30 minute meal, Entree

Cowboy Casserole

My son came home from school the other day with a Betty Crocker Bisquick cookbook he had checked out of the library.  This recipe is one of the ones we picked out together to try and I’m so glad we did. It was simple to prepare and incredibly hearty. If you don’t have Bisquick on hand you can use the prepared Pillsbury biscuits.

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 16 oz can baked beans
  • 1/2 cup barbeque sauce
  • 2 cups Original Bisquick mix
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 425.  Brown ground beef in a oven-proof skillet (I use my cast-iron one). Drain off the excess fat, then add in the beans and barbeque sauce. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, mix the biscuit ingredients until a soft dough forms.  Drop by large spoonfuls on top of the meat mixture.  Bake for 15-20, or until brown.  Take out the skillet and sprinkle on the cheddar cheese, returning to the oven to melt the cheese. Serves 6.

*If you don’t have an oven-proof skillet you can transfer the meat mixture to a ungreased casserole dish and finish the dish in that.

30 minute meal, Entree

Beef and Bean Crispitos

My oldest son came home from school one day asking me to find a crispito recipe like the one he loves at school.  This is what I came up with.  It’s not exactly like what he has at school, but we love them just the same, and they have the added benefit of being a 30 minute meal. Photo and recipe inspiration courtesy of letsdishrecipes.com.

  • 1 can refried beans
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 3 Tbs taco seasoning
  • shredded cheese
  • 8″ flour tortillas
  • vegetable oil for frying
  • salsa or sour cream for dipping

Brown your ground beef, then add 1/3 cup of water and the taco seasoning, (you can substitute a packet of taco seasoning for the homemade stuff if that’s what you have).  While the beef is browning, heat up the refried beans in a microwave safe bowl til hot, and shred your cheddar cheese.  When all the components are ready, heat up a thin layer of oil over medium-low to medium heat.  Spread a line of refried beans in the center of the tortilla, then ground beef, then cheese.  Roll them tightly, leaving the ends open.  Fry in batches, seam side down first for 30-60 seconds or until golden brown.  Serve with salsa or sour cream.

30 minute meal, Entree

Stuffed French Bread

I’ve been very into 30 minute meals lately because as my kids have gotten older things have gotten more hectic. This meal was easy and filling and delicious I knew I had to add it to my rotation.  I left out the celery and only half a can of soup. Recipe and photo courtesy of http://life-in-the-lofthouse.com.

  • 1 loaf french bread
  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 tablespoon chopped parsley (optional)

Preheat oven to 350.  Slice the french bread in half, lengthwise, so you have two equal pieces.  Scoop out the bread in the center of each piece.  Place bread in a large bowl and tear into small chunks. Set the two halves of french bread onto a large baking sheet.  Set aside.  Brown the ground beef and onion in a large skillet, over medium-high heat.  Drain any grease.  Add the celery and garlic to skillet.  Cook a few minutes until celery is tender. Next, add soup, milk and Worcestershire sauce.  Season with salt and pepper.  Stir and cook mixture until heated; another 5 minutes or so. Add the beef mixture to the bread in the large bowl. Stir to combine.  Pour mixture into the center of one half of the french bread.  Spread out evenly.  Top the mixture with the shredded cheese. Top with the other half of bread. Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until cheese is melted.  Remove from oven and let stand 5 minutes before slicing and serving.



30 minute meal, Entree, Gluten-Free

Korean Beef

This recipe is another 15 minute meal that is so easy, and so delicious.  My older boy asked for seconds so I knew it was a winner.  Recipe and photo courtesy of sixsistersstuff.com.

  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon crushed red peppers
  • salt
  • pepper
  • rice, cooked

Heat a large skillet over medium heat and brown hamburger with garlic in the sesame oil. Drain most of the fat and add brown sugar, soy sauce, ginger, salt and pepper and red peppers. Simmer for a few minutes to blend the flavors. Serve over steamed rice and top with chopped green onions if desired.

30 minute meal, Entree

Beef and Bean Tostadas

This recipe is a variation of The Pioneer Woman’s beef and bean burritos.  I love this dish because while simple, it reminds me of my Tex-Mex upbringing. If making for kids, take the spice down just a touch. I also halve the recipe for my family of 4.  Recipe courtesy of thepioneerwoman.com.

  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • 1/2 whole onion
  • 1 7 oz can El Pato tomato sauce
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • cumin, oregano, chili powder, garlic, to taste
  • 3/4 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 1 can refried beans
  • tostadas

Brown ground beef with onion and season to taste. Pour in sauce and simmer over low heat. Add water if mixture gets too dry. Heat refried beans in a saucepan. Add cheese and stir in till melted. Keep warm. Spread a small amount of beans on each tostada. Add meat and sprinkle with grated cheddar. Broil until the cheese melts.

30 minute meal, Entree

Meatloaf Muffins

This is another great weeknight recipe because it only takes about 30 minutes from counter to table. The individual portions make it great for kids, or leftovers the next day.

  • 3 lbs ground beef or turkey
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1 cup cracker or bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar

Mix together all the ingredients. Spoon into muffin tins that has been sprayed with non-stick spray. Bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes. Top with your favorite bbq sauce or ketchup.

30 minute meal, Appetizer, Entree

Meatball Sub Cupcakes

This recipe got a “Wow!” from my husband after the first bite.  The best part is they take 10 minutes to assemble and 15 to bake, which makes them great for a busy weeknight. Recipe and photo courtesy of plainchicken.com.

  • 1 can of refrigerated crescent roll dough
  • 4 oz cream cheese, soften
  • 3/4 teaspoon italian seasoning
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella
  • 12 1 oz meatballs
  • spaghetti sauce

Preheat oven to 375. Spray 12 regular size muffin cups with cooking spray. Set aside. Remove dough from can; press seams to seal and press into an 8×18 inch rectangle. Cut dough into 12 squares. Press squares into muffin pan cups.
Combine cream cheese, Italian seasoning and 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese. Divide the cream cheese mixture in the bottom of each muffin cup. Place meatballs on top of cheese; top each meatball with spaghetti sauceSprinkle with remaining mozzarella cheese. Bake 15 to 18 minutes, or until golden brown.

*If you grocery store carries the seamless Pillsbury dough sheet this would be great for that.

*I had 1/2 oz meatballs so I made these in mini muffin cups and they worked great. Perfect appetizers for a party.