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How to Make Easy Low-Carb Hamburger Casseroles

by
author image Andrea Cespedes
Andrea Cespedes is a professionally trained chef who has focused studies in nutrition. With more than 20 years of experience in the fitness industry, she coaches cycling and running and teaches Pilates and yoga. She is an American Council on Exercise-certified personal trainer, RYT-200 and has degrees from Princeton and Columbia University.
How to Make Easy Low-Carb Hamburger Casseroles
Using ground beef as a casserole base is a no-brainer. Photo Credit Ingram Publishing/Ingram Publishing/Getty Images

Finding new ways to prepare meat when you're on a low-carb diet can be a challenge. Casseroles easily add variety to dinner, but many contain high-carb ingredients such as noodles or shredded potatoes. Adapting hamburger casseroles to fit your low-carb lifestyle is easy. They're a cinch to put together and pop into the oven.

Use about 1/2 pound of raw meat for each serving in the casserole. For example, if you want to serve four people -- cook up 2 pounds of ground beef. When you calculate the carbs in each combination, consider the net carbs: the amount a food has when you subtract the fiber grams from the carb grams. Net carbs are the digestible ones that impact your blood sugar.

Low-Carb Cheesy Italian Casserole

Create a hamburger casserole that tastes like a bowl of Italian meat sauce. Serve it with steamed zucchini, which has 3 grams of net carbs per cup.

Saute ground beef in olive oil with a generous handful of dried Italian seasoning, which adds 0 carbs. Add minced onion, with 4 grams of net carbs per 1/4 cup cooked, and a few cloves of chopped garlic, each of which is just about 1 gram of carbohydrate. Stir in canned tomato sauce, with 3 grams of net carbs per 1/4 cup.

Spread the whole mixture into a casserole dish and top with shredded mozzarella cheese, which has less than 1 gram of carbs per ounce. Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees and serve. Remember that the recipe's entire carb count is divided among multiple servings.

Taco-Style Hamburger Casserole

Harness the flavors of seven-layer dip -- without the carb-heavy beans and chips -- by quickly whipping up a Tex-Mex-flavored hamburger casserole.

Saute the ground beef in olive oil and add a mix of spices such as paprika, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder and cayenne. In total, they add about 1 gram of net carbs to the entire dish. Stir in canned, diced tomatoes for 2 grams of net carbs per 1/4 cup. Spread in a baking dish and top with shredded cheese. Place in a 350-degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the beef mix bubbles.

Serve with full-fat sour cream with less than 1 gram of carbohydrate per 2 tablespoons, green onions with about 3 grams of net carbs per 2 tablespoons and guacamole, which is essentially carb-free.

Easy Low-Carb Cheeseburger Bake

If you miss cheeseburgers because you're avoiding the bun, this casserole is for you, and if you can afford a few extra carbs, make butternut squash fries as a side dish. Peel and slice the squash into long rectangles. Toss with olive oil and bake in a 400-degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes, flipping once.

Chop several strips of bacon into small cubes. Brown the ground beef and bacon with a generous pinch of salt and black pepper. Add onion powder and minced fresh garlic. Set aside when browned through. In a separate bowl, stir together two or three eggs with several tablespoons of tomato paste and heavy cream. Each egg has just trace carbs; tomato paste has 5 grams of net carbs per 2 tablespoons; and the cream carries about 6 grams of net carbs per cup.

Spread the beef mixture into a casserole dish and top with the egg blend. Stir gently to incorporate and sprinkle generously with cheddar cheese, which has less than half a gram of carbohydrate per ounce. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 30 minutes and serve.

Beefy Green Bean Casserole

Add ground beef to a low-carb green bean casserole for a creamy, satisfying meal. Canned green beans make this a super-easy recipe.

Brown the ground beef in olive oil and add chopped onion and celery, which adds about 2 grams of net carbs for every half cup. Transfer to a bowl and stir in mayonnaise, cheddar cheese, garlic salt and pepper. Fold in drained, canned green beans and mushrooms, for 3 grams of carbs per cup and 2 grams of carbs per 1/2 cup, respectively. Place in a casserole dish and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

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