Someone once said, after reading over this blog, “These recipes are certainly unassuming.” I don’t think she meant it as a compliment. At times, I do enjoy preparing complicated dishes with ingredients that I don’t normally keep in the pantry. (See Filet Mignon with Lobster Thermidor) But most of the time, I am just making dinner. I think most of you are, too.
This is one of those times. My plan was to make something reminiscent of a grilled burger in a casserole. Cheeseburger Pasta is pretty tasty. You could change this depending upon your family’s tastes. Add bacon and a little BBQ sauce to make a Bacon Cheeseburger Pasta. If you like Mushroom Swiss Burgers then stir a tablespoon of Worcestershire into the cheese sauce, add chopped mushroom and switch the cheddar for Swiss. Also, this tastes great as leftovers and freezes well.
Also, I’ve made a change in the way I time my meals. ‘Cooking time’ is just what it says. ‘Active time’ includes cooking and prepping and tells you the amount you will spend in the kitchen. ‘Dinner in’ lets you know how long it will take for you to get dinner on the table.
Servings: 8 -10
Hardware: A cutting board and knives, measuring spoons and cups, a can opener, a skillet, a large pot, a colander, a rubber spatula, a 13 x 9-inch glass baking dish
Time: Cook time: 40 minutes, active time: 20 minutes, Dinner in about an hour
- 16 ounces ziti
- 2 cups chopped onion
- 1 ½ ground chuck
- 1 teaspoon dried mustard
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 3 cups cheese sauce (buy it where you purchase pasta sauces or make your own)
- 1 can of Original Ro-Tel-drained
- 1 cup beef broth
- 2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
- Cooking spray
- Optional: 2 large tomatoes, seeded and chopped, 3 green onions
- Pre-heat the oven to 375˚. Chop the onion. Chop and seed the tomato and green onions if you are using them. Open and drain the Ro-Tel.
- Cook the pasta following package directions. Drain.
- While the pasta is boiling, cook and crumble the ground chuck over medium heat. Sprinkle in the mustard, paprika, salt, cumin and garlic powder. Add the onion and cook until the meat is no longer pink. This should take about 7 minutes.
- Stir the beef, pasta, Ro-Tel, cheese sauce and broth together. I just use the pot I cooked the pasta in.
- Spray the baking dish with cooking spray. Put the pasta mixture into it. Top with the shredded cheese. If you want, you can sprinkle on the green onions and tomatoes. Bake for 30 minutes or until the edges are bubbling. Rest for 10 minutes before serving.