A John Wayne Casserole is a western flavored casserole full of amazing spices and textured layers. Everyone in the family will love this beef and biscuit casserole recipe.
It's a cool story. Apparently, John Wayne did contribute a recipe directly to a cookbook named "Cooking with love, from Cara and her friends" (Cara Connery). This was back in 1979.
The original recipe was made up of eggs and cheese.
There was a cafeteria in a medical center in Mississippi that created a different version - adding ground beef, biscuits and peppers.
It became a very popular version and in no time the recipe spread.
❤️ Why you'll love it
- The different textures are fabulous. From the firmness of the biscuit crust layer to the ooey-gooeyness of the cheese layer and all that tasty meat and peppers in-between.
- The ingredients are not fancy or difficult to find. It's an easy recipe.
- It's a casserole recipe that the whole family will love.
- Bisquick biscuit mix
- Ground Beef
- Taco Seasoning
- Canned Tomatoes and Chilies
- Bell Peppers
- Yellow Onion
- Jalapeño Peppers
- Cream Cheese
- Colby Cheese
See recipe card at the bottom of this post for quantities.
This is an overview of the recipe steps. For more detailed instructions visit the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
- Step 1: Mix the bisquick with water and add to a casserole dish. Bake for 15 minutes.
- Step 2: While that layer is baking brown the ground beef until no pink remains.
- Step 3: Add the taco seasoning and water and cook 5 minutes.
- Step 4: Using a slotted spoon layer on top of the biscuit layer.
- Step 5: Add the bell peppers, onions and tomatoes and chilies to the same skillet and cook until soft.
- Step 6: Layer on top of the taco meat mixture.
- Step 7: In a medium mixing bowl add the softened cream cheese, mayonnaise and half of the cheese. Mix well.
- Step 8: Spread on top of the bell pepper mixture.
- Step 9: Layer some sliced jalapeno peppers on top then sprinkle with remaining cheese.
- Step 10: Bake in the oven for 35 minutes.
Hint: I like to use the original version of Rotel for this recipe. There's also a mild version and a hot version. You could change this up for added/less heat.
🔄 Substitutions and Variations
- Sour Cream - instead of cream cheese.
- Green Peppers - use green bell peppers as well.
- Green Chilies - instead of the tomatoes, use these with fresh tomatoes.
- Ground Turkey - instead of ground beef.
- Tater Tots - instead of the biscuit layer.
- Pepper Jack Cheese - instead of the Colby - or maybe Colby Jack cheese.
- Black Olives - add to the bell peppers layer.
- Green Onions - sprinkle some on top.
- Garlic Powder - add a touch to the cheese mixture on top.
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I used a 13x9" Casserole Dish, a large 12" skillet and a mixing bowl.
I have some affiliate links in the recipe card below.
📘 Related Recipes
- Hamburger Potato Casserole
- Cracker Barrel Sweet Potato Casserole
- Crockpot Cracker Barrel Cheesy Hash Brown Casserole
- Jiffy Corn Casserole in the Crock Pot
- Big Mac Casserole
- Hobo Casserole
- Hamburger Hashbrown Casserole
- Loaded Green Bean Casserole
You could also try my Crock Pot Pinto Beans recipe, for a great Western flavored dish. Then finish it up with my yummy Snickers Bar Brownies.
Once the John Wayne Casserole has cooled completely cover with plastic wrap or aluminum foil (or transfer to an airtight container) and store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
It does in fact freeze well if you want to do that too. Store in a freezer safe container and freeze for up to 3 months.
Expert Tip: This is one of those dishes that actually tastes best the next day.
John Wayne actually contributed a recipe to a cookbook back in 1979 - although quite different to this version. It was adapted by a cafeteria whose recipe became famous.
If you’ve tried this John Wayne Casserole Recipe or any other great recipe on my site, let me know in the comment section below, how it turned out, we love hearing from our readers!
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John Wayne Casserole
A western inspired dish full of flavor, John Wayne Casserole has a Tex-Mex like flavor profile, with delicious layers.
- 2 Cups Bisquick
- 1-½ Cups Water, divided
- 2lb Ground Beef
- 2 (1oz) Packs Taco Seasoning
- 1 (10oz) Can Tomatoes and Chilies
- 1 Red Bell Pepper, diced
- 1 Yellow Bell Pepper, diced
- 1 Small Onion, diced
- ½ Cup Mayonnaise
- 8oz Cream Cheese, softened
- 2 Cups Colby Cheese
- 1 Jalapeno, sliced
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Mix the bisquick with 1 cup of water. Pour into a 9x13" Casserole dish, sprayed with cooking spray.
- Bake in the oven for 15 minutes then remove.
- While the biscuit layer is baking add the ground beef to a large skillet and brown until no pink remains.
- Add the taco seasoning and remaining ½ cup water. Cook for 5 minutes.
- Spoon over the top of the biscuit layer using a slotted spoon, pushing down if necessary.
- Discard the grease that's left then add the diced onion, bell peppers and tomatoes and chilies to the same skillet. Cook until softened.
- Layer on top of the taco meat.
- In a mixing bowl add the cream cheese, mayonnaise and 1 cup of cheese and mix well.
- Spread over the top of the bell pepper mixture, evenly.
- Add some slices of jalapeno then sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top.
- Bake in the oven for 35 minutes, until bubbly around the edges.
- Remove and allow to rest for 5 minutes then serve.
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Nutrition InformationYield 8 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 643Total Fat 50gSaturated Fat 21gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 24gCholesterol 164mgSodium 520mgCarbohydrates 7gFiber 1gSugar 3gProtein 41g
SADIE WEATHERS says
I made it!!! It's delicious!
Melanie Cagle says
So glad you enjoyed it Sadie!