This Keto Philly Cheesesteak Casserole is creamy, dreamy and a whole lotta YUM! It’s everything you love about a classic Philly Cheesesteak but without the bread! And trust me, you won’t even miss it!
Calling my fellow Gluten Free, Low Carb or Keto Dieters…this one’s for you! Now I’m not saying that just about anyone who’s lucky enough to snag a bite of this Keto Philly Cheesesteak Casserole is not going to instantly fall in love with it (because they WILL). All I’m sayin’ is that it’s got all the Keto high fat goods like heavy cream, cream cheese, mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese making it the perfect tasty dish absolutely everyone can enjoy! This is a version of the classic Philly Cheesesteak you’ve never had before. It’s loaded with bell peppers, mushrooms and ground beef and is SO dang good, you won’t even miss the bread! Promise.
Who says you can’t still enjoy much loved classic foods while on the Keto Diet? Whether that be good ol’ Chicken Parmesan or a classic Meatloaf dinner, there’s no reason you should have to miss out on these delicious tasting foods all because you’re following a low carb, high fat diet… am I right?! Since starting the Keto diet myself two whole months ago now (gives myself a *slow clap*) it’s been my mission to still eat food I love while still being able to keep within the diet (it’s more of a lifestyle than a diet, IMHO, but that’s besides the point). That’s where this Keto Philly Cheesesteak Casserole comes in…
I meeeean…first and foremost, it’s foods exactly like this one that makes me feel like I can do this Keto thing forever (hence, the lifestyle). It’s super creamy, thanks to ALL OF THE CHEESE and is full of such flavour. Simple and classic Philly Cheesesteak ingredients come together to make an unforgettable casserole you’ll want to keep serving again and again! So, if you love a classic Philly Cheesesteak sandwich, you’re going to love this everyday Keto Philly Cheesesteak Casserole (even if you don’t know what Keto is!)
INGREDIENTS YOU’LL NEED FOR THIS PHILLY CHEESESTEAK CASSEROLE
- Ground Beef: The base of this Keto Philly Cheesesteak Casserole. I went with ground beef to keep things simple and convenient. However, you can always use shaved steak or steak strips if you prefer or want to keep things a little more on the traditional side. For a different take on this dish, try it with ground turkey or ground chicken instead!
- Mushrooms: Adds a meaty and hearty texture to the casserole. Either sliced cremini or white button mushrooms will get the job done here.
- Bell Peppers: Sticking to the classics, bell peppers and philly cheesesteak go hand in hand…am I right? I used a combination of yellow and green for an extra pop of colour but any colour of pepper will do! Adds crunch, texture and flavour to this Keto Philly Cheesesteak Casserole.
- Onion: Another classic Philly Cheesesteak ingredient, onions add flavour to the casserole. White onion works best in this recipe.
- Garlic: Because you know what I always say…(most) good dishes begin with a little bit of garlic. And, IMHO, you can never have too much of it!
- Mozzarella Cheese: For that much needed ooey, gooey cheesy layer. I like using grated Mozzarella because it melts beautifully all over the beef and veggies. However, if you’re looking to keep things a little more traditional, you can substitute Provolone instead. Simply cover the top of the casserole with Provolone slices instead of Mozzarella and continue on with the baking instructions. To change things up a bit, cheddar, swiss or monterey jack (with jalapeños) are also great options.
- Cream Cheese: Where most of the creaminess comes from! Cream cheese is like a Keto Dieters best friend! Adds flavour, extra fat and smoothness to the dish.
- Parmesan Cheese: Cause you can never have too much cheese…am I right? Parmesan adds a rich, sharp and cheesy flavour to the casserole.
- Heavy Cream: YES to more creaminess! Heavy cream is another widely used ingredient for Keto Dieters for it’s high fat content. It adds a light and smooth richness to the casserole.
- Olive Oil: For sautéeing and softening the veggies. Adds flavour. You can use avocado oil instead, if you prefer.
- Salt/Pepper: With not much more to rely on for actual seasoning of this Keto Philly Cheesesteak Casserole, salt and pepper play an important role in adding flavour and making sure that nothing comes out bland!
HOW TO MAKE KETO PHILLY CHEESESTEAK CASSEROLE (KEY TIPS)
- Slice the bell peppers and mushrooms into the same size thickness to ensure even cooking. Don’t make the pieces too big that they’re difficult to bite and overtake the entire casserole. But, also not too small either, where they’re difficult to see or taste in the dish.
- Sautée the veggies in a hot skillet with some oil before assembling the casserole. This will make sure they come out nice and soft and tender. The raw veggies won’t be able to fully cook through if you just throw them in without lightly pre-cooking them first. EXTRA TIP: Don’t worry about cooking them all the way through. Get them just soft enough as they will finish cooking in the oven.
- When assembling the cheese sauce, keep a close eye on it to ensure nothing boils over or burns. Putting heavy cream and cheese over a hot stove is not necessary the easiest task and it requires focused attention to ensure it comes out just right. Since melting the cheeses and heavy cream is the way we make the delicious creamy sauce that literally pours over the entire casserole, it has to be perfect or else the dish will easily ruin. The last thing you want is for the whole thing to taste like burnt cheese or cream!
- Generously grease the baking dish with either oil or butter before adding the ground beef mixture and baking. This will prevent sticking and ensure the casserole comes out nice and easy when it’s done cooking.
