Tag: cooking with beef

Sweet and Sour Meatballs

Not sure what the weather as been like for you lately, but it’s been unseasonably warm around here. If I’m being honest, I really love it. Being a farmer’s daughter and a rancher’s wife, though, makes me think forward and hope this early spring weather doesn’t mean an extra hot, dry summer. Nevertheless, everyone seems to be enjoying the weather as the calves are thriving and the bulls we’re getting ready to sell are not bogged down in a mucky mess due to rain or thawing snow.

The recipe I’m sharing today was inspired by my friend, Lisa, who not only teaches full time, but has a busy ag teacher/coach husband, is raising three kids and is in the middle of calving their small herd of cows too. Even though she’s busy, she always has time to make an extra meal for a neighbor or friend in need. She brought this meal to us after our son was born (several years ago), and it was a hit. I didn’t grow up eating meatballs, but this Sweet and Sour Meatball Recipe is definitely one my family enjoys. And as Lisa proved, it’s a great meal to share with others too.

IMG_1239__meatballsSweet and Sour Meatballs
2 lbs. lean ground beef
1/2 c. Panko or dry bread crumbs
1/4 c. milk
1/2 c. finely diced onion
1/2 c. finely diced green pepper
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
1 egg
Salt and Pepper

Combine 1/4 c. brown sugar, 1 T. cornstarch, 1 can of tidbit or chunk pineapple, 1/3 c. vinegar and 1 T. soy sauce. Bring to boil, add chopped red or green peppers (optional), then simmer until sauce thickens and veggies get tender. Add in meatballs. Serve with rice.


All meatball ingredients were mixed together then shaped into 1″ balls, then baked in oven for 20-25 or cook in pan. (photo taken midway through baking)

The last time I made them, I adapted her original recipe by making the meatballs ahead of time and putting them in the freezer. I put them in the slow cooker along with the sauce (which I didn’t cook beforehand). These turned out great!

I love being able to make these ahead of time and store them in the freezer for an easy weeknight meal. You can even double or triple the recipe easy enough to feed a crowd. Or share with a friend…



Sweet and Sour Meatballs served over brown rice.


Categories: Beef, Blogging, Recipes

Country Beef Sausage Burritos

I’m not a big breakfast eater, but they say breakfast is the most important meal of the day. And I have tried to get better at making sure my kids who need good nutrition to fuel their day of school and play, as well as my husband, who needs energy for his work on the ranch, have something to eat that they all will enjoy.

Earlier this year we received our annual Idaho Beef Council calendar. I always enjoy looking through the months to see what recipes they are featuring. I know beef might not be the first protein you think of for breakfast (me neither), but on one of the pages I found a recipe for Country Beef Sausage. And since we have a lot of ground beef in our freezer, I thought I’d give it a try. My family loved it! In fact, I made biscuits and gravy with it as well as Breakfast Burritos.

The other day I had some hamburger I had cooked up, a half a bag of tator tots and some tortillas. I decided it would be a good idea to put together a batch of burritos to have in the freezer. Easy for my hubby to grab as he heads out the door for his day. This recipe can easily be doubled or tripled depending on how big a crowd you need to feed or how many you want left in the freezer.


I mashed up the tator tots and cooked them a bit. I removed them and put them on a plate while I warmed the beef (mine was already cooked and drained) and added my seasonings. (see full recipe below) I also added diced yellow bell peppers and chopped onions. I added back the potatoes and mixed it all together, making sure everything was heated through. It makes a great hash all on it’s own too. You could add some scrambled eggs as well.


I spooned some mixture into a tortilla. There is an awesome local bakery that makes the best homemade tortillas! I added some chopped fresh cilantro and some shredded monterey jack cheese.


Fold up the tortilla then place it in a non-stick skillet. I don’t add any fat, oil or butter. I just crisp up each side a little.


A yummy, on-the-go breakfast with BEEF!


Country Beef Sausage Recipe (courtesy Beef Checkoff)
It’s easy to double the ingredients if making it for a crowd. I also like to make it ahead of time and have it in the freezer to pull out for different recipes.

1 pound ground beef (96% lean)
2 tsp. chopped fresh sage or 1/2 tsp. rubbed sage1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4-1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper

Mix seasonings and fresh ground beef lightly, but thoroughly to incorporate the spices. Brown ground beef mixture and cook thoroughly (temp of 160 degrees) and drain if necessary. Yields about 2 1/2 cups of beef crumbles.

You can mix in other ingredients like shredded hashbrowns, eggs, cheese, peppers, onions or whatever else your family might enjoy.

