What can you make with ground beef for dinner? Well, unless you are a vegetarian or a vegan, there are quite a few things you can make from ground beef. Meatloaf or meatballs might be at the top of your list. But what about spaghetti and meat sauce, sloppy joes, or tacos? What about a delicious beef roast for dinner? What’s on your list of things to make with ground beef?
Ground Beef and Potatoes
A lover of flavor, I never interpreted the phrase “meat and potatoes” as a compliment. WELL, for neither the first (nor I am sure, last) time, my assumptions have been proven dead wrong. This easy recipe for Ground Beef and Potatoes is all the things I never imagined something as seemingly simple as fried potatoes and hamburger could be.
It’s flavorful enough to hold my attention, satisfying enough to keep me full, and nutritious enough to be a worthy addition to our healthy dinner rotation.
A mixture of potatoes, lean ground beef, onion, bell pepper, and spices, this beef and potatoes skillet will appeal to picky eaters and discerning palates alike.
Most often, the phrase “meat and potatoes” means a lack of eating adventure. A “meat and potatoes” person shies away from green vegetables, plant-based proteins like tofu, and spices.
As someone who embraces a diverse diet and certainly doesn’t want to waste her time on bland food, I am biased in the opposite direction. How could meat and potatoes possibly be anything but boooorrrrring?
Well my meat and potatoes friends, I hereby admit the fault of my prejudice. It turns out that you’ve been onto something all along.
Lean ground beef is a versatile protein.
It’s healthy in moderation (beef is packed with protein, iron, zinc, and vitamin B12) and when used in recipes that incorporate other important food groups, especially vegetables.
Most often, my healthy ground beef recipes are inspired by world cuisines, like this Taco Skillet and this Korean Beef Bowl.
Until this simple skillet recipe came along, it didn’t occur to me to cook beef with something as basic as white potatoes, because I assumed the results would be ho-hum.
Ummmmm, this assumption is from the same girl who easily demolished an entire sheet pan of these Oven Roasted Potatoes by herself and who happily eats a Potato Frittata three days in a row for lunch.
Nice logic, Erin. (Ben I am sure would be happy to give you endless examples of my contradictory behaviors, but we’ll save that for a different post. Or never.)
While the ingredient list here looks basic, the results are anything but dull.
This ground beef and potatoes skillet is homey and classic to be certain—so yes, the “meat and potatoes” persons in your life will approve—but it’s also interesting enough to appease those seeking more from their meal.
What we have is a ground beef dinner idea for all!
For another family favorite, check out my Homemade Hamburger Helper, one of my all-time most popular recipes with ground beef.
How to Make Ground Beef and Potatoes
Not only is this ground beef skillet sure to be embraced by everyone at your table, but it’s also easy to make and quick to clean up.
You can cook ground beef and vegetables together in the same skillet, leaving you just one pan to wash in the end.
- Lean Ground Beef. The flavorful and scrumptious meat for this dish. I don’t typically use oil with ground beef (the fat in the beef is sufficient enough for it to cook without sticking), but if your beef is ultra lean and your pan seems dry at any point, you can drizzle in a bit of oil to prevent sticking.
- Potatoes. Tender cubed potatoes are a slam dunk pairing with the ground beef. They’re nutritious, crowd-pleasing, and pair beautifully with the spices in this dish.
- Red Bell Pepper. Adds a touch of color, freshness, and sweetness.
- Worcestershire Sauce. Gives the dish depth and umami flavor.
- Dijon Mustard. Its tanginess pairs wonderfully with the potatoes.
- Spices. A blend of smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and oregano elevates this dish from bland to something truly craveable.
- Hot Sauce. For a delicious kick! Use a lot or use a little to fit your taste preferences.
- Sauté the potatoes in oil.
- Brown the beef with the vegetables, Worcestershire, mustard, spices, and hot sauce.
- Cook until the vegetables are tender and the meat is cooked through. Add the green onions. Serve as desired and ENJOY!
Serve ground beef and potatoes with a Merlot, Pinot Noir, or Chardonnay.
- To Store. Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight storage container for up to 3 days.
- To Reheat. Gently rewarm beef and potatoes in a skillet over medium-low heat.
- To Freeze. I do not recommend freezing this dish, as potatoes can have a mealy texture when thawed.
- I love to serve leftovers as a hash by re-crisping the ingredients in a skillet, then topping them with a fried egg. You could also turn leftovers into a scramble by mixing in scrambled eggs instead.
- Turn your leftovers into a portable meal by wrapping them into a whole wheat tortilla. Make sure to warm the filling up first. (Adding some cheese to the wrap would be scrumptious.)
