Browning Ground Beef in Your Crock Pot
For an easy, if not necessarily quick way to brown a large amount of Ground Beef…use your crock pot! About twice a month I purchase five to seven pounds of ground beef and then come home still having to repackage or cook it up. This process, although a money saver, eats more of my time than I care to invest in browned beef!
Brain cramp….. Why not use the crock pot? Today I tossed in five pounds of ground beef, a diced onion, couple of diced sticks of celery and carrots. Turned on the crock pot to low and promptly forgot about it! Yep, I didn’t smell it, so I forgot about it. Thankfully, ground beef is very forgiving because when I gasped and went running for the kitchen…. the crock pot was simmering away.
OK OK… I can hear the snickers…. and YES the ground beef was one large chunk of browned ground beef (this wasn’t exactly what I was going for when this experiment started)!
Drained the grease from the crock pot, broke up the ground beef into smaller chunks and viola… I had a MASSIVE AMOUNT OF GROUND BEEF!! Already seasoned and ready to store for later.
I quickly thought about lunch tomorrow and divided the beef into five baggies (let it cool while draining so you don’t melt your baggies)! Don’t ask how I know this…
Four baggies went into the freezer and one was dumped back in the crock pot. This batch became chili which will simmer overnight on low.
Remaining one pound baggies of prepared ground beef are ready to be used as the need arises. Simply grab a bag out of the freezer and dump into any dish that requires ground beef. Tacos are now so super quick, as are most pasta dishes. By the time you heat the pasta sauce with the beef in it, the pasta will have finished boiling.
NOTE: If you salt the ground beef while browning, wait to season your prepared dish until after you add in the ground beef. Again, this is from experience!