Posts Tagged ‘beef’

We love this recipe which can be frozen and reheated later for an all-in-one, satisfying meal.

2 T. butter or dairy free margarine
1/2 c. chopped onion
2 carrots, chopped
1 T. flour (or GF flour blend)
2 c. (16 oz.) beef broth (we like jarred “Better Than Bouillon,” which is GF)
1/2 c. tomato sauce
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp. oregano
salt and pepper to taste
2-1/2 c. (1 lb.) ground beef or turkey, cooked
2 c. leftover mashed potatoes (preferably made with cream cheese)
1 egg

Melt butter/margarine in a large saucepan and fry the onion and carrots until golden brown.  Stir in the flour and cook one minute.  Gradually stir in beef broth and bring to a boil, stirring constantly.  Add the tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, oregano and seasonings.  Cover the pan.  Reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes.  Remove from heat and add cooked ground meat.  Mix well.

Mix an egg into mashed potatoes.  Pour meat into greased 8″x8″ pan.  Top with potatoes.  Cover with foil and freeze.  Or bake, uncovered, at 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until topping is brown and meat is heated through.  To heat from frozen stage, add 10-15 minutes more baking time.

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In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, I thought I’d share my secret for Reuben Sandwiches without the rye bread.  Long before we were a gluten free household, I decided to see if I could come up with a substitute for rye bread because it tore up the inside of my mouth.  Since I had a bottle of caraway seeds – the little seeds that give rye bread its distinct flavor –  I tried sprinkling them on the sauerkraut in a Reuben sandwich made with whole wheat bread instead.  It worked!  So here’s how I make my mom’s Reuben Sandwich recipe (which doesn’t use Russian dressing like some people use, but feel free to modify it according to your tastes).

A firm, multigrain bread works best because you don’t want the bread to get soggy from the sauerkraut.  Luckily, most GF breads are pretty dense, so your favorite bread should work.

  1. Butter one side of each slice of bread.
  2. Place one slice buttered-side-down on a warm griddle or frying pan, and top with thin slices of corned beef.
  3. Remove sauerkraut with a fork and press against the side of the jar to drain excess liquid before layering on top of meat.
  4. Sprinkle with a generous amount of caraway seeds (which you can probably find in a bulk spice section for pennies).
  5. Top with a slice of Swiss cheese and remaining piece of bread.
  6. When the bottom slice of bread is lightly browned, flip and cook on the other side until the bread is browned and cheese is melted.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

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There’s just something about coming home from church to a house that smells like pot roast.  My favorite Sunday dinner is still roast, potatoes, and carrots cooked overnight in the crock pot.  In our pre-GF days, I would sprinkle a packet of gravy over the veggies and add a little water.  Now I just season the roast with some salt and pepper, then throw in an onion and a little water to keep the veggies moist (I cook my roast on low for 14 hrs., so I usually have to add a bit of liquid).  To make gravy, we add any drippings to some gluten free beef broth and thicken with a little cornstarch mixed with water.  My favorite discovery is jarred Organic Better Than Bouillon (decently priced at Costco), which can be used like bouillon cubes but is better for you and gluten free (many beef broths and bouillons contain wheat).  It’s also way cheaper than buying cans of broth, and allows you to use just a little in recipes that don’t require a whole can or box of broth.  Since it’s low sodium, I like to add a dash of onion salt for a little extra flavor.

I try to take advantage of the fact that we always have leftovers when I cook a roast, by planning to make two favorite quick and easy dishes: French dip sandwiches and shredded beef burritos/chimichangas.  We used to think our French dip days were over since having to give up sub rolls, but we like the GF version I came up with even more!

Gluten Free French Dip Sandwiches

Leftover roast beef
Provolone cheese slices (or Swiss)
Ener-G brand Light Tapioca bread (be sure to get the “light” variety)
Beef flavored Better Than Bouillon
Onion salt

Assemble French dip sandwiches like you would a grilled cheese sandwich, by buttering the bread slices and grilling them with a piece of provolone and a generous amount of roast beef inside.  (To make this dairy free, just omit the cheese and use a dairy free margarine, like Earth Balance.)

