a great salad or veggie side dish will come in handy.
Simple Sauteed Mushrooms are made with only 2 ingredients and so delicious. These make a perfect side to this casserole.
Roasted Asparagus and Mushrooms add a little color to your meal and is full of flavor.
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Ham and Noodle Casserole
- 1 cup diced leftover ham
- 1 celery stalk diced
- 1 carrot diced
- ¼ cup diced onion
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1-½ cups chicken broth
- ½ cup milk
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 6 oz egg noodles
- ¼ cup seasoned panko crumbs optional
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Cook noodles in a large saucepan according to directions. Drain noodles and clean saucepan to make the sauce.
- In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter until bubbly. Add the celery, carrot, and onion and cook for 3 minutes, until vegetables have softened.
- Whisk in the flour, salt, pepper, and thyme. Cook, whisking constantly, for 1 minute.
- Gradually add chicken broth and milk, whisking constantly. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until the sauce begins to thicken.
- Stir in the cheese and ham and cook for 1 minute, or until cheese is melted.
- Remove the ham mixture from the cooktop and stir in the cooked egg noodles. Transfer the ham and noodle mixture to a prepared 9x13 casserole. Sprinkle with seasoned panko crumbs (if using) and bake in the oven for 30 minutes, or until casserole is hot.