Skillet meals are great... quick and easy.. and always pleases.... and this Italian Ground Beef and Pasta Skillet is no exception.
Why use Hamburger Helper when you can make your own skillet meal.. you can still take some shortcuts and get supper on the table as fast as when you use a boxed mix...
Here are some tips to help you...
I like to use already made pasta rather than adding it to the skillet with water.... my advice.. is plan ahead.. make the pasta ahead of time or make it one night with one meal.. just make a bit extra..... then store it in the fridge... then all you have to do is add it in... saves tons of time and less clean-up.The amount of pasta you use is up to you... 1 cup of dry pasta is about right for 1 pound of beef.... need more?... no problem... just add more beef... and up the pasta quantity accordingly.. cooking for one or two... and need less... no problem... just cut the recipe in half... it's not an exact science.. trust me...
For the Sauce... you have tons of options... you could use jarred pasta sauce... or even.. as I said.. make this a "Round Two" meal, as Sandra Lee calls it... make a pasta and tomato sauce for one night and make extra pasta for this.. same goes with the sauce... that's ideal too.
I keep canned Hunts Tomato Sauces on hand.. they now come in "flavors" so that helps enormously with these kinds of meals.. they are small and store easily... and they make a great base for many recipes... for this one and even pizza sauce...
Maybe you made meatballs one night and a have a few extra left... perfect! .. break them up and use them in this recipe... just cook up less ground beef to compensate...
If you have fresh garlic cloves and onions... you can .. instead of the garlic and onion powders... cut up a small onion and 1 garlic clove... throw it into the mini chopper for a few quick pulses... add it to your ground beef as it finishes browning.. and cook until soft.. then continue with the rest of the recipe..
I added some fresh chopped parsley to this recipe... I almost always have fresh parsley on hand... it's relatively inexpensive... lasts reasonably well.. is easy to freeze.... and is a great addition to so many recipes. The flavor adds so much to dishes... gives it a truly homemade taste...
To freeze fresh parsley.. simply clean it dry it well... and pick the leaves off.. and chop it.. I do it in my mini chopper.. then I scrape it into a small airtight container and pop it in the freezer.. when I need some.. I simply scrape off what I need...
I hope you try this delicious meal... serve it with a salad and some bread... a wonderful and quick supper!
Recipe: Italian Ground Beef and Pasta Skillet
All you need:
For the Beef:
1 pound lean ground beef
2 teaspoons Italian Seasoning
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
Sprinkling of black pepper
For the Sauce
1 can (8 oz) Tomato Sauce (plain or Basil, Garlic and Oregano)
1/2 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
The Rest of the Ingredients
1 cup dry macaroni (elbow, ziti, penne or rigatoni)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 cup shredded Mozzarella
All you need to do:
In a small bowl, combine the tomato sauce, Italian seasoning, garlic powder and Parmesan cheese and set aside.
Cook the pasta according to your package instructions... drain and set aside.
Drop the meat in small pieces in a large skillet... sprinkle with the garlic powder, onion powder, Italian seasoning and black pepper. Brown over medium high heat... drain off any excess fat.
Add the cooked pasta to the skillet, then add the sauce.. mix well. Sprinkle with the chopped parsley and then the Parmesan cheese... cover and cook over medium low heat until the cheese is melted..