Homemade Hamburger Helper: Cheeseburger Macaroni

I first shared this recipe back in 2008. It’s amazing to sit back and think about how much has changed since then. I guess 6 years can do that…

There’s one thing that hasn’t changed though, and that’s our love of this Cheeseburger Macaroni! As the kids have gotten older, they’ve all developed very particular tastes and dislikes (much to my chagrin and best efforts), but this meal is one they all clean their plates with. That’s always a win in my book!

Here’s a quick overview of the updates in this recipe as compared to the original:

  1. It’s truly homemade Hamburger Helper style in that everything cooks in 1 pot.
  2. The flavor has been tweaked slightly. After years and years of making this, I’ve finally hit on just the right combination of ingredients to give it the best, most “cheeseburgery” flavor, at least as far as the 7 of us are concerned.
  3. The recipe is gluten free friendly. My husband has celiac and 95% of our meals have been gluten free since late in 2011, so I’ve learned to modify many of our favorites so that we can all enjoy the meal.

cheeseburger macaroni

Homemade Hamburger Helper: Cheeseburger Macaroni
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Homemade Hamburger Helper: Cheeseburger Macaroni. Gluten free friendly.
Recipe type: Ground Beef
Cuisine: American
Serves: 6-8 servings
  • 1 lb. ground beef or ground turkey
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 1 t. salt
  • ½ t. garlic powder
  • ½ t. black pepper
  • 12 oz. elbow macaroni (I used gluten free)
  • 3 c. beef stock
  • 2 c. milk
  • ¼ c. ketchup
  • 1½ T. mustard
  • 1 T. dill pickle relish
  • 2 c. shredded cheddar cheese
  • Additional salt and pepper, optional
  1. Put ground beef or turkey and diced onion in a large, deep skillet and season with salt, garlic powder, and pepper. Cook until browned and drain.
  2. Stir in macaroni noodles, beef stock and milk.
  3. Bring to a slow boil, stirring frequently.
  4. Cover and reduce heat to low. Cook, stirring occassionally, for about 15-20 minutes, until noodles are tender. (I find that the gluten free noodles cook more quickly than regular noodles, so check frequently.)
  5. Remove cover and stir in remaining ingredients, stirring to combine well. If the sauce is too thin for your liking, cook for a few additional minutes.
  6. Enjoy!

The leftovers of this are fantastic when made with regular pasta, but not so much when you use gluten free noodles. Just something to keep in mind!