Ground Beef Stroganoff with luxuriously creamy, flavorful mushroom gravy made in less than 30 minutes without any cream soup!
This Easy Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe is your favorite Beef Stroganoff turned into a budget friendly, quick and easy weeknight meal! It’s mega comforting, intoxicatingly creamy, exploding with flavor and guaranteed to become a new repeat favorite! This Beef Stroganoff is made with juicy ground beef (or turkey), caramelized mushrooms, garlic and onions in a velvety sour cream spiked gravy. It reheats like a dream for make ahead lunches and dinners throughout the week. You can even freeze it without the dairy then simply add the dairy when you reheat. This Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe is traditionally served over a bed of noodles but is fabulous with mashed potatoes, rice, and even low carb zoodles and cauliflower mash!
GROUND BEEF STROGANOFF RECIPE
Last week during lockdown, I asked Patrick what he wanted me to make for dinner with our ground beef. I suggested Weeknight Spaghetti Bolognese, Baked Ground Beef Tacos, Korean Beef Bowls, or Hamburger Soup (all easy favs of mine), and instead he suggested Ground Beef Stroganoff – and I’m SO glad he did!
This Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe is a quick and easy back pocket ace (you can even use powders instead of chopping the aromatics) to eliminate the “what’s for dinner” stress. Your entire family will LOVE the warm, soothing, creamy sauce kissed with sour cream and mustard served over egg noodles. It’s rich, hearty, and satisfying, with layers upon layers of flavor – and did I say SO creamy already?!
This Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe is every bit as palate pleasing as its legendary beef cousin but made with budget friendly ground beef. This means it’s less expensive, doesn’t require low and slow cooking to ensure tender beef AND on your table in 25-ish minutes!
WHY Is this the best ground beef STROGANOFF recipe?
Many Ground Beef Stroganoff recipes use cream of mushroom soup to create the sour cream gravy, but I wanted to eliminate the mystery canned soup and still create a dreamy, creamy version.
My modernized Beef Stroganoff with Ground Beef, instead, uses flour to create a roux, beef broth, fresh mushrooms, onions, garlic, cream cheese, sour cream and layers of seasonings. These basic ingredients simmer together to create a complexity of flavor that tastes like it’s been simmering for hours but took you minutes!
What makes this the BEST Beef Stroganoff recipe:
- The roux. While the name sounds fancy because it’s French, “roux” simply means we’re going to add flour to the ground beef that will thicken the sauce, just like gravy. This means we get to use beef broth instead of cream of mushroom soup for a satisfying beefy flavor.
- SO creamy. This Best Ground Beef Stroganoff use both cream cheese and sour cream which translates to intoxicatingly divine. The cream cheese adds the right amount of richness so the sauce is comforting but not overwhelming. The sour cream adds a mild tanginess and creaminess while cutting through the richness.
- Seasoned to perfection: Beef Stroganoff with ground beef needs adept seasoning to cut through the soothing, rich sauce, otherwise you are just left with bland, sour cream gravy. My stroganoff sauce is seasoned with a generous amount of Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, beef bouillon, dried parsley, paprika, dried oregano, dried thyme, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Every element contributes to the depth of flavor without overwhelming it, leaving you craving bite after bite after bite…
- Best mushrooms. The mushrooms are caramelized by cooking in butter and olive oil for three minutes without stirring then sautéed to golden perfection before generously seasoning with salt and pepper – no bland, squishy mushrooms here! You’ll be using this mushroom technique for all your mushroom recipes!
- Plenty of sauce. Many recipes just use 2 cups of broth which is barely worth the effort of making the sauce! If I am going to make a meal (especially one that keeps beautifully), I am going to make enough for at least 6 servings.
- Make ahead or amazing leftovers. This Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe stores and reheats beautifully which means it’s a fabulous make ahead meal and repeat leftover favorite.
- Versatile. You can make this Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe as written, or feel free to adapt it. Omit the mushroom, add peas, asparagus, carrots, zucchini, bell peppers etc., serve over biscuits, cornbread, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, rice, cauliflower rice, pasta, zoodles, etc.
