Ground Beef and Cauliflower Rice Casserole

4.81 from 124 votes
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Ground Beef Casserole is packed with fresh spinach, beef, and cheese, then combined with cauliflower rice and baked. A low-carb and Keto casserole the whole family will love.

Serving cheesey ground beef cauliflower casserole in a white baking dish


Cheesy Ground Beef Casserole with Cauliflower Rice is one easy and delicious dinner! Casseroles make everyone’s lives easier, and this one is a true timesaver. This is a fusion of lean ground beef and light, fluffy cauliflower rice, all baked to bubbly perfection. It requires minimal prep, and then you just pop it in the oven and forget about it for the next 30-ish minutes. It’s low-carb and Keto, too. Swapping traditional rice for cauliflower rice significantly lightens the dish, making it not just tasty but also waistline-friendly.

Get ready to explore a meal that’s perfect for a cozy family dinner or as a meal prep solution, packing nutrition, convenience, and a whole lot of yum into one dish!

Why You’ll Love This Casserole

  • This casserole is the epitome of comfort food but without guilt. The lean ground beef provides a protein boost, and the cauliflower rice offers a low-carb alternative to traditional grains.
  • The recipe is quick, making it a perfect choice for busy weeknights. This casserole can be on the table in 30 minutes.
  • A great way to add some extra veggies like spinach for added sustenance.
  • Only uses simple, easy-to-find ingredients you’ll likely spot in your pantry and fridge.
Scooping out ground beef cauliflower rice from a baking dish.

Ingredients You’ll Need

  • Olive Oil
  • Onions & Garlic
  • Lean Ground Beef
  • Seasonings: Italian seasoning, sweet paprika, salt, and pepper
  • Baby Spinach
  • Cauliflower rice
  • Sour Cream
  • Butter
  • Dried Basil
  • Shredded Cheese

    How to Make Ground Beef Casserole With Cauliflower Rice

    • Preheat: Set your oven to preheat to 375˚F.
    • Saute: Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the garlic.
    • Brown: Add the ground beef and season it with Italian Seasoning, salt, and pepper. Continue to cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon until the beef is completely browned.
    • Add: Add in the spinach. You might have to do this in batches, depending on the size of your skillet. Stir frequently for 1 more minute or until the spinach is wilted. Remove the skillet from the heat, drain liquid from the skillet, and set it aside.
    • Combine: In a baking dish, combine cauliflower rice, sour cream, butter, and dried basil. Stir and mix until everything is completely combined and creamy. Add the prepared beef mixture to the baking dish and stir until everything is incorporated. Then, top it all with shredded cheese.
    • Bake: Bake for 22 to 25 minutes or until the juices are bubbly and cheese is melted.
    • Serve: Remove the dish from the oven and let stand for several minutes before cutting and serving.

    Tips for the Best Cauliflower Casserole

    • Be sure you let your casserole stand for at least 7 minutes before serving. This will allow the casserole to firm up and will make it even prettier and more yummy on your plate. Trust me, it’ll be worth the wait.
    • Resist the urge to cover this casserole with foil before baking. I know, that’s like casserole blasphemy, but since everything is already cooked and warm, it’s really not necessary. Baking it uncovered will allow the cheese to get bubbly and melty, which I really like!
    • More veggies? No problem. If you want to add more veggies to this casserole, you could throw in some diced and sauteed carrots, or some frozen peas or corn.
    • Meat options. You can opt to use ground turkey, ground pork, or sweet Italian sausage in place of the ground beef, if you prefer.
    • Make A Day Ahead: Prep this casserole in the morning or the night before, and tightly cover it. Keep it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to bake it. For even cooking, take the casserole out of the fridge about 15 to 20 minutes before it goes into the oven.
    Ground beef cauliflower casserole sliced with melted cheese over the top

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Should I cook the cauliflower rice before adding it to the baking dish?

    Yes and No. I have tried this casserole with both methods, and it works either way, but you should thaw the cauliflower if frozen because it’s easier to work it in the sauce. However, I prefer to precook it because it’s much easier to get a creamy consistency when the cauliflower is warm.

    How can I make this recipe vegetarian?

    This casserole can definitely be modified to be vegetarian. My favorite way to do that is by using mushrooms in place of ground beef. Mushrooms have a hearty meat-like flavor, and I bet you won’t even miss the meat! Another option is to make a lentil-based ground meat substitute. This is commonly done as a taco meat substitute and could work easily here. 

    Can I freeze a casserole before baking?

    This, or any casserole, makes for a great freezer meal. I love to make it for my new mom friends or where a parent has just undergone surgery. This is also a great freezer meal idea for meal prep, making weeknight dinners a little easier for you. This casserole can stay in the freezer for about 3 months. All you have to do is defrost it and bake it in the oven when ready.

    Overhead view of Cheesy Ground Beef Cauliflower Rice Casserole in a baking dish.

        How to Store Leftovers

        • Once the casserole is baked, your leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for 3 days or frozen for up to 3 months.
        • To reheat, allow the casserole to reach room temperature, then heat it at 375˚F until warmed throughout. For individual portions, scoop your desired amount into a bowl and microwave, stirring midway, until hot.

