Last week I shared a collection of Chicken Recipes for Big Families and today I’m going to share a collection of beef recipes for big families. Please, don’t let the name fool you, if you are a smaller family, these recipes will still work for you. You can always make a big recipe and then either freeze a portion to be used some night when you need a quick weeknight meal or you could give some of it away. Is there an elderly couple you know who could use a nice hot meal? What about a family with a new baby or a sick child; they could surely use a home cooked meal delivered to their door. (Since I follow the Trim Healthy Mama way of eating, if I know how to make these THM friendly, I will include those instructions.)
Beef Recipes for Big Families
1. Indiana Chowder (Ground Beef and Noodles)
If you looked over the chicken recipes for big families, you know I’m a fan of adding noodles to the dish. Any type of pasta, rice, bread or veggies can stretch a meal. Plus, if you happen to have a child who doesn’t like this that, almost all children will happily settle down in front of a plate of buttered noodles.
2. Funky Crockpot Casserole
I know, the name right! Briana is one of my favorite Trim Healthy Mama cooks. She creates delicious recipes, heavy on the dessert recipes…what’s not to love! This recipe is convenience to the max using a crockpot and hot dogs. I consider this a true beef recipe because when I buy hot dogs I only buy the all beef, nitrate free hot dogs.
3. One Pot Taco Casserole
Yes please! This recipe had me at “one pot.” This recipe can easily be Trim Healthy Mama friendly by using Dreamfield’s pasta in place of regular semolina pasta. Serve this delicious casserole with a big garden salad and you have a yummy dinner.
4. Oven Baked Tacos
In case you need another Taco recipe for Taco Tuesday, here is an over baked taco recipe. I love that these are already assembled to make serving a hungry family quick and easy. And as with any taco recipe, you can change up the filling ingredients and increase or decrease the heat depending on your family. Trim Healthy Mama’s, have you tried cheesy tostada shells? Oh My Yum! Just take a handful cheese and place it on a baking sheet in a small circle. Bake until nice and bubbly. Pull the baking pan out of the oven and let the cheesy circles cool. As they cool, they will crisp up leaving you with a crispy, cheesy tostada shell. Delicious!
5. Beef and Bean Burritos
Sticking with a Mexican theme in our recipes, here’s a great recipe for beef and bean burritos. This is another versatile recipe and these types of recipes can also be easily frozen and reheated as needed. Make these burritos up in advance and then flash freeze them on a cookie sheet. Once frozen, place them in a freezer bag. When you’re ready for a burrito for lunch or dinner, pull out the number and need and reheat.
6. Bacon Cheeseburger Gnocchi Casserole
I just don’t know if there is anything a picky child could pick out…maybe the tomatoes, but if they are pureed first in a blender, they will never know! This is a budget friendly meal and can easily be multiplied to serve more.
7. Beef Stir Fry
Stir Fry made the chicken recipes for big families list too. Stir Fry’s are so adaptable to quantity and preference. If your big family doesn’t like peas, leave them out. If you have a child or adult momma (ahem) who doesn’t like mushroom, take their portion out before you add the mushroom. Do you have a picky eater at your table who won;t touch the meal with a ten foot pole? Serve them up a plate of rice and butter and some fresh fruit on the side. Stir Fry’s are also Trim healthy Mama friendly.
8. Beef Mac and Cheese
This recipe sort of reminds me of a Goulash recipe my grandma used to make, only there aren’t big chunks of tomatoes to scare the kids away! Again, another easy recipe to adjust measurements, flavors and ingredients. It also includes pasta which helps stretch the meal. A big piece of garlic bread and a side salad make this a great recipe for big families.
9. Great Meatballs
Three ingredients, crockpot, meatballs…enough said! My family loves this recipe. I’m not sure what the original name was or even where I found it, but the name was quickly changed to “Great Meatballs.” We have every Christmas Eve when we make a smorgasbord of yummy snack food to enjoy before the large Christmas dinner the next day. We also make this in a camper when we’re camping. We also make this for no reason at all. It’s delicious served over rice with some French bread on the side to sop up the yummy sauce.
10. Texas Hash
My husband, one of eight children, grew up eating Texas Hash. This recipe includes bell peppers, his mother made hers with out–that’s one of the beautiful things about recipes for big families, their adaptability. You could add in summer vegetables from your garden…or not. Add more onions and peppers…or none. Use diced tomatoes, or puree them for picky eaters. Brown rice or white…and for mom and dad who want something a little fancier, this makes the perfect Stuffed Pepper filling.
11. Sour Cream Beef Enchiladas
Another one of my favorite sites to search for Trim Healthy Mama recipes is Mrs. Criddles Kitchen. I added her Chicken Enchiladas to my Chicken Recipes for Big Families last week so it only seems right to add her Beef Enchilada recipe. Let me tell you a secret though, and some of you with big families may already know this…I don’t make individual enchiladas. Instead I make it like an enchilada casserole. I layer the sauce, then the tortillas, meat mixture and then cheese…repeat…repeat. This saves so much time in the kitchen.
