I recently discovered a fantastic time/budget saving tip and I'm embarrassed that I didn't think of it sooner because it makes preparing meals so simple and has cut our grocery bill substantially.
We buy ground beef when it goes on sale, or from Costco (Costco is $2.49 a lb). This week we got 10 lbs. for $1.99 a lb from Rainbow- this is a fantastic deal and from now on I'm not paying more than $1.99 a lb for ground beef. I use to pay at least $5.00 a lb before buying in bulk- that is just plain spending too much!
This week we took 5 lbs. of beef and browned it with onion and garlic and drained the grease. We bagged it up in 1 lb. lots using Zip-Loc bags and freeze until needed. We use this beef for tacos, meat sauce for spaghetti, hotdish and Sloppy Joe's! It takes all of 10 minutes to make any of the above and I've found that it takes a very short amt. of time to defrost, which makes life SO much easier while trying to cook and care for your kids.
With the rest of the beef we decided to make hamburger patties. Jalapeno Popper burgers and Buffalo Bleu Cheese burgers. See recipe for Jala burgers below. I freeze the patties using press and seal wrap so they are individually wrapped and then place in freezer bags with label and date. We ended up with 20 burgers and 2 lbs of beef left over for meatballs or whatever we decide to do with it.
1 lb ground beef
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup Mozzarella Cheese
1 4oz can diced jalapenos
1-2 Tbsp. of Hamburger grill seasoning
Mix all ingredients in large bowl using hands. Make sure all ingredients are mixed thoroughly. Form into hamburger patties and grill! Top with sour cream and salsa or melt mozzarella cheese on top.