Quick and Easy Ground Beef Dinner Recipes
They all take around 30 minutes (or less).
Scenario: you pulled some ground beef from the freezer to thaw for dinner tonight because you already know that a pound of it can cook in about 8 minutes and be turned into tons of different dinners. The only problem is that you also need a dinner recipe that is super fast, easy, and that the whole family will love—after all you’ve got a busy night ahead.
The solution? One of these 15 dinner recipes that use ground beef and takes around 30 minutes from start to finish. Most of them can be made with kitchen staples like canned beans, dried pasta, or burger buns and are almost guaranteed to be crowd pleasers.
- Best Ground Beef TacosWhether it is actually a Tuesday (you know, for taco Tuesday) or you just need a handheld meal that can be eaten while everyone gets ready for baseball practice, these tacos are simple adaptation of a weeknight classic. Save even more time and swap all the individual toppings for a bagged slaw or salad.
- Easy Stovetop Ground Beef StroganoffClassic Beef Stroganoff takes at least 40 minutes for tender beef, but if you swap the sirloin or chuck for ground beef you can make a creamy and comforting weeknight version in under 30 minutes. You can serve the saucy beef over noodles or rice, which are also quick cooking.
- Minute Chili With Ground Beef and BeansEvery kitchen needs two kinds of chili—the long, slow cooking kind made on Sundays and the lightening fast version that can be made from a few pantry staples on a weeknight. This recipe is the latter and ideal for serving over baked potatoes
- Indoor-Grilled BurgerIf you think burgers are a weekend only recipe, think again. Burgers are actually very quick cooking and can be the on-the-fly dinner you need tonight. Bored of basic burgers? Try out Cajun Burgers or mix up Middle Eastern Spiced Burgers.
- Big Mac SaladThis recipe will make you so happy you skipped the drive-thru! Seriously, this salad starts with seasoned ground beef and ends with special sauce all over crispy lettuce, creamy cheddar, and sweet tomatoes. You’ll be making this even when you aren’t super busy.
- Instant Pot Sloppy Joes (that is not made from a canned base) take a little longer than you think—about 50 minutes with chopping and cooking all the vegetables! So you need these quick Instant Pot Sloppy Joes for those rush dinners, plus most of the cooking time is hands off.
- Texas-Style Chili With Ground Beef and PorkFor those unfamiliar, Texas chili has tons of meat, deep flavor, and no beans. It cooks quickly and can be used for topping tortillas chips or hot dogs for a quick but filling dinner for a crowd.
- The Best Beefy Taco Salad RecipeThis taco salad has it all: tender peppers and onions, crunchy lettuce, and cool sour cream; But the best part of this recipe is actually the salsa cooked ground beef. You brown the beef and add both broth and salsa and then add French dressing off the heat. Sounds weird but this Tex-Mex mash up is a huge hit at the dinner table.
- Instant Pot Stuffed PeppersStuffed peppers are a great way to use up leftovers but the classic oven baked method takes over 90 minutes to make. This Instant Pot version takes a third of the time and doesn’t require pre-cooking the ground beef before pressure cooking.
- Easy Loaded Nachos RecipeNachos are one of the best vehicles for ground beef and this recipe turns the basic sheet pan method into a deep dish casserole of layered beef, cheese, and chips. After baking, top the whole thing with your favorite toppings or scoop up individual servings and let each diner top their own.
- Moroccan Beef KoftasBeef kebab lovers have long been hip to pressing seasoned ground beef onto skewers and grill, and now you can be too. You can cook these skewers on the grill or in a pan and then turn them into a meal with pita, hummus, and chopped fresh veggies in less than 30 minutes.
- Beef and Bean BurritosThe Spruce / Eric KleinbergThese burritos take just over 30 minutes, but the extra 5 minutes is totally worth it. The ground beef and beans are simmered with enchilada sauce and then wrapped up with cheese into a cozy burrito. You’ll even have time to crisp the finished burritos in a hot pan.
- Meaty and Cheesy Stuffed French BreadThis sandwich is a little like a cheesesteak sandwich with its creamy comforting sauce, melty cheese, and tender beef on crispy bread—but, of course, it takes way less time.
- Instant Pot GoulashGoulash dishes range from long braised beef and lamb dishes to quick cooking ground beef varieties. This version utilizes the Instant Pot to cook both the beefy, tomato sauce and the pasta at the same time. From prep to pressure release, this goulash cooks in 24 minutes.
- Walking TacosA walking taco is quite possibly the most fun dinner you can make with ground beef! You brown beef, season it with taco season, add some beans and serve this chili-like base inside a bag of Fritos. You can literally eat this dinner walking out the door, if you need to.