Monday, June 6, 2011

Two Meals, One Mixture

I am always on a quest to make the good ol' everyday food our family loves as healthy as possible without compromising taste. I throw in extra vegetables to whatever dish I can think of. I've done chili and spaghetti and now I'm doing hamburgers. Good ol' all beef, on the grill hamburgers. These were so very good that I'm pretty sure I'll use this recipe a lot in the future! Best part? This meat mixture becomes two meals. Hamburgers are just part one. Part two is a cheeseburger macaroni, much like the boxed stuff only not from a box at all. With it you add more vegetables disguised as a childhood favorite and the plates will lick themselves clean. Winner, Winner - vegetables for dinner. If you have a larger family, you may need to double each recipe alone instead of using the meat mixture to make two meals.

Meat Mixture Ingredients
2 lbs lean ground beef (or turkey would work)
1 red bell pepper
1/2 onion
3 cups fresh baby leaf spinach
1 garlic clove
2 tablespoons worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons hamburger seasoning (I used McCormick)
4 oz plain greek yogurt (optional for moisture)

In a food processor combine pepper, onion, garlic and spinach and process until very finely chopped. Combine ground beef with chopped mixture and remaining ingredients. Mix well and allow to sit at least 4 hours, best if overnight. Divide mixture in half. Use one to make hamburgers on the grill (will make 6 or more depending on size of patties) and the rest for following recipe.

Vegetable Beef Burgers

For Hamburgers simply divide mixture into 6 even segments and pat out into hamurger patties. Grill as desired, dress with lettuce, tomato, avocado, pickles, onions, etc - as many veggies as you like and enjoy!

Cheeseburger Macaroni
1 lb Vegetable Beef Mixture
1 14.5 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 14.5 oz can broth (can be beef or chicken)
3-4 oz velveeta, cubed
1 can fat free evaporated milk (like carnation)
1 box Smart Balance Elbow Noodles
1 tablespoon dried parsley
salt and pepper to taste

Boil 3/4 box of noodles, reserving 1/4 of the box. In a large pan, brown meat until cooked through. Rinse, drain and return to pan. Cook a few minutes longer until all water is cooked out and add crushed tomatoes. Simmer until bubbly and add broth and velveeta cubes. Stir until Velveeta has melted and add in the can of evaporated milk. Bring to a simmer or small boil and add 1/4 of the box of noodles. Allow to slow boil for 5-8 minutes and then add remaining cooked noodles. Stir in parsley, salt and pepper and add more cheese if desired. Serve with a big, fresh salad and enjoy!

Do you have a fantastic recipe to inspire us this week? Share it here!


Katie said...

That cheeseburger pasta looks so good. It is always nice to stretch one batch of cooking out longer. I wanted to invite you to come over and share your recipe at These Chicks Cooked Recipe Spotlight today. Have a great day :)Katie

Kristin Cantarini said...

wow! the meat mixture sounds REALLY good - can't wait to try it in a burger! :D

thanks for linking up to mangia mondays!