It’s 6 p.m. after a long day. You are exhausted and your family is hungry (again). What do you do? Throw together this quick-to-make cheeseburger pasta skillet. Budget-friendly and kid-approved, this tasty one pan meal made with common kitchen ingredients can be on the table in no time.

Experiment with different pasta and vegetable combinations. Try using whole wheat, legume, high fiber or high protein pasta. Use up leftover cooked vegetables by adding them to the pan towards the end of the cooking time. Sautéed mushrooms are a delicious addition.


1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
¾ lb extra lean ground beef, alternatively use extra lean ground turkey
1 small onion, finely diced
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 ½ tablespoons tomato paste
2 ½ cups beef broth, no salt added
1 cup low fat milk
2 cups chopped frozen vegetables or well-drained canned vegetables
2 cups elbow or cavatappi noodles, uncooked
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese


  1. Heat olive oil in a 12 inch skillet with high sides over medium high heat. Add ground beef and chopped onion and sauté until beef is browned and onion has begun to soften, about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove pan from the burner and drain any fat that may have accumulated and discard fat before continuing.

  1. Add cornstarch, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika and tomato paste to the pan and mix thoroughly. Return the pan to the burner and add the beef broth and milk. Stir to combine. Add the pasta and vegetables if using frozen. If using canned or leftover vegetables, add during the last few minutes of cooking to heat. Bring mixture to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer.

  1. Cook until pasta is soft and much of the liquid has been absorbed, about 9 to 12 minutes. Remove pan from heat and add shredded cheddar. Stir until cheddar has melted into the sauce. Serve hot.

Serves: 4


Calories 520 Total Fat 13 g
Saturated Fat 5 g Monounsaturated Fat 1 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 68 mg Sodium 330 mg
Potassium 470 mg Total Carbohydrate 62 g
Dietary Fiber 6 g Sugars 11 g
Protein 39 g