This is my husband's current favorite recipe I make, I'll make up a casserole specifically for him to portion out and freeze to take to work. My notes for the recipe are below.
Patchwork Casserole (Favorite Brand Names Slow Cooker, Casseroles & More)
2 lbs. ground beef
2 C. chopped green bell peppers
1 C. chopped onion
2 lbs. frozen, diced hashbrowns, thawed
2 cans (8 oz. each) tomato sauce
1 C. water
1 can (6 oz.) tomato paste
1 t. salt
1/2 t. dried basil
1/4 t. black pepper
1 lb. Velveeta
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Brown beef in a large skillet over medium heat about 10 minutes ; drain off fat.
3. Add bell peppers and onion; cook and stir until tender, about 4 minutes. Stir in potatoes, tomato sauce, water, tomato paste, salt, basil, and black pepper.
4. Spoon half of mixture into 13x9x2-inch baking pan or 3 qt. baking dish; top with half of the cheese. Spoon remaining meat mixture evenly on top of cheese. Cover pan with foil. Bake 45 minutes.
5. Cut remaining cheese into decorative shapes; place on top of casserole. Let stand loosely covered until cheese melts, about 5 minutes.
My notes: The first time I made this I used Italian seasoning instead of just basil, and I think it turned out quite well. I also added about 1 T. of minced garlic because we are all garlic lovers. The second time I made it I used half ground pork and half ground beef and it made it a little "zippier", I think I'll continue to do the recipe like that as it was quite good.