Erin's Formula for Perfectly Seasoned Ground Beef - $5 Dinners

Earlier this week, I shared my "ratio recipe" for barely seasoned rice. And I thought I'd follow up with another of my most used "formulas" in my kitchen – perfectly seasoned ground beef. Perfectly Seasoned Ground Beef If you've ever watched ...


Erin’s Formula for Perfectly Seasoned Ground Beef - $5 Dinners


Earlier this week, I shared my “ratio recipe” for barely seasoned rice. And I thought I’d follow up with another of my most used “formulas” in my kitchen – perfectly seasoned ground beef.

Perfectly Seasoned Ground Beef

If you’ve ever watched one of my freezer meal assembly videos, you’ve heard me share this before. But in case you haven’t, here is my recipe, and some other tips too!

When browning ground beef, I always (well, 99.9% of the time) add this seasoning to the beef as it is browning. It’s a ‘ratio recipe’ – meaning it’s a certain amount of seasoning per pound of ground beef.

I keep it simple with just minced/dried onion and garlic powder, plus a little salt and pepper. With this simple and “generic” seasoning, then you can use the browned ground beef in a variety of meals – tacos, enchiladas, chilis, soups, and more!

Buying Ground Beef in Bulk

I encourage you to look for bulk buying opportunities for ground beef, if you have space for freezing it. The reason – it saves you money, it saves you sanity, and it will keep you from “going back to the store.”

This will save you money when you find price markdowns on “need to sell today meat” – with this meat, you need to brown and freeze it immediately. Or when you see the loss leader prices on grocery store sales.

Or if you’re a Zaycon Fresh member and they are running a ground beef or sitewide sale! (If you’ve never ordered with them before: sign up, get your order ready and use code BL20 to save 20% off your FIRST order!) 

Stock up, brown it up and get it into your freezer!

Browning Ground Beef in Bulk

Because I find myself buying ground beef in bulk – when it’s on sale, I also find myself with a large amount that I need to “process” quickly. Sometimes I make a few batches of meatballs and brown the rest. Sometimes I make a few meatloaves and don’t brown any. Sometimes I brown it all.

When I brown larger quantities of ground beef at the same time, I get out my 2 giant pots/saucepans and do about 4-5 lbs. in each pan. Because this will take a little longer to brown, you run the risk of some of the meat really sticking and almost burning to the bottom of the pan (even if you turn it really often.)

I highly recommend adding 1/4 to 1/3 cup of water per pound you are browning to the pan.

This will help keep the ground beef from sticking to the bottom of the pan, and it will steam/burn off as the beef browns. Browning 4-5 lbs. in one pot can take up to 20 or 25 minutes, so be patient. And stick nearby, so you can turn it and stir it as it browns through.

Freezer “Meal Starters”

So, about this 4-5 lbs. of ground beef that we just finished browning. Now what?!

I usually use this seasoned ground beef (recipe below) and add it to the freezer as a “meal starter.” This is just the seasoned browned ground beef, added to container or freezer baggies. You can decide what to make with it later. It’s a “meal starter” – meaning, you’ve already started cooking the meal. You can quickly thaw this meat and use it for whatever your palate desires that day!


I will take these 4-5 lbs. of browned ground beef and make meals for the freezer (see ideas below.)

I LOVE being “one step ahead” of dinner.

LOVE is not the right word.

I NEED to be “one step ahead” of dinner and my hungry boys.

Yes, NEED.

And this is a great way to do that!


Every month, we share a new ground beef meals plan for our MyFreezEasy members – so they can take advantage of meat sales and keep their freezer loaded with a delicious variety of meals!

You save big money by buying in bulk or on sale. You save big sanity by stashing meals in your freezer.

And now for that recipe I keep mentioning…

Note: There is a print link embedded within this post, please visit this post to print it.

Perfectly Seasoned Ground Beef

Yield – 4 servings

Preparation Time – 3 minutes

Cooking Time – 10 minutes


  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 Tbsp minced, dried onion
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • Few pinches of salt and pepper


  • In a large skillet, add the ground beef with the minced onion and garlic powder and saute for 7 to 9 minutes, turning often until all the meat is browned.
  • If you plan to freeze it, let it cool completely before adding to freezer bag or container.
  • Use the perfectly seasoned ground beef in your favorite recipes, like these Beef & Black Bean Oven Nachos!


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