Saturday, September 12, 2009

Skillet Chili Mac with Corn and Green Chilies

Sometimes I long for the old days of using hamburger helper for dinner. However my tastes have changed and hamburger helper is just gross to me these days. This dish brings back the easy meal making that the boxed stuff offers but it tastes nothing like the boxed stuff. The flavors mingled together perfectly and it was simple and quick to make. I was worried about adding the green chilies and almost skipped using them. I am so glad I did not since they really added to the dish. Give this simple and quick dish a try, you won't be disappointed.

Skillet Mac with Corn and Green Chilies
Melanie at My Kitchen Cafe

Serves 6

**If you want a traditional chili mac, omit the corn, chiles and cilantro**

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 pound ground beef
1 onion, minced
3/4 tablespoon chili powder (add more if you want more heat)
1/2 tablespoon ground coriander (substitute ground cumin for a smokier flavor)
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 8 oz. cans tomato sauce
2 cups water
8 ounces (2 cups) elbow macaroni
1 cup frozen corn
1 4.5-oz can chopped green chiles
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
2 cups shredded cheese (I used a combination of cheddar and monterey jack but you can use pepper jack or a mexican shredded cheese blend)

Heat oil in a 12-inch non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the ground beef, onion, chili powder, coriander, cumin and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook the ground beef until it is no longer pink. Drain off any excess fat or grease (the amount will depend on how lean your beef is). Stir in garlic and brown sugar and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in tomato sauce, water, and macaroni. Cover and cook, stirring often and keeping the heat at a steady simmer, until the macaroni is tender, about 12-12 minutes.

Stir in 1 cup of the cheese, frozen corn, green chiles and cilantro and sprinkle remaining 1 cup of cheese over the top. Cover and let sit off the heat until the cheese melts, about 2 minutes.

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  1. Is it just me or is there this one very specific, unidentifiable flavor in boxed Hamburger Helper that makes every single flavor taste basically the same? Blech!
    Yours looks DELISH!

  2. I agree with you fully and to expand there is a smell too. My neighbor makes hamburger helper, chicken helper, or tuna helper it seems daily and the smell about knocks me over each time. No wonder her husband wonders over each night around dinner time to see if I need help with anything.

  3. This sounds great! My husband still likes hamburger helper :( He is such a man.


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