32 Warm and Cheesy Recipes | Midwest Living
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32 Warm and Cheesy Recipes

Savor one of the top comfort-food ingredients—cheese—in these recipes for lasagna, chowder, fondue, casseroles and more.

Mexican Tortilla Casseroles

Combine cubed cooked chicken, corn, Mexican cheese, tortillas and salsa in individual-size baking dishes for this casserole dish, which you can make ahead and freeze.

Mexican Tortilla Casseroles

Milk-Braised Pork with Cheesy Grits

There are a lot of ingredients in this spruced-up comfort-food dish, but trust us, it’s worth the effort for a weekend treat. The recipe from Michael Watz of Chicago was a finalist in our Best of the Midwest® recipe contest.

Milk-Braised Pork with Cheesy Grits

Sausage and Spinach Skillet Pizza

A hot cast-iron skillet mimics a pizza stone to create a crisp, evenly browned crust. We loaded our pizza with oozy red sauce and stretchy cheese. Fork and knife highly recommended.

Sausage and Spinach Skillet Pizza

Bacon-Pear Macaroni and Cheese

Crispy bacon, extra-creamy cheese sauce, pears sauteed in brown sugar and butter. It took our Test Kitchen three tries to get all the pieces right for this fall comfort food. Oh man, was it worth it.

Bacon-Pear Macaroni and Cheese

Stuffed Italian Meatballs

Spiced Italian sausage encases melty mozzarella cheese for meatballs perfect dipped in marinara sauce, stuffed into a calzone or plopped on top of spaghetti.

Stuffed Italian Meatballs

Spinach-Mushroom-Sausage Pierogi Bake

You don't get much easier than this recipe from Jan Valdez of Chicago! Saute a few ingredients, stir in cream cheese to make a sauce, and dump it all over frozen pierogis in a casserole dish. (You don't even need to thaw the pierogis!) 

Spinach-Mushroom-Sausage Pierogi Bake

Squash and Tomato Bake

Summer squash adds texture to this easy side dish, which combines stewed tomatoes with paprika, garlic, basil and pepper, as well as some melty mozzarella and Parmesan. It goes well with roast chicken or beef.

Squash and Tomato Bake

Brats and Beer Cheddar Chowder

The name alone evokes images of some of Wisconsin's best foods: cheese, bratwurst and beer. "Hearty comfort food!" writes a website reviewer. "Especially good if you use specialty seasoned brats from your butcher."

Brats and Beer Cheddar Chowder

Mexican Mac and Cheese

Pair Mexican flavors with pasta for this comfort-food casserole that includes sausage, salsa and Monterey Jack cheese.

Mexican Mac and Cheese

Southwest Corn Pudding

Buttery onions, cheddar and green chilies lace our stuffinglike pudding. Inspired by traditional skillet corn bread, this recipe works as a side or as a meatless main served with a salad or garlicky sauteed kale.

Southwest Corn Pudding

Hot Artichoke and Roasted Pepper Asiago Cheese Dip

Roasted red sweet peppers fleck this dip with a festive crimson touch. Serve the warm, cheese-filled appetizer with bread or pita wedges, or some water crackers.

Hot Artichoke and Roasted Pepper Asiago Cheese Dip

Creamy Macaroni and Cheese

The ultimate comfort food gets a twist in this recipe in which mozzarella and blue cheese fill in for more common American or cheddar. Light cream, bacon and sweet onion round out the sauce.

Creamy Macaroni and Cheese

Jack Cheese and Smoky Chipotle Fondue

Lots of Monterey Jack cheese goes into this creamy fondue, along with sour cream, chipotle peppers and bacon. Scoop up with bread or tortilla chips. It's a great party recipe or a fun family meal.

Jack Cheese and Smoky Chipotle Fondue

Mexican Polenta Pie

Great for a potluck or family dinner, this 12-serving casserole combines polenta with ground turkey, spices, black beans, tomatoes and Monterey Jack cheese.

Mexican Polenta Pie

Goat Cheese, Artichoke and Smoked Ham Strata

Parmesan and fontina get a flavor boost from mild goat cheese in this company-special breakfast casserole.

Goat Cheese, Artichoke and Smoked Ham Strata

Showstopper Chicken Surprise

Cheese lovers can't resist a good recipe for stuffed chicken. "This recipe is very adaptable -- it works just fine with boneless, skinless thighs or with smoked cheddar cheese," writes one of our website reviewers. "It's a huge family favorite!"

