I love finding recipes that are meat-based and then tweaking them to make them awesome VEGETARIAN recipes! Yes! So for this recipe, instead of sausage I used the Gimme Lean brand of fake ground beef. I was going to use a sausage substitute, but could never find one, so fake ground beef had to do. I also omitted the basil, and I couldn’t locate refrigerated mashed potatoes, so I just used the instant kind. The Gimme Lean wasn’t as crumbly as I was hoping for, but wow, it has a great taste! I don’t know WHAT makes this dish so good and flavorful, but it was REALLY good, people! Toby had 3 servings! I don’t know if it was the Gimme Lean, the Italian seasonings, or that whole bag of cheese (!), but this is really good. With this, we enjoyed a green salad.
Onion-Topped Sausage-n-Mashed Potato Casserole
(Southern Living, June 2009)
1 (19.5 ounce) package sweet ground turkey sausage, casing removed (I used Gimme Lean Ground Beef, the whole tube)
2 (14.5 ounce) cans diced tomatoes in sauce
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves, chopped (I omitted)
1 shallot, chopped
1 tsp salt-free garlic and herb seasoning
1 (24 ounce) package refrigerated garlic-flavored mashed potatoes (I used instant)
1 (8 ounce) package shredded Italian five-cheese blend
1/4 tsp dried Italian seasoning
1 cup French fried onions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Brown sausage in a large skillet over medium-high heat, stirring often, 6-8 minutes or until meat crumbles and is no longer pink; drain.
2. Stir in tomatoes and next 3 ingredients, and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Transfer sausage mixture to a lightly greased 11×17-inch baking dish.
3. Stir together mashed potatoes, cheese, and Italian seasoning in a large bowl. Mixture will be dry. Spread potato mixture over sausage mixture in baking dish.
4. Bake at 350 degrees F. for 35-40 minutes or until bubbly. Top with fried onions, and bake 5 more minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.