Tag Archives: ground beef

Mexican Casserole – Quick, Easy, and Cheap!

9 Nov

This casserole was one of the easiest things I have ever put together. It was also one of the most delicious. When I started to make this casserole, I didn’t have high hopes. I knew it would fill us up but it just seemed to be a run of the mill casserole, nothing too exciting. Thankfully, I was wrong. Jason loved it, went back for seconds that were as big as his first serving, and nibbled on it after dinner until there were no leftovers for his lunch the next day. Whoops.

I have recently become obsessed with my 8×4 baking dish. The 9×13 and 8×8 sizes are just too big for the two of us, especially when you take into account adding side dishes to a meal. The following recipe has been bulked up to fit an 8×8 baking dish because, apparently when I make it next time, the 8×4 simply won’t do.

Quick, Easy, and Cheap Mexican Casserole

Servings: 4-6
Level: Easy
Time: 30 minutes

1/2 onion, chopped
1 lb. ground beef
1/2 tbsp. cumin
1/2 tbsp. chili powder
1/2 tbsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. corriander, optional
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes, optional
1/2 c. tortilla chips, crushed
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can corn, rinsed and drained
1 can nacho cheese condensed soup, or any brand of cheese dip will work as well
1 can rotel, drained
1/3 c. cheese, shredded

In a skillet over medium-high heat, cook onions, ground beef, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, salt, corriander, and red pepper flakes together until beef is browned throughout. Drain off excess fat. Pour crushed tortilla chips in a greased 8×8 baking sheet to coat the bottom. In a large bowl, mix together browned beef, beans, corn, condensed soup, and rotel. Pour over chips. Top with shredded cheese.

Bake, covered, for 20-25 minutes. Yum!

Tips
– Serve with a dollop of sour cream and/or salsa on top.
– Serve along side a green salad.
– Use taco seasoning instead of listed spices to flavor the meat.

Advertisements

South of the Border Burgers

20 Oct

We love tacos and burritos at our house! But, alas, I was completely out of tortillas when the craving hit us. I don’t know about you but around here, when a craving hits, there’s no getting rid of it… So the South of the Border Burger was born, as most things are, out of necessity. And now this burger will surely be a weeknight  staple! I hope you like it.


South of the Border Burgers

Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 2
Level: Easy

2 servings of ground beef (I always pre-portion my meat once I buy it…)
1 tbsp. low sodium taco seasoning
2 whole wheat hamburger buns
1 tbsp. salsa
1 tbsp. sour cream
2 slices cheddar cheese
freshly sliced purple onions, optional
lettuce

Mix ground beef and taco seasoning. Form into 2 patties. Either outside on the grill or inside in a grill pan, grill burgers until no longer pink inside, about 5 minutes on each side.

Spread salsa on one side of hamburger buns and spread sour cream on the other side. Top buns with burgers, cheddar cheese,  onions, and lettuce. Yum!

Chili Cheese Turkey Dogs

20 Jun

These are some serious knife and fork dogs. The spicy chili and grilled hot dog combo is a classic that simply can’t be beat.

I NEVER order these when I’m out because chili can be unpredictable and VERY VERY fatty. You never know what the consistency is going to be like and you can never tell what cut of meat has been used. I like my chili chunky. I want to be able to see the meat, beans, and tomatoes and taste them all individually if I wanted to. I know, I know… I’m such a weirdo.

This chili is not just good on hot dogs. It is also delicious when served alone, on top of Fritos or tortilla chips, topped with sour cream and cheese, or any combination of the three. An added bonus?! This chili recipe is quick and easy and only takes 15 minutes to make!

Speedy Spicy Chili

Servings: 4
Time: 15 minutes
Level: Easy

1/2 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 lb. ground turkey or ground beef
1 can chili ready tomatoes
1 can chili beans
1/4 c. jalapeños
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. cumin

In a deep sauté  pan over medium-high heat, cook onions and garlic in a little oil until they become fragrant. Add meat and cook until no longer pink. Add remaining ingredients and continue to cook, stirring often, until chili reduces and becomes thick. Yum!

