This Big Mac Casserole is topped with the best copycat Big Mac sauce recipe! The layers of ground beef, melted cheese, and crispy tater tots makes an easy family friendly meal that’s the perfect alternative to fast food takeout.
Big Mac Casserole
Oh my goodness, this Big Mac Sauce tastes just like the real deal! It has hints of mustard, grated onion, creaminess from the mayo, and it seriously has all the right spices. Definitely don’t skimp on the Copycat McDonald’s Special Sauce, it next levels this dinner.
The three-cheese blend really elevates the flavor of this dish, too. The entire casserole reminds me of a Big Mac, minus the bun, obviously. Those beautiful golden brown tater tots will make you feel like you’re not missing anything, though!
In fact, I’m willing to bet that you’ll be thinking you just found your new favorite version of a Big Mac!
My friend’s son’s favorite food is Big Macs, so I made him this casserole for his birthday. He couldn’t get over how much this casserole resembles his favorite food and gave it two thumbs up. He even asked me if we could make this his new birthday tradition! Feedback like that from kids is always the best compliment I could get for any meal I make.
What Is Big Mac Casserole
Big Mac casserole is made with a layer of ground beef and onions that’s coated in homemade burger sauce. Next, there’s a layer of delicious melted cheese, and it’s topped off with tater tots that will become perfectly crispy and golden brown in the oven. Once it’s finished cooking, you’ll top it with more special sauce and your favorite burger toppings.
Since this ground beef casserole is topped with crispy tater tots, it has the vibe of eating a Big Mac with French fries on the side. Seriously, such a delicious combination and such an easy dinner recipe to feed a big family!
Big Mac Sauce: This sauce has to be one of my favorite recipes on this site. Even if you don’t make the casserole, you have to try this sauce! It’s made with the absolute perfect blend of mayonnaise, sweet pickle relish, grated onion, yellow mustard, white vinegar, paprika, onion powder, fine sea salt, and garlic powder.
Even though I really recommend making the sauce from scratch, if you’re really in a pinch you could substitute it with Thousand Island dressing.
Beef: I prefer using lean ground beef in this recipe, but any fat percentage will work (as long as you fully drain the drippings before continuing with the recipe).
Aromatics: A combination of onion and fresh garlic adds tons of flavor to the ground beef. I always love including them with my ground beef crumbles. Diced green peppers would be a great addition here if you’re trying to incorporate more vegetables.
Spices: Since there’s so much flavor from the spices in the sauce, you only need to flavor the ground beef with salt and black pepper.
Tater Tots: Adding a layer of frozen tater tots makes this recipe so incredibly easy and delicious.
Cheese: I love using three different cheeses in this dish. I use mozzarella (for the stretchy melty texture) and cheddar (for the flavor) in the casserole, and then I like topping the casserole with Monterey Jack.
Burger Toppings: I normally top this casserole with shredded lettuce, dill pickles, cheese, and sauce. Some other delicious toppings I’d definitely recommend trying are diced onions, diced tomatoes, and sesame seeds.
How To Make Big Mac Casserole
Start by browning the ground beef in a large skillet. Once it’s about halfway cooked, mix in the diced onion and saute until the beef is fully browned and the onion is cooked through and transparent. Then drain the drippings before continuing with the recipe. (See the recipe card below for the full printable instructions.)
Mix in the minced garlic, salt, and pepper. Saute until the garlic is aromatic. Then stir in some of the Big Mac sauce, some of the shredded cheese, and all of the diced dill pickles.
Spread out the cooked ground beef mixture into a large casserole dish.
Top the ground beef mixture with the remaining shredded mozzarella and shredded cheddar. Then line the top of the casserole with frozen tater tots.
Bake the casserole until the tater tots are cooked through, golden brown, and crispy. Top the casserole with the remaining Big Mac sauce and your favorite burger toppings, and serve. See the recipe card below for the full written instructions, including ingredient amounts, cooking times, and helpful tips, etc.
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If you like this recipe, be sure to check out all of our casserole recipes! Some reader favorites are:
If you’re looking for more cheeseburger inspired recipes, you have to try out the best easy cheeseburger slider recipe!
Big Mac Sauce:
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup sweet pickle relish
- 2 Tablespoon grated yellow onion (with juices)
- 1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
- 2 teaspoons white vinegar (optional, see notes)*
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 pounds lean ground beef
- 1 medium onion (diced, about 1 cup)
- 2 medium cloves garlic (minced)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt (plus more to taste)
- 1 dill pickle (diced small, about 1/2 cup)
- 1 cup freshly shredded sharp cheddar cheese (divided, plus more for topping)**
- 1 cup freshly shredded mozzarella cheese (divided)**
- 1 (32 ounce) bag tater tots (64 tots)
- 1/2 cup freshly shredded Monterey Jack cheese**
- Shredded iceberg lettuce
- To a small bowl, add the ingredients for the Big Mac sauce and mix until combined. Measure out 1/2 cup of the sauce, and place into a small Ziploc bag (to be used as a garnish at the end).
- Preheat the oven to 350 F (176 C).
- Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add in the ground beef and cook half way (5 minutes). Add the diced onions and cook until the beef is fully browned (about 4 more minutes). Discard the excess grease from the pan.
- Add in the minced garlic, pepper, and salt. Mix, and saute until aromatic (1 minute).
- Mix in the pickles, the remaining Big Mac Sauce, 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, and 1/2 cup mozzarella.
- Transfer the beef mixture to a 9x13 casserole dish, and spread out evenly.
- Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup cheddar and 1/2 cup mozzarella over the top of the beef mixture.
- Arrange the tater tots in an even single layer over the beef mixture. Bake in the preheated oven until the tots are golden brown (about 45 minutes).
- Top with the lettuce, tomato, and Monterey Jack cheese. Cut one of the bottom corners off of the Ziploc that the Big Mac sauce is in, and use it as a piping bag to drizzle the sauce over the casserole.
*I prefer this sauce without vinegar, but if you want it to taste more identical to the actual Big Mac sauce, then I’d recommend starting with 1/2 teaspoon of white vinegar. After that, add 1/4 teaspoon of vinegar at a time until you get the taste you like. 2 teaspoons should be the max you would need.
**I recommend using freshly shredded cheese because it melts better. Pre-grated cheeses are coated in an anti-caking agent that stops the cheese from melting smoothly.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 823Total Fat: 54.4gCarbohydrates: 39.9gFiber: 3.2gSugar: 4.7gProtein: 44g
Nutrition information isn’t always accurate. Nutrition information does not include the optional toppings in the recipe card.
If you’re looking for the perfect alternative to fast food, try making this tasty Big Mac Casserole for dinner!