Ham casserole is perfect for those nights when you want a home-cooked meal that’s easy to make and full of flavor.
This casserole is made with ham and pasta tossed in an easy from-scratch cheese sauce. It’s topped with buttery bread crumbs for a great family meal.
This casserole is great for using up leftover ham, and you can even add in broccoli or other leftover veggies for an extra boost of nutrition.
Ingredients in Ham Casserole
I love that this recipe uses ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen to turn leftover ham into a new meal.
Ham – Use leftover diced ham or purchase ham steaks at the grocery store.
Pasta – Any medium shape works. Try rotini, farfalle, shells, or penne.
Sauce – The sauce is homemade and it’s really easy to make. Thyme and Dijon mustard add lots of flavor to this leftover ham casserole.
Cheese – This recipe uses a combination of cheddar, gruyere (or swiss cheese), and parmesan cheeses for a tasty dish. Feel free to use whatever cheeses you have on hand, just make sure to include one with a bold flavor.
Topping – A topping of buttered Panko bread crumbs with cheese adds a crunchy finish to the casserole.
How to Make Ham Casserole
Homemade Cheese Sauce is easy to make and creates great flavor for this casserole. The sauce for this recipe starts with a roux.
- Cook butter & flour in a saucepan per the recipe below.
- Slowly whisk in the milk & broth and thicken. Stir in cheese.
- Combine cheese sauce, ham, and pasta in a casserole dish.
- Top with a crumb topping and bake until bubbly.
Variations & Tips
Add in veggies if you’d like! Leftover steamed or roasted broccoli, frozen peas, Brussels sprouts, or even cauliflower work in this recipe.
For a quick shortcut sauce, stir together the following:
- 10 ¾ ounces condensed cream of chicken soup
- 1 ⅓ cups milk
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 2 cups sharp cheddar and ½ cup gruyere cheese
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon each dried thyme leaves & dijon mustard
Pre-shredded cheese can have starches added to keep it from clumping so it may not melt as well. For this sauce, it’s best to shred your own cheese.
Serve Ham Casserole with…
Ham and cheese casserole is creamy stick-to-your-ribs rich with salt from the ham and cheese. Look for a side dish that is light, fresh and sweet or tangy.
- Steamed vegetables like broccoli or green beans.
- A fresh salad like tomato salad or cucumber dill salad.
Easy Cheesy Casseroles
Did your family love this Cheesy Ham Casserole? Leave us a rating and a comment below!
Cheesy Ham Casserole
- 1 pound medium shells or rotini or penne
- ⅓ cup butter
- ⅓ cup all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon thyme
- salt & pepper to taste
- 1 ¾ cups milk
- 1 cup light cream 10-12% M.F.
- 1 teaspoon dijon
- 3 cups sharp cheddar shredded, divided
- 1 cup gruyere cheese shredded
- 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese shredded
- 2 cups diced ham
- ½ cup Panko bread crumbs
- 2 tablespoons butter melted
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley chopped
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Mix together topping ingredients, set aside.
- Cook shells al dente according to package directions. Drain well.
- Meanwhile, melt butter, flour and seasonings in a saucepan. Allow to cook 1 minute.
- Slowly add in milk, cream, and dijon while whisking after each addition. The mixture will seem thick at first but will smooth out with each addition.
- Once all of the milk/cream is added, whisk while bringing to a boil over medium heat. Allow to boil for 1 minute.
- Remove from heat and stir in 2 ½ cups cheddar, gruyere cheese, and parmesan until smooth.
- Mix cheese sauce with cooked pasta and ham and place in a 9×13 pan. Add topping and remaining ½ cup of cheese.
- Bake 22-26 minutes or until heated through and topping is browned. Cool 5 minutes before serving.
Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.
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I followed the recipe exactly. my husband and I tasted it before it went into the oven. It tasted flat so I added more Dijon and some garlic powder. Still no kick. the kids liked it and didn’t even rant about the peas.
I can’t figure out what I did wrong. Any thoughts?
Well maybe if the grandkids ate it, nothing was wrong!
made this today to celebrate Easter. had left overs in the freezer from my last ham to use up. used smoked gruyere and some sharp white cheddar from the deli and parm. forgot to add peas so I served them separately along with a garden salad. very good flavor and filling. could’ve used a bit more sauce, although my choice of pasta might have contributed to that issue (rotini)
Loved this recipe. The Swiss cheese (what I had on hand), ham and slight Dijon flavour blended so well together. I prefer creamy pasta casseroles as I can sneak chopped cauliflower in and no one seems to notice. Thank you so much for posting!
First of all the Cheesy Ham Casserole was very good. However, the recipe needs a little bit of clarification. Since my late wife had all of the various pastas in large glass jars, I have no idea how much a pound of pasta actually is, so I made my best guess. Secondly, nowhere in the instructions does it say when to add the Dijon mustard. I had the casserole in the oven for about 10 minutes and as I was cleaning up I saw the unopened mustard still setting on the counter. So as a result the mustard never got added. Is it considered a spice??
Hi Jeffrey, the number of cups will change based on the type of pasta you use. It will be approximately 4 cups of dry pasta, but to get the most accurate results I recommend using a kitchen scale to weigh one pound. The dijon mustard should be added in step 4, the recipe has been updated. I am glad you enjoyed this recipe!