Grill hot dogs, place in warmed hot dog buns, and top with chili and shredded cheese. Yum!

Tips
– My dad likes to add mustard to the top of his chili dogs.
– Jason likes to add sour cream.
– You can use regular hot dogs instead of turkey dogs.
– You can also leave the meat out of the chili and use vegetarian hot dogs.

Chicken Torta

9 May

A torta is basically a sandwich. This Cuban/Mexican sandwich can be made using any type of protein. Chicken, steak, pork, and even scrambled eggs can top this veggie packed delight.

I decided to try and recreate this delicious torta after eating one with friends at Las Delicias. Las Delicias makes the BEST tortas. The one I had the other night was made with eggs… yum!

Tonight’s version is made with chicken. Either way, it is oh so good and you MUST try one soon.

Chicken Torta

Servings: 2
Time: 15 minutes
Level: Easy

chicken, cooked and shredded (enough for 2)
1/3 c.  enchilada sauce
1/4 c. refried beans
sour cream
2 soft but crusty rolls or baguette
avocado slices, optional
tomato slices, optional
onion slices, optional
jalapeño slices, optional

Heat chicken with enchilada sauce. Cook until meat is thoroughly saturated with sauce.  Spread refried beans on one side of the split bread and spread sour cream on the other. Toast until slightly crispy. Top bread with meat and veggies.

Yum!

Tips
– Try different meats and sauces. You could use leftover fajita meat that has been marinated and cooked… that would be yummy.
– If you choose to use scrambled/omelet eggs, you can omit the enchilada sauce. Add a little hot sauce or salsa to your eggs instead.
– I topped mine with hot sauce.
– I used a whole wheat baguette but it wasn’t soft enough and made the sandwich messier than normal.
– I served mine with a side of corn, bell peppers, onions, and  jalapeños seasoned with a little salt, cumin, garlic powder, and chili powder.

In Honor of Cinco de Mayo…

3 May

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Cinco de Mayo… Ahh, what a delicious holiday. Yeah, yeah, I know. It’s a holiday that celebrates  Mexico’s victory over the French on May 5, 1862.  But, dang, celebrating  their victory with a delicious dinner is just fine by me. Our neighbors to the south know what their doing when it comes to their amazing cuisine and I’m not ashamed of how much I love it!

If your going to be staying in this Cinco de Mayo or if you are planning on having a blow out fiesta with friends, check out these recipes below. I took a look back at my recipe collection and my love is clearly evident… I can’t say that ANY of these recipes are even slightly  authentic but they are definitely inspired by south of the border flavors.

Grab yourself a basket of chips and a bowl of salsa, maybe a margarita or two, and celebrate!

Enchilada Pie 

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Enchiladas (vegetarian and vegan)

Steak Fajitas

Mexican Cornbread

Quinoa Salsa Side Dish

Gringa Tostada

Fiesta Fritata

Baja Shrimp Tacos with a Corn and Radish Salad

BBQ Chili Meatballs

19 Apr

You know those little cocktail meatballs you always see at parties? I had a very random craving for those tonight. I didn’t have any grape jelly, packaged meatballs, or time to use my crockpot tonight. But I did have chili sauce, or as the bottle says… ketchup with a kick! Ha. Too bad it doesn’t really taste like ketchup. Anyway, this is my quick version and they more than satisfied my craving.

BBQ Chili Meatballs

Servings: 2
Time: 20 minutes
Level: Easy

Enough ground beef to make 2 hamburger patties (I just eye balled it…)
1 tbsp. dry bread crumbs
1 1/2 tbsp. chili saice
sprinkle of chili powder
sprinkle of pepper
sprinkle of dry onion flakes, or finely diced fresh onion
1/4 c. BBQ sauce

Preheat oven to 400°. Mix all ingredients together, being careful to handle meat as little as possible so it doesn’t become tough.

Roll meat into 1 – 1 1/2 inch balls.

Place on a cookie sheet that has sides or in a baking dish.


 (Oh, hasn’t my cookie sheet been loved?)

