One-pot Cheeseburger Pasta

Photo Credit: Tatertots & Jello

Everyone can use a few more easy dinner ideas to add to their weekly menu. This easy one-pot Cheeseburger Pasta has you covered. The layers of tender noodles, savoury meat and sauce with gooey cheese to create the same flavours of a cheeseburger. So if you and your family love pasta, and you love cheeseburgers, you'll totally love this family friendly meal idea. Jen from Tatertots and Jello shares that she made this recipe for her kids and their friends who were coming over to watch a show together. She decided to take one of the main foods eaten on the show, which happens to be cheeseburgers from a diner and combine all of the flavours together into an easy dinner idea. So instead of having to make a bunch of individual cheeseburgers, Jen only had to make one pot of pasta. It's all made in one pot from start to finish which makes this already easy dinner idea even easier. You don't even have to boil the noodles separately since they too are cooked along with everything else.

From start to finish this recipe will only take about 20 minutes to make which is perfect for families. Most family friendly meal ideas should be able to be made in an hour or less without too much fuss. So for this recipe, you will need a box of dried pasta. You can use any style you like, but smaller noodles seem to go best with this recipe to make it like a cross between macaroni and cheese and a cheeseburger. Jen used campanelle noodles, but you could also use rotini or macaroni noodles. If you are gluten sensitive or have someone in your home who is, you can also swap out the noodles for gluten-free noodles. There are gluten-free noodles made with rice, corn or quinoa so you can go to a health food store and take your pick. Maybe your grocery store even carries some different types of gluten-free noodles. You will also need olive oil, tomatoes, onion, garlic, tomato sauce, chicken stock, cheese, and the meat which could be beef like Jen used. Or, you could also use chicken or turkey meat for a leaner option. When you are using meat, and animal products make sure you always try and get organic whenever possible to avoid all of the hormones and antibiotics.

If you'd like to try out a vegan version of this recipe, you could substitute the ground meat for a veggie meat instead, or you could leave it out altogether. For the cheese, you can use a vegan cheese like Daiya, or, if you don't mind eating cheese, a cheese that's easier to digest is goat's cheese. You don't have to use the soft goat cheese either; there are plenty of hard goat cheeses like mozzarella, cheddar and swiss. It's also quite easy to make a vegan cheese sauce from almonds or other nuts like cashews. They seem to have the perfect creamy consistency for making a cheesy flavoured sauce when mixed with a bit of water and lemon juice. You can also put some of the lemon zest in for extra flavour, as well as sea salt, garlic and some nutritional yeast which does taste a lot like cheese on its own too. When you serve up this cheesy, hearty pasta, you can add toppings like lettuce, fresh tomatoes, onions and even pickles if you want to be daring. That way you also get a salad mixed in with your pasta for some much-needed fibre. Enjoy this and other family friendly meal ideas from Tatertots and Jello.***

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