These are our top 10 ground beef recipes that are perfect for ANY weeknight meal. We also share our best tips on how to cook ground beef to use in your favorite recipes!
Tips on how to cook ground beef
- You want BROWN beef, not gray. To avoid this, don’t let it “boil” or “steam” in its own juices. If you beef starts to look like it is drowning, drain off excess liquid.
- Cook your ground beef in a cast iron skillet to get that perfect brown appearance, texture, and flavor.
- If your recipe calls for onion, add it along with the beef or just before you add if you want the onion to soften more.
- Use a flat-edged spatula to break apart the ground beef.
- Avoid stirring constantly. Let it have time to brown up. Break it into pieces and then leave it alone.
- Try to season your ground beef throughout the process.
- When browning beef that is extra lean, you may want to add a little more oil to get that flavor you want.
Dinner ideas with ground beef
These are our Top 10 best ground beef as chosen by YOU, our readers. These are our most viral, commented on, pinned, “liked”, and most viewed ground beef recipes. Try one for dinner tonight!
Easy Instant Pot Meatballs
These Instant Pot Meatballs are the easiest way to make meatballs EVER. No browning or sautéeing necessary. You put them in the Instant Pot Uncooked! They can be shaped, thrown in and cooked without falling apart AT ALL. Let the Instant Pot do all the work! Try cooking them in our Homemade Spaghetti Sauce and you have a spaghetti dinner that can’t be beat!
Crock Pot Vegetable Beef Soup
Crock Pot Vegetable Beef Soup is a warm, delightful bowl of comfort food. One of the easiest soups to throw together and always a family favorite! It smells SO good when it has been simmering for hours in the Crock Pot. This is one of our very favorite ground beef soup recipes!
Easy Beef and Noodles Skillet
This Easy Beef and Noodles Skillet can be made in just 15 minutes! It is perfect for those busy nights when you need dinner quick. Ground beef and noodles with a creamy, cheesy sauce makes for a delicious comfort meal the whole family will love! It will quickly become one of your favorite, easy ground beef recipes!
White Castle Sliders
White Castle Sliders you can make at home! If you’ve always wanted to replicate these popular burgers, this recipe is the real deal. You can make a bunch at one time and it is SO easy! These are one of the most popular beef appetizers on our blog. Make them and you will see why!
Claim Jumper Meatloaf
Claim Jumper Meatloaf is another favorite copycat recipe using ground beef. This tastes just like what they serve at the restaurant. Full of chopped vegetables and bursting with flavor! I’m not even a huge fan of meatloaf, but this is DELICIOUS!
Mexican Lasagna is a cross between lasagna and enchiladas. Corn tortillas, ground beef, a rich tomato sauce, and cheese layered and topped with your favorite Mexican toppings! This dish has been a favorite in our family for years, for generations even! It is such a great comfort food. My mom would make this a lot when we were growing up and we always loved it. It is one of those “please everyone” dishes.
Olive Garden Pasta E Fagioli
This Pasta E Favioli Soup is one of our family’s most favorite cold weather meals. It reminds me of fall leaves, football season, sweaters and cozy fires. It’s my top choice at Olive Garden every time we go there to eat. This copycat recipe tastes exactly like the popular restaurant dish, but makes enough to serve a crowd and can be made right at home.
Frikadeller (Danish Meatballs)
Frikadeller is a savory meatball dish that is popular in Denmark. It has a rich, creamy sauce making it comfort food at it’s best! For leftovers (if you really want to do it like the Danes) slap a few of these bad boys onto some toast (or bread) with some mayo. Oh man, it is GOOD.
Southwestern Frito Chili Pie
Chili Frito Pie is the perfect comfort dinner. Delicious layers of crunchy Fritos, Southwestern chili, and melty cheese make for a winning weeknight meal! We like this “Southwestern” spin on a traditional chili casserole by adding some salsa, corn, taco seasoning and some diced chiles. Use our method below on how to cook ground beef to make it perfect!
Cheesy Beef and Rice Skillet
Cheesy Beef and Rice Skillet is an easy, delicious one pot meal for any night of the week. Have dinner on the table in less than 30 minutes! This easy ground beef recipe was a regular rotation meal when we were growing up. It is easy to make variations of this recipe by adding different veggies and spices. Give it a try tonight!
How to Cook Ground Beef for Ground Beef Recipes
Ground Beef Recipes - How to Cook Ground Beef
- Remove ground beef from refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature (about 20-30 minutes).
- In a medium or large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat (a little closer to the "high" side than the "medium" side).
- Add ground beef to pan and press down to cover the bottom of the pan (like you are making a big hamburger), then break into large pieces (A wooden spatula with a big flat edge works best for this).
- Allow to cook for 3-4 minutes without stirring or breaking up more. Try to break that habit of adding the beef to the pan and immediately chopping up into little tiny pieces right off the bat.
- Flip the ground beef over, season with salt (or any other seasonings your particular recipe calls for) and cook on the other side for another couple minutes.
- After a couple mingles, start breaking into smaller pieces. Resist the urge to stir constantly or the beef won't get "browned". Continue to brown by stirring, then waiting a minute or so, then stirring again until the ground beef is brown and cooked through.
- For more tips on cooking ground beef, see notes above.
Recipe tips on how to cook ground beef inspired by Alton Brown