Bake for 15 minutes or until no longer pink in the center. Remove from oven and set on a paper towel lined plate to help drain off excess oil. Roll or dip each meatball in BBQ sauce. Yum!

Tips
– Serve over brown rice.
– Serve along side Green Chile Cornbread
– Make a meatball sub with any leftovers. Just throw the meatballs, some provolone cheese, and a little mayo onto a hoagie  roll.

John Wayne BBQ Burgers

28 Mar

Tonight was just one of those nights… you know the kind. The kind of night that’s rainy and cold and you walk in your door exhausted. All I could think about after a long day of work and a killer workout was a burger.

Thank goodness I worked out today because after eating this burger, I probably need another hour of TurboKick. Ugh, there’s always tomorrow… but tonight, I was comforted and it was just what I needed.

A traditional John Wayne Burger, or pizza for that matter, is usually topped with BBQ sauce, onion rings, cheddar cheese, and bacon. My take on the burger stemmed from leftover French fried onions from my Crispy Onion Baked Chicken recipe and a killer craving for the new Muenster cheese I just bought. Ahh, a perfect creation! I hope you like it.

Crispy Onion BBQ Burgers

Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 2
Level: Easy

2 servings of ground beef (I always pre-portion my meat once I buy it…)
1/8 tsp. pepper
1 tbsp. onions, chopped
1/3 c. BBQ sauce, divided in half
2 whole wheat hamburger buns
1 tbsp. mayonnaise
2 slices Muenster cheese
1/4 c. French fried onions… they aren’t just for green bean casserole, ya know

Mix ground beef, pepper, onions, and half of the BBQ sauce. Form into 2 patties. Either outside on the grill or inside in a grill pan, grill burgers until no longer pink inside, about 5 minutes on each side.

Spread remaining BBQ sauce on one side of hamburger buns and spread mayo on the other side. Top buns with burgers, Muenster cheese, and French fried onions. Yum!

Tips
– Leave off the mayo if you want to… or use fat-free.
– You can use dried onions to mix in with the ground beef instead of diced fresh onions.
– Add bacon if you want to… I wanted to but alas, my waistline preferred I didn’t.

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Enchiladas – Vegetarian, Gluten Free, and DELICIOUS!

23 Mar

My husband, as I’ve told you before, is a die-hard carnivore. DIE-HARD. Whenever I try to make a meatless or vegetarian meal, no matter how large and filling, he always starts the meal out with an attitude of  “This is rabbit food, not human food and I will starve to death if I eat like this…” He doesn’t actual say that but he does claim to be hungry after every vegetarian meal, even though he rarely ever is…it’s all mental. But, nonetheless, I’ll cook meat. Meat, meat, meat.

Until tonight. I have decided to reclaim my love of meatless meals.  I say meatless, not vegetarian, because I never really buy vegetable stock and crowders and black eyes are best boiled with a little ham or bacon. I can’t help it… But, regardless, I stuck to my guns and started cooking.

No meat? No problem! I am so out of everything in my pantry and fridge anyway that braving the “I’m gonna be hungry later” comments made me get creative. I needed a meatless meal with tons of fiber and protien to satisfy us. I mean, what was he gonna snack on after? There is nothing there. Gah, I gotta go to the store. Maybe tomorrow.

Tonight’s meal was not only vegetarian and gluten-free but it actually TRICKED my husband into thinking it was chock full of beef. Go figure! While I was cooking, I decided not to tell him it was vegetarian to see what he would say. At the end of the meal, I asked him to guess the ingredients. He guessed refried beans and ground beef. Ehhhnnnk, both wrong.

He wasn’t “hungry” afterwards either. Success!

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Enchiladas

Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 2 (but can easily be doubled)
Level: Easy-Medium

1 clove garlic, minced (optional)
1/4 c. onions, chopped (optional)
2 small sweet potatoes
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. coriander
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. salt
4 small corn tortillas
1/3 c. shredded cheese
1/2 c. salsa
sour cream to top, if desired

Preheat oven to 350°. Peel and cube sweet potatoes.

