Taco Ring
Recipe by Joan Ruskamp
Dodge, Nebraska

  • 1 lb. lean ground beef with ¼ cup onion, cooked
  • 1 package taco seasoning mix
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup sweet corn
  • 2 tbls water
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 2 8-ounce packages crescent roll dough
  • 1/2 head lettuce, shredded
  • 1 large tomato, coarsely chopped, for garnish
  • 1 cup whole pitted black olives halved, for garnish
  • Sour cream (to garnish)

Set oven to 375°F.  In a bowl, combine the cooked ground beef, taco seasoning mix, salsa, cheese, sweet corn and water.  On a lightly greased pizza pan, or round baking stone, arrange the crescent triangles in a circle, with the larger sides of the dough overlapping each other a bit in center, with the points to the outside (you should have a 5-inch diameter circle in the center).   Spoon a small amount of meat mixture over rolls.  Fold the points of the triangles over the filling, and tuck under the base at the center (the filling will not be completely covered).

Bake 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown.

Mound lettuce, tomato and olives with sour cream garnish in the middle of the ring and serve!

Sweet and Salty Pork Burgers
Recipe by Shana Beattie
Sumner, Nebraska

  •  1 lb ground pork
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp seasoned salt

Preheat the grill or a stovetop griddle to 350 degrees. In a large bowl combine ground pork, sugar and salt. Mix with your hands until the sugar and salt are incorporated evenly. Make 4 to 6 patties. If grilling, use a sheet of heavy foil and spray with cooking spray. The sugar caramelizes as they cook (which is delicious), but can cause the burgers to stick to the grill grate. Cook on first side for 6 minutes or until golden then flip for another 6 minutes until the internal temperature is 160 degrees. Add your favorite cheese right after they’re off the grill. We love provolone. Enjoy!

Meatloaf Cups
Recipe by Diane Becker
Madison, Nebraska

  • 2 eggs (beaten)
  • 1/4 c. ketchup
  • 1/4 c. milk
  • 1/2 c. crushed cornflakes
  • 1/4 c. chopped onion
  • 1 t. mustard
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1/4 t. pepper
  • 2 lbs. ground beef

Combine all. Press in greased muffin cups. Top with tablespoon of the piquant sauce below. Bake 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes.

Piquant Sauce

  • 3 T brown sugar
  • 1/4 c. ketchup
  • 1/4 t. nutmeg
  • 1 t. dry mustard

Stuffed Jalapeno Peppers
Recipe by Linda Schwarz
Bertrand, Nebraska 

  • 1 pound spicy sausage
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar or Worcestershire Sauce
  • 33 large jalapeno peppers
  • 1 pound thin sliced bacon

Prepare the jalapenos by cutting off the tops and removing the seeds and membrane from the insides using an apple corer.  Be careful not to poke holes in the sides of the peppers.  Drain on paper towels. I recommend wearing gloves for this spicy project!

Brown the sausage in a sauce pan. Chop the onions fine in a food processor.  Add the browned sausage and process until the meat is finely chopped.  Add the cream cheese, balsamic vinegar and garlic powder.  Process until combined. Stuff peppers with sausage mixture using a jerky shooter, pastry bag or small spoon.  Cover top of pepper with one-half slice of bacon using a toothpick to secure.  Place in jalapeno pepper cooker or custard cups making sure peppers remain upright.

Bake in a 350 degree oven for 1 to 1.5 hours.  The longer they bake, the milder they are.

Grandma Mag’s Hamburger Stroganoff
Recipe by Hilary Maricle
Albion, Nebraska

  • 2 lb Hamburger
  • 1 c Chopped Onion
  • 1 c Fresh Mushrooms
  • 1 can Cream of Mushroom Soup
  • 6 oz Sour Cream

Brown hamburger, drain off grease.  Saute’ onion and mushrooms, add hamburger with mushroom soup.  Simmer about 30 min.  Add sour cream just before serving over toast or noodles.

