Hamburger Helper was a staple in many households. It was easy enough to brown some meat in a pan and add pasta and couple of packets of seasoning and sauce. But what most people don't realize is that half of the ingredient list is stuff unrecognizable to most us, let alone something we would identify as food - Hydrolyzed vegetable protein, modified whey maltodextrin, monoglycerides, just name a few. Homemade hamburger helper has all the convenience of the prepackaged meal with all natural ingredients. Your family can be enjoying this one pot meal in just 20 minutes.
Homemade Hamburger Helper
1 pound ground beef
1 1/2 cups uncooked shoert whole wheat pasta (penne, fusili, orecchiette)
2 cups milk
1/2 cup beef stock
2 Tbsp flour (all purpose or whole wheat)
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp paprika
One 10-ounce box chopped frozen spinach, thawed, drained and squeezed dry
1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste
Heat a large skillet over medium high heat and brown. Season the meat with salt and pepper while cooking. Once cooked thoroughly, drain off excess fat. Take pan off the heat and add pasta, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika flour, and cheese. Stir in milk and water, mix ingredients to combine. Return the pot to the burner over medium-high heat. Bring mixture just to a boil, then reduce heat to a light simmer. Stir the pasta frequently so it doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan. Add the spinach and mix to combine. Place a lid over the skillet, and allow to simmer until pasta is cooked, about 10-15 minutes. Taste the pasta and adjust the seasoning as needed.