Tomato Basil Summer Veggie Casserole

This easy and healthy casserole is a great way to use up all those vegetables from your garden. It feeds a crowd and tastes amazing! Perfect meatless dinner for a summer night.

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You want to know the best way to get killer tomatoes from your garden? Go on vacation for 3 and 1/2 weeks and ask your green-thumb neighbor to water for you. It’s pretty much a no-fail situation.

Tomato Basil Summer Veggie Casserole

I guess I shouldn’t be giving the neighbors all the credit, because Eric has been in charge of our garden this summer, and it’s his baby. He comes home every day from work and dutifully waters the plants with the kids. He even taught Charlotte to do it by herself. It’s just kind of funny leaving on vacation and then coming home to HUGE lush plants that are dropping tomatoes like it’s hot.

Tomato Basil Summer Veggie Casserole

Tomato Basil Summer Veggie Casserole

Also, can we talk about my lack of faith. I came home and even after seeing the plants bought 8-10 romas at the grocery store out of habit. They are still hanging out somewhere in my veggie drawer. Oooops.

Guess I have another excuse to make this casserole again! I was looking up vegetarian casserole recipes that I could freeze for a friend I was making dinner for, and stumbled across this gem. It’s easy, meatless, and packed with tons of summer veggies that you may or may not have a million of right now. I used broccoli, but I’ve also tried it with raw zucchini, so if you have a ton of that right now, this is a perfect way to use it up.

Tomato Basil Summer Veggie Casserole

One last thing, I almost used regular ol’ mozzarella for the top, because using fresh mozzarella and then baking it seems like a waste. But it was SO good! I want to try it on the next lasagna I make. Yum.

Do you guys give up? Or are you thirsty for more?
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Tomato Basil Summer Veggie Casserole

Yield: Serves 8-10

Ingredients

  • 1 (16 ounce) container cottage cheese
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 lemon, juiced (about 1/4 cup)
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 pound broccoli (2 crowns) (or you can use frozen florets. Thaw them first.)*
  • 12 ounces rotini pasta (I used the multicolored kind)
  • 1 large ripe tomato, chopped**
  • 1 dry pint cherry tomatoes, divided
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 (15 ounce can) white beans, drained
  • 1/2 cup chopped basil leaves
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, chopped
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan
  • olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped (for garnish)

Instructions

  1. In a very large bowl, stir together cottage cheese, eggs, lemon juice, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper.
  2. Bring about 2 quarts of water to a boil in a 3-quart pot. Add about a tablespoon of salt.
  3. While it's heating up, cut your broccoli into similar-sized florets.
  4. When the water is boiling, add the broccoli then immediately cover with a lid. Keep the heat on high. Set a timer for 3 minutes, then use a slotted spoon (don't drain!) to remove the broccoli to the bowl with the cottage cheese.
  5. Bring the remaining water back up to a boil. Add the pasta and cook according to package directions until al dente. Drain in a colander, then add the noodles to the bowl and stir.
  6. Add the chopped tomato to the bowl. Slice the cherry tomatoes in half, and reserve about a cup for the top of the casserole. Throw the rest in the bowl.
  7. Add the chopped onions and garlic to the bowl. If you don't love raw onions/garlic, you can saute them in a little oil for a few minutes before adding them to the bowl. They won't become completely cooked in the oven, so be aware.
  8. Add the white beans, 1/2 cup basil, and 1 cup of shredded mozzarella. Stir well.
  9. Grease a deep 9x13 inch casserole dish and preheat your oven to 375 degrees F.
  10. Pour the mixture into the dish. Top with the remaining cherry tomato halves. Sprinkle with the chopped fresh mozzarella. Sprinkle with 1/4 up Parmesan. Drizzle the dish with a bit of olive oil, just a tablespoon or 2.
  11. Bake at 375 for about 35 minutes, or until the cheese is golden brown. When it's done baking, immediately sprinkle with fresh chopped basil. Serves a crowd!

Notes

*You can use zucchini instead of broccoli. No need to cook first, just toss it in. **Use any kind of tomatoes you like (all regular or all cherry). I just used what I had on hand.

http://thefoodcharlatan.com/2015/07/23/tomato-basil-summer-veggie-casserole-recipe/

Source: adapted from The Kitchn

Easy Cheesy Asparagus Tortellini Bake: (you could try this with zucchini in place of the asparagus, that would be good)

Easy Cheesy Asparagus Tortellini Bake from TheFoodCharlatan.com

 

Roasted Garlic Ratatouille:

Roasted Garlic Ratatouille from The Food Charlatan

Poblano, Corn, and Zucchini Lasagna: << this is soooo good

Poblano, Corn, and Zucchini Lasagna from TheFoodCharlatan.com
Other awesome summer casseroles from friends:
Broccoli Quinoa Casserole from Eat Good 4 Life
Cheesy Taco Casserole from Cookie Monster Cooking
Mediterranean Quinoa Casserole from Making Thyme for Health
Twice Baked Potato Casserole from Mom on Timeout

Comments

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Comments

  1. says

    I have a black thumb so I’m never lucky enough to have any produce in my garden! But I have no shame in begging others for it! :) I’ll definitely be making this!
    Kim recently posted…Cuba LibresMy Profile

    • says

      Same thing happened to me Liz!! Last year I grew some basil and it went all giant on me, I loved it. This year it stinks. Although it may have something to do with the fact that the tomatoes are in the spot that the basil was in last year…seriously, we have like one square foot of decent soil in our entire yard :) Guess I’ll need to keep mooching off the neighbors.

    • says

      Good for you! Gardening has it’s own special rewarding feeling, and I’m not even talking about the food :) My husband’s secret is Miracle Grow, I think they even have a tomato-specific kind!

  2. says

    I HOPE that when you mentioned vegetable drawer that you were NOT referring to the one in the refrigerator!! Here in Delaware if one puts tomatoes in the refrig, he/she risks never being able to use tomatoes again in life!!!

    The casserole will work so well for the vegetarians in my family!! Thanks!

    • says

      Arlene, that’s so funny that you mentioned that. My mother didn’t teach me right and we grew up with tomatoes in the fridge. (I didn’t like them back then anyway. Kids are so dumb.) But just last year my friend (who is from Maine!!) told me that once a tomato has been in the fridge she will not eat it. So I stopped putting them in and it is so much better! When I saw the bag of store tomatoes in there I was shaking my fist at my husband. Maybe he’s just trying to make his garden tomatoes seem EVEN BETTER by comparison :) :) haha!

  3. says

    This looks scrumptious! What a great way to get your veggies in. Poor Eric…he probably did all the hard work of making the tomatoes come to fruition, and the weather and timing must have been just perfect for them to really come to life while you were on vacation. Now the neighbor gets all the credit lol. But seriously, this casserole looks sooo yummy. My Dad just gave me a huge bag full of tomatoes he bought at the farmer’s market for 50 cents!! It’s like 5 lbs worth of tomatoes and was obviously a ridiculously good deal. I made a bunch of tomato soup with almost half of it, but this looks like the perfect way to use up the other half. Also fresh mozzarella is everythingggg. My mom always uses it in her lasagna, which converted me for life. :)

  4. says

    What an awesome looking casserole and meatless!!! What a great way to use up all those yummy veggies. It’s great you have an awesome neighbor to help take care of your garden! Could you send them my way cuz I need some help in that department!! ;)
    Malinda @ Countryside Cravings recently posted…Rustic Berry TartMy Profile

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