Monday, November 18, 2013

Hamburger Rice Bowls and Easy Hamburger Patties

Today I thought I would share one of my favorite quick fix dinners - Hamburger Rice Bowls.  This dinner is inspired by a dinner my grandma used to make when I was a child, and was always one of my favorites, Hamburger Patties in Gravy over rice.  My grandma would cook up hamburger patties, and then let them simmer in cream of celery soup (which gives them a wonderful taste) then serve the patties with the cream of celery soup "gravy" over rice.  Today I make multiple variations of this recipe.

Hamburger Rice Bowls

Hamburger Rice Bowls make an easy week night dinner.  I start with frozen patties, I recently learned a trick for making and storing hamburger patties from my mother-in-law, I will share how to do that below.  You can also use pre-made frozen hamburger patties, which are quite a bit larger, but will still do the trick.

Another trick I learned from my mother-in-law, is to prepare your hamburger patties in the oven, rather than on the stove top- I used to avoid cooking hamburger patties on the stove top because of the greasy mess it would make- cooking them in the oven is much easier!  Just lay out your hamburger patties in a layer on a rimmed baking sheet, sprinkle the tops with Lawry's Seasoning salt (or your favorite seasoning), and bake at 375 F. until they are thoroughly cooked through, I flip them once, halfway through cooking.  Cooking time will vary based on thickness of patties.  I make my patties rather thin, so they cook quickly.

 Here are the patties all cooked up and ready to go.

While the hamburger patties are cooking, I also have my rice cooking.  I use a rice steamer, which I love, we eat a lot of rice around here and the rice steamer is really wonderful for making big batches of rice, of course you can also make it on the stove top following package directions.  My favorite rice is Golden Star Jasmine Rice, I love the flavor and the way it cooks up.  For this recipe, I also steamed a bag of broccoli, and prepared some brown gravy.

You can use your own recipe for classic brown gravy or use a gravy packet to make up a quick batch if you don't have any beef broth on hand.  To assemble, just scoop a serving of rice in a bowl, add the hamburger patty, and broccoli, and ladle on some gravy.  This meal is super easy, and surprisingly filling, the whole family loves it.

Variations- You can make this recipe with cream of celery soup (one of my favorites) or cream of mushroom soup as the gravy, and serve the veggies on the side.  You can swap out the veggies, and instead top the hamburger patty with a fried egg and brown gravy for Hawaiian style "Loco Moco" , my kids weren't too keen on the fried egg version, but I love it!

Here's how my mother-in-law taught me to make easy frozen hamburger patties.  I buy hamburger in large family packs, and split up the package into meal sized portions to put in the freezer, some of the hamburger I turn into these patties.  I put about a pound and a half of hamburger into a gallon sized freezer bag, then flatten it out so it spreads the meat to the side and bottom of the freezer bag ( I leave at least an inch or two from the top of the bag so it will close easily) You can flatten it using a rolling pin or just press it down inside the bag until it is uniformly flat.  Then start forming the little square patties using a flat spatula ( I love my wooden flat spatulas, one of my favorite kitchen tools!)  Press a line down a portion of the hamburger like shown in the picture below, make sure to press all the way through the hamburger, so the patties will freeze separately, careful not to tear the freezer bag.

I separate each bag into 9 patties just like shown below.  You may want to separate them into 6 patties if you want them to cook up a little larger for tradition hamburgers on buns.

Carefully close the top of the zipper bag to remove any air and thoroughly seal, then lay it in the freezer, being careful not to smash the patties, so they remain separate.  The nice thing about them being packed flat like this is, is that they store nicely in the freezer.

Whenever you are ready to make them, they pop right out of the bag!

When I first saw my mother in law making hamburgers like this for us one Sunday for lunch, I was impressed by how quickly they cooked up, and was eager to try it myself.  Definitely my new favorite kitchen tip! 

Thanks for stopping by!



  1. Oh my goodness....I would call this one of those 'duh' moments. That idea with the hamburger patties has just simplified my life 'so much'! 'Wonderful' helpful hint, April. And your burger with gravy on rice (love it with the cream of celery soup too) is now on tonights menu.

  2. Thanks! I agree, definitely a "duh" moment, such an easy way to make and freeze hamburger patties, and much easier to cook straight from the freezer! Just checked out your blog! Love the whole concept, I look forward to reading more of your posts in the future! :)

  3. A great idea! I will cook the hamburgers in the oven too!


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