In a small saucepan, heat 1-1/2 c. water to boiling.  Add 1-1/2 T. beef bouillon (or more to taste) and a dash of onion salt.  Pour into small dishes and serve with grilled sandwiches.

Gluten Free Roast Beef Burritos or Chimichangas

1/2 c. chopped onion
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
1 T. vegetable oil
1-1/2 c. shredded cooked roast beef
1/2 c. salsa
1/4 tsp. cumin
8-10 corn tortillas
Shredded cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Place tortillas on an extra-large cookie sheet (or 2 baking sheets that fit side by side in the oven), overlapping slightly, if necessary.  Sprinkle with cheese.  Set aside.

Heat oil in a medium skillet.  Saute onion for 2 minutes or until tender.  Add garlic and heat for a minute.  Add the roast beef, salsa, and cumin.   Stir and cook over medium heat for 4-6 minutes until heated through.  Meanwhile, put tortillas in the oven and bake for 5-6 minutes or until softened and just starting to crisp around the edges.

Remove tortillas from oven and immediately place a large spoonful of filling down the center of each tortilla, distributing the filling equally among the tortillas.  Working quickly, roll up the burritos by folding in the short ends, then rolling up the long side.  (The cheese helps it hold together.)  Serve with additional salsa, or fry both sides in a frying pan filled with little oil over medium heat to make chimichangas.

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I can thank $.88 Tuesday at our local dollar store for getting me to try this recipe, since it calls for V8 juice and I happened to find the Kroger brand vegetable juice there.  It’s a great change of pace from chili, and has a nice kick – but follow the amounts listed for the jalapeno pepper slices carefully.  I nonchalantly tossed in an extra one when I first made it, and my family – who likes food with some heat – all had steam coming out of their ears!  If you are sensitive to hot spices, reduce or omit the jalapenos (although they do provide a lot of the flavor).

1 lb. ground beef
4-6 medium red potatoes, cubed (the smaller the cubes, the faster it cooks)
2 c. frozen corn
2 c. sliced celery
1 c. chopped onion
2 tsp. minced garlic
2 10-oz. cans diced tomatoes with green chilis
4 c. V8 (or generic brand) juice
4 pickled jalapeno slices – JUST 4! (I found pickled jalapenos at the dollar store, and the jar lasts a long time in the fridge)

Cook ground beef.  Drain grease.  (If using high fat beef, rinse in hot water and drain a couple times to remove excess fat.  Pat dry with paper towels.)  Add all ingredients to a *5-quart crock pot.  Cover and cook on low 7-8 hrs. or on high 4-5 hrs. (or until potatoes are tender).

Quick, Stove Top Method:
If you don’t want to wait for hours to eat, you can make this in a Dutch oven on the stove.  Cook the beef, onion, and celery until meat is no longer pink.  Drain.  Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, cover and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.

*To cut down on clean up, I love to use the Reynolds Slow Cooker Liners.  While holding the center down inside the crock pot with one hand, I gently stretch it around the edges of my 5-quart oval crock pot.  It also works in my 4-quart round crock pot.  These are a must for messy, tomato-based foods like soup and chili!

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A great way to give yourself a gift is by making one lasagna for dinner and one for the freezer.  Or, if you have a small family, break the noodles in half and make half of the recipe for dinner and the other half for the freezer.  When I make a lasagna to freeze, I prefer to buy a disposable foil pan (from the dollar store) and freeze it in that.  Not only does it keep me from having to use my baking dishes, it makes for quick clean up since I will likely serve it to company or give it away.

9 lasagna noodles (Tinkyada brown rice lasagna noodles are gluten free)
1 lb. ground beef or sausage, cooked
Chopped pepperoni slices, optional (adds more flavor if you’re using beef)
32 oz. spaghetti sauce or 4 c. homemade sauce (we like Ragu Roasted Garlic)
8 oz. (2 c.) mozzarella or Italian cheese blend, divided
1/2 c. cheddar cheese
12 oz. cottage cheese
1 egg
1 t. onion powder
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/2 T. dried parsley
1/8 tsp. pepper
1/2 c. chopped red or yellow bell pepper, optional
1/2 c. grated zucchini, optional (if cooking immediately, fresh spinach can also be used)
Parmesan for sprinkling on top

In a large bowl, mix 1 c. mozzarella, cottage cheese, egg, onion powder, basil, parsley and pepper; set aside.  Pour a thin layer of spaghetti sauce (about 1/2 – 3/4 c.) on the bottom of a lasagna pan or 9″x12″ baking dish.  Add remaining spaghetti sauce to ground beef or sausage, and stir in grated zucchini, if desired.

