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Busy-Day Dinner Recipe
Busy-Day Dinner Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Busy-Day Dinner Recipe

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4.5 3
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I have used this recipe for over 30 years because it is delicious and so easy to make. You can mix it up in an electric skillet or on your stovetop. Kids love the tomato flavor and the crunch of the celery.
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Cook: 35 min.
MAKES:6 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Cook: 35 min.
MAKES: 6 servings


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 package (7 ounces) elbow macaroni, cooked and drained
  • 1 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1 cup chopped green pepper
  • 1 cup finely chopped onion
  • 2 cups thinly sliced carrots
  • 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder

Nutritional Facts

1 serving (1 cup) equals 312 calories, 8 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 37 mg cholesterol, 896 mg sodium, 40 g carbohydrate, 5 g fiber, 21 g protein.


  1. In a large saucepan, cook beef over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Add the remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil over medium heat; reduce heat and simmer gently, covered, for 30 minutes. Add water if a thinner stew is desired. Yield: 6 servings.
Originally published as Busy-Day Dinner in Reminisce January/February 1993, p51

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Reviewed Jul. 24, 2014

"I enjoyed this recipe because it's so easy to switch up the ingredients. I added in zucchini, fresh chives & a large garlic clove. I cut the carrots, onions, and tomatoes by half and eliminated the chili powder. I stir-fried the vegetables first, then added the rest of the ingredients & simmered about 10 minutes. It was very tasty with parmesan cheese sprinkled on top."

Reviewed Nov. 28, 2009

"This was a disappointing casserole. The flavor was not very exciting, although the leftovers were better than the first day. All the chopping took me quite a while--certainly not a meal to prepare when there's little time!"

Reviewed Sep. 17, 2009 Edited Jul. 24, 2014

"This is absolutely delicious; the flavors blend together so well. Feel free to substitute your favorite veggies (love zucchini). A very satisfying quick dinner."

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