Greek Rice Casserole with Ground Turkey (Low-FODMAP, Gluten Free)

Greek Rice Casserole with Ground Turkey (Low-FODMAP, Gluten Free)

This tasty and hearty low-fodmap casserole uses lean ground turkey. It comes together fast, so it's definitely a contender for weeknight meals. I use quick-cooking basmati rice, but any kind of rice would be great. The feta, olives and creamy sauce add plenty of flavor. Click through to get the recipe for this healthy low-fodmap entree!

Does the word "casserole" make you think of 1950s housewives or high-fat fare made with tubs of sour cream? If so, it's time to meet the modern casserole!

This rice bake with Greek flair is an excellent example. It's healthy and light, but there's a ton of flavor thanks to kalamata olives and feta.

It's a low-FODMAP meal that comes together fast enough for weeknights. I also think it makes great leftovers, so don't hesitate to pack it up for lunch. 

I know I said this casserole is healthy (it's true!), but it also has a creamy sauce that pulls all the flavors together.

 

This is actually pretty cool: It turns out you can make a very respectable bechamel sauce (the classic French white sauce) with a gluten-free blend and lactose-free milk. Very good news if you love creamy baked pastas and casserole like I do.

 

And if you've never made bechamel sauce before, you're about to have some fun. It's easy. You'll be slightly anxious the first time, but after you've done it twice, you'll feel like a rockstar in the kitchen. I used butter in the sauce which is traditional, but I'm 99% sure olive oil or ghee would work too.

What do you think...Is this casserole your cup of tea? If you have a favorite casserole-type recipe, tell me about it in the comments!

This tasty and hearty low-fodmap casserole uses lean ground turkey. It comes together fast, so it's definitely a contender for weeknight meals. I use quick-cooking basmati rice, but any kind of rice would be great. The feta, olives and creamy sauce add plenty of flavor. Click through to get the recipe for this healthy low-fodmap entree!

 

 

 

Greek Rice Casserole with Ground Turkey (Low-FODMAP, Gluten Free)

This casserole would be great with ground lamb or beef instead of the turkey. For the lactose free milk, I use 2% or full fat Lactaid because I think it works better in recipes like this (the texture isn't as watery as almond milk, for example). I haven't tested it with almond or other non-dariy milk. I think it would work, but I can't guarantee the same result. I am fairly sure, however, that olive oil or ghee would work just as well as the butter if you'd rather use one of those. I used quick-cooking basmati rice here because I like the delicate texture, but any kind will work. Just cook as directed. The rice can be made ahead of time too. To reheat rice (before adding it to the sauce in step 5), place in a large microwave-safe bowl and sprinkle with 2 tbsp water. Microwave until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes, stirring 3 or 4 times. This casserole also makes the perfect leftover lunch (or breakfast).

Author: Julie-Calm Belly Kitchen             Recipe type: Entree
Prep time: 30 to 35 mins        Cook time: 20 mins        Total time: 50 to 55 mins plus resting
Serves 6 

INGREDIENTS

For rice: 
1 3/4 cup water
1 cup basmati rice
1/2 tsp salt

For casserole:
1 tbsp garlic-infused oil or olive oil
1 lb ground turkey
1 tsp dried oregano, divided
3/4 tsp allspice, divided
1/2 tsp salt, divided
1/4 tsp red chile flakes (optional)
Black pepper to taste
2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 tbsp plus 2 tsp gluten-free flour blend (use a gum-free blend such as King Arthur Multi-Purpose)
2 cups lactose-free milk (see note above)
5 oz baby spinach leaves, roughly chopped
14.5 oz can diced tomatoes, drained
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, chopped
Zest of 1 lemon
4 oz feta cheese, chopped
Chopped Italian parsley for garnish
Optional for serving: lemon wedges and low-FODMAP hot sauce


INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 375F. Bring the water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Stir in the rice and 1/2 tsp of the salt. When water returns to a boil, reduce heat to lowest setting, cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until just tender (if not using basmati rice, cook according to package directions). Remove from heat, keep covered and rest for 10 minutes.

2. Heat a large skillet on medium to medium-high heat. Add garlic oil and heat just until oil is shimmering (don't let it smoke). Add turkey and cook, crumbling with a spatula, until no longer pink, 6 to 7 minutes. During the last minute or two, stir in 1/2 tsp of the oregano, 1/4 tsp of the allspice, 1/4 tsp of the salt, red chile flakes if using, and black pepper to taste. Set aside.

3. In a large saucepan, melt the butter on medium heat. Add the flour and stir until fully moistened, about 1 minute. Slowly add about 1/2 cup of the milk as you stir. When it starts to simmer, add another 1/2 cup while stirring and scraping any bits of flour from the edges of the pan. Switch to a whisk and slowly add the rest of the milk in 2 additions as you whisk, letting it come to a simmer each time. Continue to whisk and simmer until mixture is slightly thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Use the whisk to break up as many clumps of flour as you can, but some small clumps will remain, and that's okay. 

4. Reduce heat to lowest setting. Add the spinach leaves, remaining 1/2 tsp oregano, 1/2 tsp allspice, 1/4 tsp salt and black pepper to taste. Stir until spinach is just wilted, about 2 minutes. Add tomatoes, olives, lemon zest and ground turkey and stir until just heated through, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the rice.

5. Transfer to an approximately 2 1/2-quart baking dish (11 x 7" or large round dish will work). Sprinkle feta on top. Bake in the center of the oven at 375F until liquid is bubbling around the edges and cheese is starting to turn golden brown, 20 to 24 minutes. Rest 10 minutes, sprinkle with parsley and serve with lemon wedges and/or hot sauce if using.

Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1/6 of recipe  Calories: 445 Fat:19 g Saturated fat: 8g Carbohydrates: 37g Sugar: 7g Sodium: 975mg Fiber: 2g Protein: 31g