Layer 3 noodles and spread with half of cheese mixture.  (Don’t worry if the noodles are broken – it’s sort of like putting together a puzzle.)  If desired, sprinkle with pepperoni, bell pepper, and fresh spinach (but only use spinach if baking immediately).  Carefully spread 1 1/4 c. sauce over top.  Layer 3 more noodles and repeat with cheese, veggies, and sauce.  Top with 3 remaining noodles and remaining sauce.  Pour 3/4 c. water (or 1/2 c. if you like your pasta to be firm) into sauce jar and shake.  Pour around edges.

If Baking Immediately:
Cover with foil and bake at 375 for 45 minutes.  Uncover and poke down into the sauce any noodles that are sticking up (otherwise, they’ll be crunchy instead of soft).  Sprinkle remaining 1 c. mozzarella and 1/2 c. cheddar cheese on top.  Bake an additional 15 minutes or until pasta is done.  Sprinkle with Parmesan.

To Freeze:
Wrap tightly with foil.  (I like to write the baking instructions on the foil with a marker so I don’t have to dig out my cookbook when I’m ready to bake it.)  Place remaining cheese for topping in a freezer bag and attach to lasagna.  Freeze.

To Serve:
Thaw and bake 1 hr. at 375 degrees.  Uncover, poke down noodles according to directions above, and sprinkle with mozzarella and cheddar.  Bake an additional 15 min. or until pasta is done.  (If baking from the frozen stage, add an additional 15-30 minutes to the total baking time.)  Sprinkle with Parmesan.

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2 lbs. cooked ground beef
2 med. onions, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
15 oz. can tomato sauce
15 oz. can diced tomatoes and green chilis, drained
1 can white or pinto beans, drained
1 can black beans, drained
1 can red or kidney beans, drained
1 tsp. pepper
2 T. chili powder
1 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 – 1 tsp. seasoned salt, depending on how salty you like it (Lowry’s is GF)
1 tsp. cumin
Dash cayenne, optional for a little heat
1 bay leaf

Combine ingredients in 5-quart crock pot.  Cook 4-5 hrs. on high or 8 or 9 hrs. on low.  Remove bay leaf before serving (or give a prize to whoever finds the bay leaf in their bowl).  This recipe freezes well, and tastes even better the second day.

Tips for saving money on this recipe:

  • You can get by with less ground beef, but the easiest way to save money is by using the higher fat ground beef, which tends to be cheapest.  After draining the grease, rinse it by filling the pan with hot water and draining it into the sink using the lid to hold back the beef.  Pat dry with a few paper towels.  This removes most of the grease and makes it the same fat content as the more expensive, lean variety.
  • When peppers are not in season, they can get to be pretty expensive.  So when I find them for a good price, like $.50 each, I often chop the whole thing and use part of the pepper in a recipe and put the remaining amount in a zippered freezer bag for later use.  Today, I threw a handful of frozen orange pepper in my chili, and experimented with using half a jar of roasted red pepper I bought at the dollar store.  I came by this amount very scientifically, by piecing together parts of a pepper until it looked like I had the equivalent of one pepper.
  • Obviously, you can save money on the beans by using dried beans.  One pound of dried beans is roughly the equivalent of 3 cans of beans.  Start the day before by sorting and rinsing the beans, then placing them in the crock pot covered with water 2 in. above beans.  Don’t turn it on, but just let it soak at least 6 hrs.  Drain and rinse beans.  Place back in slow cooker and cover again with water.  Cook 8-10 hrs. (overnight) on low until tender.  Drain (in the morning) and you’re ready to make your chili.
  • I get all my spices in the bulk section of the store (Winco or Fred Meyer).  Sometimes, I’ll initially buy a new spice at the dollar store, then refill the jar from the bulk section.  I use a lot of spices for cooking flavorful “real” food, and the bulk section allows me to do it for (literally) pennies.

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