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No, You Don't Have to Make Your Own Ketchup {Recipe: Homemade Cheeseburger Helper} 1
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Dad's Cheeseburger Helper

Course: Main Course
Author: Ann Timm


  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. onion powder or 2-3 tsp. onion flakes
  • ¼ tsp. garlic powder or 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1 ¼ c. tomato sauce
  • hefty squirt of mustard
  • 1 ¾ c. water
  • ½ tsp. salt or more to taste
  • 2 ½ c. pasta whole wheat works fine, any shape
  • 2 c. shredded sharp cheddar cheese


  • Brown and drain beef.
  • Stir in pepper, onion powder, garlic, tomato sauce, and mustard.
  • Pour in water and pasta.
  • Bring to a boil and reduce heat.
  • Cover and simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally until the water is absorbed and the pasta is cooked.
  • Turn the heat off and stir in the cheese.

GF adaptation:

  • Use gluten-free pasta (tested with brown rice pasta) and reduce the water by a 1/4 c. to avoid mushiness.