I’m always trying to make our whole family happy around the dinner and it’s a tough job. Finding a meal that the kids love, along with my Husband, is a daunting task. I finally found a winner when I made this Homemade Hamburger Helper copycat recipe. Total respect to the original box, but this recipe is EASY and tastes so much better. You’ll never go back!
We stock up on ground beef and keep it in our freezer. It’s such a great protein to keep on hand. We use it in tacos, for grilling burgers and making chili. It’s also a great budget-friendly protein to add. The ground beef, along with the pasta, makes this such a filling and cheap dinner.
The copycat recipe is also great for larger families. It makes a huge batch that will feed the entire family and leave you with some leftovers too.
Wondering what the best part is? You make the entire recipe in ONE skillet. So you aren’t boiling pasta on the side. The sauce, meat and pasta are all cooked in the same skillet. That makes for super easy clean up. It’s one of my favorite meals to throw together on busy weeknights.
How To Make Homemade Hamburger Helper
All together, from start to finish, this dinner only takes about 30 minutes to make. You can even do a little prep work ahead of time to make it go faster. I love how tender the ground beef is and the flavor from three types of tomato.
What To Serve With Homemade Hamburger Helper
This is such a hearty dinner. I like to pair the recipe with a side salad. Grab a bottle of your favorite salad dressing or try a homemade ranch dressing. Chop some fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley on top for garnish and added color. A great Italian loaf of bread and salad, is all you’ll need for a complete dinner.
Easy Substitution Options
One of the easiest substitutions you can make is changing the pasta shape. You can always add a different pasta, if you’d like to change it from macaroni.
Another substitution option is using ground bison instead of ground beef. It’s a more lean option and can be even more tender. However, it will definitely add to the overall meal cost.
How To Store Leftover Homemade Hamburger Helper
Transfer any leftovers into an air-tight container. Keep the pasta in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. You can reheat the leftover portions in the microwave for 1-2 minutes. Add more cheese, if desired. The recipe doesn’t freeze well.
What You’ll Need From The Grocery Store:
Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
Diced Tomato Can
Flat-Leaf Italian Parsley
Step-By-Step Directions To Make Homemade Hamburger Helper
In a large skillet over medium heat, heat oil. Add chopped onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add minced garlic and cook about 1 minute more.
Add ground beef and cook until no longer pink, about 6 minutes. Drain fat and return to pan. Season with salt and pepper.
Add tomato paste and stir to coat, then pour in broth, tomato sauce, and diced tomatoes. Season with Italian seasoning and paprika, and stir in macaroni.
Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until pasta is tender, about 15 minutes.
Stir in cheese and remove from heat. Garnish with parsley before serving.
- 2 Tbsp. Extra-virgin Olive Oil
- 1 Medium Yellow onion, chopped
- 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
- 1 lb. Ground Beef
- Kosher Salt
- Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- 1 Tbsp. Tomato Paste
- 1 1/4 c. Low-sodium Beef Broth
- 1 (15-oz.) Can Tomato sauce
- 1 (15-oz.) Can Diced Tomatoes
- 1 tsp. Italian Seasoning
- 1 tsp. Paprika
- 1 1/2 c. Elbow Macaroni, uncooked
- 1 c. Shredded Cheddar
- Freshly Chopped Parsley, for garnish
- In a large skillet over medium heat, heat oil. Add onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes.
- Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute more.
- Add ground beef and cook until no longer pink, about 6 minutes. Drain fat and return to pan. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add tomato paste and stir to coat, then pour in broth, tomato sauce, and diced tomatoes. Season with Italian seasoning and paprika, and stir in macaroni.
- Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until pasta is tender, about 15 minutes.
- Stir in cheese and remove from heat. Garnish with parsley before serving.
Store any leftovers in an air-tight container and refrigerate.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 198Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 43mgSodium: 264mgCarbohydrates: 8gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 14g
**Nutrition facts are calculated by a third party. Actual values may vary.