In a pot of water, boil sweet potatoes until tender, about 8 minutes. Drain. In a skillet over medium-high heat, cook garlic and onions until onions are translucent, about 4 minutes. Add sweet potatoes, black beans, and spices. Cook until heated throughout, mashing the potatoes and beans a little as they cook along. Pour 1/2 of the salsa into a small casserole dish. Divide the potato and bean mixture into fourths. Fill each tortilla with a portion of the mixture, top with a little cheese, and roll. Place on top of salsa in casserole dish,  seam side down. Top with remaining salsa and cheese. Bake, covered, for about 20 minutes, or until hot and bubbly. Top with sour cream if desired. Yum!

Tips
– This was my first attempt using sweet potatoes and black beans together. I think you could use salsa verde for a different flavor and it would work nicely.
– As my friend Katie pointed out, I LOVE cumin. If you don’t… then leave it out.  No biggie!

Black and Bleu Sliders

18 Mar

Hawaiian rolls, Bleu cheese, and ground beef… all I can say is yum. These are not only delicious, they are easy to make ahead, and super fun to eat! I don’t know why but miniature versions of familiar foods always makes them taste better. I love adding a little whimsy to a weeknight dinner, especially when it doesn’t take any extra time or effort.

Black and Bleu Sliders

Time: 30 minutes
Level: Easy
Servings: 4-6

2 tbsp. ketchup
1/4 c. bread crumbs
1 egg
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
1/4 c. bleu cheese
1 lb. ground beef
Hawaiian rolls, as many as you need

Preheat oven to 350°. Mix all ingredients together then add beef. Handle the beef as little as possible to keep it from becoming tough. Roll beef mixture into golf ball sized balls and bake until no longer pink inside.

Pinch out a little piece of the bottom of each roll, just enough to nestle the meatball.

Yum!

Tips
– Serve with desired condiments. Mayo, ketchup, and mustard are good choices but thousand island or ranch dressing is also good!
– Don’t like bleu cheese? No big deal! You can use any cheese you like.
– These also make a great appetizer.

– Make the meatballs ahead and freeze them to bake at a later date.

H.B.’s Lasagna – A TRUE family favorite

6 Mar

My mom has a great friend named Helen and Mrs. Helen makes the BEST lasagna in the world. No joke! She also makes the best face wiper in the world… but that’s another story for another blog.

For the amount of ingredients, time, and effort that you must put forth to make this recipe, this dish is a true winner. It’s easy and quick and it uses ingredients you already have on hand. Plus, it will happily feed your ENTIRE family.

Since it was just Jason and I, I used a small baking dish and  made 1/3 of the original recipe. I reduced the cook time to 40 minutes and it worked out perfectly. I only had two layers of noodles and it still fed us twice. The first night, I paired it with Brussels sprouts (my new favorite veg.) and a small green salad. The next night, we had green beans and bread.

H.B.’s Lasagna

Time: 1 hour
Level: Easy
Servings: 6-8

1 lb. ground beef, cooked and drained
1 jar (32oz.) spaghetti sauce
1 1/2 c. water
2 c. cottage cheese
3 c. Mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/2 c. Parmesan cheese, shredded
2 eggs
1/2 c. Italian seasoning
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
Lasagna noodles, at least 9, and uncooked

Mix cooked ground beef with spaghetti sauce and water.

Simmer, uncovered, for  a few minutes. Combine remaining ingredients in a separate bowl.

Pour 1 cup of sauce in a 13 x 9 inch baking dish. Place 3 strips of the dry lasagna noodles on top.

Layer the following in order:

1 1/2 cups of sauce
1/2 of the cheese mixture
3 more dry noodles
1 1/2 cups of sauce
The rest of the cheese mixture
3 more dry noodles
The rest of the sauce

Cover baking dish with foil and bake for 55 minutes. Remove from oven and let stand, uncovered, for at least 5 minutes before cutting and serving. Yum!

Tips
– If you run out of sauce before you can add the last layer, don’t worry! I ended my 1/3 of the recipe version with the cheese mixture and it turned out great!
– This recipe freezes well, with before or after you bake. If you have a ton of leftovers… freeze them in individual portions. It will make a quick and easy dinner later on.

%d bloggers like this: