Things are getting busier day by day here. Another night, another casserole. I am trying to not spend any more money before Christmas so we are going to be using everything I can out of the pantry and freezer.
I went searching for a dish that used ground beef and potatoes that I could make and not have to fuss too much over. Not finding anything that did not contain “cream of something” soups I decided to try something on my own.
Both kids were able to help me. One helped me create the cheese sauce and the other helped with the meat.
Not bad. It was like a nice, comfortable hug. This was the comfort food that the season and weather are just screaming for. It was cheesy, melty and filling.
Both kids enjoyed the meal and had two helpings each. I served this with broccoli and a salad.
- 1 1/2 lbs. ground beef
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 (8 oz) block cream cheese
- 1 1/2 cups fat-free half and half
- 1 1/2 tsp powdered garlic
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp salt
- 6 large russet potatoes, scrubbed and thinly sliced
- 3 cups cheddar cheese, shredded, divided
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a large casserole dish with non-stick spray.
- Layer 1/2 of the potatoes in the bottom of the casserole dish. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of cheddar cheese over the potatoes.
- In a large skillet over medium heat cook the ground beef and onion. As the ground beef is cooking break it up into small pieces with the back of your spoon. Once the beef is browned and cooked through drain any excess grease from the pan.
- In a medium saucepan over medium heat melt the block of cream cheese. Stir constantly until smooth. Slowly add the half and half as you continue to stir. Once the milk is fully incorporated with the cream cheese stir in 1 1/2 cups of cheddar cheese, salt, pepper and garlic. If the mixture cooks faster than a slow simmer turn down the burner and allow to slowly simmer for about 3-5 minutes. Mixture should become thicker. It may take a few more minutes of stirring to reach the desired consistency.
- Add ground beef to cheese mixture. Stir well.
- Pour 1/2 of the cheese mixture over the potatoes in the casserole dish.
- Spread the rest of the potatoes evenly over the cheese mixture.
- Pour the remaining 1/2 of the cheese sauce over the potatoes.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes remove potatoes from oven and sprinkle last 1/2 cup of cheese over the top of the potatoes. Return pan to oven for another 10-15 minutes. Potatoes should be fork tender when done.
- Remove pan from oven and allow to set for 3-5 minutes prior to serving.
- If desired in the last-minute of cooking put the pan under a broiler to brown the cheese on top. Watch your dish carefully as it can go from brown and crispy to burnt very quickly!