April 4, 2018

Pineapple Casserole

A sweet, savory, Southern casserole recipe with pineapple, buttery Ritz crackers and sharp cheddar cheese traditionally served with baked ham.


Pineapple Casserole | A sweet, savory, Southern casserole recipe with pineapple, buttery Ritz crackers and sharp cheddar cheese traditionally served with baked ham.

Man, DANG, I wish I’d gotten this recipe out to y’all before Easter! I can’t believe I’ve never shared it with you before because it is a huge favorite with my entire family. When we have ham, we MUST have Pineapple Casserole with it.

We MUST.

It’s the RULE.

Period.

Even my meat-and-potatoes husband has to have it. There’s just something about the sweet pineapple and cheddar cheese that just goes with ham.

Pineapple Casserole | A sweet, savory, Southern casserole recipe with pineapple, buttery Ritz crackers and sharp cheddar cheese traditionally served with baked ham.

We kinda had a weird Easter this year… Mama and Daddy are both dealing with some medical issues so we decided to have Easter dinner at my house. I’ve been crazy busy with work and our own hectic schedule (three baseball tournaments back to back to back three weekends in a row before Easter – Lord, help me) and then some kind of flu-like crud jumped on me last week so our planning went something like this…

Me: OK, I’ll do Easter at my house.

Mama: What can I bring?

Me: Not a thing. I got it.

Mama: What are you going to cook?

Me: Ham and stuff.

Mama: What stuff?

Me: I don’t know yet… whatever I can pull off between now and then.

Mama: hmmph... [obviously rethinking her decision to hand over Easter dinner to me 😏]

Pineapple Casserole | A sweet, savory, Southern casserole recipe with pineapple, buttery Ritz crackers and sharp cheddar cheese traditionally served with baked ham.

We usually sit down a week or two before a big “eating” holiday and map out everything we’re going to cook, who’s gonna cook what and when it’s gonna get cooked. But with the way things have been going around here, I just stuck with the basics.

And I bought a frozen pie.

Don’t tell anybody.

I did feel a little better about that when Mama showed up at the house with a coconut cake she bought at Sam’s. Not to knock the cake, though, that sucker was delicious! My pie? Not so much.

Pineapple Casserole | A sweet, savory, Southern casserole recipe with pineapple, buttery Ritz crackers and sharp cheddar cheese traditionally served with baked ham.

Anyway, when Mama and Daddy arrived Sunday I got so tickled because she came in toting a sleeve of crackers, a block of cheddar cheese and a can of pineapple and I knew exactly what it was for! We might be winging Easter dinner but Mama was going to make sure we had Pineapple Casserole!

Here’s what I managed to put on the table Sunday:

I know, I know, I know... where's the Macaroni & Cheese, right? Well, since I was making the cheesy scalloped potatoes, I didn't figure we needed another cheesy, starchy side dish. And I have to tell you, I felt sketchy all weekend about not having a green vegetable on the table but, well, I just gave slap out of steam.

Pineapple Casserole | A sweet, savory, Southern casserole recipe with pineapple, buttery Ritz crackers and sharp cheddar cheese traditionally served with baked ham.

You can use pineapple chunks or tidbits in the Pineapple Casserole. We usually use chunks but Mama said all she had in her cupboard were tidbits so that’s what’s pictured here. Use whichever you prefer!

You can play around with this recipe a good bit. I have no idea where our recipe came from originally but it calls for 1/2 cup of sugar which I find to be waaaaay too sweet. I only use 1/4 cup but I suppose if you’re using some sort of unsweetened pineapple, you might need more sugar. There’s no wrong way to make this… as long as it holds together when you put it in your baking dish, it’ll cook up just fine!

This is an AWESOME side dish for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner! Here are some more of my favorites for serve too!

