This Homemade Hamburger Helper recipe is a cheesy, comforting, and delicious one-pot meal the whole family will love! So much better than the boxed version, have this easy 30-minute dinner ready and on the table in just 30 minutes!
Easy One-Pot Homemade Hamburger Helper
Hamburger helper is delicious. It just is.
Today we’re making our own homemade version of hamburger helper.
Made with simple ingredients, this version is just as easy to make as boxed hamburger helper and is soooo much better. Ready in right around 30 minutes, clean up is a breeze (you only need one pot!), making it a perfect yummy weeknight dinner.
Serve with a side of veggies like peas or a small green salad and be amazed as your picky eater and hubby (or wife!) devour their entire dinner.
How to Make Homemade Hamburger Helper
Get started making this cheeseburger macaroni hamburger helper by finding a large skillet or Dutch oven and browning your ground beef with salt, black pepper, and paprika, until it is no longer pink in the middle.
Reduce the heat to medium and add the onions. Cook for a few minutes, stirring often, then add the chili powder and garlic powder (optional seasoning includes onion powder, cumin, or Italian seasoning). Cook until the onions are tender.
Add the ketchup, mustard, noodles, and broth (beef broth, vegetable broth, or even chicken broth). Cover and simmer until the noodles are cooked, this should take around 12-15 minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in the sour cream (perfect for extra creaminess) and shredded cheese.
- Use ground turkey or ground chicken in place of the ground beef to cut down on the total amount of fat.
- I used elbow macaroni. Feel free to use a different small pasta shape like ditalini, shells, orecchiette, etc.
- As written, this recipe is mild. To add a little heat, add half to one teaspoon of cayenne powder at the same time as the other seasonings for a little kick.
- If possible, shred your own cheese. It melts better.
- If halfway through cooking your pasta it seems that you need a bit more broth, don’t be afraid to a little more, about a half cup at a time.
- To make this recipe gluten-free, swap regular pasta for your favorite gluten-free macaroni.
Looking for more easy one-pot dinner ideas? Try these reader favorites:
- American Goulash Recipe
- One-Pot Creamy Mushroom Tortellini Recipe
- One-Pot Chicken and Rice Recipe with Olives
- One-Pot Lasagna Soup Recipe
- Mushroom Rice Pilaf Recipe
Have you tried making this Homemade Hamburger Helper Recipe?
Tell me about it in the comments below! I always love to hear your thoughts. And tag me #theforkedspoon on Instagram if you’ve made any of my recipes, I always love to see what you’re cooking in the kitchen.
One-Pot Homemade Hamburger Helper Recipe
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 lb lean ground beef
- 1 tsp salt (plus more to taste)
- ½ tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 onion (finely chopped)
- 1 tsp chili powder
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 1 tbsp ketchup
- ½ tsp mustard
- 1½ cups elbow macaroni
- 3½ cups low sodium beef broth
- ¾ cup sour cream
- 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese (shredded)
- fresh parsley (to garnish)
- Add the olive oil to a large skillet or Dutch oven set over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef, salt, black pepper, and paprika. Cook the ground beef until no longer pink and use a wooden spoon or spatula to break it into smaller pieces.
- Stir in the diced onion and mix well to combine with the ground beef. Reduce heat to medium and season with chili powder and garlic powder. Continue to cook over medium heat, stirring often, until onions are tender.
- Add the ketchup, mustard, macaroni noodles, and beef broth. Stir well to combine.
- Cover and simmer for 12-15 minutes, or until noodles are cooked to al dente.
- Remove from heat and stir in the sour cream. Slowly add the cheddar cheese, stirring continuously to prevent the cheese from clumping together.
- Serve garnished with minced parsley, if desired.
- Use freshly shredded cheese rather than pre-shredded bagged cheese. It tastes better and blends better, too.
- You may need to add a little extra beef broth or water, especially if you use larger noodles like penne or large shells.
- Speaking of pasta, use whatever you have on hand, except for maybe long stringy noodles like angel hair or spaghetti noodles.
- Add some heat. Season with a pinch (or two) or cayenne powder or a teaspoon of red pepper flakes. You could also season with a dash or two of hot sauce.
- Keep leftovers stored in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Reheat on the stovetop with a splash of broth or water over low heat, stirring often. Or in the microwave.
(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.)