My favorite substitutes:

  • Leftover Sunday roast, cut into small pieces
  • Dried Chopped Onion (Spices Cabinet)
  • 1 7 oz can Mushrooms, pieces & stems, drained
  • Add a 2nd can of Cream of Mushroom Soup
  • Serve over mashed potatoes

Ham Loaf Superb
Recipe by Leslie Boswell
Shickley, Nebraska 

  • 1 ½  lb. ground ham
  • ¼ c. finely chopped onion
  • 1 ½  lb. ground pork, not sausage
  • 2 T. prepared mustard, divided
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1 ½ c. finely crushed soda crackers
  • ¼ c. brown sugar
  • 1 ½ c. milk
  • 1 c. pineapple juice
  • pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix ham, pork, eggs, crackers, milk, onion, 1 tablespoon mustard and pepper and shape into a loaf.  Place in a shallow baking pan.  In a saucepan, bring the 1 tablespoon mustard, brown sugar and pineapple juice to a boil.  Reduce slightly.  Pour ½ of it over loaf.  Bake for 1 hour.  Baste with remainder of juice mixture several times during baking.  These can also be made into individual serving size loaves.

Hot Beef Sundaes
Recipe by Dawn Caldwell
Edgar, Nebraska

This is one of those times you get a set of directions more than a recipe.

  • 1 lb. 1” Sirloin Cubes or Stew Chunks
  • 2 packets of Brown Gravy Mix (our family of four uses 2 packets)
  • Russet Potatoes (enough for each family member to have a heaping serving)
  • Sour Cream
  • Grated Cheese
  • Cherry tomatoes

Start with boiling the potatoes so they are ready when the meat gets done.  While the potatoes are cooking, heat a very small amount of vegetable oil in a skillet to brown the meat.  Turn the meat pieces several times while cooking to brown all sides and be sure meat is cooked completely through.

Once meat is cooked thoroughly (but not over-cooked, as you want it to be tender) mix up the gravy packets and pour the gravy in with the meat to thicken.

While the meat and gravy are simmering, mash the potatoes with your family’s desired amount of butter and milk.

To serve, start with a nice pile of mashed potatoes.  Drench with meat and gravy. Add grated cheese, a dollup of sour cream, and top with a cherry tomato. Serves four.

We love to have this meal with some steamed green vegetables and crescent rolls.   It is a perfect meal for the kids to have the night before an athletic event so they have plenty of carbs and protein going into the next day!

Big Hamburgers
Recipe by Chandra Horky
Sargent, Nebraska

  • 2 lbs hamburger
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 c. oatmeal
  • 1 tbsp of onion flakes
  • 1 tbsp of minced garlic
  • Seasoned salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¾ cup water

Mix all together (except water) and form into large patties.  Place in a 9×13 baking pan.  Spoon mushroom soup on to the patties.  Pour water into bottom of pan.  Cover with foil bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

I use Tastefully Simple’s Garlic Garlic™, Onion Onion™ and Seasoned salt and sometimes I like to add their Merlot Sauce as well.  For a different twist, try TS’s Bayou Bourbon Glaze instead of the mushroom soup.

Beefy Mexican Lasagna
Recipe by Kristen Eggerling
Martell, Nebraska

Total preparation and cooking time:  45 minutes
Makes 8 servings

  • 1 ½ pounds 95% lean hamburger
  • 2 cans (10 oz. each) mild enchilada sauce
  • 1 can (15 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 ½ cups frozen corn
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 9 corn tortillas
  • 1 ½ cups shredded Mexican cheese blend
  • ½ cup chopped tomato
  • 2 tablespoons chopped tomatoes
  • Crunchy tortilla strips (optional)

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Brown ground beef in large nonstick skillet over medium heat 8 to 10 minutes or until beef is no longer pink, breaking up into ¾ inch crumbles.  Pour off drippings.  Stir in 1 can enchilada sauce, black beans, corn and cumin; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat; simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Spray 11 ¾ x 7 ½ inch glass baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.  Arrange 3 tortillas in dish, cutting 1 as needed to cover bottom.  Spread ¼ cup remaining enchilada sauce over tortillas; cover with one third of the beef mixture, then one third of the cheese.  Repeat layers twice, omitting final cheese layer.  Pour remaining enchilada sauce over top.

Cover with aluminum foil.  Bake in 350 degree oven 30 minutes.  Remove foil; sprinkle with remaining ½ cup cheese.  Bake, uncovered, 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.  Top with tortilla strips, if desired, tomato and cilantro.

Can be made up to 24 hours ahead and refrigerated.  Increase baking time to 45 minutes. Recipe from The Healthy Beef Cookbook, by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and American Dietetic Association.