Kids and adults alike will LOVE this rich and creamy One Pot Cheeseburger Macaroni! This 30 minute meal is a family favorite!
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Homemade Hamburger Helper
Finding a recipe the whole family loves feels a bit like winning the lottery these days. With 4.5 and 1.5 year old boys, we never quite know what to expect when we sit down for a meal.
But occasionally, a recipe wins big, and instead of complaints we’re met with the blessed silence of two hungry kids gobbling up their dinner.
Such was the case with this One Pot Cheeseburger Macaroni–a delightfully creamy, cheesy concoction that combines two of our favorite meals in one dish.
This recipe reminds me of an upgraded, homemade version of the boxed hamburger helper I grew up with. It was a big hit with the kids, but it also won big for me. This Cheeseburger Mac checks all the boxes I’m looking for in a weeknight dinner.
- It’s quick. You can have this on your table in 30 minutes flat.
- It’s made in a single pot. Hallelujah. Less dishes.
- It’s made with pantry staples. This meal is perfect for those last days before your grocery run when the fridge is starting to empty.
- It’s delicious. Cheesy, hearty, with a hint of sweetness and tang, this Cheeseburger Macaroni really does taste like a burger in pasta form!
Ingredients in Cheeseburger Macaroni
Here’s what you’ll need to make it:
- 1 lb. ground beef– This is more pasta heavy than meat heavy. If you like more meat, feel free to use 1.5 pounds!
- 1 small yellow onion– I hated onion as a child, but it really does add so much flavor. We told my son the sauteed onions were little pieces of pasta and he ate it up without complaint.
- Garlic– Because, everything’s better with garlic.
- Beef broth– The pasta cooks in the beef broth, giving it an extra savory flavor.
- Macaroni Noodles– I love macaroni noodles because they’re quick cooking and very kid friendly. You can substitute shells or penne, but you’ll likely need 1/2 cup more broth and a few more minutes of cooking time.
- Canned tomatoes–
- Ketchup and mustard–Yes, you heard that right! We’re adding our favorite burger toppings to pasta. It sounds weird, but the combo adds just the right amount of sweetness and tang to make this really taste like Cheeseburger macaroni!
- Milk– Here’s where the creaminess comes in! We prefer whole milk for this.
- CHEESE!– Arguably the most important part of the cheeseburger, we never want to settle for any old cheese. We recently discovered Cooper® Sharp American Cheese and have been loving it for all kinds of recipes! Since it’s start over a century ago, Cooper® has earned a loyal following in the Northeast, and it’s now available to ship nationwide. Cooper® is rich, creamy, and has a one-of-a-kind sharp flavor that definitely stands out from other deli cheeses. It also melts like a dream, which was a huge bonus for this recipe!
How to Make Cheeseburger Pasta
- Grab a BIG skillet. You’ll need a deep, large 12 inch skillet so everything can fit!
- Saute a pound of ground beef over medium heat for a few minutes, then add a diced yellow onion. Let everything sizzle together, until the beef is browned and onion is softened.
- Sprinkle in some minced garlic and saute until you can smell the goodness. Season the beef mixture to taste with salt and pepper.
- Stir in the beef broth, canned tomatoes, and ketchup and crank up the heat! Bring everything to a boil then toss in the macaroni noodles. Let it boil for 7-8 minutes or until most of the liquid is absorbed and the pasta is al dente.
- Stir in the milk, cheese, and mustard until it’s melty and creamy and you can’t wait to dive in!
- Want to kick it up an extra notch? Sprinkle the top with more cheese and pop it under the broiler for a few minutes.
One Pot Cheeseburger Mac for a Crowd
This recipe makes a BIG batch–enough to feed 6-8 people, depending on your hunger levels and whether or not that number includes any teenage boys. 🙂 Feel free to halve the recipe if you prefer.
We like to serve cheeseburger pasta with some dill pickles on the side for a little freshness and tang. I know it sounds weird, but it really works!
If you’ve got leftovers, store them in the fridge and reheat by placing them back in a pot with an extra splash of milk. Stir everything together until it’s heated and creamy again!
More Cheesy Recipes You’ll Love
Craving more creamy, cheesy dishes? Cooper® Cheese is incredibly versatile and can be sliced, shredded, or cubed to use in all your favorite comfort food recipes, including:
- Pastas, like my Creamy Mac and Cheese, it’s cousin Baked Mac and Cheese with Panko Breadcrumbs, and this ultra creamy Basil Pesto Fettucine Alfredo.
- Burgers– Pimento Cheeseburgers, Taco Burgers, and classic Bacon Cheeseburgers are three of our favorites!
- Sandwiches, like these Loaded Slow Cooker Sloppy Joes or Grilled Cheese.
- Casseroles, including this family favorite Green Bean Tater Tot Casserole.
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 1 small yellow onion, chopped
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 4 cups beef broth
- 1 14 ounce can diced tomatoes with their juices
- 4 Tablespoons ketchup
- 16 ounces macaroni noodles
- 2 teaspoons mustard
- 3/4 cup milk
- 2 1/2 cups shredded Cooper® Sharp White Pasteurized Process American, divided
- In a large, oven safe skillet over medium heat, saute the beef for 2-3 minutes or until some of the fat is rendered. Add the onion and continue to cook until beef is browned and onion is softened. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute. Drain off any excess fat, then season the beef to taste with salt and pepper.
- Stir in the beef broth, canned tomatoes, and ketchup. Turn the heat up to high and bring to a boil. Add the macaroni noodles and cook for 7-8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until liquid is absorbed and noodles are al dente.
- Lower the heat, then stir in the mustard, milk, and 2 cups of shredded cheese until melted and creamy. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top then broil for 3-4 minutes or until browned and melty. (optional)