I love this recipe mix from the Complete Tightwad Gazette:
Amy Dacyczyn’s Universal Casserole Dinner
1 cup Main Ingredient
1 cup Second Ingredient
1-2 cups starchy ingredient
1 ½ cups binder
¼ cup “goodie”
Main ingredient suggestions: tuna, cubed chicken, turkey, ham, seafood
Second ingredient suggestions: celery thinly sliced, mushrooms, peas, hard boiled eggs chopped
Starchy ingredient suggestions: potatoes thinly sliced, cooked noodles, cooked rice
Binder suggestions: cream sauce, sour cream, can of soup
“goodie” suggestions: pimiento, olives, almonds, water chestnuts
Topping suggestions: potato chips, cheese, bread crumbs
Mix your combination of ingredients, add ½ cup milk or stock if the mixture seems dry. Place in buttered casserole dish and bake at 350 degrees for 30-45 minutes.
If you think about common casseroles they follow this pattern. Think chicken, broccoli, rice and cream of chicken soup and almond sliced topped with cheese. If you don’t have rice use noodles. Out of cream of chicken soup, use mushroom soup. No bread crumbs in the pantry? Toast and crumble a bagel.