6 High-Protein Casseroles for the Mediterranen Diet

The Mediterranean diet has long been celebrated for its health benefits, emphasizing fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats.

In addition to being delicious and nutritious, Mediterranean-inspired dishes are often simple to prepare and perfect for feeding a crowd.

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Casseroles, in particular, are a popular choice for busy weeknights or gatherings with family and friends.

By incorporating high-protein ingredients such as beans, legumes, fish, poultry, and dairy, you can create satisfying and wholesome casseroles that align with the principles of the Mediterranean diet.

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In this article, we’ll explore six mouthwatering high-protein casseroles that celebrate the flavors and ingredients of the Mediterranean region.

Greek-Style Lentil and Spinach Casserole:

This hearty and nutritious casserole features protein-packed lentils, nutrient-rich spinach, and flavorful Greek spices for a delicious twist on traditional comfort food.

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To make this dish, start by sautéing diced onions, garlic, and carrots in olive oil until softened.

Add dried lentils, vegetable broth, diced tomatoes, and a blend of Mediterranean spices such as oregano, thyme, and paprika.

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Simmer the mixture until the lentils are tender, then stir in fresh spinach until wilted.

Transfer the lentil and spinach mixture to a baking dish, top with crumbled feta cheese, and bake until golden and bubbly.

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Serve this Greek-style lentil and spinach casserole with a side of whole grain bread or a crisp salad for a satisfying and nutritious meal.

Mediterranean Chicken and Quinoa Casserole:

This protein-packed casserole combines tender chicken breast, hearty quinoa, and an array of colorful vegetables for a nutritious and flavorful dish.

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Start by cooking quinoa according to package instructions and set aside.

In a large skillet, sauté diced chicken breast, bell peppers, zucchini, and cherry tomatoes in olive oil until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender.

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Season the mixture with Mediterranean herbs such as basil, oregano, and thyme, then stir in cooked quinoa and crumbled feta cheese.

Transfer the chicken and quinoa mixture to a baking dish, sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese, and bake until golden and bubbly.

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Serve this Mediterranean chicken and quinoa casserole with a dollop of tzatziki sauce and a sprinkle of fresh herbs for a delicious and satisfying meal.

Tuscan White Bean and Sausage Casserole:

This comforting casserole features creamy white beans, savory Italian sausage, and aromatic herbs for a hearty and flavorful dish that’s sure to please the whole family.

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Start by browning Italian sausage in a skillet until cooked through, then transfer to a large mixing bowl.

In the same skillet, sauté diced onions, garlic, and bell peppers until softened, then add canned white beans, diced tomatoes, and chicken broth.

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Season the mixture with Italian herbs such as rosemary, thyme, and sage, then stir in the cooked sausage.

Transfer the bean and sausage mixture to a baking dish, top with breadcrumbs and grated Parmesan cheese, and bake until golden and bubbly.

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Serve this Tuscan white bean and sausage casserole with a side of crusty bread and a green salad for a satisfying and comforting meal.

Mediterranean Eggplant and Chickpea Casserole:

This vegetarian-friendly casserole showcases the vibrant flavors of the Mediterranean with tender roasted eggplant, hearty chickpeas, and aromatic spices.

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To make this dish, start by roasting sliced eggplant in the oven until golden and tender.

Meanwhile, sauté diced onions, garlic, and bell peppers in olive oil until softened, then add canned chickpeas, diced tomatoes, and a blend of Mediterranean spices such as cumin, coriander, and cinnamon.

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Stir in the roasted eggplant and transfer the mixture to a baking dish.

Top with crumbled feta cheese and chopped fresh parsley, then bake until hot and bubbly.

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Serve this Mediterranean eggplant and chickpea casserole with a dollop of Greek yogurt and a sprinkle of toasted pine nuts for added texture and flavor.

Spanish-Style Seafood Paella Casserole:

This elegant casserole captures the essence of Spain with succulent seafood, fragrant saffron rice, and a colorful array of vegetables.

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Begin by sautéing diced onions, garlic, and bell peppers in olive oil until softened, then add diced tomatoes, smoked paprika, and saffron threads.

Stir in short-grain rice and chicken broth, then bring the mixture to a simmer.

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Arrange a selection of seafood such as shrimp, mussels, and clams on top of the rice mixture, then cover and bake until the seafood is cooked through and the rice is tender.

Garnish the paella with fresh lemon wedges and chopped parsley before serving.

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This Spanish-style seafood paella casserole is perfect for special occasions or dinner parties and is sure to impress your guests with its bold flavors and beautiful presentation.

Moroccan-Inspired Lamb and Couscous Casserole:

This exotic casserole combines tender lamb, fluffy couscous, and a medley of Moroccan spices for a fragrant and flavorful dish that’s perfect for entertaining or special occasions.

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Begin by browning cubed lamb shoulder in a skillet until golden and caramelized, then transfer to a large mixing bowl.

In the same skillet, sauté diced onions, garlic, and carrots until softened, then add dried apricots, raisins, and a blend of Moroccan spices such as cumin, cinnamon, and ginger.

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Stir in cooked couscous and chicken broth, then transfer the mixture to a baking dish.

Top with toasted almonds and chopped fresh cilantro, then bake until hot and bubbly.

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Serve this Moroccan-inspired lamb and couscous casserole with a side of harissa-spiked yogurt for a satisfying and aromatic meal that’s sure to transport you to the streets of Marrakech.

Conclusion:

These six high-protein casseroles offer a delicious and nutritious way to incorporate the flavors and ingredients of the Mediterranean diet into your meal rotation.

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Whether you’re craving the bold flavors of Spain, the aromatic spices of Morocco, or the comforting classics of Greece and Italy, there’s a casserole on this list to satisfy every palate.

By choosing wholesome ingredients such as lean proteins, whole grains, and colorful vegetables, you can create satisfying and nourishing meals that support your health and well-being.

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