Thursday, September 23, 2010

Hamburgerless Helper to the Rescue: Quick Meals

One of my Facebook followers asked for some ideas on how to prepare hamburger helper without the hamburger. He noticed that the ingredients included in the whole grain products did not contain any non-vegetarian ingredients and thought they would make a great meal, but that they needed something more.
I decided to go and do some research and find some ideas for him. I've given two ideas for each of the four whole grain hamburger helpers; that's 8 meals! These make great lunches for the busy mom or student, and a quick dinner when you don't want to think too much! So skip the meat and enjoy!

Whole Grain Hamburger Helper: Stroganoff
Suggestion 1: A great alternative to beef stroganoff has always been mushrooms! Saute a half a pound of cremini or baby bella mushrooms and add them when you would the hamburger.
Suggestion 2: Give it double the veggies! Use a can of prepared tomato basil soup instead of water (Progresso has a good one!) and add 2 cups frozen broccoli, thawed, when it's done cooking.

Whole Grain Hamburger Helper: Cheeseburger Macaroni
Suggestion 1: Add 1/2 cup of salsa and 1/2 cup of sour cream along with a can
of drained black beans and 1/2 cup of corn and top with sliced olives for a yummy Mexican inspired pasta dish!
Suggestion 2: Try adding 1 cup frozen peas and a 1/4 cup of sun-dried tomatoes,the dry packed kind are pretty cheap, and are great to have on hand,. Sprinkle with some parmesan cheese for some extra cheesiness!

Whole Grain Chicken Helper: Lemon and Herb Chicken
Suggestion 1: My absolute favorite thing with lemon is asparagus. Toss 2 cups steamed chopped asparagus with the prepared pasta. Skip the lemon glaze though... just trust me!
Suggestion 2: Use Morning star Meal starter chicken strips in place of the chicken, toss in a cup of mixed veggies and chill for a wonderful pasta salad.

Whole Grain Chicken Helper: Honey-Mustard Chicken
Suggestion 1: Use tempeh cutlets in place of the chicken. Place lettuce and the helper along with some sour cream in a tortilla for a yummy wrap for on the go!
Suggestion 2: Um... this one is baffling me... most likely because I don't really like mustard... anyone have any other suggestions? Write them in the comments!

I hope these ideas have helped! If you have any more ideas for quick mix-ins or substitutions please leave them in the comments!
Also, tomorrow we will be having a special quest post! Yup, The Recovering Meataholic Dad (aka, My Husband Dominic) has a recipe to share with you! So be on the lookout!
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1 comment:

  1. I wonder if the honey-mustard chicken one would be good with chopped boiled eggs. I appreciate your blog because we are trying to eat more vegetarian, with meat as an accent rather than a centerpiece.