- Don’t skimp out on the cheese! The ooey, gooey-ness from the different cheeses is what really takes this Philly Cheesesteak Casserole to the next level! Like a good Philly Cheesesteak sandwich….it’s all about the cheese, eh?! EXTRA TIP: Broil the casserole under high heat in the last few minutes of cooking to get the cheese browned and crispy, if desired.
- Let this Keto Philly Cheesesteak Casserole sit at least 5 minutes before serving/eating. The juices, sauces and cheeses are still flowing and bubbling directly out of the oven and if you cut into it too soon, you’ll lose all that goodness. Just like you let a good steak rest after cooking, allow the casserole a few minutes to rest before slicing to absorb all the liquid and flavour.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Any leftovers should be stored in an airtight container and kept in the fridge. They’ll be good for up to 5 days. Keep in mind that the creamy sauce and cheese will harden in the fridge but will melt back out to their creamy consistency once the dish is reheated. To reheat, simply pop the leftovers back into a 350° oven for 10-15 minutes or until heated through and bubbly. Alternatively, you can use a microwave or an airfryer.
YES! PRO TIP: Make a double batch and portion it out into freezer/oven safe containers. I like using these. That way, when ready for a comforting and cozy dinner, all you have to do is throw it into a 350° oven and cook, covered, for about an hour or so until the cheese is bubbly and the casserole heated through (it might take a bit longer than this if cooking directly from frozen).
If planning to freeze, follow the recipe instructions until step number 10. Freeze. Then continue on with the cooking instructions when ready to eat, adding a bit more time to ensure it gets cooked all the way through. No need to thaw in advance. But, if you want to, thawing in the fridge overnight the day before you want to eat it will give you the best results.
Trust me…this baby is hearty and satisfying all on it’s own! However, if you insist on serving it up with something, you can never go wrong with a nice soup or side salad. A light tomato salad, cucumber salad or kale caesar salad are my favourites. Cauliflower rice of any kind is always a great Keto side dish option to any meal.
And heck. If you’re not following the Keto diet, then go ahead and rub it in all of our faces and serve this Philly Cheesesteak Casserole up with some homemade crunchy garlic bread. I won’t be mad.
YES! And that’s the beauty of casseroles, don’t you agree?! There are two ways you can do this:
1) Prep all the different components of the casserole except for the creamy sauce (unfortunately, that has to be made fresh. But don’t worry, it’s quick and easy!) So, brown the ground beef and sautée the veggies and store them in an airtight container. Keep them in the fridge until ready to use. I wouldn’t do this more than a day or two in advance. When ready to assemble the casserole, simply make the sauce, mix it in with the veggies, pour it into your greased casserole dish, top with cheese, bake and enjoy! Full instructions can be found in the recipe card down below.
2) The other option you have if you want to make this Keto Philly Cheesesteak Casserole in advance is to assemble the entire thing in the casserole dish, cover it with aluminum foil and keep it in the fridge until ready to cook. Again, I wouldn’t recommend doing this any more than two days in advance. But, when ready to eat, all you have to do is pop it in a 350° oven until warm and heated through. So, probably closer to 30 minutes instead of the normal 20 since it’s coming from the cold fridge. And voila! Dinner made easy any night of the week!
- 2 pounds Ground Beef
- 2 Bell Peppers
- 1/2 pound (227g) Cremini Mushrooms
- 1 White Onion
- 8 oz Cream Cheese, cut into cubes
- 2 cups Mozzarella Cheese, grated and divided
- 1/2 cup Heavy Cream
- 1/4 cup Fresh Parmesan Cheese, grated
- 2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 cloves Garlic
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1/2 tsp Pepper
- Fresh Chopped Herbs, for garnish, optional
- Preheat the oven to 350°. Grease a 9 x 13 baking dish with oil or butter and set aside until ready to use.
- Chop all the veggies. Dice the onion, mince the garlic, slice the mushrooms and cut the bell peppers into thin strips.
- Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the ground beef and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned. Drain, transfer to a plate and set aside.
- In the same skillet, add the oil. Next add the sliced peppers, diced onions and the minced garlic. Stir to combine and sautée a few minutes.
- Add the sliced mushrooms and sautée until the veggies are mostly soft and tender, about 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Add the cooked ground beef back into the skillet and stir until everything is well combined. Season with salt and pepper. Turn the heat to medium low and cook for a few additional minutes to allow the flavours to mingle.
- While that's cooking, add the cubed cream cheese, heavy cream and 1/2 a cup of the grated mozzarella cheese to a saucepan over medium heat and stir frequently until the cheeses melt and a thick sauce forms. Remove from the heat when the sauce is smooth and no clumps remain
- Pour the sauce into the ground beef and pepper mixture and stir until the ground beef is coated and the ingredients nicely combined.
- Add the creamy ground beef mixture to the greased baking dish and spread into an even layer.
- Top with the remaining shredded mozzarella and parmesan cheeses.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the cheese is nice and melted and bubbly. Optional: broil on high in the last few minutes of cooking to get the cheese browned and crispy. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving. Garnish with fresh chopped herbs, if desired. Enjoy!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 801Total Fat: 61gSaturated Fat: 28gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 25gCholesterol: 228mgSodium: 961mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 1gSugar: 4gProtein: 54g
Nutrition is only an estimate and calculated using Nutritionix.
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