This recipe was shared at Meal Plan Monday!

pineapple, casserole, southern, cheese, cheddar, recipe, best, side dish, ritz, crackers
Yield: 4-6 Servings

Pineapple Casserole

Ingredients:

  • 1 20-oz can pineapple chunks or tidbits
  • 3 tablespoons reserved pineapple juice
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 4 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (about a cup)
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups butter cracker crumbles (such as Ritz)

Instructions:

Drain pineapple, reserving 3 tablespoons. Combine cracker crumbles and butter then gently stir with a fork to combine. Lightly spray a shallow 1-quart baking dish with cooking spray or rub with butter.

Combine reserved 3 tablespoons of juice and flour in a bowl then mix until smooth. Add sugar, drained pineapple and cheese then stir until combined. Gently stir in 1/3 of the cracker crumbles.

Spoon mixture into baking dish then top with remaining cracker crumbles. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until cheese is melted and crackers are starting to brown. Serve immediately.

Notes:
  • A small pie plate works great for this recipe!
  • This recipe doubles beautifully! Just use a 13x9 baking dish then cook about 5 minutes longer. 
  • You can use pineapples in heavy syrup, sweetened juice or unsweetened juice – just add a tablespoon or two of sugar if using unsweetened. 
  • You can use self-rising or all-purpose flour – we’re just using it as a binding agent.
  • I say to use cracker “crumbles” instead of “crumbs” because I like the crackers to stay kinda chunky – not to be crushed too fine.
  • I always use sharp cheddar when I make this because I think it goes so well with the sugar and sweet pineapple.
  • I have often thought of using cheese crackers (like Cheez-Its) in this recipe – if you’ve tried it, I’d love to hear about it!
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Pineapple Casserole | A sweet, savory, Southern casserole recipe with pineapple, buttery Ritz crackers and sharp cheddar cheese traditionally served with baked ham.


13 comments:

  1. I rarely buy Ritz crackers, but for some reason decided to buy 2 boxes (BOGO) and some cheese yesterday. I even have a ham in my fridge. Pinning this!

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  2. This is one of our favorite casseroles and a "must do" for all the holidays/family gatherings. Plus, this is a great brunch dish and have even had it for breakfast with sausage biscuits! YUM

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  3. My mother in law makes us all our own birthday cake/dessert each year, and every year I ask for this. She tries to tell me this was a side dish for Sunday dinners, but I didn't care, I NEED my own and not share with anyone.

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    1. I never thought to have it as dessert! I bet it would be DIVINE with vanilla ice cream!

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  4. I need to try this recipe soon! It sounds delicious!

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  5. Years ago my Aunt Carol brought this to one of our church Thanksgiving potluck dinners and when she explained what it was ...we looked at her like she had two heads....until we tried it. Imagine myself and my two gracious, Southern sisters trying to elegantly scurry back to where the dish was to snag lady-like seconds without causing much of a scene(impossible).Thank you for jogging that memory and sharing your recipe, I can't wait to surprise them with it at the next family dinner.

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  6. This was so amazing. I wanted to try it, but then got weirded out by the ingredients. Thankfully my boyfriend convinced me we should give it a try. I can't believe how good it was. Thanks so much for sharing.

    It may be common in the south, but here in Canada, it is truly a unique recipe.

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  7. Oh my glob. We all absolutely LOVED this for Mother's Day. Then, when I had cold (I hate re-heating stuff hah!) leftovers for lunch at work yesterday... Oh my, WHAT WITCHERY IS THIS?! It was like CANDY! I wanted more, more and more. Definitely a keeper, thanks for the recipe. Martine :)

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    Replies
    1. LOL I'm getting that on a t-shirt! WHAT WITCHERY IS THIS?!

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  8. will this work in a slow cooker? too hot for oven

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  9. Can this be made it the slow cooker?

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Hi there! While I'm not able to respond to every comment, I try hard to answer any questions that haven't been addressed in the post, recipe or in other comments. And though I may not respond to them all, I do read each and every comment and I LOVE to hear from you guys! Thanks, y'all! - Mandy