With just a few simple ingredients you can have Homemade Hamburger Helper. It’s done in less than 30 minutes, making it the perfect weeknight meal.
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Sometimes you just really need some carby comfort food. Now is that time and I’m delivering big time with this Homemade Hamburger Helper.
Added bonus: it takes less than 30 minutes to make with pantry and refrigerator staples.
So Many Things to Love
Let me start off by saying this is a one pot dish. Dishes are the last thing we want to be doing right now and with this recipe all you’ll have is one pot and your plates.
Bonus if you eat it right from the pot. This enamel cast iron pot is my favorite for making these types of dishes.
From browning the ground beef to cooking the pasta, it all comes together in less than 30 minutes.
It’s super family friendly too. Who’s not going to like cheesy, beefy pasta?
Ingredients for Homemade Hamburger Helper
So, you need a few more ingredients than you do when making the boxed stuff but I promise you it will be totally worth it. We’re going with a copycat of the classic cheeseburger version because we all know that’s the best one.
Here’s what you need:
I promised they would be simple ingredients.
The ketchup adds just a little tomato goodness to make it taste like a cheeseburger but not be overwhelmingly ketchupy.
If you don’t happen to have any ground beef in your freezer you can definitely substitute in ground turkey or even ground chicken. If you’re making this sub, you may want to add an extra tablespoon of olive oil when browning to add a little more fat and richness to the finished dish.
When it comes to the pasta I used the classic elbow macaroni that I remember Hamburger Helper having in my childhood. You can use whatever short cut pasta you have in your pantry.
The recipe calls for beef broth but if you don’t have any you can just use water instead. It won’t be quite as rich in flavor and beefiness but it will still be tasty.
How to Prepare Homemade Hamburger Helper
Start by heating your pot over medium heat. Once it’s not and hot, add the olive oil and ground beef. Cook until no longer pink then add the ketchup, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika and kosher salt.
Add beef broth (or water) and milk and bring it to a simmer. Once it’s bubbling, add the pasta and cook for about 10 minutes or until the pasta is tender.
As the pasta boils it will soak up the beef broth and spices to add even more flavor to the finished dish. When the pasta is tender remove the pot from the heat and stir in the shredded cheddar cheese and it’s ready to serve.
This literally tastes like a cheeseburger in a bowl and I’m here for it.
More Easy Weeknight Dishes:
Homemade Hamburger Helper
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 2 Tbsp. ketchup
- 2 tsp. onion powder
- 2 tsp. garlic powder
- 2 tsp. paprika
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 3/4 cups beef broth (or water)
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 8 oz. elbow macaroni (or short cut pasta)
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- Heat a large pot over medium heat. Once hot add olive oil and ground beef. Break up and cook until no longer pink. If there's a lot of grease, drain it out. Stir in ketchup, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika and salt.
- Stir in beef broth and milk. Bring to a heavy simmer and add pasta. Cook for 10 to 12 minutes, until the pasta is tender. Remove from heat and stir in cheddar cheese.
April 8, 2020 at 11:56 am
Hi Meg. This looks delicious and very affordable! I loved Hamburger Helper as a kid, and it looks pretty simple to make from scratch. Thanks for sharing!
April 10, 2020 at 12:52 pm
I never had hamburger helper in my life!! I’m excited to try this – looks so easy and delicious!
April 12, 2020 at 7:14 pm
I made this Saturday and my family adored it. The Homemade Hamburger Helper is so much better than what comes from the box and so easy.
April 12, 2020 at 7:34 pm
That makes me so happy Debbie! Glad you all loved it! Thanks for stopping by and letting me know.
April 22, 2020 at 4:01 pm
Sorry Meg, but this was way too cheesy for us. Maybe I will try it with 1/2 the cheese or leave it out altogether.
April 23, 2020 at 9:36 am
Sorry to hear that Cindy.