All Purpose Ground Meat Mix

 Best of MTTD:

This post originally ran on July 12, 2010.

With the economy taking a turn for the worse recently;  and with inflation rising hourly it seems,  I thought today would be a good day to remind us all that cooking in bulk will help save both money and time.


I found this easy, useful, and wonderful recipe at this really neat website I think many of you will like.

One of the best and easiest ways to save money is to buy in bulk and/or to stock up on non-perishables when items are on sale. If you have a big freezer and can stock up on perishables too, that is wonderful!

I think I have mentioned several times I have what I call my ‘depression stash’. That is, lots of canned goods and pantry items; just in case. I have tuna fish, canned salmon, pasta, tomato sauce and paste, diced tomatoes, canned and frozen vegetables and fruits, soups, pasta, rice, beans, peanut butter. Just some basic staples. Things I can make a meal with.

Well this new site, Cheap Eats, goes one step further. This site has a recipe for a Meat Mix that you can make ahead of time, in bulk,  and freeze. This is good not only during a recession, but for busy moms and dads and families any night of the week any time.

When ground beef is on sale, you can buy in bulk and make the mix up, freeze it and then on a busy night take some of the mix out, defrost and you are half-way to having a home cooked meal on the table lickety-split. Cook once and have several meals. What’s not to like????? 

I am posting the recipe here with written permission from Deborah Taylor-Hough. You will also want to check her site out by clicking this link, Cheap Eats. I have also added her website to my list of Favorites Blogs, a list found to the right of this post.

This recipe also meets my other criteria ~ Quick and Easy!!!

One of the best things is Deborah shares several recipes you can make with this mix as well.

Cook once. Nine recipes. I like! I like a lot!!!! 

So with no further ado, following  is the main recipe and then other recipes you can use the Mix  in. 

Featured Recipe          All-Purpose Ground Meat Mix


 This is what you need to make about 12 cups of mix:

5 pounds ground meat (beef or turkey)
2 cups celery, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cups onion, chopped
1 cup green pepper, diced
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon salt (optional)

Here is what you do:

Brown meat in a large pot. Drain. Stir in celery, garlic, onion, green pepper, salt and pepper; cover and simmer about 10 minutes until vegetables are tender but not soft.

How easy is that!!!!!

You can use this mixture immediately during your cooking session or freeze it in two-cup portions for later use. If you are going to freeze the mix let it cool completely before you put it in the freezer.

Some Suggested Uses


Add one package taco seasoning to two cups All-Purpose Ground Meat Mix (follow package directions for amount of water). Freeze. To serve: thaw and heat taco mixture; prepare tacos as you would normally.

Taco Potatoes

Follow instructions for taco mixture (above), but serve the mixture over baked potatoes instead of tortillas or taco shells. Top with grated cheese, diced tomatoes, sour cream, sliced green onions, sliced black olives and salsa. 

Easy Taco Salads

Follow instructions for taco mixture; place a layer of corn chips or tortilla chips on plate; spoon taco mixture over chips; add layer of shredded lettuce; add diced tomatoes, sliced green onions, sliced black olives, sour cream and salsa.

Sloppy Joes

In a large skillet, place two cups Ground Meat Mix, one (10 3/4 ounce) can tomato soup, two tablespoons brown sugar, and one teaspoon prepared mustard. Stir. Cover and simmer ten minutes. Serve ladled onto hamburger buns.

The All-Purpose Ground Meat Mix can also be used for: stuffed peppers, chili, spaghetti, and baked ziti

Check out Deborah’s site (see link above or below.) She also has several books on frugal living and cooking in bulk you might want to get at the library. In her books are more recipes using this Ground Meat Mix. You can find the titles at Cheap Eats.

This is a fantastic recipe, a fantastic way to save money, and a fantastic way to save time.

Bon appétit!!!


5 pounds ground beef              $6.45
2 cups celery, chopped            $1.29
1 clove garlic, minced              $0.78
2 cups onion, chopped             $0.10
1 cup green pepper, diced        $0.50
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon salt (optional)

Total cost = $6.45
Cost per meal (5 meals) = $1.82
Cost per person per meal (3 people) = $0.61

Quote of the Day

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort. 

Herm Albright, quoted in Reader’s Digest, June 1995


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