Ingredients & Substitutions for Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe
This Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe uses mostly pantry friendly ingredients. If you don’t have the fresh garlic or onions, you may use powder. You will need:
- Lean ground beef: may sub ground turkey, ground chicken or ground pork with the addition of beef bouillon for richer flavor.
- Mushrooms: use your favs, we like cremini mushrooms.
- Onions and garlic: you may substitute with 1 teaspoon each of onion powder and garlic powders.
- Flour: thickens, the gravy. Use your favorite gluten free flour needed.
- Beef broth: use low sodium beef broth so we can control the salt and add additional beef flavor with beef bouillon or better than bouillon.
- Dijon mustard: adds a slight tanginess; may substitute with ½ teaspoon ground mustard.
- Seasonings: dried parsley, dried oregano, dried thyme, paprika, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Use more or less to taste at the end of cooking.
- Cream cheese: full fat melts better but you can use less fat with tasty, possibly speckly results.
- Sour cream: full fat is less likely to curdle. You may also sub Greek yogurt.
WHAT IS THE BEST MEAT TO USE?
You can go pretty lean in this Beef Stroganoff because the ground beef is swaddled in creamy mushroom gravy. Go for 90-93% lean, meaning 90% is lean and 10% is fat. The fat will give the ground beef juicy beefy flavor without all the dripping grease. You can drain some of the grease (if there is any) but you’ll want to keep some of it because it replaces the butter in the roux.
CAN I USE GROUND TURKEY?
Yes! This easy Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe works excellent with turkey for the same reason you can use lean ground beef – the turkey is enveloped in the creamy gravy so you won’t even notice you are using a lean protein.
If you really want the turkey to taste like ground beef, then I also suggest adding 2 teaspoons beef bouillon. I use this trick in my turkey tacos and turkey chili and it is AMAZING! It infuses the turkey with rich, beefy flavor that will blow your mind!
If you do use beef bouillon, then omit the salt called for in the recipe and add salt to taste because beef bouillon contains salt so you will likely need less salt than the recipe calls for.
WHAT MUSHROOMS ARE BEST?
For the best Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe, I recommend baby bella (cremini) mushrooms. They are a more mature version of the white button mushroom and a younger version of the next mature variety, the portobella – that is why they are often called “baby bella” or “baby portobello” mushrooms. Once they reach about 4″ – 6″ in diameter, they are deemed a portobello.
Cremini mushrooms are more intensely flavored, heartier and earthier than white mushrooms and add deeper flavor to the stroganoff. Of course, if button mushrooms are all you have, or if you want a less intense mushroom flavor, then they are perfectly acceptable.
You are also welcome to use other flavorful mushrooms such as portabella, shiitake, or oyster mushrooms or more exotic mushrooms such as chanterelle, morel, enoki or king oyster mushrooms. You can even mix and match different varieties of mushrooms.
CAN I LEAVE THE MUSHROOMS OUT?
Mushrooms are considered a quintessential part of stroganoff, but yes, you can certainly omit the mushrooms if you prefer – it is YOUR Beef Stroganoff!
The beauty of making Beef Stroganoff with ground beef at home is you can customize it any way you want. When I made this last week, we didn’t have any mushrooms, so I simply omitted them. If you have some mushroom lovers and some mushroom haters, you can leave the mushrooms out of the sauce and just add them to the plates of the mushroom lovers.
CAN I USE GREEK YOGURT?
Yes, you can use Greek Yogurt instead of sour cream in this Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe. I recommend 1/2 cup of 2% Greek yogurt — at room temperature, anything with less fat has a problem melting and becoming smooth. Room temperature Greek yogurt is KEY to prevent curdling.
If you use Greek yogurt, it will still taste delicious, but don’t expect it to taste the exact same as the sour cream version.
STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS TO MAKE BEEF STROGANOFF:
To make this Ground Beef Stroganoff, the mushrooms are first caramelized in butter and olive oil; the beef is then browned with onions and garlic and finally the sauce is made by whisking in flour, beef broth, and seasonings then simmering until thick. The crowning glory is stirring in cream cheese and sour cream to achieve luxuriously creamy results. Here’s how:
STEP ONE – COOK MUSHROOMS
- Mushrooms: Melt 2 tablespoons butter with 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat in a large cast iron skillet. Increase temperature to medium-high; add mushrooms, stir to coat then spread into an even layer.
- Cook mushroom for 3 minutes without touching, then continue to cook and stir an additional 3-5 minutes, until all the liquid is evaporated and mushrooms are golden. Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper; remove to plate.
STEP TWO – BROWN BEEF
- To the now empty skillet, add beef and onions and season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
- Cook until beef is cooked through then add flour and garlic and cook, while stirring for 1 minute.
STEP THREE – ADD BROTH & SIMMER
- Turn heat to low and stir in beef broth, Worcestershire, Dijon, beef bouillon and all of the seasonings.
- Bring to a boil then reduce to a gentle simmer until thickened (but not too thick), about 5 minutes. Keep in mind that both the cream cheese and the sour cream will make the sauce thicker so you don’t want to simmer to end goal consistency at this point.
STEP FOUR – ADD CREAM CHEESE & SOUR CREAM
- Reduce heat to low and whisk in cream cheese until melted. Make sure your cream cheese is very soft before adding it to the Ground Beef Stroganoff, this will help it melt better (see section below on cream cheese).
- Add sour cream and stir until combined. You can add more or less sour cream depending on how tangy you would like your Ground Beef Stroganoff.
STEP FIVE – ADD MUSHROOMS
- Add mushroom back to sauce. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve over egg noodles/pasta of choice or mashed potatoes, rice, etc. Garnish with fresh parsley if desired.
HOW DO I KEEP MY SOUR CREAM FROM CURDLING?
I have never had a problem with sour cream curdling in this Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe or any recipes but here are a few helpful tips:
- Use room temperature sour cream. Remove it from the refrigerator when you start prepping the recipe.
- Use full fat sour cream. You don’t have to use full fat, but just know that lightened sour cream is more likely to leave you with white specks.
- Don’t increase heat above low. Simmering the sour cream will cause it to curdle.
- Stir until melted. Little specks will continue to melt when stirred gently over low heat.
HOW DO I KEEP MY CREAM CHEESE FROM CURDLING?
I LOVE the addition of cream cheese to Ground Beef Stroganoff. It adds a rich creaminess that cannot be achieved just from the sour cream alone.
When people see little specks of cream cheese in a dish, they think it is curdling but it is NOT curdling, it is the exact opposite – it just hasn’t melted yet! Your stroganoff sauce would have to be scalding hot in order for the cream cheese to curdle.
To help your cream cheese melt:
- Use full fat cream cheese. You are welcome to use less fat, but be aware your sauce will be spotty.
- Cut cream cheese into pieces. This will ensure your cream cheese softens evenly and you aren’t left with a hard center.
- Use VERY soft cream cheese. THIS IS KEY! Soften the cream cheese in the microwave to the point the pieces begin to melt into each other, about 20-25 seconds. If you do this, you will never have a problem with spotty cream cheese.
- Whisk: Whisking helps break down the cream cheese and evenly incorporate it into the sauce better then just stirring.
CAN I PREP GROUND BEEF STROGANOFF IN ADVANCE?
Absolutely! You can prepare all the ingredients head of time: chop onions, garlic, and mushrooms, measure seasonings, etc. for a meal that comes together in less than twenty minutes.
You can also completely make the Beef Stroganoff recipe then reheat. If you are serving over pasta, then make sure to not overcook the pasta. Rinse the pasta in cold water, drain and toss with some olive oil to prevent it from clumping together.
TIPS FOR BEST GROUND BEEF STROGANOFF RECIPE
This Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe is pretty straightforward, but here are a few tips and tricks for the BEST Beef Stroganoff every time:
- Mushroom variety. Use baby bella/cremini mushrooms for the most intense mushroom flavor.
