March 2, 2024

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Than a Food Fitter

Pineapple Casserole {The BEST Recipe} – WellPlated.com

6 min read
A baking dish with the best pineapple casserole ever

A sweet-and-savory mashup of juicy pineapple chunks and sharp cheese with a buttery, crunchy topping, Pineapple Casserole sounds bizarre but is absolutely delicious, especially with turkey and ham!

A baking dish with the best pineapple casserole ever

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The first time someone passed me pineapple casserole was the first holiday I spent with my in-laws.

I was horrified.

Cheese and warm PINEAPPLE?! What was this abomination?

Already feeling homesick for our family’s traditional holiday recipes, like Glazed Sweet Potatoes and Crockpot Mashed Potatoes, I was now going to have to pretend to like this absurd dish.

I took a tiny, toddler-sized bite, and…oh my heavens, pineapple casserole is wonderful.

Healthy pineapple casserole with ritz crackers and breadcrumbs in a baking dish

I later learned that pineapple casserole is a traditional dish in the South (like Squash Casserole

I thought the combination of pineapple and cheese sounded too weird to be true, but it doesn’t just work—it triumphs.

Warm pineapple and cheese create a surprisingly scrumptious pairing that goes incredibly well with meat. (Think pineapple glazed ham, Hawaiian pizza, or pairing apples with cheese).

Easy pineapple casserole for ham in a baking dish

Topped with buttery cracker crumbs, this pineapple dish tastes rich, lightly sweet and savory, and comforting.

In other words, it is perfect for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, and any upcoming holiday that gives you a reason to serve it (with your favorite Healthy Green Bean Casserole perhaps?).

This simple pineapple casserole is also SO EASY.

  • You stir the filling in one bowl, the topping in another, then combine and bake.
  • This casserole can be in your oven in about 15 minutes!
A baking dish with the best pineapple casserole with cracker topping

How to Make Pineapple Casserole

Traditional recipes call for a hefty amount of sugar, so much so that they may make you wonder if pineapple casserole is a dessert or a side dish.

Opting to make this a healthy pineapple casserole (or healthy-ish), I prefer to add crushed pineapple for its natural sweetness and a moderate amount of honey.


The Ingredients

  • Pineapple Chunks. Pineapple is sweet and refreshing, and the chunks add texture to this casserole. With vitamin C and antioxidants, it’s the star of this healthy pineapple casserole.
  • Crushed Pineapple. Smaller, juicier versions of pineapple chunks make the filling lush and provide texture (like in this Pineapple Cheese Ball).

Substitution Tip

You can make pineapple casserole with fresh pineapple. To make this swap, cut the fresh pineapple, so it mimics both the canned pineapple chunks (not pineapple tidbits) and the crushed pineapple.

Personally, I don’t think it’s worth to use fresh (save your fresh pineapple for Pineapple Shrimp Kabobs), but feel free to go for it if you’re feeling ambitious or have tons of extra pineapple.

  • Honey. Naturally sweetens the casserole along with the pineapple.
  • Flour. Helps thicken the filling.
  • Sharp Cheddar Cheese. I find sharp cheddar to be the best cheese for pineapple casserole. It offers plenty of flavor and punch to contrast the sweetness of the pineapple. Plus, it melts like a dream.
  • Cracker Breadcrumb Topping. Buttery round crackers (like Ritz crackers) and panko breadcrumbs are mixed with melted butter and pineapple juice for a topping that’s sweet, buttery, and crisp.

Substitution Tip

For pineapple casserole without Ritz crackers, omit the crackers and use extra panko. If you prefer a crisp, chunky topping, try making pineapple casserole with small, fairly dry bread cubes instead (I’d also increase the butter and pineapple juice a bit, as the bread will soak up more moisture).

