Sometimes I crave gnarly foods. Today’s craving is Hamburger Helper and the craving hit me on the way to the parking lot. I started a new job and this week I’m in training, so I’ve been dutifully taking my lunches because I don’t know what there is to eat there and when I arrive home after battling traffic, I buy myself dinner. Me and my belly have hit a take-out wall and I was thinking of what I could throw together when I got home. I mentally searched my cabinets and freezer on my walk and I came up with an at-home version of the gnarly hamburger / cheese / pasta concoction. I just finished eating my rendition and let me tell you, it was far from gnarly.
No shade to any Hamburger Helper enthusiasts. My memory of the first and last time I had it was fond. It was delicious. Sadly, the fallout was great. Pun intended. The problem with the dish is that it includes all the things I’m allergic to except potatoes. Take a look:
My version includes Trader Joe’s Turkey burger patties, vegan cheese sauce, and elbow macaroni. It’s that simple. Try it. I bet it’s cheaper than the stuff in the box + the POUND of ground beef that goes with it.
2 frozen TJ’s Frozen Turkey burger patties
2 cups cooked elbow macaroni pasta prepared per package instructions
1 batch of vegan cheese sauce (~1.5 cups)
1. Prepare pasta according to package instructions.
2. Brown frozen patties in a pan with a tiny bit of EVOO. Season patties with salt and garlic powder on both sides. (Trust me on this one) Cook for 3 minutes on each side and then chunk them up with your cooking utensil. The inside of the patties will still be pink. Cook for an additional 3 minutes. Set aside and start vegan cheese sauce.
3. Prepare cheese sauce according to recipe. While it’s bubbling, add two cups of pasta to the pan with the chunked up turkey meat. Pour vegan cheese sauce over pasta and meat and stir to coat. Serve immediately.