This homemade hamburger helper recipe is an easy meal ready in under 30 minutes!
Cheeseburger macaroni is a one pot meal with ground beef and elbow macaroni in an easy cheesy sauce!
This hearty dish is filled with tasty pantry staples! No complicated ingredients.
Homemade Hamburger Helper
This is an easy homemade hamburger helper recipe, perfect for busy weeknights!
- This homemade casserole is a one-pot wonder. The whole dish is made in one skillet for less mess and less cleanup.
- This copycat hamburger helper recipe is made from scratch with just a few simple ingredients.
- Budget-friendly, add extra pasta and sauce to stretch it even further.
- This dinner is just as quick as the boxed version and it’s on the table in less than 30 minutes.
Ingredients for Cheeseburger Macaroni
Ground Beef – Choose lean ground beef and drain off any fat after cooking. Substitute with ground turkey or ground chicken.
Sauce – The pasta is simmered with seasonings in chicken broth and milk until tender. Beef broth can be substituted, but we find chicken broth to give the best flavor.
Cheese – Once the pasta is tender, stir in the cheese. A bold cheese like sharp cheddar cheese adds the most flavor. Try any kind of cheese, but be sure at least one has a sharp, bold flavor.
Seasonings – Salt, paprika, and pepper are the seasonings of choice for this stove-top casserole. For extra flavor add some hamburger helper to the dish or a package of instant soup.
- Swap the milk for light cream for extra creaminess or stir in a little sour cream or Greek yogurt before serving for a little tang.
- Change up the seasonings with a tablespoon of tomato paste or 1 teaspoon of dijon mustard.
- Add fresh vegetables like onion, celery, or tomatoes.
How to Make Homemade Hamburger Helper
There are a variety of flavors of Hamburger Helper; this version is a copycat cheeseburger macaroni recipe.
- Brown the beef and onion in a large skillet (as per the recipe below).
- Add the uncooked elbow macaroni with the remaining sauce ingredients.
- Bring to a simmer until the macaroni is tender, and stir in cheese.
- This macaroni dish will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days and for 1 month in the freezer.
- Thaw in the refrigerator and reheat in the microwave or place in a 350°F oven for 15-20 minutes until heated through.
Homemade Hamburger Helper
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- ⅔ cup diced yellow onion about 1 medium
- 2 cups milk
- 1 ¼ cup chicken broth
- 1 ½ cups uncooked elbow macaroni
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 1 ¾ cups sharp cheddar cheese shredded
- In a small bowl, combine cornstarch, garlic powder, sugar, salt, paprika, and pepper. Set aside.
- Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Brown the ground beef and onion, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until no pink remains. Drain any excess fat.
- Add milk, broth, and elbow macaroni to the beef. Stir the cornstarch and spice mixture. Bring to a boil.
- Once boiling, reduce the heat, and let simmer, covered, for 9-12 minutes or until the pasta is cooked through. Stir the mixture occasionally and, if needed, add more broth or water.
- Remove from heat and stir in cheese until melted. Serve hot.
- Substitute the onion with 1 teaspoon onion powder if desired.
- Depending on the brand of pasta and the size of the pan, you may need a little bit more or less liquid. Add extra broth or water as needed.
- Add any kind of cheese but ensure you use bold cheese, it’s needed for flavor.
- Remove the skillet from the heat before adding the cheese.
- For a little extra kick, add a dash of hot sauce, or some red pepper flakes.
Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.
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