Jan has been cooking and writing about food for over 20 years. She has cooked on multiple television stations, including the Food Network.
Perfectly Sweet and Savory Southern Pineapple Casserole
I love the very idea of this dish—it shouldn't make any sense, but it does. It comes together perfectly—delightfully sweet with a hint of savory and a tiny touch of salty. It checks all the boxes.
Now, I don't know the history of this recipe. I've heard it called several things—hot pineapple dish, pineapple casserole, pineapple and cheese dessert—not all of which are actually rather appealing now that I think of it. But I do know that I've seen slight variations on this dish in community, Junior League, and church cookbooks going back as early as the great depression. And it certainly feels like a depression-era recipe, doesn't it? Sugar, canned fruit, cheese, and crackers? As far as I'm concerned, it took the particular genius of Depression Era cooks to figure out how to make that work—and make it work so deliciously.
- 2 (20-ounce) cans pineapple chunks in juice, drained with juice reserved
- 1/3 cup flour
- 1 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 cups extra-sharp Cheddar, grated
- 1 sleeve round butter crackers, crushed
- 4 tablespoons butter, melted
- Butter a 7x11 casserole dish. Preheat oven to 350F.
- In a large bowl, whisk together 1/3 cup of the reserved pineapple juice, 1/3 cup of flour, and 1 1/2 cup of sugar. Stir in the drained pineapple chunks, tossing well to combine. Pour pineapple mixture into the buttered casserole dish.
- Sprinkle grated cheese over the top of the pineapple mixture.
- In a small bowl, stir together melted butter and crushed cracker crumbs. Sprinkle crumbs over the top of the cheese.
- Bake at 350F for 30 minutes, or until hot and bubbly throughout.
© 2019 Jan Charles