Looking for how to reheat a casserole in the oven without drying it out? Here you find easy tips for reheating casseroles from frozen to thawed, cheesy to crispy toppings, and everything in between!
how to Reheat a casserole in the oven
To reheat casseroles in the oven, from single portions to entire casseroles, it’s best to let the leftovers come to room temperature first. This will prevent baked or unbaked casseroles from becoming dried out while they reheat. Cover with foil and reheat in a 350ºF oven until hot throughout.
While this is the best way to reheat casseroles, there are a variety of options depending on whether you are re-warming single casserole slices, meat casseroles, pasta dishes, breakfast casserole, frozen dishes and more.
Find all the best and easy tips right here, including proper oven temperature, how to prevent a dried out casserole, and reheating a frozen casserole.
For best results, let the leftovers come to room temperature first. If you have a frozen casserole, thaw in the fridge overnight. Next, let it sit for 30-60 minutes at room temperature depending on how chilled it still is.
Starting with a room temp casserole will require less baking time, meaning less time for moisture loss.
Cover the baking tray with aluminum foil and place in a 350ºF oven. The time required for reheating depends on how cold the dish was to start with and the density of the contents.
Generally casseroles take about 20-30 minutes to reheat, but use the tips below for checking when it’s properly heated throughout.
Last, you will need to check for cold spots and see if it is warm enough to enjoy. To do this safely, insert a dinner knife and check to see if the knife is hot after it is pulled out.
A more foolproof way would be to use an instant-read thermometer . Insert it in the middle and it should read at least 165ºF if it is properly heated through.
quickest way to reheat A casserole
If you are short on time or have a small portion to reheat, it’s best to jump start the process in the microwave or even a stovetop skillet first.
- Pull the leftovers from the refrigerator and gently heat slices over low heat. In the microwave use 40-50% power until it comes to moderate temperature. For best results, place a damp paper towel over the top to maintain moisture.
- Transfer the leftovers to an oven-safe baking tray, cover with foil, and place in a hot oven (350ºF).
- Heat for 10-20 minutes, or until hot throughout. If there is a cheesy or crispy topping, remove the foil for the last 5 minutes.
reheating frozen casseroles
Frozen casseroles can also be reheated with great results! Follow these steps for either previously baked or unbaked dishes.
- For best results, pull the frozen casserole from the freezer and thaw in the fridge overnight. This will mean less time in the oven to reach the proper temperature.
- Let the casserole dish sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes first to take the chill off. If you need to heat it faster, you can always place it in a microwave-safe dish and use the defrost microwave function to bring it to room temp quickly. Alternatively, cover with foil and thaw in 300ºF oven.
- Transfer leftovers to an oven-safe container. Cover with aluminum foil and heat in a 350ºF until it is hot throughout, about 20-30 minutes.
should it be covered or uncovered?
When reheating casseroles it is best to cover with foil first. This helps prevent a dry casserole because the steam is trapped inside.
Also, if your casserole leftovers contain pasta or rice, such as in baked ziti or Mexican chicken casserole, covering with foil or a secure bakeware lid will keep the contents soft and not crunchy.
casseroles with crispy topping
If you have a casserole with a crispy topping, such as bread crumbs, french fried onions, or potato chips, like in this old fashioned tuna noodle casserole, still reheat with the foil on top.
Once it is heated through, remove the foil and turn up the oven slightly to 375ºF. For best results, add additional topping and heat uncovered for 5-10 minutes, or until the topping becomes crispy again.
casseroles with cheesy topping
If you are reheating a dish with cheese on top, such as chicken and broccoli bake, you will still want to cover it with foil before heating.
TIP: Spray the foil with nonstick cooking spray before placing it on top. This will prevent any cheese touching the foil from sticking to it.
When the dish is properly reheated, remove the foil and let it bake 5 minutes more so the cheese becomes golden and bubbly again. You can also add additional cheese at this time so it is just as good as the first time you enjoyed it!
Best tips to avoid dried out casserole
- If possible, reheat casseroles from room temperature. This means less time in the oven, preventing moisture loss.
- Covering the baking dish with foil not only helps it warm up faster, but means moisture cycles back down into the dish.
- If your casserole has creamy ingredients or contains a sauce, such as in baked mac and cheese or chicken tetrazzini, adding a splash of milk or water will bring the dish back to it’s original glory!
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