It's probably not surprising that I have never had Hamburger Helper.... first of all, because it has hamburger, but second of all because it comes in a box. I am really not much of a box eater and I never have been, because my parents weren't. Besides Ramen noodles and Spaghettios, we have always been real food eaters. With that said, I know millions of people have loved Hamburger Helper for years. This is one of Fresh Mama's recipes that Laura tried and she talked me into trying it for myself.
Here's how it works: you make a healthier, weird chemical-free version of the powdered mix. It makes such a big batch, you will have enough for 5 batches of Hamburger Helper. Then you mix it up with ground beef, elbow macaroni, and cheddar cheese. Apparently, that's that! I couldn't stand to serve my family a meal without any vegetables, so I added peas, corn, and a shredded carrot, but that's up to you.
|I wrote directions on the bag to make it even easier!|
The bottom line is that this recipe can really streamline your dinner preparation. Once you have the seasoning mix, you just brown the burger; add hot water, milk and seasoning; add the pasta, and cook (and any vegetables if you are so inclined!). The cheese gets mixed in last. And voila: dinner is ready. Not so vegetarian-friendly, but definitely budget- and clock-friendly :)
homemade Hamburger Helper
from Fresh Mama
for seasoning mix: *will make enough for 5 batches
1/3 cup cornstarch
1/3 cup chili powder
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons paprika
1 pound ground beef
1 cup hot water
2 cups milk
1 1/2 cups elbow or small shell macaroni
3 tablespoons + 1/2 teaspoons seasoning
1 cup shredded cheese
1) First, make a bulk batch of seasoning. Mix all seasoning ingredients in a small bowl or mason jar and mix thoroughly. This makes 5 servings of seasoning.
2) Brown ground beef in large skillet.
3) Add hot water, milk, and seasoning.
4) Add macaroni. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer on low 10 - 12 minutes until pasta is tender.
5) Once pasta is cooked through, add cheddar cheese and stir well.