Showstopper Chicken Surprise

Short Ribs over Cheesy Polenta

Put in a slow cooker, short ribs give you a delicious, dressed-up dish with hardly any work. A hint of licorice from fennel accents the recipe.

Short Ribs over Cheesy Polenta

Cheesy Brat Stew Casserole

This six-ingredient hotdish recipe from an Appleton, Wisconsin, reader features bratwurst, cheddar cheese and potatoes. "It's a quick, easy recipe," our reader says. "There's not much you can mess up."

Cheesy Brat Casserole

Tortellini with Chicken and Cheese

Prepare this chicken dish in just 20 minutes using packaged ingredients. Substitute leftover chicken (or any leftover cooked meat) for the package of frozen chopped cooked chicken breast, if you like.

Tortellini with Chicken and Cheese

Tagliatelle a la Hudson

A simple mix of ingredients results in an elegant dish. Lemon peel and prosciutto flavor a whipping cream and Parmesan mixture tossed with hot pasta.

Tagliatelle a la Hudson

Gouda and Red Onion Pizza

You can put just about any cheese on pizza. Try Gouda or Edam on this fresh-tasting onion pizza. To ease prep, start with refrigerated pizza crust.

Gouda and Red Onion Pizza

Spinach Quiche

This easy breakfast pie, packed with nutrient-rich spinach, isn’t overly eggy like some quiches. The recipe comes from Carol Reimer of  Brownsburg, Indiana.

Spinach Quiche

Hot-Stuff Kielbasa-Cheese Soup

Robust kielbasa sausage simmers with potatoes and sharp cheddar for this meal-in-a-bowl. Turn to low-sodium broth to reduce the salt.

Hot-Stuff Kielbasa-Cheese Soup

Bacon and Baked Potato Soup

Shredded American cheese is ideal for this soup because it melts so well. "My family loved this soup, and I even passed on the recipe to a neighbor who also thought it was awesome," notes one of our website reviewers.

Bacon and Baked Potato Soup

Cheesy Italian Meatball Casserole

Combine Italian meatballs, three kinds of cheese, pasta and sauce for this easy, crowd-pleasing casserole.

Cheesy Italian Meatball Casserole

Lemon Chicken Lasagna

No-boil lasagna noodles, a jar of Alfredo sauce, and a package of refrigerated or frozen cooked chicken breast strips make this lasagna a snap to put together. Ricotta, Fontina and Parmesan cheeses, along with lemon zest, add flavor.

Lemon Chicken Lasagna

Starker's Bacon and Cheese Curd Burger

Sugared bacon and melting cheese curds or string cheese make a mouthwatering filling for these behemoth burgers. The recipe comes from chef/owner John McClure of Starker's Restaurant at Country Club Plaza in Kansas City.

Starker's Bacon and Cheese Curd Burger

Eight-Layer Casserole

Cream cheese and cheddar melt into layers of ground beef, tomato sauce, spinach and noodles with a hint of basil in this hotdish recipe.

Eight-Layer Casserole

Cheesy Potato Soup

Potato, bacon and cheese--all the flavors you love in a bowl of soup! The American cheese keeps the soup from curdling while it slow cooks. Mashing cooked potatoes a bit gives the soup some body, while the bacon adds a smoky-salty taste.

Cheesy Potato Soup

Triangle Ranch Scalloped Corn

Eggs, creamed corn, diced green chile peppers and American cheese give this classic American side dish a new flavor. Saltines add some texture to the mix.

Triangle Ranch Scalloped Corn

Swiss-Artichoke Dip

Artichoke hearts, dried tomatoes and sauce combine for a rich, creamy dip. Our recipe calls for processed Swiss cheese because it melts smoothly, but regular Swiss cheese will work fine, too. The dip will have a more stretchy, less creamy texture, but it tastes just as good.

Swiss-Artichoke Dip

Mexican Tortilla Casseroles

Combine cubed cooked chicken, corn, Mexican cheese, tortillas and salsa in individual-size baking dishes for this casserole dish, which you can make ahead and freeze.

Mexican Tortilla Casseroles

Ultimate Grilled Cheese and Ham Panini with Parsnip Fries

When grilled cheese dreams big, it winds up like this. Our melty-perfect creation layers fruit chutney with ham, thinly sliced pear, a few arugula leaves, Gouda and creamy, nutty Fontina.

Ultimate Grilled Cheese and Ham Panini with Parsnip Fries

 

Free printable casserole cookbook and more

Click below to download our free printable collection of 10 casserole recipes or other free printable cookbooks.

 

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