Hamburger Skillet Dinner a Fresh Take on Hamburger Helper

"This is a super helpful recipe I found in a "Company's Coming" cookbook. The whole family tucks into this dish with a salad on the side. I also like it because it follows the technique of Hamburger Helper (read: easy to do) without having to buy a box from the store."
photo by Chef Meka 75 photo by Chef Meka 75
photo by Chef Meka 75
Ready In:




  • Scramble-fry ground beef, onion and garlic in large non-stick frying pan 3-5 minutes.
  • Add zucchini and mushrooms.
  • Cook for 6-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until beef is no longer pink.
  • Drain.
  • Add water, spaghetti sauce, basil, sugar and oregano.
  • Heat until boiling.
  • Add pasta.
  • Reduce heat.
  • Cover.
  • Simmer for 30 minutes or until pasta is tender but firm and liquid is mostly absorbed.
  • Add mozzarella cheese.
  • Stir until melted.

Questions & Replies

Got a question? Share it with the community!


  1. This was great. My family got up for seconds and thirds which is very rare for us since we try not to eat past the full feeling. This was a great way for me to use some Zuc since I never know exactly what to do with it but always buy it. I did make a few adjustments just for what I had on hand. I used 3/4cup bottled mushroom stems/pcs. 1/2tsp thyme, 2 cups tomato sauce and elbow pasta. I used grated swiss cheese and the fam. topped theirs with parm. chz. Thanks so much for posting this recipe.
  2. My family loved this simple but delicious recipe. I actually used Prego's chunky garden sauce because it has zucchini already as well as plenty of other veggies. I also used can mushrooms and minced garlic instead. Even as a leftover dish it was sooo good!
  3. This is a standby recipe that I've made over a dozen times. Delicious! I omit the zucchini, mushrooms, and cheese, but otherwise as written, and I double it for my large family. Thank you for this great one pot dinner recipe!
  4. This was good and easy to make. I followed the recipe as written other then I needed to add more liquid to cook up the spaghetti. I just dumped some more sauce and water in, I didn't measure it. I also didn't add the mushrooms as I am not a fan. I used mozzarella cheese and just dumped some in. We all enjoyed this but thought it was a bit sweet. I don't normally put sugar in my sauce so next time I would omit that.
  5. my favorite meal of all time!


  1. I'm giving it four stars because my picky picky kids ate it up. Hubby and I did not care for it much though. It was edible and we did eat it but I think our tastes have changed since the days of college where we ate Hamburger Helper several times a week. I used marinara and had to add quite a bit more water than the 1 cup called for in the recipe. I didn't have zucchini but used some broccoli cores and shredded carrots to get the veggies in my kids. I will most definitely make again for them, but hubby and I will probably have more grown-up food. :) Oh I used egg noodles instead of spaghetti to make it more like Hamburger Helper.
  2. This was wonderful! Very easy and quick and it tasted great! I used onion flakes and garlic powder instead of the fresh onion and garlic.


I live in the province of Beautiful, British Columbia. I am a mom of one young daughter. I attend college classes and volunteer in my community. Classes and community work keep me very busy. It's so refreshing to come to Recipezaar and get inspired to cook something new. Thanks to Recipezaar for helping me make good meal choices for myself and my family. The make-ahead "Mixes" and OAMC have been especially helpful.
View Full Profile

Find More Recipes