~ Maggie

Categories: Beef, Recipes

Steak Tacos

At the beginning of August our family spent a week at our local county fair. Our oldest was showing cattle and all the kids had various projects and activities to enjoy. When you spend a week at a fair, you can sometimes get tired of all the regular fair food options. We usually try to visit several different food booths to support the local groups trying to raise money, the 4-H leaders association, various churches, school clubs and community groups. One of newer food vendors was the Taco Truck. We frequented there a few times! This little recipe is inspired by the steak tacos we ate there. I was still craving them when we got home the next week. Super simple, fresh and healthy too!


Chopped white onion and a bunch of cilantro. I think fresh cilantro makes everything better. If you’re not a fan of the herb, you could probably use flat leaf parsley, but it won’t be quite the same.


Thinly sliced sirloin steak, seasoned with lime juice, cumin, salt and pepper. The thinner the slices the better. They cook quickly and are more tender.


Is your mouth watering yet?


I warmed corn tortillas, then added the meat, chopped onions and cilantro, then squirted everything with some lime juice. Delicious!

~ Maggie

Categories: Beef, Recipes

Sharing Beef


Handing out beef samples at the FitOne Expo.

If you follow us on Facebook, you saw some of us cattlewomen joined the Idaho Beef Council in Boise for the FitOne Expo benefiting St. Lukes last week. We stepped off the ranch and into the city to interact with consumers. It was such a great event and we had fun sharing beef samples with the public. Did you know there are 29 lean cuts of beef that fit into a healthy diet? And lean beef is one of the most flavorful and efficient ways to meet the daily value for essential nutrients such as zinc, iron, protein and B vitamins.

The recipe shared by the Idaho Beef Council is one many of us have used to cook for our own families. It uses an economical cut of beef like the chuck or shoulder roast, and it’s a slow cooker recipe. That makes it easy so you can fix it and forget it. Start it in the morning before work and come home to a great smelling and tasting dinner.

We had so many compliments on the wonderful flavor and tenderness of the dish. From high school football players to small children, parents, grandparents and people of all ages stopped by to grab a sample. The recipe uses simple ingredients people have in their pantries. In addition, there are four additional variations so you can add some other ingredients to give you different flavors. See the complete recipe below.


An easy beef recipe using an economical cut of meat.

 Four Way Shredded Beef (A Beef Checkoff Recipe)

  • 1 beef Shoulder Roast, Arm Chuck Roast Boneless or Blade Chuck Roast Boneless (2 to 2-1/2 pounds)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil (optional)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • Salt and pepper


  1. For optional browning, heat 1 tablespoon oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot. Brown beef roast on all sides.
  2. Place onion and garlic in 3-1/2 to 5 quart slow cooker; place roast on top. Cover and cook on LOW 9 to 10 hours or on HIGH 5 to 6 hours or until roast is fork-tender.
  3. Remove roast from slow cooker. Skim fat from cooking liquid, if necessary and reserve 1 cup onion mixture. Shred beef with 2 forks. Combine shredded beef and reserved onion mixture. Season with salt and pepper, as desired. Continue as directed in Recipe Variations below, as desired.
  4. Recipe Variations:
    Mexican Shredded Beef: Combine tomato or tomatillo salsa and beef mixture, as desired. Place in large microwave-safe bowl. Cover, vent and microwave until heated through, stirring occasionally. Serve in warmed flour or corn tortillas topped with pico de gallo, slice avocados, shredded cheese, chopped cilantro and/or chopped white or green onions, as desired.BBQ Shredded Beef: Combine prepared barbecue sauce and beef mixture. Place in large microwave-safe bowl. Cover, vent and microwave until heated through, stirring occasionally. Serve on whole wheat rolls topped with creamy horseradish sauce, coleslaw, Cheddar cheese slices, chopped green bell pepper and/or canned French fried onion, as desired.Asian Shredded Beef: Combine prepared hoison or teriyaki sauce and beef mixture. Place in large microwave-safe bowl. Cover, vent and microwave until heated through, stirring occasionally. Serve in lettuce or cabbage cups topped with shredded carrots, sliced cucumber, chopped fresh cilantro or mint, sriracha or crushed red pepper flakes and/or chopped peanuts, as desired.

    Indian Shredded Beef: Combine prepared Indian cooking sauce, such as Tikka Masala or Vindaloo. Place in large microwave-safe bowl. Cover, vent and microwave until heated through, stirring occasionally. Serve in naan or pita bread topped with toasted chopped pistachios or coconut, raisins, Greek yogurt or mango chutney, chopped fresh mint or cilantro and/or sliced cucumber or green onion, as desired.

Not only do we love eating beef in our own homes, but we enjoy sharing recipes so others can provide nutrient rich beef for their own families. Would love to hear if you try this recipe and how you add other ingredients or spices to make it your own!

Categories: Beef, Recipes