12. Beef Roast
Of course a Roast recipe would be included. Who doesn’t think of a large family meal after Church and immediately thinks of roast, mashed potatoes, buttered rolls and a dessert? Well, although a great recipe for big families or serving a crowd, you have to watch for sales on roast because they can be e.x.p.e.n.s.i.v.e! When you catch them on sale, stock up! Roasts are so versatile: Pot Roast, Drip Beef Sandwiches, Shredded Meat for Mexican Casseroles, Tacos or Enchiladas.
13. Shepherd’s Pie
Raise your hand if you grew up with a Shepherd Pie recipe. Me too. Made with ground beef, a bag of frozen vegetables, tomato soup and mashed potatoes. Well Jennifer has a yummy, Trim Healthy Mama version…thank goodness for women who love to create or tweak family favorite recipes. A side salad and some fruit make this a great addition to our recipes for big families.
14. No Canned Soup Slow Cooker Beef Stroganoff
Most Stroganoff recipes contain canned soup. Although we all grew up with Cream of Mushroom soup as a staple in our mother’s pantry, more and more people are moving towards less preservative laden recipes. Thsis Stroganoff recipes fulfills all the requirements for a big family meal: quick, easy, inexpensive, can be s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d by adding more meat or more noodles, can be portioned out for those who don’t like an ingredient or for those who just want noodles and butter–one recipe momma, so many options.
15. Sloppy Joes
Of course Sloppy Joes would make the list as well. Ground beef and seasonings served on hamburger buns…family friendly y’all. We used to buy the Sloppy Joe mixture at the grocery store until one day we tried some homemade Sloppy Joes…Yummy! Here’s the non-recipe. Brown a couple of pounds of hamburger or ground venison. Add some diced onion. If you use hamburger, once it’s browned, drain and return to the skillet. Next, add ketchup and mustard…about three times as much ketchup as mustard. Add a little sugar and you have homemade Sloppy Joes! The ingredients are to taste. I like more mustard than my husband, he likes more sugar. Adjust to the right taste and consistency for your family.
16. Frito Chili Pie
Frito Chili Pie is a staple around here in Fall and Winter. We also almost always make a big batch for birthday parties, having friends over and camping. I linked to Pioneer Woman’s Frito Chili Pie, but you could use your own favorite chili recipe and add Fritos. I have to tell you I was shocked…shocked…recently when someone told me they had never heard of Frito Chili Pie! What!! I thought everyone grew up with this as one of their family favorites.
17. Grilled Burgers
Grilled burgers can go for miles and miles…a necessary for big family recipes. Watch for a sale on either ground beef or pre-made patties; typically around holidays like the 4th of July, Labor or Memorial Day. Buy the meat in a quantity. Also buy the buns and chips because they will be on sale also. Grill up a bunch and I mean a bunch of hamburgers. Serve what you’ll need that meal and flash freeze the rest of them. Place them in freezer bags and into the freezer. Add you buns and chips to the freezer as well–yes, chips freeze well! When you’re ready to have hamburgers for dinner, pull out the frozen burger patties and place them into a baking dish covered with foil. Bake them at 350 until they are warm all the way through. Pull your chips out of the freezer as well as your hamburger buns. The last 10 minutes of warming up your hamburgers, place your buns in the over too. A yummy grilled burger night without the grilling. We usually eat our hamburgers with Potato Salad and or Coleslaw to help stretch the meal.
18. Taco Soup
Surely by now you have seen this incredibly easy recipe for Taco soup. This recipe uses packaged Ranch and packaged Taco seasoning, both of which you can make homemade and store in an airtight mason jar to use as needed. Obviously this recipe can be doubled, tripled and multiplied to your heart’s content. Serve this with a thick piece of cornbread and you’ve got a simple, easy inexpensive big family recipe.
19. Ground Beef Stew
Here’s another economical beef recipe from Christy at Southern Plate. Big family recipes require adaptability and this recipe provides. You could use frozen veggies or fresh vegetables form your garden, onions or no onions, spicy V-8 or plain tomato juice. Serve this with hot buttered rolls…Mmmm, delicious!
20. Ground Beef Recipes for Big Families
Finally, this is so much a recipe as a tip, words of wisdom and a major time saver. When you brown meat, brown a bunch. I know, meat comes in pounds, not bunches, but you know what I mean. Even if all you can do based on time and skillet size is brown two pounds instead of one…do it. Use one pound and freeze the other for another meal. If you can brown ten pounds one afternoon or weekend and then freeze them in one pound freezer bags, do it. You’re browning the meat anyway, might as well do as much as you can at one time. You will appreciate those individual sized freezer bags of browned meat one night when you get home late, or don’t know what’s for dinner.
Big Family Kitchen Tools:
12-Cup Food Processor–for quickly chopping large quantities of veggies