- Don’t Submerge Mushrooms. If you rinse mushrooms in water, they will absorb water like a sponge and not brown as well or become as flavorful because they are full of water. Instead, clean them with a damp paper towel.
- Be patient. It is tempting to not cook your mushrooms to the point all the liquid is absorbed, but keep cooking until they are browned all over for maximum flavor.
- Cook mushrooms separately. It is best to cook the mushrooms separately from the sauce and stir them in before serving. If you cook them with the sauce, the mushrooms lose color, flavor and texture.
- Salt mushrooms at the end. Add salt and pepper when instructed at the end of cooking the mushrooms. If you salt your mushrooms while cooking, it will prevent them from browning in the pan.
- Salt to taste. If your Ground Beef Stroganoff tastes like its missing something – it is probably salt. Salt enhances all of the other flavors. Add additional salt to taste a little at a time if needed.
- Use VERY soft cream cheese: THIS IS KEY! Soften the cream cheese in the microwave to the point the pieces begin to melt into each other, about 20-25 seconds. If you do this, you will never have a problem with spotty cream cheese.
- Use room temperature sour cream. Remove the sour cream and measure it out when you start prepping the recipe. Room temperature sour cream mixes seamlessly into the sauce.
- Don’t simmer sour cream. Once you add the sour cream, the Ground Beef Stroganoff should be done simmering. If you add the sour cream to a simmering sauce it will curdle.
- Thin sauce if needed. If the sauce becomes too thick once the cream cheese and sour cream are added, simply stir in a little milk or beef broth until it reaches desired consistency.
- Don’t overcook pasta! Egg Noodles are thinner than other noodles so it is critical to not overcook them. I recommend testing your pasta about 2 or 3 minutes before the box recommends – pasta should be al dente– meaning it should still be a little firm in the center/ have a “bite” to it.
- Stop pasta from cooking. Strain and rinse your pasta with cold water to prevent it from continuing to cook.
- Prevent pasta from clumping. If you’re not using the cooked pasta right away, toss it with a little olive oil. This will prevent it from sticking together.
BEEF STROGANOFF RECIPE VARIATIONS
This Ground Beef Stroganoff can be a springboard for all sorts of yummy recipes! Here are a few ideas:
- Swap the protein. Use ground turkey, ground chicken, ground pork or Italian sausage. You can even stir in leftover chopped beef, shredded roast beef or shredded chicken.
- Add veggies: Add veggies such as peas, broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, zucchini, bell peppers, carrots, etc. You can even add leftover roasted veggies such as potatoes, squash, cauliflower etc.
- Make it gluten-free. To make this Ground Beef Stroganoff recipe gluten free, use your favorite gluten free pasta and gluten free flour.
WHAT TO SERVE WITH BEEF STROGANOFF WITH GROUND BEEF?
- PASTA: Beef Stroganoff with ground beef is traditionally served over wide egg noodles but is also delicious over other short, spiral pastas such as radiatori, roccheti, rotini, fusilli, and cavatappi.
- POTATOES: It is also delicious with anything that holds sauce such as mashed potatoes, baked potatoes or polenta.
- RICE: I love the texture of rice with stroganoff! Use any rice your heart desires from white, brown, wild rice blend or quinoa.
- LOW CARB: Serve Ground Beef Stroganoff over zoodles, spaghetti squash, cauliflower rice or cauliflower mash.
- BREAD: It is also fabulous over biscuits to create a version of “Biscuits and Gravy.”
WHAT SIDES TO SERVE WITH GROUND BEEF STROGANOFF RECIPE?
Ground Beef Stroganoff served over pasta, potatoes or rice, pairs beautifully with a fresh fruit side, salad and/or veggies:
- Salad: Strawberry Avocado Broccoli Salad, Wedge Salad with Blue Cheese Ranch, Cucumber Tomato Salad, Strawberry Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette, Apple Salad, Roasted Butternut Squash Salad, Cranberry Apple Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad, or Beet Salad with Orange Pomgranate Vinaigrette.
