Cowboy Dumpling Stew - Western Style Family Food

This dish will lasso your family to the dinner table!

Cast your vote for Cowboy Dumpling Stew

Great for Active Kids

This stew is easy to make and even more fun to serve. It has a secret ingredient - melted cheddar cheese in the middle of the fluffy white dumplings! Make sure you create about 20 dumplings (or more) because they are the most popular part of this super easy, hamburger helper family meal that can be whipped up in a jiffy on a busy weeknight. All that's required is a nice medium deep skillet (about 2-3" deep) which will be needed when you add the dumplings at the end.

One of the things about this dish (besides that it dirties only one pot and can be made rather quickly) is that it lends itself to helpers. My older child chops up the cheddar cheese. The younger one likes to dump the green beans into the sauteed meat and season the mixture. The green beans, if they are long, can be halved before adding in. Or just break them in half as you throw them in.

If you prefer frozen green beans, add more water to the hamburger mixture. You may also need a slightly deeper skillet so there is plenty of room for all the ingredients.

Turkey burger may be substituted, either 50% or completely so feel free to experiment. (For me 50% is best so you get a little more meat flavor.) For those who love Mexican food, a little salsa can also be thrown in and some ground chili pepper and even a little cumin in you feel like it. While the kids are "little" I stick with the basic recipe.

Here it is! Have fun - enjoy - and tell me what you think!


Hamburger, Tomato Sauce, Green Beans and a Surprise!

Green beans and hamburger with a base of tomato sauce.  It would be a delicious recipe even without the cheddar cheese cubes in each fluffy white dumpling!
Green beans and hamburger with a base of tomato sauce. It would be a delicious recipe even without the cheddar cheese cubes in each fluffy white dumpling! | Source
Cheddar cheese cubes (or Monterrey Jack or Swiss may be substituted) make a nice burst of flavor in the middle of each dumpling.
Cheddar cheese cubes (or Monterrey Jack or Swiss may be substituted) make a nice burst of flavor in the middle of each dumpling. | Source

Cook Time

Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 30 min
Ready in: 45 min
Yields: Serves about six people

Ingredients for the Cowboy Stew!

  • 1-1/2 lb. ground beef, brown and drain
  • 1 - 16 oz. can green beans undrained
  • 2 - 8 oz. tomato sauce, rinse with water, add to meat if a saucier stew is desired
  • 2 tsp. instrant minced onion, or substitute fresly minced
  • 2 cups Bisquick, or similar pancake / all purpose flour mix
  • 2/3 c. milk
  • 20 cubes cheddar cheese, about 1/2" size
  • pinch salt
  • dash pepper
  • pinch oregano

Western Style Food

  1. In a lightly oiled skillet, brown the hamburger, stirring with a wooden spoon to cook the meat evenly and thoroughly.
  2. Season the hamburger with salt and pepper to taste, continually stirring to prevent sticking.
  3. Add the 16-oz can of green beans, undrained, then two 8-oz cans of tomato sauce, 2 tsp. instant minced onion (or fresh onion if you prefer). Pinch oregano between your fingers and rub while adding it to the hamburger and green bean mixture. Gradually bring the cowboy stew to a boil, stirring as needed.
  4. On the side, prepare the dumpling mix. 2 cups of Bisquick (or similar), 2/3 cup milk can be added. For best results, put the dry mix in first, create a well in the center and add the milk gradually to prevent lumps, beating vigorously about 20 strokes.
  5. Chop up 20 or so cheese cubes (I use cheddar) and insert each cube into a small amount of dumpling batter. I find it is easier to work with your hands than a spoon. Grab a chunk of batter, insert the cheese and seal it up again. Add directly to the simmering meat mixture, cover, and cook another 12 minutes or so until the dumplings are cooked.
  6. A good, quick and easy dish which doesn't cost a lot to make. I like to make this dish when my kids have a friend over for dinner because it's a little out of the ordinary, as well as its name - Cowboy Dumpling Stew!

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