The Directions

Crushed and chopped pineapple in a bowl
  1. Stir the drained pineapple chunks, crushed pineapple, and honey together.
Cheese being stirred with flour and pineapple in a bowl
  1. Add the flour and part of the cheese to the large bowl.
Pineapple fruit cubes and cheese in a bowl
  1. Stir the pineapple mixture.
Cheese on top of a casserole in a baking dish
  1. Transfer the filling to a baking dish and top with the remaining cheese.
Cracker crumble topping being stirred in a bowl
  1. Stir the crumb topping ingredients together, then sprinkle it over the filling.
Simple pineapple casserole side dish in a baking dish
  1. Bake pineapple casserole at 350 degrees F for 35 minutes. ENJOY!

Make-Ahead Tips

  • To Store. Refrigerate baked pineapple casserole in an airtight storage container for up to 4 days.
  • To Reheat. Rewarm leftover pineapple casserole in a baking dish in the oven at 350 degrees F or in the microwave.

Meal Prep Tip

  • Up to 1 week in advance, crush the crackers and store them in an airtight storage container or ziptop bag.
  • Up to 1 day in advance, prepare the casserole filling and transfer it to the baking dish. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate it. When you’re ready to finish the recipe, remove the baking dish from the refrigerator, add the topping mixture, and bake as directed.
  • You also can fully bake this recipe 1 day in advance. Refrigerate, then reheat, covered, in a 350-degree F. oven.
Cheddar cheese pineapple casserole with canned pineapple and a cracker topping in a baking dish

What to Serve with Pineapple Casserole

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Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe

The Best Baking Dish

A beautiful, high-quality baking dish will help you make delicious casseroles or desserts. It will last a lifetime!

A baking dish with pineapple casserole

Did you make this recipe?

Let me know what you thought!

Leave a rating below in the comments and let me know how you liked the recipe.

I recently made southern pineapple casserole to go along with Crockpot Ribs at a party. My friends were skeptical, then delighted once they tried it.

Take one bite, and pineapple casserole will make a believer out of you too!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Add Cream Cheese?

While I haven’t tried it myself, you could try making this into a pineapple casserole with 4 ounces of cream cheese. Dice the cream cheese into small pieces and stir it in with the pineapple. Only use half of the cheddar.

How Can I Make this Recipe Gluten Free?

For gluten free pineapple casserole, use gluten free crackers, breadcrumbs, and a 1:1 gluten free baking flour instead of all-purpose flour.

Where Did Pineapple Casserole Originate?

While nobody knows exactly who made the first pineapple casserole, the dish likely first came into existence in the southern United States where it remains most popular today. The dish’s creation was likely spurred by the new, widespread availability of convenience foods like canned fruit, packaged crackers, and canned soups that came about in the 1950s.

Pineapple Casserole Video

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  • 20 ounces pineapple chunks in 100% pineapple juice drained (reserve 2 tablespoons juice for the topping)
  • 20 ounces crushed pineapple in 100% pineapple juice drained
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 6 ounces freshly grated shredded sharp cheddar cheese about 1 1/2 cups, divided

FOR THE TOPPING:

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
  • 20 buttery round crackers crushed, such as Ritz (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs or additional crushed crackers
  • 2 tablespoons pineapple juice reserved from one of the cans above

  • TO MAKE AHEAD: Up to 1 week in advance, crush the crackers and store them in an airtight storage container or ziptop bag. Up to 1 day in advance, prepare the casserole filling and transfer it to the baking dish. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate it. When you’re ready to finish the recipe, remove the baking dish from the refrigerator, add the topping mixture, and bake as directed.
  • TO STORE: Refrigerate casserole in an airtight storage container for up to 4 days.
  • TO REHEAT: Rewarm leftovers in a baking dish in the oven at 350 degrees F or in the microwave.
  • TO FREEZE: Freeze casserole in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating. The texture of the casserole will change once thawed, but it will still taste delicious.

Serving: 1(of 10)Calories: 275kcalCarbohydrates: 33gProtein: 6gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 8gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 36mgPotassium: 182mgFiber: 2gSugar: 24gVitamin A: 437IUVitamin C: 11mgCalcium: 156mgIron: 1mg

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