Ground Beef 5 Ways

Beef can be part of a healthy diet and give you good iron and protein. The trick is choosing the right recipes, using lean cuts and sticking to smart portiions. Here are five easy ways to enjoy ground beef guilt-free.

Folks may warn you away from red meat, but don't believe them. Beef can be part of a healthy diet and provide good amounts of iron and protein. The trick is to choose the right recipes, use lean cuts and stick to smart portions. Here are five easy ways to enjoy ground beef guilt-free.

Sloppy Joes

Okay, so Sloppy Joes are an obvious one, but still a beloved classic. Forget the canned stuff (and lose all the extra sugar and salt that comes along with it) and make your own. It's pretty easy to make your own sweet and sour sauce and mix it in with ground beef and veggies (more fiber). We serve ours up whole grain rolls or over brown rice or quinoa with a fresh garden salad on the side.

RECIPE: Sloppy Joes
Stuffed Peppers

To keep the calories and fat in balance, make ground beef a smaller part of the meal, not the main attraction. With all the peppers in season right now, I’ve been playing with some different versions of this basic stuffed pepper recipe.

Taco Salad

Ground beef in a salad? Absolutely! All you need is a mix of veggies, beans and a sensible portion of ground meat for this easy weeknight dinner (leftovers make a tasty lunch, too). Beans add fiber and energy-boosting B-vitamins, thiamin and riboflavin. Beef also contains two different B-vitamins (Niacin and B12) that helps with energy and healthy red blood cells. I created an easy recipe that everybody loves.

Mini Burgers

We can't skip burgers on this list. Get the flavor for less calories and fat by downsizing. These little sliders work as fun finger food for guests or can be a complete meal along with green beans or potato salad.

Bolognese

This thick, flavorful meat-and-veggie sauce goes great with pasta or slices of bread. This recipe, from Food Network's Giada de Laurentiis, does it right -- one pound of meat for six people, not two! I like to serve my Bolognese with small portions of whole grain pasta (about 1.5 cups cooked per person) and a big salad.

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