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          4.81 from 124 votes

          Cheesy Ground Beef and Cauliflower Rice Casserole

          Ground Beef and Cauliflower Rice Casserole packed with fresh spinach, beef, and cheese then combined with cauliflower rice and baked.
          Prep Time: 15 minutes
          Cook Time: 25 minutes
          Total Time: 45 minutes
          Servings: 4


          • 1 tablespoon olive oil
          • 1 small yellow onion,, diced
          • 3 cloves garlic,, minced
          • 1 pound lean ground beef
          • 1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
          • ½ teaspoon sweet paprika
          • Salt and pepper,, to taste
          • 6 ounces fresh baby spinach
          • 10 ounces frozen cauliflower rice,, cooked according to the directions on the bag
          • 1 cup sour cream
          • 1 tablespoon butter,, room temperature
          • ½ teaspoon dried basil
          • 2 to 3 tablespoons milk,, if needed
          • 8 ounces shredded Italian blend cheese,, or any other shredded cheese that you have/prefer
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          • Preheat oven to 375˚F.
          • Heat olive oil in a large 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat.
          • Add onions and cook for 2 minutes.
          • Stir in garlic and cook for 20 seconds.
          • Add ground beef; season with Italian Seasoning, paprika, salt, and pepper.
          • Continue to cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, and cook until beef is completely browned.
          • Add in spinach – you might have to do this in batches, depending on the size of your skillet – cook, stirring frequently, for 1 more minute or until spinach is wilted.
          • Remove from heat, drain liquid from the skillet, and set aside.
          • In a 9×13-inch baking dish, combine cooked cauliflower rice, sour cream, butter, and dried basil; stir and mix until completely combined and creamy. If sour cream and butter aren’t melting completely, stir in some milk. The cauliflower rice should be warm enough to melt the butter.
          • Add prepared beef mixture to the baking dish; stir until everything is completely incorporated.
          • Top with shredded cheese.
          • Bake for 22 to 25 minutes, or until bubbly and cheese is melted.
          • Remove from oven and let stand for 7 to 10 minutes before cutting and serving.


          • Let the casserole sit for about 7 to 10 minutes before serving.
          • Avoid covering the casserole with foil before baking to let the cheese melt and bubble up.
          • Feel free to add more veggies like sauteed carrots or frozen peas.
          • Swap ground beef with turkey, pork, or Italian sausage if desired.
          • Prep a day ahead, store in the fridge, and bring to room temperature 15-20 minutes before baking.


          Serving: 10ounces | Calories: 553kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 43g | Fat: 38g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 120mg | Sodium: 314mg | Potassium: 982mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 4556IU | Vitamin C: 49mg | Calcium: 274mg | Iron: 5mg

          Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.

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          1. Gina Benfatti says:

            My husband asks for this casserole! We eat any leftovers the next day. It’s a keeper!

            1. Katerina says:

              That’s wonderful to hear! It must be a hit if your husband asks for it specifically. Leftovers the next day are always a bonus. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

          2. Amanda says:

            This is my favorite recipe incorporating riced cauli to date. I used original Mrs Dash in place of Italian seasoning. It smelled so good baking! I’m wondering if I could turn this into more of a meatloaf dish as well to change it up.

            1. Katerina says:

              Glad you loved the recipe and switched up the seasoning! A meatloaf twist sounds great. Thank YOU! 🙂

          3. Joy says:

            This just came out of the oven. It looks and smells delicious! I did not alter recipe. We will report findings later. It was very quick and I even ‘riced’ my own cauliflower.

            1. Katerina says:

              Fantastic to hear it’s looking and smelling great straight from the oven! Impressive work on ‘ricing’ your own cauliflower too. Looking forward to hearing how you find the taste. Enjoy your meal! Thank YOU! 🙂

          4. Heidi says:

            Absolutely delicious!! I used white rice and it is so easy and so yummy!

            1. Katerina says:

              I’m very glad you enjoyed it with white rice! It’s great to hear the recipe was easy and delicious. Thank YOU! 🙂

          5. Jen M. says:

            What are the net carbs? I’m allowed 20g of net carbs per day, so based on the cauliflower being used, it feels like per service the net carbs should be lower. Really want to try this!

            1. Katerina says:

              You can calculate the number of net carbs in a serving by subtracting the amount of fiber from the total number of carbs. So for this recipe, net carbs = 10 grams per serving (about 5 ounces total) because the carbs are 13g and the fiber is 3g.

          6. Mary says:

            This was delicious! I read another review where they read the recipe wrong & added a can of rotel by mistake, so I decided to add a can of diced tomatoes with garlic & olive oil. That’s the only change I made. I did just add all the ingredients to my pan with the meat mixture then put in my casserole dish, but that’s just what was easiest for me. Great recipe! Will definitely make again! Thank you!

            1. Katerina says:

              Yay, I’m happy to hear you enjoyed the recipe! ☺️ It’s always great to see how a little twist can personalize a dish.

          7. Chelsea says:

            Made this tonight with Trader Joe’s Mexican pepper and jalapeño cauliflower rice! I subbed garlic powder, onion powder, paprika only for seasoning the ground beef. Added hot sauce on top before eating. So good! Thanks for the recipe idea!

            1. Katerina says:

              Great variations!! Thank you for trying it out and for sharing your experience.