- Vegetables: Roasted Parmesan Broccoli, Roasted Parmesan Asparagus, Brown Butter Asparagus, Roasted Butternut Squash, Roasted Carrots or Glazed Carrots, Roasted Cauliflower, Roasted Brussels Sprouts or Sautéed Brussels Sprouts, or Roasted Root Vegetables
- Fruit: Grape Salad, Fruit Salad with Honey Lime Vinaigrette, Winter Fruit Salad with Honey Lime Poppy Seed Vinaigrette, Berry Salad in Honey Mascarpone, Tropical Fruit Salad,or Pina Colada Fruit Salad
- Bread: Garlic Bread, Dinner Rolls, Garlic Parmesan Butter Breadsticks or Pesto Pull Apart Bread.
CAN I REHEAT EASY GROUND BEEF STROGANOFF?
This easy Ground Beef Stroganoff reheats beautifully for an ideal make ahead dinner and the best part is (aside from heat and eat) is that the leftovers taste even better the next day as the flavors build and meld.
You can reheat Ground Beef Stroganoff in the microwave or stove top, stirring a couple times until heated through. Once heated, you may need to add a splash of beef broth or water to thin out the sauce as it will thicken slightly in the refrigerator.
CAN I FREEZE GROUND BEEF STROGANOFF?
Yes, you can freeze Ground Beef Stroganoff WITHOUT the cream cheese or sour cream, otherwise the sauce will separate when reheated and the texture will be unpleasant. So, it is best to make with the intention of freezing and not to freeze leftovers. To Freeze:
- Cook stroganoff according to directions up to the point of adding the cream cheese and sour cream. Add the mushrooms back to the sauce but do NOT add sour cream or cream cheese.
- Let stroganoff cool completely in the refrigerator.
- Add stroganoff to a freezer safe container or freezer size bag, seal, label and freeze.
- When ready to eat, thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
- Warm over medium low heat on the stove. Once warm, turn heat to LOW and stir in cream cheese until melted followed by sour cream.
Helpful Tools for this recipe
- Cast iron skillet: A quality cast iron skillet is a must in your cooking arsenal. It browns meat beautifully and seamlessly transitions from the stove to the oven. I love my super high quality Staub and Le Creuset. Their enamel interior don’t require additional seasoning and resists staining, dulling, wear and tear. They are a one-time pricey purchase that will last a lifetime. You can also go with a more economical, trusty skillet like this one which also works very but it will need to be seasoned and always rubbed with vegetable oil after using.
- Pasta Pot and Strainer: I LOVE this pasta pot with a removable strainer and use it every time I make pasta! The set allows you to simply lift out the strainer when the pasta is done cooking. The stainless steel also does not discolor, react with food or alter flavors.
- Garlic press: I use this every single day! It is the ultimate garlic press- it is easy-to-use, easy-to-clean and minces garlic with one squeeze.
- Onion chopper: onions make me cry like crazy so I LOVE this onion chopper! It’s made with stainless steel discs for chopping/dicing the hardest vegetables/cheeses with 1 easy motion. It’s also backed by a lifetime warranty – and I can guarantee way less tears!.
LOOKING FOR MORE DINNERS WITH GROUND BEEF?
- Lasagna Soup
- Best Lasagna
- Beef, Bean, Cheese Burritos
- Honey Buffalo Meatballs
- Million Dollar Baked Penne
- Swedish Meatballs
- Albondigas Soup
- Cheesy Taco Soup
- Jalapeno Popper Taquitos
- Easy Tostadas
Want to try this Ground Beef Stroganoff RECIPE?
Pin it to your Dinner, Beef, or 30 Minute Meal Board to SAVE for later!
Find me on Pinterest for more great recipes! I am always pinning :)!
©Carlsbad Cravings by CarlsbadCravings.com
Carlsbad Cravings© Original